Each month Sonsi will feature one of YOU in our YourStyle article, highlighting some of your favorites in Fashion, Life and Home. This lucky lady will not only be featured on SonsiLiving but also get to showcase their very own, hand-picked clothing collection on Sonsi … Shop Diane’s YourStyle Collection here!
Tell us about Diane, in your own words: Hello, my name is Diane Figley and it is amazing to be here with you! I moved to Vancouver, WA in 1993. I came from Southern California and to say the move was a culture shock is putting it mildly. However, with that move came many changes. My son going through high school and then moving back to CA for college. My first marriage coming to an end. Learning a new job. Finding the man of my dreams. Starting our own Wedding Ministry and to date marrying over a thousand couples. Becoming Mrs. Diane Claus, a character that continues to evolve (she is a very modern Mrs Claus). Becoming a catalyst, empowering people to look from within and pull out their inner strengths and beliefs. To not be afraid of who you are. And a Breast Cancer survivor.
The last one has taken up almost four years of my life. From January 2009 until now I have undergone 18 operations. I am very pleased to say I am cancer free. I had so wanted to be the ‘normal’ breast cancer survivor. Have surgery (maybe two or three), have chemo and/or radiation and then be done. Off to walk in the “Walks” and bond with other fellow survivors. Show my friends that although this is scary, it will be easier than they dreamed. However, the Lord had something different planned for me. Breast Cancer has changed my life. Breast Cancer has given me strength in myself, brought out the warrior in me.
Breast cancer has brought a challenge for me in finding flattering clothing for my new ‘normal’. My breast have been greatly reduced in size, but my waist and hips didn’t follow! LOL Finding Sonsi has helped me feel confident in finding the clothes that fit me now.
Describe your style: Eclectic and Daring! I like to push the envelope. Having always being a big beautiful woman, it was not until I met my husband in 1999 that I finally began to believe that I was beautiful. He has opened my eyes to help be become the extrovert I am today! Self esteem is so important for all of us and I believe that we partially reflect that in how we dress and how we look. Finding fashionable clothing to fit us is a challenge. I am pretty tall at 5’11 and it was years before I could find pants that were long enough! I learned to sew… but ran out of time! I am so glad that we all can now find clothes that fit us in the style we like!
What costume will you be wearing this Halloween? I LOVE Halloween! I love to dress up! So when I saw this Saloon Girl outfit I knew it was for me. I love the frilly tulle at the bottom of the skirt. It’s not too short and it is sassy! I’ll have a round tray to deliver those drinks just as fast I can to those gentlemen!
What advice can you give for other women going through a hardship? Life changes. That is the ONE constant that I have learned. It can and does literally change in a minute. Never give up on yourself. You ARE stronger than you realize. You need to dig DEEP into you and pull out all the good that is you. So often we have been tramped down to believe we are worthless. I have learned that all people have insecurities…that the reason some people are mean or arrogant is because of their own insecurities. Think about what really matters. Remember that just as when the sun is covered by clouds, it doesn’t mean the sun has left, it is only covered. It will return. I have been through so many situations; a very degrading relationship that I myself didn’t realize for 14 years; a special needs step-son whom I so wish I could do more for; Breast Cancer, and while my breast cancer story is different from many others and it isn’t what I had hoped for, it is through all my life experiences that I have been able to cope (along with an incredible husband, son and family) to become who I am today. Truly, the sun does rise again.
Tell us about your DREAM date, outfit included! My dream date would be at the top of the Space Needle in Seattle. The view form there is amazing, you can see all around Seattle. Afterwards we would head over to a club to relax and talk and dance a bit. I LOVE Seattle.
Who or what are your biggest inspirations? My biggest inspiration in my mother. That might sound odd, but for me there is no one else like her. She worked in the ’50′s when all my friends mothers were there at home after school. She was the one who provided for us. She taught me how do deal with living on very little money. That money (while nice) does not always equate to happiness. That your life can be rich, without being wealthy. I am so thankful for her, she has taught me and continues to teach me each and every day on how to be gracious, accept myself and live fully. I am so very proud of her.
What advice would you give to your 16 year old self? To appreciate youth and not to try to grow up so fast. To realize the opportunity we are given with school and to try to do much better than I did. To not lie. To live your life in a way that you have no regrets. To hurt less, give more and listen. Listen to nature, listen to what your relatives what to share with you for they are lessons in how they would have liked to do something different. To drive slower and to know that you are beautiful just the way you are.
What is your favorite holiday? Christmas! I get to read stories to all the children, bake cookies. But the very best? Traveling with Santa!
What is your #1 beauty secret? Beauty Secret does help a lot! LOL. But, since having cancer and going through chemotherapy I have learned that beauty is within. I now love to try new looks. My hair… oh my gosh! I have had more fun with my hair that ever. When I was diagnosed and began chemo I was mad. I knew that I was going to lose my hair and I wanted to make a statement. So before that happened I decided to make my statement! I wanted PINK hair. I wanted the world to know that I was going kicking and screaming into all of this! We found a friend of a friend that had a bunch of those plastic pink flamingos and we went over to his house and took a buck of pictures! I love those pictures. Many have told me that was my far my greatest statement. So now and then when I do return to the hospital for additional surgeries, I always do my hair PINK. Everyone knows me, and they take great care of this PINK-haired lady. So, beauty secret? Be you. Have fun and your smile IS the most beautiful asset.
Thank you to Diane for being our October YourStyle & an amazing inspiration to us & our Sonsi Women! Don’t forget to shop Diane’s curated YourStyle collection at Sonsi.com all month long!