Swyft: The Origin Story
How a dad fighting to save his family led to one of the leading done-for-you website services in the industry
It's June 9, 2016.
I'm sitting at the kitchen table checking email. My wife is close by, rocking back and forth with our four-month-old daughter in her arms.
“Call me at home as soon as you get this.”
- Dr. Ehrhardt
I’d gone in for tests the day before, so I excuse myself, walk upstairs to our bedroom, and make the call.
“I’m so sorry, Jason, but your results came back positive. You’re scheduled to start treatment next week.”
I’m numb. I walk into my daughter’s room where Megan is waiting, Cora still in her arms. My first thought is not being there to walk her down the aisle. I don’t say a word, wrap my arms around them both, and cry for the first time in 15 years.
The realization that I have cancer is terrifying, but even more concerning is how I'm going to take care of my family.
My income all but vanished. Medical bills emptied our savings. Our options seem to have come down to selling our home and my wife getting a second job.
Even though I have the excuse of cancer, I still feel like a failure…as a husband and as a new dad…and I’m breaking the one promise I made to myself all those years ago.
I grew up in a small blue-collar town in Wisconsin, raised by a single mom who worked third shift at a light bulb factory to take care of me and my two older brothers.
She did the best she could, but without support it was a struggle. Moving from one apartment to the next. Power turned off repeatedly. Never enough money to buy the things we needed.
And then one day, while grocery shopping with my mom, I remember being so scared that someone from school would see us paying with food stamps that I made a promise to myself, “If I have a family of my own, I will NEVER let them struggle like this.”
And now, watching my wife worry about how we’ll make it, we’re there. I’m lost. I’m scared. And I’m ashamed.