A woman recently diagnosed with terminal cancer is getting the wedding of her dreams — thanks, in part, to the generosity of strangers.
Jen Bulik, a 35-year-old hair stylist from Mountain View, Calif., was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in December. Despite aggressive treatment, the cancer spread to her lymph nodes, and doctors told her in June she has fewer than six months to live.
"I just got news that there are cancer cells in the spinal fluid," Bulik wrote in a blog post. "This happens to 5% of cancer recipients. And I'm [one]. Talk about special. According to the doctors the prognosis is grim. According to me there is still hope and possibility."
Jeff Lang, her boyfriend of six years, proposed earlier this month.
"Must [have] done well," Lang wrote on Facebook. "She fist pumped it!"
Erica Ota, a Bay Area wedding planner, heard about Bulik's story and offered her services for free.
"They only wanted to have a simple backyard BBQ with friends," Ota explained. "However, when I took a look at her Pinterest board, I saw all of the things she had been wishing for and decided that I wanted to give them all to her and more."
Ota was able to secure 30 local vendors, who are donating more than $50,000 in services to make Bulik's dream wedding come true. (Ota says she's in talks with Hawaiian Airlines to give the couple a free seven-day Hawaiian honeymoon.)
“It was my goal for them not to pay a dime,” Ota told NBCBayArea.com. “I thought to myself, 'These people have already suffered enough, why not be able to give them a gift?'"
The wedding is Saturday.
Ota started an online fundraising campaign for those looking to contribute. A separate campaign launched by Bulik's family and friends has raised more than $20,000 for her medical expenses.
Despite the grim prognosis, Bulik says she's doing "incredibly well."
"I checked in with Hospice today and she says I made her job easy," she wrote in a "wedding week update" on her blog. "In the meantime I've been doing wedding stuff. I did a polish change on my toes today, the color I had wasn't quite right. I got a wig haircut. My wedding wig now looks more real. I found a clutch for the wedding dress. [...] The increase in health has made all of these things possible, I have the energy to do it. I'm being asked very minimal in terms of wedding anything. This is amazing because so many people are helping and giving me space to rest and heal. I'm having a lot of fun."