Tag Archives: health

I Have MS

The title of this post is the short story. Below, is the long story.

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It has been a rough winter. We lost out on another house we were in love with, we’ve had car issues, I found out my foot has been broken for two years and I’ve just been walking on it like no big deal, and I was diagnosed with MS.

Let’s rewind a bit…

In March of 2010 I started having trouble breathing. I felt like I was never getting a full enough breath or getting enough oxygen. The doctors told me it was anxiety, once even prescribed Ativan. I knew it wasn’t, but tried to ignore it as best I could. A week or so later, I started losing feeling in my feet. I assumed it was a pinched nerve or bulging disk and spent a few hundred bucks on massages. They didn’t help, and the numbness and pins and needles feeling spread up my legs and torso, to my arms, and hands. It was so bad, I was unable to type on the keyboard and couldn’t sense temperatures.  Again, multiple doctors told me it was anxiety. Finally, in June, I met with one doctor who said “Presenting with these symptoms at your age (27) is textbook Multiple Sclerosis.” He immediately sent me for hours, and hours of MRIs on my brain and spine, where a 1.5cm (half inch) mass was found in my spinal cord between C2 and C3. A really, really crappy place to have a mass.

MRI result

Here I was, engaged, planning a wedding and life with my husband, thinking about our future family and suddenly my world was crashing down around me.

I met with a neurologist who said “I don’t think this is MS, and even if it is, I can’t diagnose you with it since you’ve only had one event (flare)” She sent me to a Neuro oncologist because she felt it was probably a tumor.  He looked at it, sent me for more MRIs, CT, more blood work than you can imagine, and did a spinal tap (which was absolutely horrible, made worse by the fact that I have “unique spinal anatomy.” Because, of course I do…) My spinal fluid came back pristine, and slowly my symptoms subsided. My neuro oncologist brought my films to the Tumor Board (a group of super smart oncologists who look at tumors and try to determine what they are and how to best treat them. They didn’t have any suggestions other than “Well, tumors don’t just shrink on their own, and if the symptoms are getting better, it must be shrinking.” But maybe it’s an astrocytoma or a glioma, or some other type of scary tumor that just isn’t malignant…yet. So, the plan was to watch and wait. They wanted me to get another MRI in 6 months, and then every year. But I didn’t have insurance and was no longer eligible for the Hospital’s “charity” so, since I didn’t have symptoms, I just waited.  As soon as I had insurance again, I made appointments but then COVID came along and wrecked those plans, too.

Finally, in January of this year, I was able to get a spinal MRI. The spinal lesion that had been a constant worry for over decade was smaller. Half the size. This was great news, but I was still worried about my brain.  Over the past couple years I’ve had vertigo, headaches, hearing issues, vision issues, fatigue, and other symptoms that had always been chalked up to my Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, anxiety, allergies, and just being a busy mom. But I knew something wasn’t right, and having one lesion that was never diagnosed has always left me worried that another could appear. Fortunately, my amazing doctor listened to me, and sent me for a brain MRI when I requested it.

The results came through my portal the next morning. The news wasn’t good.

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Lesions in my brain, one prominent, two very tiny, “Likely represent demyelinating lesions.”  After a call with my doctor, he referred me to the MS Center at our local hospital. I met with my new neurology team, who reviewed my MRI results with me and determined, without a doubt that I have MS.  Fortunately, my MS is “mild” at this point. It’s not aggressive, and it’s a good sign that I have gone so long without any symptoms. He told me that he rarely sees patients at this stage of disease because most people wouldn’t discover it at the point. Most folks come in having lost vision, or experiencing sudden paralysis or at least sever weakness. However, MS is an incredibly unpredictable disease, and there is no way of knowing if I’ll continue to have little to no progression, or if everything will speed up. I was given options. I could wait it out, see if I have another flare or more lesions show on my next MRI a year from now. I could go the conservative route and try some of the less intense medications. Or, I could treat it aggressively with the top tier meds. My doctor said “It all depends on what level of disability you’re comfortable risking. ”

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The answer to that is none. So, I have decided to treat this aggressively. I’ll start meds as soon as possible. It will be a monthly infusion, that will hopefully prevent future lesions. There are possible side effects, some boring, some scary, but the (very low) risk is worth the reward.

So that’s a lot of words to say, I’m really scared and sad and angry, but also hopeful. Honestly, it’s not the physical symptoms I’m most concerned about. Could I end up needing a cane or a wheelchair? Yup, I could. I’m mostly ok with that. It’s to potential cognitive issues that scare me the most. Like I said, the disease is completely unpredictable, I have no idea what will happen next. But there is some relief that comes with finally having a diagnosis. When you have a mass of unknown origin in your body, you never stop thinking about it. For years I was worried about”What ifs” What if it IS a tumor that suddenly turns malignant? What if it starts growing again and leaves me paralyzed or dead? What if more tumors grow? What if it IS MS? Well, now I know and we can treat it. Now I know WHY I feel the way I do and why my body doesn’t always work the way I want it to. Now I know it’s not in my head.  (Even though it is literally in. my. head.)

I have to say how incredibly fortunate I am to live in a place with such incredible medical care. I am grateful to have an MS Clinic here where I have access to the most knowledgable doctors, and a team of other health care workers like Occupational and Physical Therapists on-site. I am also feel so grateful that I have supportive friends, coworkers and bosses, and of course my incredible family.

So I will learn to live with this, and fight it when I need to fight. I’ll likely write a lot more about this as I go through it. I’ve never hidden any of my life’s challenges, and feel that my journey may help others in the future. Like my adoption story and postpartum journey, if I can help one person, it will be worth it.

Thanks for reading, and please don’t treat me any differently. Ask questions if you have them, don’t make assumptions. I’m still the same Sarah.

Here’s some info for family (and friends) of someone newly diagnosed with MS

 

Simple Water Bottle Storage Ideas

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MyLittleRemedies #CollectiveBias

You wouldn’t know by looking at her 33lb 38 inch frame, but the words I hear from Avery most (all day, every day) are “I’m Hungry!!!” followed by “I’m Thirsty!”  If given the chance, she’d sit and snack all day. I try not to give in to all her snacking demands (because honestly, 90% of the time she’s just bored) but, I never say no to her requests for water!Avery drinking waterThis is especially true when she’s been sick. Last week, our kiddo had her first ear infection. It had come on after a few days of some major congestion. Her doctor had prescribed her an antibiotic, and recommended that we also pick up a probiotic since the antibiotics can cause some tummy trouble.  Avery has always had some digestive issues, so we’re no strangers to the benefits of probiotics!little remedies at targetAfter her appointment, we headed to Target (of course) where I picked up her prescription and checked out the Digestive aisle for probiotics. I noticed a BRAND NEW option on the shelf! Little Remedies® NEW Probiotic Plus Electrolytes I also noticed the signage reading “Buy 1 Little Remedies product and get a $5 Target Gift Card” (this offer started4/24 and runs through 5/14) and you all know how much I love a Target gift card!!I love that Little Remedies® Probiotic Plus Electrolytes contains 5 billion active cultures of the probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, which helps keep the digestive system in balance and supports immune function and that it also contains electrolytes to provide vital minerals and nutrients to help support hydration.* It is also free of artificial flavors, artificial dyes, and parabens!!!Little Remedies probiotic plus electrolytes

And Avery is a big fan of the yummy berry flavor! little remedies hydration

When she’s feeling 100% Avery participates in so many activities and I always want to make sure she’s hydrated. From soccer, to t-ball, to dance, we never leave the house without a water bottle, and let me tell you , we have quite a few!!stay hydrated at danceBut where do we store them?  They take up so much space in our small kitchen. They fall down in the cabinets and fly out at me when I open the door. I know that I can’t possibly be alone in this, right?? simple water bottle storage ideasOne of the easiest storage ideas I’ve found, is to just keep the bottles filled and in the fridge.  Avery likes this, because she can just grab one when she’s thirsty without having to wait for me to get it for her.water bottles in fridgeAnother option we have used, is to put a basket in the cabinet. This keeps all the bottles contained, and they aren’t falling all over.water bottle basketIf you just don’t have space in your fridge or cabinets, but you do have a pantry or closet, you can try this. Buy an over the door shoe organizer, and store the bottles in there! They fit perfectly, are nicely organized, and hidden behind the door!store bottles in shoe organizerAnother idea is a DIY storage chain. You can hang it wherever is convenient. It’s SIMPLE and INEXPENSIVE (seriously, it cost less than $5)  Here’s how I made one for our pantry.

You’ll Need:chain bottle storage supplies

  1. A length of plastic chain (available at your local hardware store–I bought a yard for 64 cents!!!)
  2. Carabiners (Buy one for each water bottle)

THAT’S IT!

Now here’s how simple this is.

Step One:
Attach carabiners to chain.carabiner on chainStep Two:
Attach water bottles to carabinersbottle on carabiner

The End.

Easy, right?chain water bottle storageI’m glad we’ve found some simple ways to keep our water bottles organized and within easy reach.  Avery loves being able to grab her bottle, and fill it up all by herself!

We loved the Little Remedies® Probiotic Plus Electrolytes so much, I’m definitely going back to Target to pick up a couple more boxes, so I can get in on the $5 Target Gift Card offer!! (Now through 5/14)

Find more great reasons to love the new Little Remedies® Probiotic Plus Electrolytes by visiting this link:http://cbi.as/3bgpu

*This statement has not been evaluated by the food and drug administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

I’m Fat

I’m fat. Really. I am. By all standards of fat measurement, I fall into the “Obese” category.  I don’t need any one to tell me I’m fat. I own a mirror, and I go shopping for clothes. I’m aware.

And I’m working on it.

I don’t say this as a put down or an insult. And I definitely do not say it to get people to tell me I’m NOT fat.  It’s just a fact. I am very overweight. Fat.  My body doesn’t define me as a person, I know this.  I’m fat. I’m also funny, and generous, and a good friend, and an artist, and a mom….I’m a lot of things.

I’ve never been what one would call “skinny” I’ve always been “chubby” or “husky” or “big” or “chunky” I’ve had people call me names a few times growing up, fortunately I was usually able to get them to shut their mouths with a quick comeback, or a look that showed I would slam their face into a locker. Fortunately, I was never really bullied, and I never felt hurt by the comments. I was pretty comfortable in my skin.

There was a YouTube video posted today (that I will not link to, nor will I post the name of the vlogger) that claimed to be a message to “Fat People” to HELP them. To urge them to “eat less, move more” because this person “cares” about our health!!  Then goes on to talk about a terrible encounter with some fat people in an airport, and the HORROR of having to sit next to a fat boy on an airplane. Even though she says Fat shaming doesn’t exist, that’s exactly what she’s doing in her monologue.

The video really pissed me off.  Not because I was offended, or my feelings were hurt, or I felt attacked or shamed. But because WHY?  Why use your platform to spew such vitriol?  Why use your position for something so mean, and nasty?

I get comedy.  I do. I understand that sometimes, comics say some pretty offensive things to get laughs.  The thing is, if you’re going to go that route as a comedian, you’d better be FUNNY.  This chick?  Not funny. Like, at all.

This video wasn’t comedy, it was bullying. Sure, some people think the vlogger is funny, but bullies usually think they are being funny.

Ok, so back to my adipose.

I’m fat. And I’ve been working at not being so fat. I’ve lost over 40lbs since April (GO ME! YAY!) but it wasn’t because some vlogger shamed me into it. It wasn’t even because anyone in my family said “Hey there, we’re worried you’re gonna get the diabeetus, check your sugahs girl!!” or any of my friends said “We’ve noticed that you are getting super huge and we’re worried about your arteries.”    In fact, NOBODY said anything to me about my weight.

But, I was fat and it was having a major impact on my health and my life in general.   I felt sick all the time, I was always uncomfortable, my back and knees hurt, I would get winded going up the stairs, carrying Avery was difficult and exhausting, I had symptoms of diabetes,  but it wasn’t until I saw this picture:

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…that I said “Whoa nelly, things have got to change!”

Let’s be real, and honest here. That photo shows me at about 210 pounds.  At 9 million months pregnant with Avery, I was under 170.  My “standard” weight throughout my adult life was 145.  Those shorts are a size 16, but they were too small. That shirt is an XL but I’m wearing spanx. I’m hot, exhausted, and feel like crap, and really didn’t want my picture taken but Avery and the photographer insisted.  That picture above, shows that I had really let myself go. It was a combination or emotional stuff like not caring, at all, about myself, and eating really poorly and too much. But mostly, it was because I was in a really crappy place emotionally and wasn’t happy with myself, and I was putting myself down, in my head, hundreds of times a day.

I know there are people who are bigger than I am.   But that photo shows my personal “rock bottom”

So I made changes. I made changes because I wanted to. Because I needed to. NOT because someone told me to. NOT because someone shamed me.

Shame and negativity don’t motivate. You know what they do?  They make you feel like garbage. Being shamed makes you feel worthless. Negativity makes you feel like you’re a lost cause.  It doesn’t make you say “Ya know what?  I’m worth it!! I’m worth taking care of!” And while you and I may not be offended by what this vlogger said-while it may not hurt our feelings-there are a whole heck of a lot of other people out there whose feelings WERE hurt. Who are hurt Every. Single. Day by people laughing, and pointing, by people calling them names.  Fat shaming doesn’t work.  It actually makes people eat more, and if you don’t believe me, read THIS

I mean, let’s think about it for a minute. If you’re overweight, and you’re depressed, and being depressed makes you eat (as it does for many people) and someone tells you how gross you are, and how unhealthy you are, and that you’re going to die because of what you’re doing to yourself,  and people start making fun of you and making you the butt of their jokes, and that makes you even more depressed, and then you eat more….How is that helping?

I made changes. My weight loss has been very successful, and I feel amazing, and happy, and healthy physically and emotionally. And I will write more about that very soon. My weight still doesn’t define me. I’m not a better person because I weigh less. I’m a happier person because I feel better, and my head is clear, but it’s not about the number on the scale.  Do I hope that my friends who want to lose weight find success? YES! Do I want all of my friends to be healthy and live incredibly long lives?  You betcha! Am I going to support them in their journeys no matter what path they choose! Certainly!  Am I going to bully, shame, and insult them under the guise of “motivation”  Uhm…NO WAY!

Just like I am more than my weight, so are my friends. I’m not friends with them because  of what they look like (Though, I will say, I have some dang sexy friends! No, seriously, every single one of my friends is GORGEOUS!!) I’m friends with them because they are amazing people, great moms & dads, incredible friends, talented, caring, generous…great people. Great people who deserve RESPECT.

As a blogger, I have a platform to reach people. I may not have huge reach, I may not go “viral” I may not get published on HuffPo or some other sought after internet publication, but people read my blog.  I think as social media influencers we should use our platform for good, not evil. Not hate, not bullying, not offensive commentary just for the views.  I have posted my share of not-so-kind posts (ie; Josh Duggar) and I know some people think I’m a hypocrite, but why use your power and influence to be mean? You don’t know who is reading or watching. You don’t know where they are in their life. You don’t know what they are going through. So why be hurtful, nasty, hateful, cruel. You don’t know the damage that your words can do. Or maybe you do know, and you still say those horrible things, and that’s even worse.  Why not share love?  Why not make a video about how we are all beautiful no matter what shape or size or color or heritage?  I guess kindness doesn’t go viral…

So, I’m fat, but I’d rather be fat than cruel.

 

The Balloon Ladies And Other runDisney Tales

I met the Balloon Ladies!!!  Yup! Those phantoms of runDisney, who you pray you’ll never meet up with for fear of being swept.

I met them.

And swept I was.

But let’s start this story from the beginning.

Once Upon a Time…

I flew down to Orlando to meet up with some of my favorite girls (Including Jess from Magic, Memories, Mayhem  who was kind enough to share some of the photos below!) with grand plans of running not only the Frozen 5k but also the Enchanted 10k. Why?  Because, MEDALS!PicMonkey Collage
We met up on Wednesday, ran around the parks all day, then did the same the next day, then got up long before the sun on Friday where we stood outside in what felt like sub-zero temps (It was actually 30*, which is still frigid when you’re in running tights and a light jacket and standing there for hours)

Girls weekend in Walt Disney World

Photos courtesy of Magic, Memories, Mayhem (www.magicmemoriesmayhem.com)

And then we RAN LIKE THE WIND! or….we walked, and ran whenever course photographers were in view.

It was so much fun, truly the best race I’ve ever participated in. Filled with selfies and photo opps with characters, and overflowing with laughs!

It was great and I started to get excited about the 10k that I had previously been dreading. Out of our group of 8, only 2 of us were crazy enough planning to participate in the 10k, so of course, we, again, spent the rest of the day in the parks and had a nice dinner and went to bed far too late for someone planning to run a race at 4 in the morning.

So with my roommates and most of the rest of the world asleep, I got up an hour earlier than the day before (2am) and headed for the starting line.

Disney Enchanted 10k Balloon Ladies

Here are a few of my mistakes.

1. Signing up for a 10k
2. Thinking it would be a good idea to run this 10k the day after running a 5k
3. Thinking it would be a good idea to run this 10k after spending 3 full days walking around Walt Disney World
4. Thinking it would be totally fine to run a 10K on 3 hours of sleep
5. Thinking I could do this without any sort of training other than the 5k the day before

Let me be very clear.  I DID NOT TRAIN FOR THIS RACE. At all. I had great plans to do so, and well, I just never had the motivation.  I knew I’d be fine in the 5k, and  thought I’d be fine in the 10k as well, and probably would have had I done the 10k first, but there are so many “what ifs” at play here.

The point is, I really wasn’t prepared.

So, I arrived at Epcot and got into my corral. I was in Corral E.  The LAST corral. I also ended up being at the very back of the corral, which meant I STARTED the race WITH the Balloon Ladies.

(Had I started in an earlier corral, I WOULD have finished–barring any kind of serious injury. Corral A started over an hour before I crossed the start line, meaning they  had a one hour lead on the Balloon Ladies. This is the one aspect of the race that did bother me. A whole lot, actually)

I knew I didn’t have a chance in hell. My heart sank. I wanted so badly to prove a few haters wrong, despite knowing that I was grossly under-prepared. I wanted to finish this race, even if I had to crawl across the finish line.

That thought made me go against my original plan of walk/jogging my pace, and just staying focused. Instead, I panicked and thought “Oh my god! I need to run! I need to get as far ahead of these balloon ladies as possible!! I need to run!!”

And I ran. I ran as fast and as hard as I could for that first mile.

It was a huge mistake because as soon as I saw that mile marker something went awry in my ankle. Then a cramp. Then I tried to “walk it out” because I couldn’t stop! The balloon ladies were on my heals.

For the next mile I did a lovely run-limp-walk-limp-run-limp thing. It wasn’t pretty, but I couldn’t let the balloon ladies pass me! I just couldn’t!

Just past mile two, they did. The passed me. And I knew it was probably over, but I kept pushing.

Let me pause here to tell you something about the Balloon Ladies:

They are really nice. They want you to succeed. They don’t want to pass you, they don’t want you to get swept. They aren’t the villains that social media has made them out to be. They try to motivate you to KEEP GOING!

The Balloon Ladies are lovely!

The course medics are also AWESOME and try to help motivate people on the course.

Mile 3, despite knowing it would be my last mile, was probably the best mile of my runDisney experience. It was the most motivational, and the most moving. There were shouts of “YOU’VE GOT THIS!!” and “YOU GO GIRL!!”  Women ran to each other and held hands, and held each other up. Strangers became friends out on that course. It was awesome.

Then I saw it.  THE BUS. Flanked by  a few Florida Highway Patrol cruisers, it blocked off the course.

At Mile three, I was swept. Along with a whole bus load of other women and a few men.

On the bus there were some tears from those who had worked really hard to be there. There was laughter from some who were happy they didn’t have to run the rest of the race and could go back to bed. Then someone made a commented about this being the “loser bus” and it really, REALLY ticked me off. So I said something.  I said “NO!  This is NOT the loser bus! Every person on this bus is a winner. We all got up, and got out here and tried. There are a whole heck of a lot of people who are still in bed right now!”

The thing is, while I was disappointed, I still felt good about what I had done. I still got up, and got out there, and I tried. I pushed myself, and I didn’t quit. I was proud of that.

When we got off the bus we were handed our medals. (Which we deserved because we tried and we PAID for them!) I put mine in my pocket until I got on the bus back to the hotel. At first I was a bit embarrassed to wear it. I didn’t want some elite runner asking me my time. I wasn’t sure how to handle the inevitable shouts of “Congratulations!” That I’d heard the day before while wearing my 5k medal. But, on the bus, I decided I’d wear it. With pride. Sometimes I’d be open and honest about my sweep. Other times I’d just say “Thank You!” when I was congratulated.  I decided not to wear my medal the rest of the trip, but I was still proud of what I had done.

I still ran.

I may not have run a 5k AND a 10k, but I did run 10k…I just split it up over two days.

Sarah RunDisneyHave you ever done a runDisney race?  What did you think?  I had so much fun, I hope to go back again next year!

Selfless Love

Yesterday, I happened upon this video….despite the fact that it was almost 9 minutes long, something compelled me to watch, and I am so glad I did….Take the 8 minutes and 55 seconds to watch…

 

Here’s a tissue, wipe away the tears and think…is your love that selfless?

This couple is amazing and we need more of this! (I’m not talking specifically about the religious and spiritual aspects of their relationship…though that is pretty amazing as well) I’m talking about unconditional love. Larissa and Ian are the perfect example of what love for our spouse should be.

Would you marry a man with this type of brain injury?  Would you be that loving and selfless? I’m not sure any of us can answer this for sure without being in that situation, but I’m willing to bet that few of us would.

I like to think I would.

As a child, maybe 8 or 9, I remember watching an episode of Phil Donahue (Remember him?!) and one of his guests was a man who had been paralyzed in a sky diving accident (I don’t remember the details exactly, but I think it was a collision with another sky diver) After his accident, his fiancé left him. She didn’t want to marry someone who was “damaged.”   I remember thinking how evil she was. I think I even wrote her a really mean letter (that obviously was never sent) and thinking that I would marry him, because, he was the same person inside. My 8 or 9 year old self was pretty compassionate and wise.

So, would your love be this selfless?

Would you be able to continue to love, when your vision of your life has been turned upside-down, inside out and backwards?

I’ve known women who have left their husbands when they were deployed, sick, or injured. I’ve seen so many marriages fail this year alone. I’ve also seen marriages survive all those things, however, this story is different…this woman CHOSE to MARRY this man, knowing  (and not knowing) what their life would be like. Knowing that while he could communicate with her it was different than it had been. Knowing that they would face struggles unlike those that most couples face (on top of the ones that all couples face) This isn’t a woman who stayed with her husband through an accident, this woman chose to become his wife after his accident.

Thinking back to when Dave was sick (granted, his illness cannot even compare to a traumatic brain injury, and he of course recovered quickly) I loved him more through that illness. He needed me to love him more. We needed to love each other through the sickness. It was scary, it was emotional.

It made me realize that the things I would get mad at him for were so ridiculous. Who cares if he has to change every lightbulb in the house, double check the furnace, water heater, & timers the minute before we leave for vacation (He’s so much like my dad!) It’s no big deal if he eats the last popsicle and puts the empty box back in (leaving me oh, so disappointed when I go looking for a snack) It’s not the end of the world if he does a load of laundry and half of the items end up on the floor next to the washer/dryer (I find one of my socks on the floor every.single.time. lol)

I’d really like to think that our love is this selfless. I know Dave’s is. His father is an incredible role model, and has stood by my mother in-law for over 30 years, through her health issues.

Is your love this selfless?  No judgment if you don’t think you could do what Larissa did. I mean, there are times when it is completely understandable to be “selfish” and like I said, I don’t think there are many people who would be this selfless.

Marriage can be hard, sometimes REALLY hard, but I think we need more selfless love. I think we can all learn a lot from Larissa and Ian.

You can read more about Ian & Larissa here: Pray For Ian

I Didn’t Win, But I Can Still LOSE!

Ya know that contest I was tweeting, pinning, blogging, Instagramming and flooding your Facebook feeds about?

I didn’t win.

I’m really bummed and disappointed. I can’t help it. Normally I am a pessimist. I NEVER think I can win anything. It’s good because I’m never disappointed.  This was different. In my mind and in my heart I HAD THIS!  I had won. I knew it. How could I NOT? Thousands of followers across Social Media, a definite NEED for the program and of course I had all YOU amazing supporters!  Retweeting, commenting, following, voting, everything. You guys did everything I asked and more!  I was focused, I was all in. So, I knew that I would win. I don’t think I even had a shred of doubt.

I was cocky…and…

I was WRONG. Totally wrong. I didn’t win. And I was very disappointed.

I’m sure that’s so silly, but when you are so incredibly hopeful, and invested in something….something that you really, truly NEED…it’s hard to say “Oh well, better luck next time”

That said… while I lost the contest, and can’t move forward in the ways I had planned, I will still reach my goals.

I have to.

For me.

For Dave.

For Avery.

For you guys who are cheering me on! (And I know some of you would literally kick my butt if I didn’t follow through on this!)

It may take me longer, It may be harder, but I’m going to do it!!

Let’s just revisit WHY I need to do this….

Here is a visual of where I am now and where I was and want to be….

photo 3

photo 1

Seeing it laid out like that…ugh… I need to make a change!

I fit in to that Stones shirt and those light jeans when I met Dave in 2009.  I am fully aware that my body has changed due to giving birth. Babies cause a bit of destruction (all totally worth it, of course!) and I may never be able to get those jeans on, but I’d love to come close!

So where am I starting?

Here….with blood work!  I need to find out if there is anything going on physiologically…because if there is an underlying medical issue, I can work my butt off and not see results (which has been my issue in the past) I will still see Dr. Petteruti for this, as he really takes this aspect of weight loss seriously, where many others do not!

photo 2

Let me be perfectly clear. I will NOT use any of these test results as an EXCUSE. (I have a damn tumor or alien or whatever in my spinal cord that makes my extremities numb and my breathing labored, and I’ve never used that as an excuse, so no test results will make me “give up” on this! They will just show me what is going on on the inside, and help me find ways to boost any impact my fitness and diet have on the outside!

And This:

photo 1

photo 2

We did our weekly shopping tonight and we stocked up on good stuff! (missing from the top photo is the cucumber that we can’t seem to find….)

I bought a bunch of seltzer (which I let go flat haha) and veggies to eat when I’m feeling a snack craving coming and as recommended by a friend who lost a lot of weight herself,  clementines for when I have a sugar craving!!

And then there will be this stuff:

PicMonkey CollageSince I cannot afford any of the local Functional Fitness type gyms, I will be setting up my own, at home in the back yard!  (Don’t worry, I have been taught proper form!!) So I can do these awesome workouts while Avery naps and in the evening when Dave gets home!!

I’m going to look for (and see if I can afford) a trainer…and weigh my options with a few other gyms (I will probably go back to the Y since it’s most affordable and has child care!) and I’m going to do my best to keep focused on strength and not lose my motivation if I get “bored” but instead, find new ways to work out!

The best thing is that I have the full support of my awesome husband!  With his support, and the support (and arse kicking from all of YOU) I know I can do this!

So, while I didn’t win the contest…..in the end I will still be a winner by LOSING weight and becoming a healthier and happier version of me!

Thank you again for all your love and support!  It means the world to me!!

 

 

Hey Boston; It’s Time For Your Check Up (With The Doc McStuffins Mobile!)

Are you looking for something fun to do with your kiddos tomorrow? Do your little ones love Doc McStuffins? Well head on out to The Franklin Park Zoo, because it’s time for your check up!!

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Franklin Park Zoo, Boston, MA
Sunday, August 18th 10:30am – 4:00pm

Disney Junior & Doc McStuffins are hitting the road with The Doc Mobile Tour! At this fun event with Radio Disney Junior, kids & families can experience Doc activities focused on healthy living and well-being. Kids will see how “there’s so much you can do…to take care of you,” and they can also be just like Doc and bring their toy for a check-up inside Doc’s mobile clinic.

Themed “So Much You Can Do…to Take Care of You!” the initiative is inspired by Disney Junior’s acclaimed “Doc McStuffins,” the animated series that models good health and compassion through stories of a young girl, a would-be doctor, who cares for her ailing stuffed animals and other toys. The Doc Mobile features an area for kids to perform a “check-up” on their own toys plus other activities and age-appropriate health and wellness lessons including nutrition and physical development and fitness.

Unfortunately, Doc herself will not be in Boston, but, kids and parents will have the opportunity to meet real-life doctors from the Artemis Medical Society, an organization of more than 2500 female African-American physicians from around the world who formed their group after seeing a reflection of themselves in “Doc McStuffins.” Recognizing the opportunity to further inspire young girls, the group serves to nurture, mentor and provide the foundation necessary to create a diverse physician workforce.

The Boston stop requires a paid zoo admission. (Franklin Park Zoo)

DOC, BRONTY

Fans are invited to follow The Doc Mobile Tour route on their facebook page, Disney Junior And follow on Twitter @DISNEYJUNIORUSA Of course the Doc Mobile has it’s own hashtag!  #DocMobile.

Avery, Dave and I are so excited for this event!

Not in the Boston area? No problem! Doc is hitting up other US cities on her cross country journey!
Sunday, August 18
Boston, Massachusetts
Franklin Park Zoo

Wednesday, August 21
New York, New York 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Times Square Disney Store

Sunday, August 25
Chicago, Illinois
Navy Pier Gateway Park

Saturday, August 31 & Sunday, September 1 
San Antonio, Texas 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Festival PEOPLE EN ESPAÑOL – Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center

Friday, September 6 
Dallas/Fort-Worth, Texas
Fort Worth Museum of Science

Tuesday, September 10
New Orleans, Louisiana
Audubon Zoo

Saturday, September 14
Atlanta, Georgia
Centennial Olympic Park

Tuesday, September 17
Washington D.C.
*Location TBD

Thursday, September 26 
Los Angeles, California
The Grove

Saturday, September 28
Phoenix, Arizona 7:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Arizona Coalition For Tomorrow Kids Health Fair – Salvation Army Community Center

DOC, LAMBIE

And don’t forget!!  Season two of “Doc McStuffins” premieres FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 6 on Disney Channel (10:00 a.m., ET/PT) and Disney Junior (4:00 p.m., ET/PT). Guest voice stars for season two include: Geena Davis (“A League of Their Own”), Jeffrey Tambor (“Arrested Development”), Tony Hale (“Arrested Development”), Molly Shannon (“Saturday Night Live”), Tony Award-winning actress Sutton Foster (“Anything Goes”), Amy Sedaris (“Strangers with Candy”) and Peter MacNicol (“Grey’s Anatomy”).

DOC, VAL

A “Doc McStuffins: The Doc Mobile” game and other digital activities including
one that invites boys and girls to create a customized doctor avatar, will debut on DisneyJunior.com/Doc on Friday, August 30. Also debuting that day is a preview of the season two premiere “Doc McStuffins Goes McMobile/Chip Off the Ol’ Box” via WATCHDisneyJunior.com, the WATCH Disney Junior app for smartphones and tablets, and Disney Junior on Demand. It will become available for download on iTunes, Amazon and Xbox beginning Saturday, September 7.