Month: December 2014

Getting Fit in the New Year

With the New Year fast approaching, lots of people will be making those often ill-fated “resolutions” in the eleventh hour, promises that they will better themselves in every possible way, eliminating any bad habits for good.  For many, one of the top resolutions is some variation on the theme of getting in shape, losing weight, etc.  Such a goal is often difficult for many, particularly for those with a chronic illness and possible physical limitations.  The inclination tends to lead more often than not to the extreme, the dramatic and the not-very-sustainable category, one that can be particularly detrimental to those whom are already working from a physical and nutritional deficit. Gyms and other fitness centers will hop on this all-in-or-bust attitude, and discounts on memberships and personal training sessions abound during this time of the year.  It is certainly tempting, and can be a great thing if you use your head.  I am all for getting in shape and using exercise to help combat stress and enhance one’s mood, but there are a few …

A Little Holiday Laugh

My first holiday season after having my total colectomy wasn’t a fun one.  By the time the holiday rolled around, I had only had my ileostomy for less than two months, and I was still working out the kinks with it.  There were leaks, and I vividly remember having a “blowout” at my stepmom’s house during a family dinner and bursting into tears.  She brought me into her bathroom and helped me clean up, reassuring me that it was no big deal.  That was such a difficult holiday – everything that was happening to me was still so new and unfamiliar.  I didn’t really feel human. One of my other memories from that first holiday season was a visit from my best friend, Nicole.  Many of my friends had kind of vanished over the last really bad year with the disease, but she still came to visit me, undeterred, whether it was in the hospital or while I was recovering at my mom’s.  True friends are hard to come by, and I’m proud to say …

Thanking Your Pit Crew

Just a quick post today – as I’m sure the case is with everyone, it’s been a crazy couple of weeks and things don’t let up until next week.  My energy levels are lagging this week due to work and holiday engagements; while fun, late nights definitely take their toll.  Last night was our company holiday party that I set up and we feasted on Argentinean cuisine from a local restaurant, so I just finished some leftover empanadas with chimmichurri for lunch.  It was delicious, but now I’m ready for a serious nap. Anyway, of course it’s the season of giving, and if you can make the time, it is always a good idea to give some small gifts to your team of doctors whom you work with regularly.  Given the multi-system nature of Crohn’s, my team or “Pit Crew”, as I like to call them, is made up of my PCP, my GI doc, my Hematologist, Surgeon, Chiropractor and masseuse.  The gifts don’t have to be anything fancy, but I think it is important …

Taking Control of My Future

Ten years ago last month, I had just returned from a two week holiday in Italy and Switzerland with my then-boyfriend.  I remember the timing so clearly because of what happened during the trip and upon my return.  The scenery and sights were amazing, of course, not to mention the food, but none of that is the first thing that brings that particular time to mind. In the latter half of 2004, my treatment with the chemotherapy drug 6MP was well underway, and I had made it through the initial side effects, which for me included severe pneumonia, bone marrow suppression and a case of hemolytic anemia.  Several months after I had recovered from that train wreck, true to form, I began planning a trip for myself to celebrate my perceived victory.  Working in the hospitality industry afforded me some pretty great connections, and I enlisted the help of my boss at the time to plan a trip to Europe.  After some discussion about the time frame and what locations might be best, I decided …

My Year In Review

As I write this, it has been almost a year to the day that I walked out the door of my hotel for the last time and took the proverbial “jump off of a cliff” into the unknown.  As I was walking the dogs this morning, I marveled at how a year could have passed already, and wondered where the time had gone and what, if anything I had accomplished.  If you’ve read anything I have posted before this, you know “accomplishment” is something very important to me and, like it or not, something I use as a scale by which to rate myself.  It may not be healthy, but it is what it is. Of course, I am also painfully aware of some of the limitations that I have based on having Crohn’s for so many years, not to mention surgeries, etc; I have become much more sensitive to this over the last year, that is for certain.  This time of year when the social engagements are many and my obligation to some of …

A Bit About Little Moon Essentials

So you’ve probably seen several of my posts mentioning the company Little Moon Essentials, and a few of their products on my Resources page.  I should probably go into a bit more detail here, because if you just pull up their website, I will admit that some of the products sound a little like something created while coming down off of a pretty wild acid trip.  I mean, bath salts for different phases of the moon?  I was skeptical, but I should explain how I came across the site and started using their products. This past spring, my husband and I took a road trip from our home in Austin to Santa Fe for my birthday.  Neither of us had been before, and it seemed a good way to christen his new car that he had only had for a couple of months.  During our week in Santa Fe, I had read about a mineral spring relatively nearby called Ojo Caliente.  The material on it said that it had various mineral spring baths containing things …