Jan 19

Those Words

“In yourself right now is all the place you’ve got.” Flannery O’Connor

On Tuesday, I sat there all day long fighting back the tears, or at least trying to fight them. Those words never get easier to hear.

This blog is a place of healing for myself, it’s my outlet. I come here to discover, I come here to think. There will come a day when I am on the other side of this that I will want to remember just how far I have come; so every step of the way I am going to share.

This week on Tuesday I had my second sympathetic nerve block for my CRPS. That afternoon I had a follow-up with my surgeon  to discuss a few concerns as well as evaluate the wound on my heel at the incision.

For the heel, we are doing nothing. The only way to do anything would be another surgery which is the very last thing my body needs to go through and could likely cause more damage than any good. We will let my body heal naturally & see what happens with it.

A big concern is that fact that I am not able to walk yet. CRPS was winning in this battle. Because of this disease, I cannot handle touch; my foot is extremely sensitive. Air hurts my foot when I take off my sock! My sock has to be big for my foot so that it is not too tight or again, my nerves go crazy. The sensitivity & the pain it would cause, I cannot handle having my walking boot on for more than maybe 3 minutes & that is a stretch!

If I want full mobility back & do not want this horrible disease to take that from me, I have to get up & moving. My surgeon okayed a walking shoe as well as using my crutches or whatever it was I needed to put weight on it.

“It is going to get much worse before it gets better….IF it gets better at all.”

Those are not the words you want to keep hearing over & over again from your medical team. When you feel you are already barely living through the pain you have now knowing things are going to become that much worse is not comforting. Also, the uncertainty of this disease scares the heck out of me. There are no guarantees when it comes to this rare disease. To put it into perspective, here is the chart showing the levels of pain & the fact that CRPS is extremely painful & real.


Again, hearing the reality of my prognosis had the tears beginning to fall from my eyes. As my surgeon got ready to leave the room, he began to reach for my hand to shake it but instead pulled me in for a hug. It was at that moment that I realized I do have a really good team on my side right now that I trust in between him, my pain doctor & my physical therapist.

Yesterday I went to PT; I’m back with the therapist I have seen for over fifteen years. I knew if there was anyone to get me back on my feet it would be him.

Guess what? I took just a few steps in my walking shoe with a cane. It was the hardest thing ever & I am certain I was dripping in sweat. It actually took a lot of thought process to get it to move. We went through several other exercises, discussed what it is I need to do & what to expect. Yes, it was a horribly painful hour.

Not only am I fighting against this disease, but I also had major reconstruction surgery & nothing in my foot is the same. There is zero muscle in my left leg; my calf has shrunk to nothing.

I got home from work yesterday with so much on my mind after a week that had been very trying for many reasons. I was exhausted & really wanted to take a bottle of wine & crawl into bed at 5:30. But, I sat there for a moment staring out the window & realized  this fight has got to come from within me & I cannot rely on everyone else to fight for me.

It has to come from within me. I have to fight like hell. I have to tell myself that things are going to worse & I have to fight through that. I have been through other periods of time in my life where I had to accept that things would get uglier before some day I could find something better than I could have ever imagined. Perhaps this is the same, although much harder.

So, I walked around my house in my special shoe with my one crutch. All night. Then, I had a glass of wine to celebrate as I climbed into my Epsom salt bath. IMG_2011_Facetune_18-01-2018-18-19-10.JPG

Today, I am wearing jeans. I have lived in sweats & leggings for 11 weeks. My walking shoe goes on for a bit & I walk around with my one crutch. It’s incredibly painful. Sometimes, I have to give my nerves a time out & take the shoe off & put my foot up.

I consider this step one. I’m here at step one & I will fight through the worse part in hopes that soon I can find even a small piece of “better.”

Until Next Time~

Jan 16

Someone You Know

I had no idea that my  life was about to change that day.

Living with a chronic disease/illness/pain….whatever label it might have, is something I never could have understood before. Today I am here because I am going to share what it is like. Let me make myself very clear in saying I do not share to get your sympathy. But, I am sharing because someone you know is going through this daily. Someone you love is fighting a battle they cannot seem to find the words to explain. For whatever reason, I  was given the courage to always share my story. I believe there is power in one’s story so today I share because quite possibly out there right now is someone typing in the Google search bar to find a story. That was me, and is still me, as I search to find someone out there fighting a similar battle. The reality is that using our voice is scary but if I help one single person, the fear is always worth getting over.

Living with this pain every day caused by Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) is the hardest thing I have ever done. It has beaten me down in more ways than I even realize yet.

I struggle almost daily with just feeling empty. I’m not sure if that is because part of me is morning the life I lost, the drugs I’m on, or just the simple fact that every thing I do in a day is so difficult. Mental fog is something that feels like my mind is like my achy body and is trying to trudge through mud. I walk around in a fog.

One of the hardest things is that I often feel like I am lost; like I am not sure who this body I    am living in belongs to but I would really like to move out of it. Gone is the mom who went to work every day dressed nice with cute jewelry to accent her clothing, her make-up was spot on & her hair looked great. This was all after a 4:30 a.m. workout. Now, when I see my reflection in the mirror I get tears in my eyes. This woman looks so worn down, like no amount of cover-up can fill in her black undereye circles.  It was so difficult for this woman to take a shower this morning that she barely had the energy to put a tiny bit of makeup on her face leaving zero energy to care about her hair which is left wet.  Her clothing? Black leggings as they are the only pants, besides sweats, she can get on over her foot. She is sporting some kind of a baggy sweatshirt with her right Bearpaw boot on & her left foot is wearing the only socks she can handle which is a tall white one. Looking in the mirror at the eyes of this woman you can see the pain she is wearing. She does not bother putting on too much eye makeup, it’s a guarantee she will cry at some point in time. Perhaps from the pain & perhaps from the emotional state she is in. Crying is something done very often in her world.

The mom who never had to ask for help can no longer run her girls around. She can no longer handle those days where she leaves the house at 7:00 a.m. & does not return until 9:00 p.m. She gets in the door & immediately crashes to the couch with her foot up & delegates everyone’s chores or nighttime to-do lists from there until she crawls up the steps to bed.

This weekend I had to pull my car over to let myself just cry. Ten weeks later I am feeling the frustration of having to rely on everyone for everything. I was ready to leave my home on Saturday morning when I headed to the steps & remembered that I cannot even leave my house without help down the steps with my knee walker. Today it happened again when I was going to run home to pack an overnight bag for my girls when it hit me I could not do that. No one would be home to carry up my knee walker & I cannot carry a bunch of stuff on crutches. You begin to feel helpless, worthless because you cannot do the things you feel you should be doing.

Some days I need help in the shower, some days I need help getting dressed. Some days I    need help getting out of bed after another night that my pain kept me awake, crying & screaming into my pillow.

I have watched my body change so much. Today we will not touch on the amount of weight I have gained, which I am told is normal. Instead let’s talk about the fact my left leg has lost so much muscle that my sock will no longer stay up & my leggings that were once tight are now loose. I watch my skin change colors daily & the swelling grow by the hour. Not to mention the lovely incision scars to wear for life.

The side effects of the prescription drugs I am on just add to the rest of the fun. If my pain is actually dropped down to a 5 (pretty much the lowest it ever gets but is incredibly rare) then chances are good I am feeling very nauseous from my drugs. What was it like to feel good? I    cannot even remember anymore. My drugs have a million other side effects that I battle daily.

When I crawl into bed at the end of the night, I    am grateful I had the strength to battle through the challenges & the pain that the day brought. I am always so thankful for my family who helped me get through it all & love me beyond measure. But, even these positive thoughts & the gratitude I feel, some nights it just does not stop the tears of frustration or the tears of depression from falling into my pillow.

Someone you know is fighting a similar battle. Be kind & patient. Be understanding when we have to cancel plans at the last minute. Be helpful when they are down. Love them beyond measure. Don’t look at them & only see pain; inside some place is a person fighting so hard to come back out. Be their wall when they cannot stand, dry their tears when they need to let them fall. Don’t fill them with false hopes that some day everything will be okay, don’t tell them you hope they recover from something that has no cure. Just let them know you are there for them, be the ear they need when they need to vent, be the hug they need to know they are not alone.

More to come. I am off to bed with a heart full of gratitude that I made it through another day with my pain jumping between a 7-9 on the scale out of 10. It took everything I had to push through it and as always, I will go to bed hopeful that maybe tomorrow will be a little bit better.

Until Next Time~

Jan 12

Ringing It

I am not quite sure how the calendar already says the twelfth day of January and I am just now getting around to this. I did not end 2017 with a blog post like in the past because I had no words that day. But, I had no idea how I would begin 2018 & that was pretty incredible!

For the New Year we invited people over to our home because honestly, it is too hard for me in other homes. Our home is very spacious & easy for me to fly around on my knee walker. My big open bathroom is there, my pillows to prop up on are there, my meds are there.


Because we have such an amazing group of family & friends, everyone chipped in & the food was freaking amazing.

Now, for the story of my guy & me. Let me begin by saying that since day one, we have both been very committed to truly only being ourselves & have had a “this is me, love me or leave” attitude. I love the fact that he does not go out of his way to impress anyone; he is himself. I love the fact that at times I wonder if he is still 18 as I shake my head & laugh all while being thankful that life with him never is too serious. I admire the way he cares for everyone he loves. I feel so blessed watching the way he cares for my girls & the way he is always there to support them. I love the way he pushes me & always has even though my goals have certainly changed, but yet its always in an encouraging way. I am so thankful for this man in more ways that I can ever find words to explain!

Before he & I began, I think it is important for me to explain that I did not believe in “forever.” I truly was set on the fact that I would never marry again for many reasons. This man came into my heart & changed it.

I knew that a proposal was coming soon but I did not think it was yet. He had me tricked that he did not have a ring yet. But, being the joking relationship we have, he was playing with my mind all day on NYE. He kept getting down on one knee pretending it was the moment. This carried on once our party began & it ended up driving my bestie nuts…which, in turn, made it more fun for him.

Finally, in his penguin pajama pants he wore all night, at 2 in the morning with my bestie, his sister & her husband standing there he got down on one knee as I sat with my leg up at the kitchen table. Again, he pretended to stand back up before dropping back down to one knee.

His words had us all laughing; he was so nervous all night which shocked me. His proposal was hilarious & basically said he loved me even though I’m broken and he thought I was not very smart for wanting him but finally said, “will you marry me?” as he pulled out the ring from his pocket. We laughed a bit longer & a couple minutes later, I commented that I had yet to actually say “yes.” Like I said above, life with my guy will never be too serious and that is just perfect.


IMG_1594IMG_1799.jpgThis man walked into my life, tore down the walls I rebuilt numerous times, changed my view on love and has promised to always be by my side. For now, we are focused on my health & getting me back up walking. Knowing he will be there holding my hand makes the fight seem a little bit smaller.

Until Next Time~

Dec 28

I Got Up

In the past twenty-four hours if I was the type of person to get knocked down easily I would be down. It has been a time span of such heartbreak. I have gone through every emotion possible and I sit here now in my space looking out just before dark at the most beautiful and inspiring view there are tears strolling down my face.

Yesterday morning I found out I have Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS). There is no cure for it and no real explanation as to why people get it. It can happen after any kind of injury, such as a sprain, or after any major trauma, such as surgery. It is a disease of the nervous system and is causing a wide range of issues inside my body.

The constant pain lingers all day & night. At times I can simply breathe through it, other times it hits me & I struggle to breathe while other times you can find me in total tears & screams. It is causing major swelling in my foot; like crazy. It is causing circulation issues causing my skin to turn a red/purple color. It is causing problems with coordinating muscle movement making any small movement with my foot pretty much impossible. My skin on my foot is incredibly sensitive. I cannot stand to have my sock off and have the air hit it; any touch on it makes me jump. Now I am to the point where having my sock on it is really starting to bother me but that struggle is better than the air. Oh & sleep….if I get three hours a night I am a truly happy woman.

Today I had my first physical therapy appointment. If I was to be totally honest with you I would tell you it was completely heartbreaking. My therapist, which I really like, told me that CRPS is no joke; that really it is hell. The patient before me also had it which he said was very rare to have two patients with it.

He worked on my foot, mobility especially. There is zero. It is not good. He told me right now my outlook, not counting in the CRPS, is not looking bright because I have no mobility. Sure, he said this to scare me into doing my homework but the reality is that he is right. My foot has no bend; no movement & there is no way I’ll be walking unless I fix this.

I was supposed to also have pool therapy but both of my therapists decided it was not worth the risk due to the pressure sore on my heel still with its open gash. The risk for infection is too great & we all decided that was the last thing I needed.

At the end, I met the other patient with CRPS. She has been fighting this since the 1990s after having knee surgery. She shared with me her journey; she told me what to expect. She sincerely told me she was so sorry that I had it as it is a hard life to live. It was truly a heartbreaking conversation.

I understand that the reality of any prognosis should be truthful. If I was the type to just lay down and accept defeat you better believe that is where I would be.

Down. Defeated. The end.

But I have never been one to not fight like hell at any challenge I have faced. I realize this challenge is way bigger than any I have faced & I understand that a lot of this challenge is out of my control. However, I will not lie down.

My therapist told me the best way to fight CRPS is to piss the nerves off. Well, it is a darn good thing that I am good at pissing people/things off.

I sat here again in my silence this evening with tears rolling down my face & was feeling a bit sorry for myself & pissed off at this disease. If anything right now I just feel it’s isolation for the past eight weeks, the hours I have spent sitting alone at home when an introvert has certainly never been my thing!

In that moment, I realized I am better than that. I’m a fighter damn it & I will not lie down & accept the defeat that everyone seems to lay at my feet. So, in that moment I started my homework from PT. I dropped many word bombs, I had tears, I had frustration at what was so dang hard & I wanted to rip my skin off while rubbing it with silk to desensitize. But, I finished.

Last week my surgeon told me that TODAY was the day I could walk a little. Not with crutches, just my walking boot. I was to walk just a little bit & then increase my walking daily. Well, the problem with this is that due to the sensitivity I cannot even handle having my walking boot on for a minute without screaming.

Well, let’s piss off those nerves a little more I thought. You cannot keep this woman down for long & it was time. I put on my boot and I picked up my crutches due to the lack of mobility in my foot I knew I would need the assistance.

I walked a few steps.

Just a few. A few with assistance. But, the point is that I got up to fight. I realize this road will be hell & I realize that there is a chance that none of this will help me at all; that happens for some. But, I also know there is no way that I won’t give it my all so in the end I know I tried with everything I had.

Challenges have never scared me; they excite me. This one scares me to my core. I know this one will test everything I have; I know this one will have me crying daily; I know this one will have days where I can barely move at all. But every chance I am given to fight, I will fight & not lose hope that I will improve. I will not give up that tomorrow will be better.

Until Next Time~

Dec 26

Taking It All In

There once was this time that I was one of those rat race people. You know the type. They are the ones always running around like crazy peeps from one place to the next and are always so damn busy to just stop.

Perhaps with easy passing year I find a little more wisdom?

This holiday season was one that could have led me to a stress level so high that a daily breakdown would have probably happened. Yes, still being zero weight on my left foot has its challenges; but more than that is the nerve pain I endure.

I wondered a few times how I would get the shopping all done and what in the world would I do about wrapping? Let’s not forget about the meals & so many parties to attend.

I had one of those heart to heart talks with myself one day & made a promise I would not get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season because that is not what it is about to begin with. Instead I would choose to smile & realize that things did not have to be perfect or shiny or the best ever.

Yesterday morning seeing the light of Christmas morning shining in my daughter’s eyes I felt such a peace. As I stood there receiving a giant “good morning” hug from my nine-year old, I was able to listen to her version of  the magic of Christmas. Oh to be able to just stop & live in that magic even for just one day is a gift & it was one I  was so thankful I opened.

The amazement in a child’s eyes when they open that gift; the love & appreciation spoken & shown for someone’s thoughtfulness; the anticipation as you sit there waiting to see the reaction for that gift you put so much love into. These, my friends, are the moments that I    love.

It was in those moments where for even just a brief moment in time, my pain seemed to disappear and all that was felt was the magic of a Christmas morning shared with those that you love more than anything; with those that are the gifts that never came from under a Christmas tree but are gifts that I thank God for every single day.

I will cherish these small moments, I will cherish the smiles & the hugs shared through the images captured in the pictures taken for years to come.

In eleven months from now, I will again promise myself to not get caught up in the hustle & bustle of the season and in 364 days I will again take in the magic of a Christmas morning & feel beyond blessed every day until then for the most incredible gifts I get to love daily.

Until Next Time~

Dec 20

I Don’t Want to Forget

It was my day off of work & I found myself in complete silence sitting in this beautifully decorated living room with tears running down my face. I had been on the verge of breaking down for days & finally I could no longer stop it. I was exhausted in ways that sleep could not help.IMG_1111

I had a morning that was completely full of mom fails. Simply put, I was so past tired and hurt so much that I could not find the patience or the energy which caused us all extra stress.

Jacee has turned into the most incredibly helpful kid but has had to do so much “mothering” that perhaps it has created battles. She helps take care of me & does the things I cannot. Then, as she has to help her sister, the battles come out in full force. She helps make meals, cleans the kitchen, washes the dishes, helps with laundry, sweeps the floor, helps me find my clothes, carries my walker upstairs + downstairs, helps me in the car… and the list continues.

Laynee has been a struggle testing the limits daily. In truth, she is identical to myself as a kid. Still in her three month trial for her regimen, she fights me on her meds she must take three times a day. She is in a phase where she is struggling to fall asleep at night, but she is still trying to help her mom as much  as she can & with the tasks she is able to do.

Both of  my girls have sat & watched me in tears, they have both heard my sudden screams when the pain strikes out of nowhere. They have hugged me, asked what they could do to help & given me the sweetest kisses on my cheeks.

They have been so patient with me but yet, I have not returned that same gift. The pain, the frustration, the lack of sleep & the energy it takes for my body to fight through the pain while it is trying to heal is so much. While my body is under stress, it has been causing everyone else around me extra stress too. I realized that as I sat there in the living room with tears flowing.

I write this post for myself. Down the road, when  I find a day that is pain free, I do not ever want to forget what this was like. I want to remember so that I can always appreciate those days where my body feels good.

I want to remember what it felt like to have the feeling that someone is constantly drilling into my heel, or the millions of constant pins & needles, or the sudden stabbing in my foot that makes me scream, or the feeling of 100 needles going into my foot giving me shots all at the same time, or the constant fire with their big flames, or the throbbing that extends up to my knee. I do not want to forget the sleepless nights where I toss & turn for hours with tears in my eyes; sometimes the tears are for the pain while others it is for the frustration & exhaustion.

I want to remember how hard it was to go any place alone as I would use my crutches on the icy parking lots to get to the back of my car, stand on one foot as I got my knee walker out and would throw my crutches in the back of the car to await my return trip to the driver seat. I want to remember the struggles of Christmas shopping alone & the pain I fought through to pick up those random last minute items that were hard to grab on-line. IMG_1223

I want to remember the kindness & the rudeness I experienced while being out and about. The battles of overly crowded stores and people who run into you. I want to remember sharing the stories with my daughters & the remarks they shared with me. I want to remember the time at Meijer where Jacee put me in the car, loaded all the bags & my knee walker and then went to the car next to us in their handicap spot & helped the little old lady struggling with her bags and cart.

I have realized throughout the past year (plus several months) of my life that it is hard for others to understand what it is like to live with pain. The struggle some days just to get yourself out of bed & to take a shower. The tears you can shed sitting at your desk at work trying to make it through another work day. The smile you try to wear in front of others because no one wants to hear about your pain & because you do not want your pain to define you.

This little space of mine here in the online world is for my story. I want to write about this journey fully so that I can remember what these days were like. Some day I hope I can come back & read this point in time and smile at how far I have come.

Until Next Time~

Dec 5

Change Your Damn Pants

It was like I woke up that way; like they were just there ready to fall. I knew this would be a difficult journey, but I will admit I was not mentally prepared for it all.

The night before had started this feeling. It was one of those moments that you find yourself in a place where you have zero power to change it.

So I spent Saturday hiding. Hiding from text messages, hiding from social media and even hiding my face.

The tears just fell. On and off. All day.

I have always been a very strong independent person. I have always been one that does not “need” others. If I need you, it is because I have chosen to. I do not ask for help, I like to just do things myself.

Suddenly, here I lay not even knowing who I actually am anymore. This person is not me at all. I have to rely on others for everything; for myself and for my daughters. I needed rides every place I needed to travel to. The groceries that I cannot run out to get, the sports practices, the laundry, the cleaning, the cooking.

Every damn thing I do in a day felt so unbelievably hard and would frustrate me. There was no simplicity in my day; no luxury of being able to just go through the motions. Every movement I made had to be planned out, thought upon, or have assistance.

The simple act of getting up to use the restroom took so much out of me. Getting dressed in the morning made me want to just go back to bed. Let’s not even talk about how exhausting taking a shower is; and yes this includes sitting on a shower stool the entire time.

I was not prepared to need so much help that you feel like you have zero independence. I did not fully realize how hard it would be to do simple things.

I truly was not prepared for the amount of pain this would cause. I have felt pain in my life many different times & from many different ways from being a stubborn athlete who never allowed injuries to sideline her, to a mom giving birth, to shoulder surgery, to training for & completing a marathon through many injuries {truly one of the hardest things ever in my life} to the present.

This hurts. Non-stop.

Friday night I found myself laying in bed with tears flying out of my eyes literally praying out loud to be able to just sleep. I was past the point of exhaustion: physically, mentally & emotionally.

Saturday began with me immediately having to cause my guy to completely change his plans because I needed him. Because I needed him to drive me to the doctor’s office. Because my phone didn’t work & we had to go to the store to get that fixed. Because I needed his help getting ready. Because I needed him to run downstairs to grab the few clean clothes I can wear. Because I needed his help getting my knee walker back downstairs. Because I needed help grabbing food. Because I needed help…..

Feeling helpless like this is so difficult. You feel like such a burden. I felt like for the past three weeks EVERY person in my life had been inconvenienced by my surgery. My daughters were so far off of a normal schedule that I wondered how long before they unraveled.

I just cried. I cried all day Saturday. I looked out the window in the dark pretending to be searching for Christmas lights as I hid the tears running down my checks. It was hard to put into words the way I was feeling & I knew it would be hard to understand how I felt without feeling this way.

In the middle of the night Saturday as I had moved back to the couch in hopes I could fall asleep there, I admired our beautiful Christmas tree in the corner standing there still untouched. Yes, this was the tree that I rode around in my car while my entire family was walking around looking for trees & spotted one for us. It was not the tree that I explored searching for with my daughters.  I wondered if this would be the year it would be just a natural tree. I thought about all the things I could not do during my favorite time of year, I thought about how different this holiday was going to be and the questions of how I will even get certain things done at all.


I watched the hours go by on my phone screen that night {1:00, 1:25, 2:03; 2:33; 3:08….} once again laying awake due to the pain just praying for a little bit of relief.

Eventually, Sunday morning came. I woke up in an empty quite house feeling a little refreshed after getting about two straight hours of sleep before the pain woke me up again. I looked over at the Christmas tree again & decided when I got off the couch that I would change my damn pants.

I was going to put on my positive pants & throw away the negative dark ones. But here is the thing, I had to wear that other pair for a day.

I fully know & remind myself that my current situation is temporary. Down the road, there will be a day I can walk again with no crutches or walking boot. I can only hope & pray that the day will come that I will not feel daily pain as that is a guarantee that cannot be given & a risk I had to take. I know there are others out there that might not be able to say this & my heart breaks for them in a much deeper way now.

But, I also believe that we need to allow ourselves to feel what it is we truly feel. If I had not allowed myself to take a day to just let my frustrations flow out of my eyes, because someone else is worse off {even though there are millions that are better} than I would be burying my feelings & from personal experience, I have learned this is not the way to live your life.

We should be able to feel the way we feel without anyone telling us we don’t deserve to feel something or that we should not feel something.

I let myself feel. I awoke with a much different perspective. I thought about how I am being put through a trial that is challenging my greatest weaknesses & that this is only going to make me a stronger & more understanding individual in the end. I thought about the patience & the care  my guy had shown me during this time; unlike anything I have ever known. I smiled at how incredible my daughters have been at helping & taking care of me; I am truly so blessed I was chosen to be their mom.

I looked back at our bare Christmas tree & realized that it really did not matter what was on the tree. All that truly matters is the people around me during my favorite time of the year while I am going through something that is truly challenging me and ultimately changing me.


So, I put on my positive pants & I smiled through my day even while doing the simple daily functions and motions that feel so difficult right now & told myself I was stronger today.

Until Next Time~

Oct 20

The Cha-Cha

Years ago I began a journey. I had no idea how long of a trip it would be, I had no idea where it would lead us. It was a journey to find a way to give my daughter a better life. It was a journey to find answers to her body.

I was told over and over that there was nothing I could do. The only solution I was given was one I absolutely hated and refused for my child due to extensive research.

But, despite the number of times I was told there was nothing, in my heart I knew there was something there. I knew there was a reason and I knew there was something wrong. I knew there were solutions out there, I just had to keep looking.

The journey was horribly lonely at times; but the bond she & I share now is something I treasure & is a bond you cannot put into words. There were so many moments of weakness, too many moments of defeat & several moments where part of me wondered if I was just crazy. If I was completely losing my mind.  I found myself lost in moments where I was not sure my heart could take one more step backwards.

But as a mom, there was a fire inside of me that even when it felt it was about to go out, the flame never fully diminished.

I had promised my daughter one day, as I looked into her eyes and held her hand, that I would never give up.

As parents we always want to give our children the best. We want to provide them with a healthy and happy life. We want the best teacher; not the mediocre one. We want the best school system, the best pediatrician. When it comes to our children, we do not settle and simply say, “good enough.” Trust me, I know my daughter is healthy and I know exactly how blessed we truly are. But, that did not stop me from wanting to help her.

This journey took time; it took having to truly increase my patience. It took many “no” answers. It took trial and error so many different times. It took so many tests. It took getting our hopes up over and over only to get them shot down.

Until one day, we met with the surgeon that performed her surgery as a baby. He asked me what I thought about trying out this clinic in Ohio that was doing something unique with kids like her. What? You mean there are kids like her?!!

It took many trips. It took this team to see what was wrong. It took them going in to see how bad it was & making an extensive repair. It took them going back in due to scar tissue. It took over another year of constant X-rays and emails back and forth and constant tweaks.


Today, I sit here with a smile.  I am so thankful that I never gave up for my girl, despite the number of nights we both spent in tears. The struggles, the trial and errors over the years, the storms she fought through.

Every day we kept the belief that tomorrow was a new day. It was always a new day for things to go smoother. It was a new day for getting closer to answers. It was just a new day & yesterday could be forgotten.

As I pulled away from our home away from home this week, tears welled in my eyes. I can say now, my girl is finally on a better path. We love our little piece of this world, we fit in here. We have others who understand us; we have others to share experiences with. We have families we connect with.

I promised her I would never give up and this mama’s heart could not be more happy for her, for her future. Our journey is not over, but the strides her body has made is amazing. Just like any big change in life that you make in hopes of progress: it’s messy. Sometimes it is two steps forward followed by three steps back. Sometimes you have days where you just want to give up hope and forget it.

This is a three-month trial & my precious girl & I will happily do the cha-cha with our steps forward and back fully believing this is the right dance to carry her to a better tomorrow.


Until Next Time~

Oct 2

Newest Addiction

Here we are. Another Monday. Another week of crazy. Another week of non-stop mom taxi driving. Another week of a buried desk at work. Another week of grinding at home every evening.

Another week of the above because it all fills my heart.

Anyway, this weekend came and flew by; like they all do. But, luckily my main love language is quality time. We tried the Melting Pot this weekend for my bestie’s birthday. That is a place I can say with pretty much complete certainty, that I will not be returning to. We still are not sure what took so long, but over three hours later we walked out from our four course meal & all four of us were still hungry.


The good news is that it was three hours with three people who truly matter. You cannot ever put a price tag on time spent, memories created, and laughter shared.

Anyways, my to do list is quite lengthy right now in life. Changes happening, medical “stuff” on the calendar, chapters ending….you know, a little of this and a lot of that.

Currently, I am on Operation Declutter. For the past few years the opportunity for me to have a garage sale is pretty non-existent as my days off work are saved for medical days; my weekends are already too jam-packed. I will admit that STUFF has just been sitting for so long needing to leave my home.

Oh my gosh y’all – if you have never been on a mission to really go through your home & get rid of the “stuff,” you must do so soon.

It is addicting. Getting rid of all this clutter, the stuff in life that does not matter, the stuff that takes up space and the junk that takes your time away from the important things. I cannot stop! For. Real.


I mean really….can you please explain to me why I had so many pairs of jeans in my closet. Especially when I wear like maybe only three of them. All I can do is shake my head at myself!

In other words, if you are trying to find me in the next couple of weeks you will have to look for me buried in a closet some place with black trash bags and bins around me with the tunes blaring out of my Block Rocker.

Now, for what I am eating. I am literally loving chicken tenderloins grilled up on our charcoal grill. The smoky flavor and whatever seasonings my guy uses is just incredible & makes eating chicken way more exciting! So, he cooked me up a package yesterday making my protein on my meals this week pretty easy! When you do not have a free night during the week, this is the key!


Now, off I go back to the sea of sticky notes that cover my life!

Until Next Time~


Sep 29

I Hide.

It seems to be a common theme for my life lately. I hide.

At the end of summer I took my girls to the beach for one last summer adventure. I needed this one day to be a fun mom again who was not defined by her pain like I feel I have been for so long. I relied on inner strength, pain meds, and my guy. At one point we were walking in the sand and to no one’s knowledge I appeared to be fine, but I was hiding behind my sunglasses with tears from pain. However, when my girls looked at me they saw a smile and that was what mattered.


In yoga class, I hide my face. There is always a point where the pain gets to be so great that suddenly there they are. This week I received a few messages about how inspiring I am that I keep fighting and staying positive but really, I am just hiding.

Sitting inside these small little offices several times a week makes it feel like this is my job. This time, my heart was beating at a rapid pace because I knew the answer before. This time I knew we had reached the end of one road. This time I knew I was standing at the intersection and I had to decide to turn left or right.

Yesterday I had a follow-up in the morning with my spine doctor to see how things were progressing since the second injection. I told him how incredibly painful the site was for days after; the report actually indicated that doctor had trouble getting to the exact spot this time and ensured me next time he had a different plan of action. My disc is bulging and there is a chance I have my mom’s spine so we chatted about the things I can do to help and those that can hurt.

We talked about how to move forward and feel we were at a stop sign for my back. The injections have given me great relief from the constant nerve pain I was feeling daily — thank God. It is not 100 percent gone, but it is also not 100 percent at the front of my mind like it was. I still having shooting pain that starts in my back and shoots down my leg. I have days where the pain is nothing too severe and I have days where it is too great.

The one thing that has never changed was the pain in my foot meaning we had our answer; an answer I knew in my gut from day one. The pain in my foot is unrelated to my back. From a back standpoint, we needed to push pause because perhaps if I was not walking funny, favoring that “bad” side because of my foot, some of these back symptoms could improve.

Fast forward to yesterday’s afternoon appointment with a new foot specialist who is a top doc. I knew going in where I was headed. I have done my research as well and this was now my third foot and ankle specialist. I have tried everything there is to try unless this doctor had a secret potion no one else knew about. I’ve spent $500 on two different pairs of orthotics. I have rested it. I have tried meds. I have physical therapy. Nothing has given any form of relief.

I had three choices upon examining my foot.

  1. I could go on with life dealing with the pain.
  2. I could go on with life wearing my orthotics still dealing with the pain & no relief.
  3. I could proceed with surgery.

Surgery was not what I wanted because this is not an easy one. But, sometimes you have to accept its time to move forward. He told me his goal for me was to get me back to running but cannot promise it.

I responded with, “I can’t even walk a mile without the pain stopping me right now.”

“I can promise you after your recovery you will be able to walk a mile pain-free,” he responded.

That’s all I need. I don’t have to run long distances ever again. But, I want to be able to live life better. I want to be able to walk with my kids. I want to be able to take them to the beach without hiding pain behind my sunglasses. I want to be able to go outside and play ball with the girls when they ask. I want to be able to move. So, essentially, I am getting a new foot. An almost complete foot reconstruction. Bones moved, tendons moved, calf muscle lengthened. From my heel to my toes — my foot will be entirely different.

The road ahead is long. There will be weeks of no work and no movement; there will be weeks of no weight-bearing at all with a very slow-paced journey of a small percentage at a time to get to full weight bearing. He warned me this surgery is an incredibly difficult one. The total recovery time from this is ONE YEAR.

All I can say, is November 2018 I’m coming for you. I have traveled long painful roads before and I know this one has more challenges than I have yet to imagine but I am hopeful and that feels good.

Until Next Time~