I have been sooo missing in action for the past couple of years, only posting a few times throughout the year and most of those posts were contributed by guest bloggers. For this reason, I want to say thank you for being such loyal followers. Your support is much appreciated. Honestly, I am truly humbled. I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me.
Have I groveled enough? OK, good, because things are about to take a turn for the better. This kid has decided to make a comeback. Seriously though, some good things are on the horizon and I want to fill you in as well as give you a better glimpse into my life.
Over the next few posts, I’ll go into more detail as to what’s been going on with me. So MUCH has been happening in my little life here on the south side of Washington, DC. Where shall I begin?
A kid plus one
Well, the biggest news to share is that I gave birth to a healthy baby boy last August. Yup, he’ll be a year old next month. He’s such a precious little boy, and I feel so blessed to have him in our family. My daughter recently turned five years old this year, too. It’s hard to believe that I started this blog nearly five years ago after giving birth to her prematurely. I’m happy to report that she is doing very well in a school that she, as well as my husband and I, love.
Because she was born premature, she experienced speech delays. Last January, when she was three years old and attending preschool these issues became more pronounced and her teachers as well as I knew that if she didn’t get help soon it would interfere with her learning and academic skills down the road. I enrolled her in speech therapy right away. She continues to attend sessions twice weekly (although we’ve taken a break for the summer), and she has progressed greatly with the help of an amazing therapist named Megan. She speaks more clearly and more confidently, and her vocabulary is stronger. These were the goals I had hoped she would achieve, and she made me a proud momma by exceeding them. I am constantly impressed by her tenaciousness and gentle spirit.
Thankfully, our son was born just a few days before his due date by cesarean delivery. He was a big, healthy little boy weighing in at 8 lbs 10 oz. What a huge difference it is giving birth to a full-term baby versus a preemie. It’s still hard to believe my baby girl came into the world weighing in at only 2 lbs 11 oz. Thank God for modern medical technology and the care of an experienced nursing staff.
My children are both such a joy. They continue to be the reason why I do what I do. Back in 2008 when I launched The Career Pioneer, I talked a lot about my desire to be a work from home mom. I’m happy to report that I still work from my home office; the flexibility it affords me is priceless. I get to be there for my children whenever they need me, and I could never trade that for anything. In my humble opinion, these formative years go by so quickly, and I want to be the one that makes the biggest mark on my children’s lives. I’m extremely thankful that I have an opportunity to work from home, as I know that so many moms have a strong desire to do the same but their circumstances at the moment don’t work in their favor.
A little more about kids
I truly believe that being a mom is the greatest calling. And being the best mom that I can be is part of my service to God. Sharing the unconditional love and care that He has shown me is also an expression of my gratitude to Him. That said, they’re still kids. Don’t get it twisted. They do get on my nerves once in a while, and mommy needs a break. All in all, however, I love being a mom and I love being their mom. I also love being a wife and professional.
I’m at a juncture in life where I feel well-rounded and more at peace with who I am, where I am, and what I’m doing both personally and professionally. The thought of that brings me pure joy because it’s been a long road to get here. For that reason, I am more resolved to continue on this path which God has placed me. It also makes me more determined to help other people find what they were put on earth to do, and to offer the encouragement they need to just go for it. I can relate to being frustrated, feeling marginalized and facing burn out. You are not alone, my friend.
A little more about me
Over the years, it hasn’t been easy. I’ve experienced some challenges. Just like you, I’m not immune to a little heartache and pain every once in a while. I don’t easily show it though.
I’ve never shared this on the blog in greater depth, but in recent years I’ve experienced health challenges. I haven’t shared it because I tend to be a very private person to avoid the risk of appearing weak. I don’t like making people feel like I’m looking for sympathy either, so I’d rather keep quiet. I also wanted to keep it private so that I can work through it on my own with the help of my doctors.
Let’s look back
About six months after giving birth to my daughter, I started feeling sick. Except it wasn’t your normal kind of sick feeling. I was retaining lots of water so my face and entire body looked and felt puffy. I was also constipated. I couldn’t stand the cold. I felt depressed and weak. I had difficulty remembering basic tasks. My skin was dry, and my hair and nails started to look and feel brittle. I had the hardest time losing weight, and even put on weight more easily even though I wasn’t eating any differently than I had before and consumed a fairly healthy diet for the most part.
The most striking symptom was that I was constantly tired, chronically tired in fact. I’d sleep 12 to 14 hours a day and wake up feeling just as tired as before I went to bed. All I wanted to do was lie in bed and sleep. But, of course, with a new baby that was virtually impossible. So I slogged through each day blurry-eyed.
All of these symptoms were alarming. But because I didn’t know any better — and at this point I wasn’t under the care of a doctor — I thought it was all just a normal part of the postpartum recovery process. It wasn’t until I visited my family in Georgia for the holidays that I started discovering clues as to what was really happening to my body. My sister-in-law at the time, who is a doctor, suggested I see an endocrinologist based on my symptoms. I didn’t even know what an endocrinologist was and had to ask her to spell it for me. It’s funny to think about it now, but consider being 24 years old and aside from just recently having a baby I was an overall healthy, able-bodied person that never needed to seek serious medical advice for a mysterious illness. Until now.
Fast forward a bit. I’m back in D.C. trying to find a qualified endocrinologist. The more popular ones were booked many months out. I finally snagged one that could see me within a week. When I went back for my follow-up appointment to discuss my blood work, he told me that if I hadn’t come in when I did, I could’ve eventually gone into a coma based on what my blood work had shown. WHAT?! This was crazy, I remember thinking. I was so exhausted at the time, however, that I could barely muster any kind of reaction so I just sat there staring at him. He proceeded to prescribe a daily medication, and within a couple of weeks I was starting to feel a little bit like my old self. And I mean only a little.
I wish I could say that all was well from there. But it’s been a long road trying to achieve complete wellness — mentally, physically and spiritually.
I have what’s called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis or chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis, an autoimmune disease in which the thyroid gland is attacked by the immune system. It’s actually becoming one of the most common autoimmune diseases and it is the primary cause of hypothyroidism. Its symptoms are wide ranging, from depression to weight gain to body aches to chronic fatigue.
Most people with the diagnosis end up having to take medication for life. I currently fall in that camp. But with the proper course of treatment, you can regain your health and flourish. There’s more to this illness than what I’ve just mentioned but I won’t overwhelm you with details. (However, if you’d like to talk about it further, feel free to email me or post a comment.)
Like I suggested earlier, it’s been difficult trying to find the right doctor for treatment and then finding the proper course of treatment, as there are so many implications for other health issues when you’re diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. Like other sicknesses, it’s not easily diagnosed and often mistaken for other maladies. It also takes trial and error to find the right course of treatment. Years later, I’m still in that discovery mode. Long story short, however, I am doing overall well at the time of this writing. I still get tired to the point where I need to lie down and my body can’t handle stress very well. But I can still do almost anything I want to do and when I want to do it. That’s something to celebrate.
So there you go. I wanted to share this about me to let you know what I’m about, and to fill you in on what’s been going on with me in the past few years. I’ve shared this with close friends and family, but I wanted to tell you these things because I want you to understand me on a more personal level.
That level of intimacy is what I hope you feel when you read this blog. Know that you’re connecting with a real person — not an internet marketer, or a salesperson, or even a blogger — but another human being that has challenges and victories just like you.
Moving forward, I want to generate honest dialogue. But in order to do that I realized that I have to become more vulnerable. I thought that would be more painful, but it wasn’t. Thanks for bearing with me.
What to expect
In the next few posts I’ll share a little bit more about what I’ve been doing in the last few years and in the near future. So stay tuned to learn more about:
- My work as a freelance copywriter and principal content branding strategist at Write House LLC.
- Starting a mastermind group with someone I recently met and have fast established a trusted friendship.
- Starting a new website, but abandoning it because I didn’t have the time and energy to commit to it.
- Launching a new podcast here on the blog soon, which I think you might want to get in on.
Share your thoughts and tell me your story
If you like what you’ve read here. If anything resonated with you. Or if you can relate. Let’s talk about it either here on the blog or on social media. I really want us to connect with each other this year. Yes, I’m talking to YOU. Let’s get open about what’s really going on in our lives, and stop faking it. It’s time to dig in and discuss the good, the bad and the ugly.
What do you say? Care to join me on this new journey as we engage in real talk about the intersection of careers, business and life? How about we start with you sharing your story?