Tag Archives: health

Thankful

Today I was reminded about how thankful one has to be in the face of adversity.

While walking with a friend this morning, I was telling the story of what happened on Thursday with my youngest daughter, Brityn.  She went in for her weekly allergy shot and called me an hour later complaining about a stomach ache.  I didn’t think much of it because she eats many foods that causes her to get stomach aches.  About 30 minutes later when I arrive at my mom’s (she was with grandma), I walked in and she looked awful.  Flush in the checks, pale in the face, coughing, somewhat difficulty breathing, crying because of her stomach. She then pulled up her shirt and she had hives covering her entire torso.  Oh my goodness….she’s having a reaction!  I called the doctor and they immediately said to call 911 because we didn’t have her EpiPen handy. So I did and within about 20 minutes we were taking a ride in the ambulance and spent a couple hours in the ER.  Thankfully with Benadryl and quick medical attention, she was ok after a few hours and doing fabulously today!

It was scary and anxiety ridden and sad and the list goes on.  I remained calm but deep down I was dying inside as my baby girl was severely struggling….and I didn’t know what to do about it!  Even yesterday, I was still shaken by the whole experience.  However, the calmness that came over me when my friend said…”She’s ok, you’re ok…and despite the ordeal there is a lot to be thankful for.”

Yes, there is.  Lesson learned… Be thankful for the little things and hopefully the big things won’t seem quite so scary!

On a separate note, I’ll post more later about my latest diagnosis!  All good news as we finally think we’ve found the last piece of the puzzle!

Ways to Skin a Cat

If April showers bring May flowers, what do April blizzards bring?  Answer:  I’ll let you know in May!

I’ve always been fascinated by the saying “there are several ways to skin a cat”.  But first I ask, why would you want to skin a cat?  Second, why would anyone think of multiple ways of doing that?  Nonetheless, this holds true for most things in life. There are many ways to approach a challenge!  As I continued on my health journey, which started in 2010, I was learning just how many ways one can “skin a cat!”  No cat skinning here, but eating disorder…let’s count a few ways…1.  Therapy  2. Doctors  3. Self-care  4. Education/school  5. Hypnosis  6. Family/friends  7. EFT.  There are many other ways, but this was the list I pulled from the top of my head.  And yes, I tried all of them!  But EFT proved to be the most effective.  When it came to my eating disorder, I was able to clear the emotions causing me to eat the way I did.  I won’t go into detail about how EFT works (PM me or reach out to Elda if you want to learn more), but I can tell you after several sessions, my relationship changed with food and with my body.  OMG….I was now able to control the extreme shifts in my eating habits.  Success!!  Life changing!  

Without the extreme shifts in my eating, I was feeling better, my moods were more stable, I had more energy, and I was getting better sleep.  BUT… I was beginning to notice some weight gain.  While this was a good thing because my BMI was low, I was not happy about continuously gaining weight. I was eating healthy, yet I was feeling bloated and heavy more days than others. I began to notice many of my clothes were not fitting anymore.  I began to notice exercise was not maintaining my weight.  What was I doing wrong?  Because of the work I did with Elda and EFT, I did not go back to my old habits!! High five!  Yet I did need to understand what was happening.  So I turned to my doctor for guidance.  Here’s what I learned….restrictive eating, yo-yo dieting, and/or extreme food shifts over a long period of time can cause internal harm to your body.  Are you kidding me?  I was cutting foods to help my body.  I was limiting my food intake to benefit my body.  I was restricting foods to heal my body.  Now I was told all of that work over the last 6-7 years was actually harmful to other organs in my body.  I was shocked. I was sad. I was frustrated. I was mad.

Multiple ways to skin a cat?  What happens when some or all the ways cause harm to the cat?  Now what?

Another twist in the journey…but this too will be met with gratitude, positive thoughts and most importantly…. eyes wide open!

Stay warm…and I’m hopeful that Spring is actually coming to MN!

Seeking Help

Awareness is key!  At least that’s what they say!  In my case, being aware that I may have a problem was the start to me seeking help.  

In 2015, I started to suspect I may have an eating disorder, but I wasn’t quite ready to admit it. I wasn’t willing to talk to my friends or my family about it.  I didn’t want to talk to any of my doctors about it.  What would people say?  Would they view me differently? Would they judge me harshly?  In my mind, talking about it meant I was admitting I had a problem. I was very ashamed so….. I did nothing even though I was silently suffering.

At some point in 2015, I saw an advertisement for the Emily Program indicating they helped people with eating disorders so I confidentially reached out to them.  To my dismay, I needed a doctor’s referral in order to make an appointment.  This made me angry and frustrated.  A person should be able to reach out if they needed help!  Why is a doctor the only source of entry into the program?  As I mentioned before, I wasn’t willing to go to my doctor, so I then questioned if I really had an eating disorder.  My eating patterns hadn’t changed, but maybe my eating disorder wasn’t as bad as people who were in the program.  If the program doesn’t take “walk-ins” then I must not have a problem.  So, again, I did nothing!  Again, I continued to suffer in silence.  

Don’t give up they say!  Fast forward to late 2016 when I met Elda Dorothy through a networking group. Elda, through her business, Compassionate Truth, works with clients using EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique aka Tapping). Prior to Elda, I had seen a few videos and read a few articles on tapping, but it wasn’t something I knew or cared much about.  However, I had heard SO MANY wonderful things about Elda and while our paths crossed at the annual conference, I hadn’t had the pleasure of speaking with her.  So when I finally had an opportunity to meet with Elda in 2017….WOW…everything I had heard was true!  Elda was and still is the most sincerest, kind-hearted, caring, genuine and generous person I have ever met.  What I didn’t realize was how much Elda and EFT would change my life!
Stay tuned…..and don’t ever give up!
If you would like more information on EFT, please message me or reach out to Elda Dorothy at https://live.vcita.com/site/eldadorothy.

How my eating disorder started

Thank you to all of those who have reached out regarding my “Unexpected Eating Disorder” blog.  It’s very heart felt to have so many loving and caring people in my life.  Hugs to you all!

As promised, the series continues…..here’s how it started:

When I reflect, I can see where and how this began.  It took until about 9-10 months ago (yes, 2017) before I was willing and able to admit I had a problem.

About 8 years ago, I changed my exercise plan and eating habits.  Instead of walking daily, I added running, strength training and yoga.  Instead of cereal every morning, I ate eggs. Instead of sandwiches, I ate salads for lunch.  Instead of Hamburger Helper, I ate meat/poultry and veggies, rice, potatoes or some other combination for dinner.  I did this during the week and then would eat whatever I wanted on weekends. I would enjoy going out and going to parties with cocktails, snacks, chips, dip, candy, etc.  It took about a year of following this routine (eat healthy during the week, consume whatever I wanted on the weekends) before I realized I lost 20 pounds!  What?  Having never felt like I was overweight at 125lbs (height 5’5”-5’6”), I never thought my body would change as much as it did.  I went from a size 8 to a size 00 and weighed in at 105lbs.  My lowest weight was 99lbs (but that was after a surgery).  I was eating healthy and exercising. No problem here.

I liked being thin so I started to exercise more (generally 2 workouts a day) so I could eat more.  By doing this, I still felt skinny and beautiful.  I loved my new body. I loved feeling strong and athletic. I loved fitting into little black dresses or cute summer tank tops.  I was loving life! I loved being skinny while still enjoying the food and festivities of life!  I was eating healthy (most of the time) and exercising (a lot). No problem here.

Fast forward a couple of years when my health started to turn and found I needed to cut some major food groups from my diet because my body was reacting to the foods.  I cut dairy and gluten from my diet. I eventually cut eggs and almonds. I cut blueberries, cashews, kale, chia seeds, flaxseeds, salmon, legumes and the list goes on and on.  At one point, I hired two personal chefs to make food for me because I was finding it more difficult to come up with recipes I could eat.  As my list of restrictive foods grew, the substitutions became less. As the substitutions became less, my weight started to increase.  It’s now 2014 and while I was eating healthy (very restrictive) I was also gaining “extra” weight. Now at 115lbs, I felt I was “overweight”.  But still no problem here.

Having to eat the same foods every day, I started getting tired and frustrated. By late 2014, I started cheating on more foods.  I started to eat more foods from my restrictive food list for 1-2 days. I would suffer physically for this, but found if I juiced (only drank fresh green juice) for 2-3 days, I would be able to maintain my weight.  This turned into cheating on foods for a week, then juicing again for 2-3 days.  Then I started to binge eat for 7-10 days, juice for 2-3 days and then I added fasting to my routine, just so I could maintain my current weight of 115-118lbs.  It was a cycle.  By 2016, I’m officially 10-13lbs “overweight”.  I believe this is all par for the course because of my health challenges.  I told myself every day that I will lose the weight once my health is back.  Again, no problem here.

By 2017, I was consumed…. every day, every minute, every thought, morning, noon and night, revolved around food…..  I told myself I had to because of my health.  I also refused to gain any more weight.  I was obsessed..I had to lose weight.  Could I fast for 3 days?  Could I juice for a week? Or vise versa?   Reality set in…. I think I have a problem.

Mind Muscle & Movement Podcast

Good Morning!  We are nearing the end of September, Halloween is right around the corner and Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming right behind!  Whew – this has been a fast yet amazing year!

A first for me this year was talking with Lindsey Heiserman on her podcast Mind Muscle and Movement!  Wow – She is one amazing lady! She made me feel confident and comfortable talking about my health journey (and we all know that’s not an easy task).  Thank you Lindsey!

I want to share this podcast with you so you can listen and verify for yourself how great she is!  This is only one of her many podcasts! She has wonderful messages and interviews to share!  I encourage you to listen!

Take it away Lindsey….

“This week on the Mind Muscle and Movement Podcast we start our women’s health series and I talk to Lori Paul. She shares her incredible (and outrageous health story) but also gives us her 3 Tips to Build Confidence When Dealing With Transitional Changes.

You’ll want to check it out. Head on over to the blog to read more and LISTEN”

http://www.lindseyheiserman.com/interviewwithloripaul/

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Frustrated!

Mother’s Day weekend!!  My tradition is to plant flowers on Mother’s day weekend. Honestly, I transport flowers from one pot to another, but I still consider that planting (insert winky face).  I just planted my flowers and even if you don’t plant flowers, I want to wish all the moms a happy, fun filled day spent doing something YOU love whether or not it includes children, family or friends.  Do something that feeds your SOUL!

So, today I’m frustrated.  Not because its Friday (of course not!) or because I still need to get a card for my mother for Mother’s Day, but because I’ve been doing the Whole30 diet with a couple of friends and I’m ticked off with my body’s reaction.  First, I cannot eat eggs, beans, sweet potatoes or nuts which are staples in the diet!  But second, my severe case of SIBO and leaky gut takes these foods and many other foods off the list! Ugh!  Finally, the ultimate bummer is how my body is responding!

Three weeks in, I’m feeling more energized and sleeping better; however, I’ve noticed over the last three days, my clothes have gotten tighter (Yes, I said tighter not looser), my stomach has become bloated and my mood shifted from happy to irritated.  What is going on? Isn’t eating cleaner supposed to bring fitter, leaner, healthier results?  And to top it off, I ate turkey and squash for lunch and my stomach reacted with major bloating!  WTH!  My body isn’t cooperating and I’m ticked!  UGH!! Double UGH UGH!!  

Yes, I’m frustrated!  I also realize I cannot heal my stomach overnight. I cannot wave a magic wand and make SIBO, Leaky Gut or Lyme’s disappear overnight.  BUT, I can be grateful for where I am today.  Somedays it takes a little (or BIG) push to get there, but we all can get there!  So, even with being frustrated (greatly frustrated), I’m grateful I can afford to eat healthy foods.  I’m grateful for my doctor who has turned this frustrating adventure into a livable journey. I’m grateful for my friends, who talked me off the ledge this morning when I was having a pity party!  I’m grateful for my daughters who motivate me to push ahead with my head high despite the setbacks!  I’m grateful for the people who will read this, who may also be struggling, and see the glimmer of sunlight for them too!  

Yes, life is frustrating, but keep going!  I’m proof you can see the rainbow after the storm!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Spring Cleaning

Spring has sprung here in Minnesota.  Nearly 70 degrees on Monday and low-to-mid 60s the rest of the week!  I suppose we could get one last blast of snow in April, but I’m staying positive and thinking flowers instead!

When I think of spring, my first thought is spring cleaning…Ugh!  Some people love to clean closets and wash screen and windows, but to others that may seem time consuming and like a really big hassle.  Yep, that’s me!  Honestly, I sometimes tend to find other things to do like go for a walk, watch a movie or read a book instead.  However, what I do remember is the feeling when the spring cleaning is done!  It feels amazing, freeing and joyful!  

With the end result in mind (I want to be joyful, free and feel amazing), this year I decided to focus on spring cleaning my SELF instead of spring cleaning my HOUSE.  Everyone has something they have been wishing or hoping they would/could/should do or stop doing.  It could be shopping for a new car or discontinuing an automatic monthly shipment of _______ (fill in the blank).  What comes to mind for you?  

Mine was to get back into a healthy routine!  Anyone who knows me well knows I tend to be healthy (i.e. eat healthy, exercise regularly, go to bed early), but the past several months have brought a lot of extra activities like networking, weekly lunches and dinner meetings, happy hours and sometimes even lazy mornings!  Needless to say, I haven’t been exercising regularly, I haven’t been eating healthy and I haven’t been getting to bed early either.  When living with a chronic illness, it most definitely takes a toll on my mind and my body!  Soooooo, its time to SPRING CLEAN. There’s no time like the present, so why not start a new hobby, break a bad habit or build a new healthy routine?  I’m starting today!  How about you? How will you spring clean?

 

Limitations or Lessons

Happy New Year – it’s been a while since I decided to show up here but I’m back, like it or not!   I love the idea of starting new in 2017 yet I wanted to remind everyone that every day is a new day to start fresh – who needs an entire year to go by to make a fresh start? Not me!

As I reflect on 2016 and greatly anticipate an amazing 2017, I wanted to reflect on some things I’ve learned while living with Lyme’s disease. It is a completely different beast than I ever would have imagined.   Living with Lyme’s has the fun of working with food restrictions and food allergies, numerous bouts of various medications, many physical limitations, along with mental and emotional challenges.

There are so many limitations Lyme’s can put on one person every day. However, are they really limitations or are they lessons? I’d like to think they are lessons. What I’ve learned living with Lyme’s is that it’s ok to slow down. It’s ok to enjoy the quiet moments of life. It’s ok to shut your eyes for 5 minutes and breathe in the fresh (cold) air while the sun warms your face. Its ok to snuggle on the couch with a loved one and just savor the moment of closeness. It’s ok to be late for a meeting sometimes. It’s ok to eat ice cream for breakfast and pancakes for dinner. It’s ok to skip hockey or basketball practice to head to Starbucks instead. It’s ok to sit in your car when you get home so you can finish belting out your favorite song. (Just did that myself yesterday). It’s ok!  I now know don’t have to win the race every day and some days I don’t even participate. And that’s ok. Why? Because limitations or not, I can wake up (God willing) and start fresh tomorrow.

3 Things I’ve learned this year

This year has flown by, hasn’t it? Fall is here, Christmas is coming and shortly thereafter is 2017!

 As I recently celebrated my 41st birthday, I had a friend mention how much has changed in one year’s time.  As I pondered that, I began to reflect on my past year and came up with 3 important things I learned this year.

 First, everything happens when it’s supposed to.   I found its best to be patient and let life happen as it should.  Yes, we need to be proactive, but we cannot rush through life.  For instance, I am working on re-launching my law firm and PowerUp2Health businesses. I have been going full steam ahead and haven’t looked back.  After meeting with a wise friend and mentor this week, she said a few of the ideas I was pursuing may not be in my best interest at THIS TIME.  Basically, I was putting the cart before the horse.  I was disappointed and a little upset, but after some reflection, I realized I do not need to rush.  If I put in the proper time, preparation and effort, my businesses will bloom when they are supposed to!

Second, John Maxwell said today on Minute with Maxwell, Choices you make… make you! It took me a minute (no pun intended) to comprehend what he meant, but he continued on to say that everything I, you, we do is 100% our own responsibility!  I cannot blame anyone for where I am today, but myself.  I am exactly who and where I am because of MY choices. Think about that!  Are you taking responsibility for choices you are making in your life?

 Finally, YOU will survive!  As I reflect back on this past year and where I am today…I celebrate!  I celebrate because I realized after all the ups and downs (there’s been a whole bunch) this year….I survived 100% of them!   I had days I questioned everything and wanted to throw in the towel and other days that lifted me back up.  But in the end, I survived, I survived, I survived!  Not unscathed, but I survived!   You know what?  You will too!

 As you reflect on what you’ve learned this year, please drop me a note and let me know! 

 

Just Decide

How many times do you ponder what to do? You take hours, days, sometimes weeks to decide what to do.  Whether it be about what to wear in the morning, what route to take to work, what to make for dinner or big ticket items like what career to pursue, what doctor to see, what trip to take, what to do to be healthier, to lose weight, to eat better.  We all have decisions to make every day! And yes, decisions can be scary and they can be exhilarating all at the same time.

It’s not enjoyable to be stuck. It’s not fun to worry about what you should do or what you should not do. I recently spoke with someone who is dealing with Lyme’s.  He is sick, he’s tired, he’s tried several different options and now he’s immovable. He cannot decide which path to take.  Both paths have advantages and disadvantages. Both paths have scary options and desired options. Both paths have unknown results and consequences.  He cannot take both paths, so I said pick one, any one, just pick!  He cannot gain any ground by sitting and thinking about it.  Yes, it may not be the right decision, but it’s a decision. You can always make a new decision. It could also be the best decision, it’s still a decision.  It’s a step forward; it’s putting everything into motion, its moving ahead….its getting unstuck!

Once you decide, you will feel like you’ve already won!  You are more than half way there by just deciding!  Deciding is the first step in learning, in knowing, in finding the desired outcome.  You have 100% control.   I encourage you to look at your pending decisions, look at your options, review all possible scenarios, but whatever you do, just decide!

What did you decide to do today?

Lori