A year. 💖💪🏼

Just sharing one of my most recent Instagram posts since I think it’s fitting for many who have maybe had some struggles mentally, emotionally or physically. Hope this gives you a little light of how much can change in a year. Some years it may not be drastic, or maybe it is night and day. . Either way, try and embrace the changes. The good. The bad, Or the same. Find the light in your life. I just did. 💡

A lot can happen in a year. This is especially true for me. Thinking back to my life a year ago, I was post-op, so unhealthy , sick, sitting in a hospital bed for 7 weeks hoping I would get better and be home to my boys. Now, I am HEALTHY, enjoying summer , how I am supposed to be ( went to visit my beautiful hometown with my husband🌊, enjoyed celebrating my birthday with family🎉, went to a comedy show in TO last weekend with family😀 ) and have been back to work almost 8 weeks. Bring on the 12 hour shifts this week. Lol Life is good! 🙌🏼☺️ It has been said ‘that time heals all wounds’. I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone. _______________________________________________

We have to realize that our lives could be gone in a moment. There are no guarantees that we will be here at this time next year. Learn to live each day to the fullest. Be grateful for the opportunity to experience each day. Never regret a day in your life. The best days give us happiness and memories. The bad , even the worst days give us experience and teach us lessons. Learn to appreciate the good ones. Just the little things. It’s so easy to forget how important life is but lately I’ve been thinking a lot about ‘ last year ‘, as a year ago was a lot different than it is now for me. Sometimes we need a reminder to realize how good we have it now. Life experience is everything. I’m so grateful! Enjoy everyday ! Wishing everyone a healthy & happy summer !

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“Owning your story is the bravest thing you’ll ever do” ~ Brene Brown 💖💪🏼☺️ #liveeachday #sometimesweneedreminders #onedayatattime #thinkwhereyouwereayearago #stronghealthyhappy #alotcanhappeninayear #grateful #sometimesitsnightandday #mystorymyjourney #cancerandsepsissurvivor #itsthelittlethings #summer2018isamazing

PS. Life experiences are definitely amazing , the good and the bad. The good allows us to make memories and smile and laugh with the best people on this earth. The bad and even the worst times that have us struggling and crying and in my case so sick, allow us to appreciate the good times that much more.

This is key. I’ve heard this time and time again and it couldn’t be more true. Find the light in the darkness. Find the good in your bad day. This has especially opened my eyes since my health journey / struggle since the Fall of 2016, it has allowed me to appreciate the good in life ( sometimes it takes a true struggle to realize how lucky you are). I am grateful but I will be honest , sometimes like all humans , we need a reminder.

For some reason , tonight , my eyes opened to what my life was like a year ago and wow , life is so much better now. I am healthy. I am able to work. I am enjoying time with family and friends. Trips to the city and vacations back home. We will always have stress of some kind ( financial / emotional ) because life happens … we just spent unexpected $$$ on my husband’s car this week, ( but it’s a car), and I’m back working and it is what it is. No point stressing, right??? Wrong.  I did for few days as we were both worked up together ($$$$$ / what if it’s the transmission etc etc)  , my hubby and I tend to stress well together. Go over the worst case scenarios and jump to conclusions too quickly.   lol  But I am trying/ we are trying.    🤣😳🙈🚗 ( Side note: It was NOT the transmission. Car works fine now)

I’m not perfect.  I am really trying to appreciate the good and not stress over things we can’t control ( although that’s a whole other post… I have come a long way, I think letting the dog hair gather up for weeks on end not being able to vacuum or move much at times , helped me with some of the ‘let it go’ mentality, although I have a long ways to go yet.. haha ) Appreciate the good in your life. Finding the good in your day is key to living a good life. The memories made with family recently in my hometown seeing the sunsets , boating and biking and celebrating my 34th 🎉🎂, laughing hysterically at a comedy show have been my personal highlights ! Being back to work and doing what I love has been nice too, the social interaction and laughing and talks with coworkers , ( I knew I had a passion for nursing but I really love helping others, it’s really allowed me to find purpose again and has been nice to be back with my patients) Work hard, Play harder is my new motto. Stop waiting for Friday, for summer , for life to get easier. There will always be something! Enjoy today. It’s a good life we live ! 🙌🏼☀️💖

Wishing you all a HEALTHY and happy summer 2018!!!! That’s all I want! — Lo

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Don’t you dare rain on my parade !!! ☔️

I have come to a point in my life where I have realized that I really don’t have time for negative, judgemental toxic people. We are all in control of our own happiness and a part of that is choosing who is in our circle. Who we want in our parade. It’s time to surround yourself with those who bring out the best in you, not the stress in you.

Life is short. I remind myself daily to enjoy every single day and I always try and find the good. ( There is always good, some days it’s just harder to find). Everyone in our lives has their own opinions, ( and yes they may be different than our own), but if it always seems negative, unsupportive , hurtful and rude , then why do you need this? Friends are supposed to raise us up, not bring us down. Why are you allowing that person to stress you out ? Bring you down and perhaps question what you’re thinking or doing? Everyone has opinions , yes, but the difference between an opinion and being judgmental is, if you don’t ask what they think, then why are you sharing their negative ,rude, judging behaviour about something that you are enjoying, that you am using, that you plan to do. That’s not love. That’s not being kind.

If you are anything like me, when someone judges you, says something negative about whatever it is that is going on in your life, something that you’re doing/ using, you get defensive. You even would have to either bite your tongue, or usually you reply standing up for yourself and this causes stress that you don’t even need in your life. An argument or a debate that is totally unnecessary and ridiculous. Ask yourself why this is even happening and don’t even allow it. You do not, I repeat, do not need to justify what you are doing/ using and why. Stay confident , be strong, and distance yourself from this. It is your life remember !

Let’s go back a little bit , I remember from my high school days ( approximately 16-18 years ago– *don’t judge me* haha) when a certain ” friend ” would make me feel guilty for having a boyfriend, or make me feel bad for not going to her party on a Friday night just because I didn’t feel like it or for who knows what else, time and time again, It happened. I always felt the need to explain myself. Later in life, when I looked back at why this girl made me feel this way? I realized , it was to make her feel better. Some people are like that, they drag others down to make themselves feel better. It happened then, it happens now. Don’t allow it.

Pick people who share your same energy. Positive , supportive people who are your cheerleaders in life , who don’t judge you , no matter what. Those are the people who get you. Keep them. They belong in our parade.

At the end of the day, life is busy enough with work, housework , family, so keep things simple. Choose who you let in. If you find yourself stressing out, look at the reason, and ask yourself why? Why am I even allowing this ? You need to make you happy, that’s it, that’s all. Don’t let people rain on your parade. Because let’s be honest, you’re parade is pretty amazing!

This quote is a pretty cute reminder about life! 🍑

Til next time…. Lo xx 😘☔️

Enjoy every moment. 🌷🙏🏼

2018 is a new year. A year for health and wellness improvements. A year to set new goals and resolutions for yourself (if you’re into that kind of thing.). A new start’, ‘ a new me’ mindset, it’s about setting goals for yourself, whether it’s to lose weight, go to the gym or knock some bad habits. It’s a new year. A chance for a new you.

My 2018 manta is to enjoy every moment. I have realized especially over the past year or so , that life is so short. I know that we always say that, but it really is. We get one shot. One journey. That’s it, that’s all. We don’t know what tomorrow brings or how our future will go. All we can do is enjoy the days. Be grateful for the good. ( and yes, there is always good).

I read a quote not long ago and it inspired me. I now think twice when something unfortunate happens to me and try to let it go. The quote is , ” was it a bad day?, or ” was it a bad five minutes that you milked all day?” It’s so true. How many times have you had one or two small things go wrong and it’s been the topic of conversation of the entire day, or at least half of your day… You have stressed yourself out over spilling your coffee, waking up late and rushing to work scattered, or you got into an argument with a friend , husband , or loved one and have carried the mood with you for the day and it’s interrupted any positive or good for that day because you are holding onto to something way longer than you should have ? ( Here is your chance to rethink ) . Just try next time and see if you can let it go!

If you’re anything like me, you overthink things. You go round and round with one tiny idea or problem and allow it to be a larger issue than it is. You speak of it for hours and let it consume your day. You drive your spouse or best friend insane because you share every single detail of your unfortunate event or ‘ bad day’ experience because you’re so upset, pissed off at or just want to cry and give up because of it ?? Sound familiar??

Anxiety is a very powerful thing. It’s so much more common than I ever knew , and if I would have known that’s what kept me up at night for years , I could have had many more sleep filled nights. LOL. But seriously. Try and train your mind. Just like we want to feed our bodies with healthy foods and tons of water , and exercise for health and weight reasons, our mind needs nourishing too. Feed it positive thoughts.

Your mind believes what we tell it to. In the past six months particularly, I have really tried to control my mind and not allow it to control me. Sure, counselling and meditation can help , but it’s been the journaling, positive mindset quotes, and training myself to change the way I think. It’s not easy and it’s definitely not something you can do overnight, but I’m learning and and am much more aware. I have learned for me that expectations often lead to disappointments, so try not to set myself up for failure. Live in the moment.

My year has been filled with a series of unexpected , unfortunate events with my health ( I have now endured three surgeries in thirteen months — along with some complications and new health issues that has me off work, and I am currently freshly recovering from my latest one) Not only has this year changed me as a person , but it has inspired me to enjoy the journey. Create memories and enjoy the moments.

Days happen. Good and bad. Yes, there are bad , awful days or moments. Sometimes we are given bad news , or stress about a situation that we can’t control. We need to learn to cope with it to the best of our abilities. Be there for the ones we love and try and understand that we all deal with things in a different way. Sometimes there is no right or wrong way , it’s just different. I am still learning this as my husband and I are polar opposites at times and when we are faced with a stressful situation , our reactions are black and white.

Be the best you. Try and enjoy the moments. It’s all we can do. I am not trying to paint a picture that I am always filled with happiness, rainbows and butterflies , because that is definitely by far not the case, but everyday ( okay most days), I try. I try to be the best me I can be. I try not to stress over things I can’t control. I try and come up with a plan and then let it go for the day ( sometimes allowing yourself a time limit to talk about something works for me , then let it go for the day) . I am enjoying the moments. I enjoy time on the couch with my husband , I enjoy time with my nephew and sister in law, I enjoy the phone chats with my mom, I enjoy the hot shower in the morning, and I enjoy amazing foods and coffee. What have you enjoyed today??????

P.S. I have learned that self-care is so important…. take a bath, blare your favourite songs, paint your nails, go for a walk ( if it’s not too cold out there) , or just watch a show or movie on the couch with your favourite tea or alcoholic drink! Try and keep things simple!

P.S.S. Health is a gift. I am so thankful that my post op experience is going as expected this time!!!

Til next time xx, Lo 💞💪🏼

Inspire. Breathe. Repeat.

The past six months of my life have literally flashed before my eyes. The calender pages have turned, the seasons have changed from spring to summer to fall. Now winter is upon us, without much warning at all. The brisk cool winter air reminds me of my health over the last year, so very quickly altering without a chance to adjust my sails in the storm.

In a nutshell, I’ve been healthy for 32 years and then within the past 11 months I’ve been told:

  • I had ovarian cancer ( had surgery removing one of my ovaries for this, a bowel resection for endometriosis and removed my appendix).
  • Three months later , I developed gallbladder issues ( requiring another surgery to remove it) ,had a bowel obstruction from the anesthetic after this surgery, then developed sepsis ( a huge infection) after my gallbladder was removed , where I spent 6 weeks of my life / summer in the hospital — just over one week of that in the ICU), where I became extremely malnourished , lost about 25 pounds, developed pleural effusions ( fluid in my lungs) , a fast heart rate , had four drains in my abdomen draining out the infection , was on very strong antibiotics and many medications , and basically was the sickest I have ever been in my entire life.
  • Now four months after my last surgery, I have recently been told I have an incisional hernia from the complications of everything and now need another surgery in January.

Overwhelmed is an understatement. Life happens whether we’re ready or not. The good. The bad. The ugly. I am going to dedicate this post to my health over the past year. To the challenges, the constant roller coaster , the anxiety , and the grateful attitude I try to hold with me during it all. Being a nurse , knowing far too much about the diagnoses, the side effects, the medications , the lab values, the equipment used , and the risks of the procedures and tests, have made this journey the most difficult experience that I have ever had to endure in the past 33 years of my life.

I try to live everyday with a positive and full heart however , no matter what you go through some days are easier than others. Sometimes a bad day turns to a bad week, or a bad month, or a bad year. Being enthusiastic about life is definitely not the easiest thing to do 24/7. You get worn down to such a thin level of even being able to cope with daily life. I am sure a lot of you can relate to this on many different levels. Whether it be stress from work, home , health or finances. Sometimes enough is enough. Yes , Sure I am so lucky to be alive. I count my blessings as often as possible. I am very thankful for my amazing and supportive family and friends. Without them , I would be a lot worse off than I currently am.

However , lately I’ll be honest it has been really difficult for me not to play the ” why me’s” in my head. I try and tell myself ‘this too shall pass’. But so far it hasn’t gone anywhere. The blocks keep building and I’m standing inside.

About two weeks ago, I was getting bloodwork done as I was having some hair loss , ( oh yes , one of the other side effects of being so sick) , I thought maybe my iron or thyroid was extremely off to cause this and of course wanted a quick fix to a problem, no such luck. So , yes about two weeks ago I was at the lab sitting in the chair waiting to be poked for the 1000th time this year.

I looked up, in front of me was a woman who appeared younger than me , who with my very observant nurse brain , I noticed that she had hand deformities on both of her hands with scarring. She was very thin and frail and had white pale skin. She was speaking to the lady taking her blood loud enough for me to hear across the room, ” I’m doing so much better this time than the last time I was here ” , she said. The lady smiled while drawing blood from her sticklike arm and said, ” yes , the last time you could barely walk , you look better now , you put on some weight.” (To me , she still looked fairly unwell but as I have personally found out , a month of healing makes the world of difference. )

She looked over at me , we smiled at each other. To her, I looked ‘ healthier‘ than her , but little did she know I was smiling as I could relate so well with the feeling of being so unwell and weak. The frustration and struggle of not being able to walk independently . Being so young and feeling like you were much older. As I smiled , I thought to myself this was me just a few months prior. I am on my way to health. Hopefully she is too.

After I walked out to my car that day , I thought to myself ‘ wow! That lady inspired me. ‘ She seemed so positive and happy, yet so sick. Inspiration is in our daily lives, we truly just have to look for it. Sometimes we try not to or we don’t realize this as we are far too busy, or too stressed, or staring at our phones. In turn, we could be inspiring others without knowing. We need to remember this.

I forgot how great it feels to be free with my thoughts on paper , or on computer screen I guess . * laugh out loud *. So I hope that somehow or in some way , this blog has inspired you. That was my intention. I am also breathing in and out while I end with one of my favourite sayings:

This is also a reminder to myself. The days are feeling longer. The sky darkening sooner. Winter is here. Instead of thinking of the cold snow, cleaning off your covered and iced cars, think of the magic. Christmas is an amazing time of year. I’ve pushed my energy into getting into the season this year with some holiday baking and Christmas card making ( I will share in a following post) . Anyways, take care of yourselves. I am trying too. Good thing life only happens day by day, that’s as much as I am handling right now.

‘Til next time,

Lo xx ♥️😗

Health 💜

Never take your health for granted. I have recently realized how important it was to make my health a priority. It’s crazy how fast things change without even knowing they will.   I have themed many posts and Instagram hashtags about health & wellness these days. Whether it’s related to eating well, exercising or just living life in a happy and stress free way.  I have truly become aware of its true meaning and how important it is.   Unfortunately , sometimes it takes losing something you’ve had to realize how vital it is when you don’t have it.  

After 32 years of only a few hospital visits for stitches and two broken collar bones, I have been so lucky and blessed to be overall very healthy. The Fall of 2016 changed my fortune but I still have the mentality that , it could always be worse.  In saying this, even when you have a positive outlook on life, there are still bad days.   There are days where you just feel you cannot be glass half full, days where people tell you that it is all going to be okay & you feel like it’s hard to smile.  This is okay.  As long as your positive days outweigh your negative ones.   Sometimes when you don’t feel well, you feel defeated and you feel like ” okay I’ve seriously had enough ” and that is totally how I have been lately since I just found out I need another surgery. 😦 

Cancer has definitely changed my outlook , and the life of my family.  My surgery was frightening for all and my recovery was long.  I was brave and got through it with amazing nurses , doctors and my supportive family at my side.   


Nobody wants to have surgery or be sick. Especially when you are unsure what to expect , (or sadly you do because you just endured it, ) or if you suffer from anxiety like me.  I have learned to crawl ( when you can’t walk) through the many hoops,  to look back and say ” I did it”.  I am stronger because of this. 

The point of this blog is to say: I have been healthy. I have been sick.  I have been told I had cancer , but surgery was the only treatment I needed.  And for that , I am truly blessed.   I am one of the lucky ones. I do try and live every single day with a grateful heart. 

I have recovered from my major surgery, I got back on my feet, generally feeling well. I have even returned to work to take care of others who are sick and need care.  

And then… last week while at work, I had some symptoms which had me check into my doctor ( which I did way faster than last time I was sick) – sometimes you do live and you learn , and realize health isn’t something to play around with.  I had bloodwork.  I had an ultrasound. I worried about my results thinking the worst…what will they find ( anxiety and waiting aren’t a good combination) ,  but my results showed that I am hypothyroid and need to be started on thyroid meds which isn’t the end of the world ( it runs in my family – my mom, aunts , cousins all have it) & my gallbladder needs to be removed.   YES, another surgery for me.    I cannot believe my luck.   Waiting for surgeon consult , eating only rice cakes , and low fat flavoured rice and iced tea and Gatorade basically right now.  I am thankful for anything I can keep *in* at this point.   


This too will pass.   I am going to get through this as I did with my past health experience.  It should be much simpler this time ,as my mom reminds me .  So, as mom also says and reminding myself too. ” Keep your chin up. ”

.. Til next time ( I know it’s been awhile-  hopefully not as long til my next post… I have missed it…& hope this helps anyone it can) 

Xx  😘 Lo  

Count your blessings 🌟

Lately more than ever before in my life , I have learnt that many things happen unexpectingly. Being out of control of a situation is probably one of the hardest things. You can plan all you want , but ready or not , life just happens. 

I consider myself lucky ( most days ), I have a nice home by the lake, a good job , a caring husband , two fur babies I love, amazing family and friends in my life & I am working my way back to health and wellness ❤️.  There is so much to be greatful for. Although even with all of this, I find myself overwhelmed with life at times and stressed out. I try and remind myself not to stress over things I can’t control.  This is always easier said than done … 

Lately I have had a very sudden unexpected illness that made me go off work without warning. It was unpredictable and probably the scariest moments of my life.  Since , I have had a pretty extensive surgery and have been recovering at home.  I am now feeling well and ready to go back to work (hoping this happens sooner than later — to get back to normal  if there’s such a thing & just be the best me I can be ). 

In the meantime, I am trying to keep my positive outlook and look on the bright side of life. ( trust me some days are harder than others as you fall into your old patterns of thinking— which I call ‘negative building’ … when one bad thing happens , then another and another … it’s like a downward spiral and you are super discouraged and stressed out! But,  it really doesn’t HAVE to be this way & its best to avoid this way of thinking ) Instead I try and think of each event as a seperate one and try to take everyday as a new one and start again.  

Count your blessings. This is a saying we have all heard , but generally fail to take it literally.  Now, I try and count them – I list all of the positive things in my life and think ” things could be a lot worse” even on my worst day.    Life isn’t easy, there’s ups and downs, and I truly believe we are tested to our maximum somedays and not always successful to pass these tests we are given.  A bad day is just that, and there was better days ahead. There is sunshine after the storm.  

Find the good in everyday. Be kind & try and laugh a little ☺️ 

 

Stay strong & Breathe  xx Lo 🙌🏼❤️

The Bachelor 🌹

I’m sad to admit I have been watching the Bachelor.  Nick, I’m not sure you’re impressing anyone this season.  So we have Rachel , Vanessa , Raven and the oh so famous girl Corrine left on this season of the Bachelor.    It’s been told that Rachel is the next Bachelorette.  So that leaves us with three contestants to marry Nick, who will it be ??  I think Corrine will be sent home next week. I mean she has to be right?   Who has a Nanny really?  And $600 sweats.  Come on lol 


Has anyone else been actually watching this show , and thinking what am I doing with my life .. I mean night haha   I use it as entertainment. Every Monday night, mom and I tune into the Bachelor , we talk on commercials and I drink wine and watch.    The past two weeks haven’t been as painful. 

Anyways , as much as I didn’t want to write a post on this show … it’s my Mondays lately.   Every girl needs a show or two. 

Til next time xx Lo