How are you feeling? — March 7, 2016

How are you feeling?

Do you ever just have something happen to you and you look back and see what you could have done differently to prevent it?

Well that’s been me for the last few days. To say I’m in some pain would be an understatement. I was finally able to change my bandages and look at my wounds for the first time. It’s definitely not what I thought it was going to look like. I thought since they went in laparoscopically my incisions wouldn’t be so bad, but I was wrong. Two of my incisions are quite large and my belly button has two more incisions with another small incision close to my left hip. The pain is constantly throbbing and my back almost always hurts.

Here is what they did to my body: Going into surgery I knew that my uterus was going to be reconstructed because it was somewhat damaged. However, my OB found that both my ovaries were conjoined, which were attached to my uterus, and my uterus was attached to my bowels. So basically all my parts were frozen together, giving me all these crazy symptoms when I was on my normal period. During surgery my left ovary and fallopian tube were so enveloped in scar tissue that they were damaged beyond repair. Once they took out my left ovary and tube it was time to take care of my right one. My right one wasn’t perfect, it had some damage that they were able to fix but in the end I am left with half of my right ovary and a fully functioning tube. (YAY) Of course after that was done the rest of the endometriosis was removed. From what I understand there was a lot of damage done an it was very hard to fix (surgery was 4 hours)but they got the job done which is all I wanted.

The main question I keep getting asked is this: How are you feeling? Well honestly, I have no idea. I’m out of work for two weeks if not three, I can’t do much of anything because of the amount of pain I’m in, and we only have a 25% chance of conceiving a baby the natural way. So the answer to “how are you doing?” is not so great. I feel like I have to say I’m fine or that things are going well because people don’t want to hear about the awful stress my body and my emotions are going through. There are plenty of times in the hospital that I cried because I don’t have all my lady parts. I cried for Russell because I feel like he is marrying someone he is always going to have care of. I wonder if I would have taken better care of myself if this could have been avoided. I wonder how I got so lucky by having someone love me as unconditionally as Russell. He is always willing to take care of me even on days when he isn’t feeling well or he’s having an off day. Sometimes I feel like he deserves to be with someone who is healthy and can do everything he wants to do. But I’ve come to realize that’s not life. Life is growing old with someone, taking care of them because you love them, being selfless in a time when you probably deserve to be selfish.

Finding out that I have stage 5 (extensive) endometriosis it felt like my world was falling apart. I felt like I was being kicked in the gut. Each day brings a new struggle. Each day a new emotion arises that I have to face head on. Today I am feeling overly emotional because I want a baby. I want to give Russell a family. I want to feel what it’s like to give birth to a baby. I want to be up all night feeding and changing diapers. But what people don’t understand is that this disease can rip those hopes and dreams away from a woman in a heartbeat. I want to be one the women who can beat this. I wan to be able to say I have “x” amount of children. It may take a while to get there but I have to keep faith that everything is going to work out. My plan for life has already been mapped and I just have to keep following it.

xoxo

 

An open letter to my best friend — November 8, 2015

An open letter to my best friend

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Caitlyn

To say I’m proud of you would be an understatement. Your hard work, persistence, and never give up attitude landed you in the Top 15 of Miss Ohio USA. Watching you last night on stage was one of the highlights of my year. This journey hasn’t been easy for you ( but how boring would it have been if it was?!) but you pushed hard, made sacrifices, and knew that with God on your side you could do anything you set your mind to. Preparing for a pageant is more difficult than anyone can imagine. You worked harder than ever; working out, practicing, and even watching what you eat (btw I hope your enjoying a donut as you read this!) to make sure your body was in top shape, and you looked amazing!

Caitlyn, you are one of the kindest, sweetest souls I have ever met. You show me day in and day out what it means to let God show your way. Throughout this entire process you have known all along that God has a bigger plan for you than you can imagine. I can’t even begin to tell you how amazing that is. Watching you grow and become more confident in yourself has been such a joy.

I am so grateful to have you in my life. Thankful for all of our conversations. Thankful to have a pageant sister like you that goes to the end of the earth for her bestie, even if we do live 3.5 hours away from each other. I am in awe of your grace and how much your give of yourself. I am so thankful for the friendship we share and can’t wait to see where your path will lead you.  Thank you for being the role model, an inspiration, and more importantly for being a strong woman of God.

With love

Official shoot as Miss Miami Valley Captivating — July 21, 2015

Official shoot as Miss Miami Valley Captivating

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Have you ever had that feeling that you are so lucky to have met someone? Well that has happened to me. Before pageants I had only known one photographer and while his work is amazing he lives an hour and half away from me which isn’t always easy, especially when he has other things he does. So one day I just happened to take the spot of a girl who couldn’t do a Mary Kay vendor event. That is when I me Beth. Oddly, it was like love at first sight, seriously. She is the most bubbly person and she is so just so cute and SO MUCH FUN! I am so thankful for her. Like I’ve said in my previous post Beth is amazing to work with She find these amazing places to shoot and I just always have a blast when I’m with her

The purpose of this shoot was to showcase me , officially, as Miss Miami Valley Captivating! I love every photo. The first photo you will see is my favorite because I was not paying attention. Beth was doing a few practice shots and this one made the cut. To me it is so stunning and elegant, everything a girl wants to feel 🙂 These pictures are so fun and so me and if you have a chance please follow Beth on instagram (@bethphillipsphoto) and see her work for yourselves!! Check out the link below to see my fabulous pictures!!

http://bethphillips.zenfolio.com/p259510470

Until next time!

xoxo

body shaming and how it could change everything if we stopped it — May 18, 2015

body shaming and how it could change everything if we stopped it

Fat shaming. Skinny shaming. Making a negative comment in some way shape of form about someone else’s body is body shaming.

I have my own issues with body shaming. I am naturally thin, enjoy working out and taking good care of myself. I enjoy posting pictures of my workout journey because I’m proud of the body I have. I have goals and I also realize I have a long way to go in my fitness journey. But I also realize there are going to be people who don’t like seeing what I have to post. They don’t want to see the results I am getting from the work I am putting in, at home and at the studio that I workout at. I realize there are going to be people who are going to have a negative comment about the way I look or the way others look.

Take for example, Rebel Wilson at the 2015 MTV movie awards. She wore leather leggings that said “think” on the back with a pair of white angel wings. She says she did it to help girls be comfortable in their own skin. But is that really why she did it? She was making fun of Victoria’s Secret super models and their being thin. I thought the effort she made was good but the message was saying it’s not okay to be thin.

On the other hand you have people fat shaming others. Something more recent is when Kelly Clarkson was fat-shamed on The Mike Gallagher show. She has had a baby in the last year and just because she doesn’t look the way some think she should, gives them the right to judge her for the way she looks.

So why do we fat/skinny shame others?  Why do we feel like we should have the right to comment on how someone else looks? I think some do it because they don’t like the way others look. I think some do it because they aren’t happy with themselves and they don’t want anyone to feel good about they way they look. I really feel like some people shame others because they don’t want anyone to look better than they do.

How do we stop this? We stop body shaming by keeping our comments to ourselves. We stop body shaming by encouraging others to complete their fitness goals. We lift each other up, every day, instead of trying to bring them down. Bringing others down is not going to solve anything. Bringing others down is only going to make us feel worse about ourselves.

I can tell you from personal experience, that body shaming hurts. It also fuels me to be better than I was yesterday. Just last week I had a lady ask me if I eat cheeseburgers. Let’s be honest, I love a good cheeseburger, as much as, the next person. I just choose when to eat them and how often. As I turned to attend to another table she looked at her husband and said, “I hate to be that thin.” Yes, I understand I am almost 26 and have a thin frame. So thin in fact, that I still wear junior’s clothing. But what that lady didn’t know is that I have gained 9 pounds and have never felt better about myself. Sure I have my insecurities just like every other girl but I don’t need anyone to tell me how I should look.

If we stopped body shaming maybe women would be more supportive of each other. Maybe if we had nicer things to say, the world would be a better place to live in. If we stop body shaming, we may be able to see the best sides of ourselves and others.

Until next time.

xoxo