So my next avenue of care was to delve into what I’m using to fuel my body. I am a big fan of clean eating and most people when looking at my weekly meal plan would say I’m the healthiest person they know. But this doesn’t mean that I’m eating to heal my body of an auto immune disorder & it’s symptoms. After my diagnosis post I received a million and one suggestions of what to do. They are overwhelming & welcomed all at once. Although I love information it has been a lot and I need to sift through it.
One of the first videos I watched is by Dr. Terry Wahls called Minding Your Mitochondria
I downloaded her book The Wahls Protocol onto my Kobo to dive into. So far I love her straight forward writing approach and the way she explains science to a “lay person”. My Naturopath has also recommended that I read Grain Brain. There are so many books out there so I’ll slowly make my way through them.
Monday was a busy day for me. I woke up feeling still slightly foggy and with a nice headache that felt like it could’ve turned into a migraine. I had received an Intro doTERRA kit from Ange of Hol:Fit which has a peppermint essential oil in it. I’ve read that this is great for easing headache symptoms so I put some on my temples and along my hairline. I smelled like peppermint for the rest of the day but it worked!
I visited my neurologist Dr. Baskind at his office on Monday afternoon. Alas there was no bow this time. He had a senior resident with him so I got to tell the quick story of how I was diagnosed and explain that my symptoms have dissipated. The feeling has returned to the entire right side of my body except my hand (which is still a bit pins & needly). As I write this post it’s almost completely gone so I’m hoping my symptoms are cleared by the end of the week. I pulled out the extensive blood work my Naturopath had done so he could take a look and then my notebook with questions. I’m going to write them down in case a recently diagnosed MS patient ever comes across this blog post and is curious about what to ask.
1. How many MS patients do you currently treat? Do you specialize in MS or are you a general neurologist? He is treating around 60 patients and is a general neurologist. He even said he’d be willing to refer to me to the MS clinic at St. Mike’s where they have specialists.
2. What type of MS do I have? I started my research on the MS Society of Canada webpage. I have the earliest form which is called Clinically Isolated Syndrome as I’ve only had one attack. Based on my MRIs and the amount of lesions I fit the McDonald Criteria.
So on January 1st I always post all my goals for the year. It’s a tradition and I can’t wait to share everything that I want to accomplish in 2015. A big part of that is my running & obstacle course racing goals which deserve a post on their own. So without further ado here are my 2015 Race Goals!
1. I really want to try the Snowshoe Raid January 17th in Blue Mountain. It’s a team snowshoe race using a map & compass. Teams have 3 hours to collect as many checkpoints as possible. Teams of 2 consist of: Coed, Male, Female, Masters Coed, Masters Male, Masters Female, Family, Juniors. I haven’t signed up yet but this seems like a lot of fun!
2. I’m signed up and ready for my first obstacle course of the year and it’s going to be my first winter obstacle. Polar Hero has three locations in 2015 in Ottawa, Montreal & Quebec. I’m signed up for the Ottawa one on January 31st and I can’t wait to have fun at this one. It’s also a great excuse to go home for the weekend.
So on Tuesday, December 2nd after receiving my first steroid IV treatment in the hospital I was sent home to sleep in the comfort of my bed. Which was glorious! I was more excited to brush my teeth than anything.
My immediate treatment was to go through 3 doses of Solu-Medrol by IV (once in the hospital) and at home over the next two days. They shipped me the medication and an IV pole and arranged for a nurse to come in every day for treatment. She would hook IVAN the IV (yes I named him) to the medication on the IV pole and the drug would run through my system for an hour before she unhooked me and left. Solu-Medrol is a corticosteroid. It works by modifying the body’s immune response to various conditions and decreasing inflammation. We definitely made jokes on social media with my fitness world peeps that I was going to get jacked on steroids! Again I always have to look for the humour.
The hospital sent my blood work off to check for viruses that could be sitting dormant in my body. Being on the steroid treatment and lowering my immune system meant that if I had dormant viruses in my body they could now take affect. Fortunately Hep A, C & HIV tests all came back negative. I was also asked to go to my family doctor for a TB test which also came back negative. Yay for positive news!
We’d get to hang out with Amy Poehler, watching dumb movies, listening to music, and swapping tales about our coworkers and difficult childhoods. Because in a perfect world, we’d all be friends with Amy – someone who seems so fun, is full of interesting stories, tells great jokes, and offers plenty of advice and wisdom (the useful kind, not the annoying kind you didn’t ask for, anyway). Unfortunately, between her Golden Globe-winning role on Parks and Recreation, work as a producer and director, place as one of the most beloved SNL alumni and cofounder of the Upright Citizens Brigade, involvement with the website Smart Girls at the Party, frequent turns as acting double for Meryl Streep, and her other gig as the mom of two young sons, she’s not available for movie night.
Luckily, we have the next best thing: Yes Please, Amy’s hilarious and candid book. A collection of stories, thoughts, ideas, lists, and haiku from the mind of one of our most beloved entertainers, Yes Please offers Amy’s thoughts on everything from her “too safe” childhood outside of Boston to her early days in New York City, her ideas about Hollywood and “the biz,” the demon that looks back at all of us in the mirror, and her joy at being told she has a “face for wigs.” Yes Please is a chock-full of words and wisdom to live by.
What I say: This was such a fun read. I could hear Amy basically reading the book to me in my head so that was awesome. I love her practical advice and hearing about just how hard she had to work to get to where she is. I paused at times to watch YouTube clips of performances she mentioned. The chapter I laughed out loud at was near the end about her boys. When she describes how she could eat them I was guffawing. Read it and tell me you didn’t chuckle. The best piece of advice she gives on career that is applicable to everyone is in the chapter “Treat Your Career Like a Bad Boyfriend”. She makes me want a career partner in crime like Tina Fey and her chapter on how cell phones will kill us is hilarious, true and so on point with how we have a love / hate affair with our phones. They drive us crazy yet we can’t get rid of them. She even takes a hack at eBooks but seriously Amy they are my bread and butter so don’t knock them Definitely a great read!
The grand total of races run this year is… drum roll please… 13! I started out with plans to do 11 so I only added 2 more than planned!
1. Toronto Yonge Street 10K: This was my first race of the year and I was injured. I had spent March & April with a sprained lower lumbar spine so I was lucky I got to run this race at all. I chillaxed and ran this one slowly and still had fun as evident by my first feature #theface race picture of the year taken by Heather’s (from RunSoulCycle.com) husband.
2. Sporting Life 10K: My body had finally started healing a bit more for this race so I definitely wanted to go for a personal best. Since I had only really run one 10K the year before in 59:21 this was an easy time to beat. My friend Dustin paced me & I even had time to leap into the air when I saw the Tribe Fitness cheer pit. I finished in 56:38 so I was ridiculously happy with a 3 min better PB!
Temperance “Tempe” Brennan faces down the demons of her past in the seventeenth thriller in Kathy Reichs’s phenomenally successful Bones series.
Unexpectedly called in to the Charlotte PD’s Cold Case Unit, Dr. Temperance Brennan wonders why she’s been asked to meet with a homicide cop who’s a long way from his own jurisdiction. The shocking answer: Two child murders, separated by thousands of miles, have one thing in common—the killer. Years ago, Anique Pomerleau kidnapped and murdered a string of girls in Canada, then narrowly eluded capture. It was a devastating defeat for her pursuers, Brennan and police detective Andrew Ryan. Now, as if summoned from their nightmares, Pomerleau has resurfaced in the United States, linked to victims in Vermont and North Carolina. When another child is snatched, the reign of terror promises to continue—unless Brennan can rise to the challenge and make good on her second chance to stop a psychopath.
But Brennan will have to draw her bitter ex-partner out of exile, keep the local police and feds from one another’s throats, and face more than just her own demons as she stalks the deadliest of predators into the darkest depths of madness.
In Bones Never Lie, Kathy Reichs never fails to satisfy readers looking for psychological suspense that’s more than skin-deep.
What I say: Kathy Reichs is one of the first author’s I dived into as an adult reader. After the effects of not wanting to read anything after University wore off my mom got me a few of her books and we’ve shared a love affair for the books by the same author as the TV series “Bones” ever since. Her newest book doesn’t disappoint. It has all my favourite characters and even if you were new to her books you could figure out what was happening. I will say the ending is a shocker and Reichs should definitely have spent more than a few pages on it! That was the only upsetting part. Otherwise I give it 2 Bones (Thumbs) Up!
The moment the doctor said “there is an abnormality on the MRI” my world stopped for a split second. He started to turn around and was pointing to the back of his neck. I stopped him and said “wait, did you say abnormality?” The next words out of his mouth were “there is a demyelination on the c spine, which is indicative of MS but not conclusive.” My next words were strong and harsh. It’s indicative but not conclusive? So why would you say that to me? Why would you put that worry in my head if it’s not a firm diagnosis? What are our next steps?
It was 10pm, I had been in the emergency room for 12 hours. I had barely had anything to eat. I had been hooked up to an IV that was painful and had to sit in horribly hard chairs in the yellow area waiting room of North York hospital. The chairs made my symptoms worse and I just wanted my bed. But let me back up to the beginning of what is called an “episode”.
So I broke out my winter jacket on November 13th. I wasn’t too happy about it so instead of whining (which I did a little bit) I set about writing my Winter Bucket List for the upcoming season. I fully give credit to my winter bucket list on getting me through the polar vortex of last year’s winter. There are rumours that we’re in for a tough one this year so I’m ready to tackle this winter with awesome activities.
Last year I created this list (pictured below) and I still have things to cross off the list so they’ll start the basis of this year’s list.
One of my favourite childhood Christmas memories is of chopping down a Christmas Tree with my family. My mom has a really fun story that I always get her to tell. One year my Dad took me, a toboggan and a hand saw into the farm fields in search of a tree, while she stayed in the car with my newborn brother. This makes me around the age of two. Apparently I wanted to go further and further in, in search of the perfect tree. She finally got worried about us and bundled my brother, John up and headed out in search of us. She found us returning, me all bundled up being pulled on the toboggan tired out and my Dad dragging a 15 ft Christmas tree with the other arm. We had really tall ceilings in Kingston so they went all out with the tree height! This story makes my Dad into the hero he always is in my head (& in real life).
So this year I had to have “chop a real tree down” on the Christmas Bucket List. Since my friend Aubrie has a house she was the perfect victim for getting the real tree for. My friend Richard tagged along and we met up with another couple up at the farm. We chose the Horton’s Magic Hill Tree Farm near Stouffville. They supplied us with a hand saw & wrapped the tree for us for easy transport. It cost $55 all in. There were plenty of fields near parking and you could venture of as far as you’d like. They also provided a wagon ride out further into the property if you wanted a full experience. This is a great outing for the family. They have hot chocolate & a nice bonfire to crowd around.