AMAZING NEWS! You Don’t Wanna Miss This!!


DSC_0313Hey guys, so I have some pretty exciting news! This is the landmark of being seizure free for one month! I made it! It feels like my birthday! Wait, even BETTER than my birthday!! I wish I could have cake and presents for it; it feels like such a milestone. I hope this is actually the beginning of seizure free living, and not just a lucky streak. Please cross your fingers for me. I need all the good vibes I can get! Here’s a quote from a song that’s been keeping me strong and making me feel inspired. You can do whatever you want, as long as you believe it’s possible. Why WON’T it work out?!

Everybody is a star

It don’t matter who you are

Keeping on reaching for your dreams

It aint as crazy as it seems

Own It” -Black Eyed Peas

http://grooveshark.com/s/Own+It/3kaJQR?src=5

Love you all! Hope this has helped those out there who are struggling with seizure control. I’m right there with ya! xox

 

Woes of Unemployment

stuck in a rutSo I think I forgot to mention a crucial milestone in my past few posts. I have graduated from my Bachelor’s degree in Social Work!!! All my hard work finally paid off. Now I have to deal with the fact that I’m a: no longer a student, and b:since I am not a student I need to look for employment. Yikes. Looking for jobs is tough, and since they can be scarce and competition can be stiff it’s hard not to get discouraged. I’ve been looking online as well as doing some networking with organizations that I would be interested in working for. So far it’s been going well, although today was an exception. Instead of writing an essay of thoughts I decided to write a train of thought poem of how my networking session went today. I haven’t written much poetry in awhile so hold on to your seats.

Woes of Unemployment

Today’s meeting didn’t go
so well.
Or maybe it did
I’m not sure
I got flustered when I got lost

Those were the most vague
Directions ever

The lady didn’t seem very
engaged.
It’s a small company
don’t hire often
Felt discouraged.

Got my shoes wet and muddy for a 20 minute
talk.
What was the point?
You have to work to find a job. No  one
will just hand it to  you
This is part of the process. You need
to put yourself out there
What kind of work am I even
qualified for?
Why do so many jobs require a driver’s license?
So unfair.

Stop whining you mofo
Whinging just takes up breath
Maybe I’ll get an interview for
one of the jobs I’ve applied for?!

Maybe I’ll be the exception to the
rule of not getting hired to the first
job I applied for.
Graduating is so stressful!
I wish I could have eased into it.

You’re seeing friends and feeling better
so that’s important
Your health is improving!
You are exercising!!!
You are strong.

Just keep carving your path
Sometimes certain things happen for a
reason.

You are like a tea bag in hot water
Just add that zest of Sita to these
tough times.
You are not alone
Friends and family love
you

You perform well in interviews
Everyone goes through tough times
Just breathe.
Remove that guilt
Pat yourself on the motherfuckin’ back
You have gotten through so much
so keep at it

Hug every day
Dance like no one gives a shit
Smile at the silly things in
Life.
I am proud of
You.
.

So there ya go! Ultimately self love came of my woes, thank god. What did you think? Are you going through similar stuff? Any suggestions? Hope you are doing well! Love you all! xox

Confessions of an Epileptic: My Body Image Sucks

Picture of me 9

I have struggled with my body image for a long time, but have always found it a difficult subject to broach. “I feel like my hips are fat.” isn’t the most glamourous way to start a conversation. For the record, I am self conscious of my thighs, especially my hips. Also from a women’s studies perspective, it is worrisome that talking about negative body image as it may create more negative body image amongst my friends. I never really had a safe way of talking about it with my friends, as it is hard to know who may feel triggered by certain comments. Additionally, I never thought that body image and chronic seizures could have any form of correlation. Through having severe seizures and the feeling of complete loss over my own body has made me feel negatively towards my body in general. Also going from completely active with regards to working out at least 6 times a week to only going for moderate walks every day (if I could muster it) was a complete life style change that I was not sure I was willing to accept. These added on challenges to an already feeling of insecurity towards my body has been a difficult path in these past couple of years, especially because I want to feel at peace with my own body and how I relate to it. 

   Sometime in late 2012 I was put on Topamax, which is an anti seizure medication. Topamax completely suppressed my appetite, which is a common side effect, although it does not occur in everyone who takes it. Dinner became the most painful meal of the day, as I had to sit at the table with my parents and literally shovel food into my mouth. Eating was no longer enjoyable and started to feel more like a chore than an enjoyable way of socializing with my friends and family. I felt full all the time and no longer had any cravings or desire for some of my favourite foods. I still ate food, but the pounds fell off as they pleased. No one said much, except for the scale screaming my weight up to me past my toes. I began to notice that my face was slimmer and my jaw line seemed to be less cushy. It wasn’t until I went to a program coordinator for the Social Work Program at my university did I realize how evident my change in weight was. Although I wasn’t there to discuss my weight, she had no issue in telling me her thoughts on my appearance. “Wow Sita! You’re so slim! I can’t believe it! You’re just so tiny! You look so great!” I ignored her comments and looked helplessly at my friend who had come to the meeting with me. I pushed past her comments to further discuss the academic matters I was there to see her for.

      After the meeting I just felt so confused. Was it good that I was “so thin?” Did everyone secretly think I was fat beforehand and now was just a convenient time to tell me that I was too skinny, yet looking great?My current ‘skinny’ weight also happened to be my stupid self internalized “goal weight”, but I here I was getting a slap across the wrists saying I was “too skinny!!” Due to my insecurity of my body image I should have been elated at losing so much weight, but I started to worry that I would continue to lose more weight. I didn’t have much more to lose! Although I did not have an eating disorder, I felt uncomfortable having lost so much weight. My old weight was healthy! I had more muscle on me and I exercised at least 6 times a week. At this weight I was so sick I couldn’t even go to the gym and my friends and family were constantly watching my back, braced for my next seizure.

    Okay let’s fast forward to 2013. Thank gawd I was taken off of the Topamax (which was a relief because it slowed my brain processes in addition to making me lose weight). It was great to have my brain processing at a sharper speed again but I had lost so much muscle due to my sedentary lifestyle. I was also fearful of having a seizure while exercising at the gym, and ultimately that fear came true when I fell off of a stationary bike. After that incident, I felt like I did not belong in the gym anymore. For a period of months I started to feel more and more like a blob, while constantly reminiscing over the days when I could run 5 km in 30 minutes, and when I took Burlesque classes with my friends. (Yes, that’s right! Burlesque!) This feeling of being ‘too soft’ and ‘not muscular enough’ trickled into 2014 until the beginning of May when I did a fitness class with a friend. It was a Barre class which was high intensity yet still close enough to the ground in case anything happened. Also the fact that I had a friend there helped a lot. Today my thighs are killing me but it was so worth it! I also bought a 10 class dance pass from Groupon which was valued at over 100 dollars but I paid only 19 dollars for it! I can’t help but say that it’s a helluva deal! I can’t wait to do some more Zumba, Burlesque, hip hop, and the other styles of dance that are offered. Dancing isn’t super close to the ground like the Barre class was, but I am too excited to back out now! Since I will be working out more, I bought a pair of cross trainers for the dance classes and other aerobics classes in general. I love them! Aren’t they cute?! 

Picture of me 10
SO SO much shoe love!

I guess I’ve kinda come full circle: supposedly too skinny, to feeling like a blob, and now back on the dance/exercise bandwagon again. It’s amazing how seizures have affected my body image and how I view my body. Even though I was insecure about my body image, it has intensified during my period of illness. It is slowly recuperating, but it just goes to show how illness can affect how we view our own bodies and or our loss of control over them. In this case, epilepsy is highly relevant as epileptics literally have no control over their bodies when they are seizing, which is absolutely terrifying. It is also amazing how the intensity of a person’s seizures can limit them from every day physical activities that people who are not affected with some sort of illness may not think twice about. Remember to count your blessings, and if being fit for you means taking a short walk every day then pat yourself on the frigging back! You deserve it! Yay for being fit again! I can’t wait! Love you all! xox

It Really Is The Little Things That Count

it-is-not-happy-people-who-are-thankful-it-is-thankful-people-who-are-happy-136314This afternoon I had a thought. It was a thought that many people have probably had before, but maybe never really dug too deeply into. This thought arose as I left a Starbucks with my green tea latte in hand, and I remembered when I had gone to the Starbucks in the library at my university a few months back. I was tired and worn out, but still determined to keep working away at an essay about women’s studies or some social work issue. As I joined the line up of other students who were getting their caffeine fix, I stood in auto pilot, just waiting for the next available barista. I ordered my usual: hot chocolate with whip, and spelled out my name so no one else could accidentally take my drink. When I got my cup I saw my name, along with a little smiley face. My heart warmed like a summer day and I couldn’t help but feel happy that someone took the time to draw a little smiley face on my cup. I believe that it was the smiley face got me through that day of essay writing even more than the hot chocolate.

So what the hell was the point of this story? I think it really is the little things in life that make a difference. It is so easy to be blind to it, and just see the overall big picture. Even when things feel like shit is hitting the fan, I try to look at my life and try to see at least a few great things that happened that day. It could be as simple as I didn’t miss my bus even though I was running late. Everyone knows how much it sucks to miss the bus! You’re standing there cursing at the bus stop, shaking your fist at the bus and how dare it be on time when you were running late! It’s usually raining and you have to text your friend to say you’ll be running late. In that moment, it is so easy to see all the crap that’s going on, and forget about the tiny things that make life amazing.

It is also so common to seek out this idea of happiness. It seems as though happiness is a beacon of light, that one day we will find. Once we get our dream job, find the perfect partner, and finally pay off all our debts we will be happy. Happiness seems to be this concept that seems to be hard to pin down. It really isn’t that hard though! Just look at the little things in life and you will realize that you have so much more going for you than you think. In my case, I know I have a chronic condition and I will most likely be on medication for the rest of my life. That is most likely my reality. Yet, there are things to be thankful for, despite my situation. I have parents who are working so hard to help me become more healthy, as well as friends who are caring and concerned. They are also just awesome people in general! I feel so blessed to have those positive connections, as so many people in the world live in isolation with no friends or family to support them. In no way am I saying that it’s easy to be accepting of chronic conditions (or any medical condition, for that matter). Acceptance of a medical condition can be difficult, and if you dwell deep enough into it, you may feel angry or that you were robbed of a ‘normal’ life. Recently I have found that surrendering to the uncertainty of my condition has been deeply liberating. I don’t mean I’m throwing my hands in the air and giving up. I just mean that I am working on living day to day, and seeing the positive things that do happen on a daily basis. For the record, I have not fully accepted my condition; some days I feel angry because I have to wait to start my career that I have worked so hard for. I am still working hard though! I reminded of this by my boyfriend and parents, which is highly validating. There is nothing better than feeling like you are doing something that can improve your situation.

So ultimately, what’s my take away message? See the teeny tiny triumphs in your day. Recognize small things that make you happy, whether having the time to watch your favourite tv show, or that you were able to talk with your best friend who you haven’t seen in ages. The little things in life are there- you just have to look for them.

Love you all! XOX