About ten years ago, I started experiencing health issues that changed my life.
I had been dealing with digestive problems for as long as I could remember, but this time it was as if all of the different systems in my body went haywire. I was overcome with debilitating gastrointestinal, hormonal, and inflammatory problems all over my body. I lost 30 pounds, wasn’t able to work or socialize, and my life was turned totally upside down. I saw countless doctors and felt hopeless and angry as I tried to deal with conflicting and confusing diagnoses. Finally, and thankfully, I connected with a team of integrative physicians that looked at my body as a whole and helped me begin a path of healing.
I learned that self-awareness and self-care are vital to my health. Eating healthy foods became a non-negotiable. I found out that gluten and dairy made me severely sick, and cut them out completely. I learned to cook, experimented with new plant-based recipes, and researched how to reduce chemical exposure and inflammation. I prioritized meditation, exercise, relaxation, and restorative rest. I also started hormone and immune therapy, received weekly vitamin infusions, and began the long process to heal my gut and reduce inflammation.
I experienced the tough task of putting myself first, and saying no to things that didn’t feel right for my body. I learned that having a chronic health issue is hard. Changing your lifestyle is hard. I saw a psychologist who helped me to recognize that I could help further my healing process by being kinder to myself – and that my body needed my support, love, and compassion to get better.
I learned that you can’t predict your next flare-up, or where you’ll be when extreme fatigue hits, and that the ‘what if’s’ are can be very scary. I remember wondering if I’d ever be able to travel again, work again, or be a mom, but I knew that I had to get my life back. Dealing with the emotional and mental side of being sick can be overwhelming and painful. I began to understand that we’re all different, and that I may have to miss out on things to take care of myself, or that I may need to spend more time on whatever I need to do to stay well, and that’s okay.
Finally, after more than four years of doctors, hospitals, treatments, and procedures, I got my life back. I started working again, found a job in nutrition and health education, and went back to school to study health promotion and disease prevention. I got married to an amazing man, received my masters degree, moved across the country with my husband (twice!), started my own business, began a new job, and created a new home. I am incredibly grateful to be feeling better and better.
Throughout this journey, I’ve realized that helping others find their own way to wellness – and prevent disease in the first place – is how I want to contribute in this world.
I’m a public health professional, wife, and wellness enthusiast. I have a deep passion for healthy living and disease prevention and while Made to Glow is my labor of love, I also enjoy my work in health policy. I spend my free time snuggling with our new pup, Kaya, and hanging out with my husband and friends.
I’m thrilled you’re here and wish you all the best on your own health journey!