About Me

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2 time ovarian cancer Survivor, Advocate for ovarian cancer awareness & research, Teacher of Zen Method Tai Chi, Blogger, sharing the wonderment and power of essential oils, proud fan of Cathe Friedrich's workouts, Reiki practitoner, A Course in Miracles student, paper crafter

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Counting Down SINS

Five more days of my SINS challenge to go! It's hard to believe that it's been almost 60 days already! It's even harder to believe that my final chemo treatment was 7 months ago! I am so proud of the strength and stamina I've gained and the pounds I've lost. I've worked hard for this progress, and I'm happier, healthier and wealthier for it. Taking control of my health and body has been beyond rewarding and enlightening. I highly recommend it!

On the twelfth day of my SINS challenge I wrote this update and increased my weight loss goal up to 12 pounds. My original goal was to lose 7 pounds in these 60 days.

As of today I have EXCEEDED that goal!! WowWoWwOw!

 I've lost 12.8 pounds in 55 days. 

A grand total of 15 pounds since my final chemo last September! 

I feel wonderfully and thankfully alive! I have been inspired and motivated by the awesome bloggers I've met at SINS (especially Marsha and Adam!) and, more recently, on Twitter. The world of a Survivor can be scary and dark place at times, thank you all for adding Light and Love to my path of healing. 

Although the end of my 60 Day SINS challenge is just about over, the challenge to reach my goal weight, increase my strength, cardio stamina and bone density continues on. I've got 65 more pounds to burn off and heavier dumbbells to lift! Onward and downward with a Spirit of gratitude.... 

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Learning from my Meltdown

How do you picture your ideal daily routine? In my mind's eye I picture Yoga and meditation first thing in the morning followed by a healthy protein rich breakfast with freshly brewed organic green tea. Email, FB and Twitter connections. Then I productively work from home connecting with and helping clients in various ways or studying for a couple hours. Cathe Friedrich workout time. Shower, then a veggie rich lunch. Back to work for a few hours. Email, FB, Twitter, food tracking break. I prepare a protein and veggie rich dinner and enjoy sharing the happenings of the day with Mom and whoever else may join us. In the evenings I meet with clients; or spend time with my sisters, nieces and nephews; or chat with my friends online; or read; or meet with friends in person; or provide volunteer Reiki to cancer Fighters or Survivors or by request; or relax with my favorite TV shows and make a meal plan for the next day. Before I lay down to sleep I write inspirational, honest, and sometimes funny blog posts about the positive effects surviving cancer has brought to my life. Self- Reiki treatment lulls me into a beautifully relaxed state and I sleep deeply. 

This is the daily routine that I tried to force upon myself last week in the form of the Google calendar. I set up my whole week starting each morning at 7:30. That approach failed. I rebelled against my own creation. Crazy, I know, but it happened. It even led to a total emotional meltdown last Wednesday. I cried myself to sleep in bed in the middle of the afternoon. Other issues contributed, too, but I mostly melted down under the pressure I was putting on myself to be my version of perfect. Yes, I am perfectly aware that there's no such thing as perfect. I guess I forgot. I blame the chemo-brain. 

Since meltdown day I had been trying to figure out what was keeping me from this ideal routine I had dancing around in my head. It wasn't until this past Sunday when it all came together in my head. I have 3 major challenges to face:

  1. My body still requires a lot of sleep. Although it's been 7 months since my final chemo treatment, my body is still healing and dealing with the side effects. One of those side effects is tiredness. I get worn out faster than before cancer treatments. My stamina is improving slowly, and I am very thankful for the progress. I want to give my body the time, space and grace that it needs to fully heal and that requires sleep. A part of me is embarrassed by it. A part of me is frustrated with this body. A part of me wants to ignore it and hope it goes away. My Spirit is wiser than my feelings, though. My Spirit knows that there's no time limit to this journey of healing, and that there's no shame in it either. I must accept it, and embrace it. I also have to take responsibility for it. That means getting into bed earlier so I can get 9-10 hours of sleep each night and wake up before 10am. (Please pay no attention to the time stamp of this post.) 
  2. I spend too much time e-socializing. I recently fell in love with Twitter and like many early romances I allowed it- happily- to eat up my time. Even though Twitter and Facebook bring educational and other positive aspects to my life I have to control how much time I spend e-connecting. The time I've been spending online is better spent studying, working or sleeping. Yes, it does kind of suck. Being a responsible grown up just sucks sometimes. I'll suck it up. 
  3. The third challenge I face is trying to change too many things about my routine-and, yes, myself- at one time. I think that's the biggest reason my Google calendar schedule failed last week. It felt overwhelming. It LOOKED overwhelming! I'm a Type A personality, and it just doesn't mesh well with chemo-brain or chemo related tiredness. I need a routine, but not a rigid hour by hour schedule. I need self-enforced boundaries that benefit me in a valuable way. I need and want to extend my body grace and gratitude it needs in order to continue to heal, strengthen, and improve.
I recognize that I can't create my ideal daily routine overnight. (Finally!) I do, however, have the ability to take a few graceful and purposeful baby steps. I will start going to bed- and to sleep- earlier. I will limit my e-socializing time to 2 blocks of 30 minutes during the day. I will use that newly 'found' time to study and build my professional life. I will give my body the gift of Yoga at least twice this week and the gift of self-Reiki at least 3 times this week. (I promise I will write something on my Reiki page very soon, too!)

Step by step and grace by grace I will create my ideal daily routine and ultimately the life of my dreams. I'm beginning to embrace the changes I need to make to create the productive and peaceful life I want for myself.  All things in moderation, right? 

Is there anything keeping YOU from the life of your dreams?

 What can you start doing today to move towards it? 

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Tweet Tweet

I'm going to tell you, dear read, something that may upset or shock you. Prepare yourself. Ready?

I officially like Twitter more than Facebook.

I like the quick pace of Twitter. I love that I can 'follow' (which is Twitter's equivalent of Facebook's 'friend') any person or company that has an open account. Most companies and people DO have open accounts. You can always unfollow or block a person or company if you change your mind. I feel as if my world has expanded in a wonderful new way through fascinating and inspirational people. Twitter is helping me to realize how truly we are interwoven. It's motivating me be kinder and more loving to myself and everyone else.

If you don't have a Twitter account (yes, it's free), I suggest that you get one. It's fun, you can learn more about stuff you like, you'll meet new friends (always use caution, though! be safe out there in cyberspace!), and discover new people and things to love. And special Twitter-only coupons, too. You don't have to write any Tweets, you can be a lurker and still get lots of enjoyment and edification.

Thanks to Twitter, I fell in love- and awe!- with ZipList. I've got a thing going for Eat This, Not That too. And I've read some awesome blogs written by wonderful talented people.

Here are some of my favorite recent Tweets. Do you see the theme?

 Motivational Quotes

Quality is not an act, it is a habit. -Aristotle

 Reasonable Diet
The temptation to quit will be greatest just before you are about to succeed. ~~Chinese Proverb

 Reasonable Diet 
 by ConnieScheel
Act as if it were impossible to fail. ~~ Dorothea Brand.

 Reasonable Diet 
 by ConnieScheel
Each time you judge yourself you break your heart. ~Kripal Venanji

 by ConnieScheel
Have you tried out our Recipe Clipper? You can save every one of your favorite recipes from across the web in one place.

 Broken Idiot™
If the loser keeps his smile the winner will loose the thrill of victory.

 Mike Hughes
"The wise man does not lay up his own treasures. The more he gives to others, the more he has for his own." Lao Tzu
 Mike Hughes 

 by ConnieScheel
“Our life is what our thoughts make it.” Marcus Aurelius

 Dr Wayne W Dyer  by ConnieScheel 
People need to be right. If you can remove that issue from your life, you'll save yourself lots of suffering

 J P Fanton  by ConnieScheel
"Be not the slave of your own past." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

 ConiConstantine  by ConnieScheel
if you push yourself further than you've ever you likely won't go back. See what you're made of peeps!

 Slow Food USA  by ConnieScheel
RT @: U have until 4/29 to tell EPA not to allow use of cancer-causing methyl iodide on conventional strawberries 

 Steven Gurgevich PhD  by ConnieScheel
Forgiveness allows you to let go of negative feelings about yourself or another than have been within you far too long. 

 Jack Sh*t  by ConnieScheel
Don't ever let anybody make you feel bad about yourself, stupid.

 Adam Farrah 
 by ConnieScheel
None of us are perfect. We all have our own unique strengths. Don't worry about how you measure up to any one...

And my personal favorite of the week.....

@ We wish you were here too! Make any great meals yet out of the cookbook? Read your blog today, awesome! Thank you:)