As I took a picture this morning to send to my friend , she wanted to see how my spray tan came out, I saw a how flawed my body was. I was a spray tan virgin until I had my cherry popped yesterday😂😂😂. As you can imagine from having all the surgeries that I’ve had I’m full of scars and my body is disproportionate. When you look at me my left side of my body it is higher than the right .It bothers me because it makes one of my breasts hang lower than the other. In the scheme of things it really doesn’t matter because I can still walk. As a woman mentally sometimes it fucks with my head. It’s because I am missing ribs on the right side and I have a titanium one this makes me off kilter. Everytime I look in the mirror I focus on that horrible year in my life of the operations ,rehabs, suffering and infections. I need to make new memories which I’m trying to do. It’s not like when I see the stretch marks on my belly and I think wow I have two beautiful children and I’m blessed. And although my back is scarred from one end to the other I don’t see it that often. I think it’s ugly but I’m starting to replace it with beautiful muscles. Body Images something that I struggle with because it was ingrained in my mind as a child from my father that you had to be perfect and I was just never good enough. Today I’m just blessed I can walk and I’m thankful for the small things in life but this morning when I took that picture it just hit me a little hard. I sometimes wonder what other women have for body image issues. do they see what I see when they look in the mirror?
This coming Saturday I am doing my first professional photo shoot to show how far I have come on my health and wellness journey.I am so nervous! Not really sure why, i stood naked today in front of the spray tan lady. That was a little weird. That was also a first for me, spray tan. Not to sure how I feel about that. I think it might be the other girls that are making me nervous. Their nervousness and fears are wearing on me. I bought some incredibly cute outfits. Stuff that I would not normally wear. Even though I am a little scared i am so excited. I have worked so hard for this day. I have been on a week lean down diet. i tried to be as strict as possible but I could have done a little bit better. Pictures to come!
This is the essay I just wrote for My isabody challeng. It’s not that great. let me know what you guys think.
I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. It was time to take back control of my
life. How had I become so lost? In September of 2016, I decided, enough was enough. I
was determined to become healthy, even if it killed me. I started walking every day,
telling myself, “baby steps”. I lost 40 pounds on my own before I made the phone call in
January 2017, to my inspirational friend Sarah, who had been on Isagenix for a few
months. I had been secretly stalking her on social media and I knew I needed help. At
170, I hit a plateau and still had no energy. Never asking for help has always been my
downfall and I have always put others before me. Making Carie a priority and giving her
some self-love was very difficult at first for me to do.
The first day of the rest of my life was filled with so much energy that it was hard
to believe. I had to ask myself, “Is it all just a dream???” No Carie, this is now your
reality and you are so worth it. On the first day on Isagenix, I headed straight to the gym
to meet Sarah. Weightlifting and cardio kickboxing was on that day’s agenda. In my
rush, I neglected to take my morning medication. Sarah was delivering my first box of
products that I ordered from her and I still had doubts about it working. I knew it couldn’t
make my life any worse because the last 10 years had been filled with chronic pain. As
we walked to her car, exhausted from the effects of no pain medications, I ripped open
my magic box and tore into a Lemon Passion Crunch Isalean Bar. It was delicious. I
wasn’t so tired anymore. That same day I took my two dogs for a walk, had a Isagenix
Shake, and went back to the gym with my daughter because I was full of energy. After
the first week, I thought there was no way these products were real. They couldn’t have
changed the way I felt that quick because I had been in a bad place physically and
mentally for so long.Things were so stressful. I was angry at the world and I had lost
myself. I knew I never wanted to lose myself again.
On January 29, my oldest son entered a rehabilitation program for drugs and
alcohol. It was time to focus on my 14 year old daughter, my husband and myself. I
needed to focus on Carie first and it started with stepping outside the box, a challenge.
On February 6, I joined the Isabody challenge. The end date was perfect for me
because it happened to be the 1 year anniversary from my last spine surgery, where I
weighed 210 lbs. I have had 20 surgeries in 10 years, 9 which have been on my spine.
I am at an advanced stage of an incurable disease called diffuse idiopathic skeletal
hyperostosis. In short, it calcifies my ligaments, grows bone spurs on my joints and
sometimes paralyzes me. I have never let it stop me and never will. This challenge was so important for me because it was going to push me to a whole new level.
Having many health issues over the years, I had not been eating properly for a
long time. Breakfast was a meal I avoided. Over the last four months, my lifestyle has
changed I now start my day with an Isalean shake and my ionic supreme (Happy Juice).
In the last 13 years, my family was lucky if I cooked one meal a month because it
caused me so pain. Now, I cook every night and I am so proud of myself.
I have had so many firsts in the last four months, I have stopped counting. I
finally know what I want to be when I grow up; a life coach. I love helping others
become healthy and I’m now doing that every single day; building a team. I want to help
those who suffer from chronic pain and let them know they do not have to live the way I
have lived for the last 12 years. That with a proper nutrition program and exercise,
things can change. I am not saying it is going to be easy, but it is going to be so worth it.
I want to take you from the couch into the land of the living again because that was my
life for so long. When you are lost, I want to help you find your spark. Someone very
special showed me that light in Isagenix and its tribe of people and I want to do the
same for others. I want to help others find their light and let them know, that they too,
can become the best version of themselves. Isagenix has completely changed my life,
in more ways than I ever could have imagined. Most importantly, I have finally found
myself after so many years of feeling so lost and I could not be more thankful for the life
changing opportunities Isagenix has given me. I am loving life and could not be more
excited for what the future holds.
Last night my daughter and I are sitting in the car after the gym. I asked her if I could post on Facebook that we just had a great workout. As I turned to look at her all the sudden I had a muscle spasm in my neck. I usually get them when I yawn and they last for about 10 seconds. I can’t breathe and it is weird as fuck. This all started happening after I had one of my spine surgery spine surgery 2 years ago. It’s usually no big deal. Last night was horrendous. My face muscles froze up as well as neck my chest. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t talk and it seemed like it lasted forever. The tears started rolling down my eyes. At this point I don’t know what to do so I panicked. I grabbed onto my daughters arm and squeeze tight with all my might. She started to panic and asked me if she should call Dad. I couldn’t even respond. I felt hopeless and helpless. I never want my daughter to feel that way. It probably only lasted for 30 seconds but it seemed like hours in my mind. When it stopped it felt like I’ve been underwater for five minutes because I was gasping for air. My neck and face hurt so bad it felt like someone choked me out. I felt on fire. I had to sit in the car for a few minutes and regroup. I didn’t even want to drive I was scared to turn on the car. What if I happens again when I’m driving home down the road with my daughter and I killed someone, us. The doctors told me that things like this we’re going to start happening to me and I didn’t want to believe them. Well it’s happening and it’s scaring the fuck out of me. I made it home safe and sound. I took a deep breath of fresh air when I pulled into the driveway. I sent my daughter into our house to get my husband and then I broke down in the car. I sobbed my eyes out. I’m scared. I’m scared of the unknown. I’m scared of what will happen. Today as I sit here typing this, my throat hurts. It’s so sore. It hurt all morning as I talked to people. I just want to go crawl in my bed and hide. But instead I got up. I went to the gym and now I’m going to get some work done. No one really knows what goes on with me on a daily basis. I hide it all. I even hide a lot from my husband. Does he see the silent tears that roll down my face as we lay there in the darkness at night? Does he hear my plea for help from a highpower? I paste a fake smile on and I act like there’s nothing wrong. When really inside I’m dying a little each day. I’m trying to make the best out of it. Trying not to let anyone see the broken me. At the same time I’m trying to fix myself it’s so confusing. Brick by brick I am trying to build myself back up. I am always in fight or flight mode.
At 9 years old I was happy . It was a great age. At that point in my life things were ok . not great but manageable. My role models were my dad and my grandfather.
I looked up to my day because he represented STRONG. He was an athlete, gymnast, weight lifter ,a logger, my coach and was always working hard. My grandfather because he was patient , kind, a teacher and a hard worker. I always wanted to prove to my dad that I was good enough, strong enough that I could be just like one of the boys. Body image was a big deal to him . I can remember my dad making comments to my mom about her weight and the way she looked. Funny thing was my mom was never big. She was never bigger than a size 10. She always carried herself with pride and looked beautiful. I felt loved by my mother, I can see that now as I look back. And I was definitely loved by my maternal grandparents but my dad was different. I knew he loved me but I was just never good enough. We were always conscious about being healthy because my dad had high blood pressure and my mom was always on a diet. She was always working out in the kitchen with her canned goods as weights. The Jane Fonda VHS tapes were always play. Celebrities at that time in my life at the time were Pippi long-stocking and Punky brewster. They were independent, always smiling . They seemed to never let anything get them down. Each one seemed to always be on a great adventure and we lived on 100 plus acres of land at the time and I loved to think of my life as an adventure too. Gender roles were definitely a strong influence in my life. My father thought women should be barefoot and pregnant. I just wanted to be one of the boys. Hell I dont think I could have gotten much more tom boy if I tried. If my father said no or that I could not do something or that it was meant for boys. I did it. I mastered it. I was better than any boy doing the sport at the time, from hunting to baseball.
Wow I did not realize how much this effected me until I wrote this today. I never wanted my kids to feel that way, not good enough. I wanted them to be loved for what was inside of their hearts, not what they could achieve or what their bodies looked like. Do you know that my daughter actually thought she should have been a boy because she was a tom boy. Because I taught her everything I know. It was horrible. She even thought I was gay because I do a lot of man stuff. Who decides what is man stuff and what is women stuff? How sad it that ? Because that is what society is making her think now a days. I told her no, it makes me a strong independent women who can take care of herself no matter the situation. LIFE OR DEATH. Now when her and I go to our mountain home she has a whole new outlook on things. I am so proud that my daughter can use a woodspliter, generator, chainsaw, Ax, lawnmower, and any other power tool. She is 14 and can already drive my car. She rides a dirtbike and fourwheeler. I love that she can shoot my riffle. I am proud of her.
At the end of this, I have no idea why my dad was my role model growing up it should have been my mom. She had the strength to over come and get out of all the horrible things my father put me and my 3 sisters through. All the abuses, physical and emotional. My mom and I may still have some issues but I am proud to be her Daughter
Your life is what you make it!
We are having a challenge for the the next four weeks in the group that I belong too. I love our challenges. We work on our mind, body, and soul. I forgot how competitive that I am.. At first I was competitive with others, now I just love competing with myself. Challenging myself to a higher level each time. It is so amazing to keep digging deeper into myself. It helps me grow into the person that I have yet to become. Everyone in our group is simply amazing. No one person is on the same journey but yet we all have something in common. My tribe of people has begun to grow and its up lifting to watch other people flourish. I love helping people.
Today My son and his girlfriend brought me to have a Lido-cane infusion at the hospital. I swear that stuff is like truth serum if they only used it on criminals things would go so much easier. It takes about an hour for it to go into my system and one of the nurses has to sit with you the whole time.I really love the nurses there. They care and it is a one on one counseling session for a whole hour. I completely lost it while i was laying there in that sterile hospital bed. I started to sob like i have not done in so long. I am having such a hard time accepting that eventually I will be paralyzed. I try never to say it or even to think about it for that matter but it has been weighed on my mind. I am so fucking scared. They had my 19-year-old son come in and hold my hand to calm me down and we cried together. He reminded me that he has seen me a lot worse that i was today and that even if I am paralyzed I will find a way to succeed. At one point he told me what an amazing person I am because of how I always help other people and now it is time to let other people help me. He said, ” Mom people alway praise how great my brother, sister and I am.” ” We did not get like this on our own. You did it. You raised us to be this way and it takes one hell of a strong women to go thru what you have been thru and still have amazing kids.” He kept wiping my tears off my cheeks. In my mind I was thinking how I was the luckiest mother on the planet to have this exceptional child. What did I do to deserve these kick ass kids. Don’t get me wrong they push my buttons sometimes but I would not change anything about them. My son made everything all better. I wish that it could have been my mom sitting there holding my hand telling me that everything will be alright. In my heart I know that it will be but I just wish my Nana was still alive so she could make me a cup of tea and call me her angel pie once more.
I have so many emotions running through my head. When we got home from the hospital I took a nap then my best friend came to see me. We made the dreaded list that I have been putting off forever. At 40 years old who wants to have to go see a lawyer about writing a will, not me. I need to go talk to my foster parents about some of my financial concerns and fix my medical proxy again. I remember 11 years ago when they first explained this disease to me I could not wrap my head around it so I had to make my best friend my medical proxy. There is no way I could ask my husband to bear the burden of pulling the plug. I do not even think that he would. He loves me so much that he would keep\ me alive forever. I just fucking hate this bone disease. To know that is going to fuse all my joints together slowly but surly. It is happening so rapidly in my spine to me having a spine operation is like getting your oil changed in your car. I never really tell anyone how I feel, You who read this are the only ones that know.
This weekend we are taking the kids to the mountains to our little getaway place. I want to move there. I am going to ride my 4-wheeler to my favorite spot and enjoy the silence. Take some fabulous photos. I am going to bust out my new chainsaw and cut up wood just because I can. I love that thing. My neighbor up there calls me skidder Bitch. I think it is a riot. Then if I am still stressed out I am going to get out my rifle that i bought myself that has barely any kick back and do some target practice. Most of all I am going to enjoy the time with my family and just be. This will be the first time in a year that my 22-year-old step son has been up to our place. He has six months clean and sober and I am so fucking proud of him. I love that kid to the moon and back. My daughter is going to be riding her new dirt bike she got for Christmas for the first time I am wicked excited for that. I can’t wait to ride it either. We are also taking my friend’s son who is 14. He is having some problems in and out of school. I am hoping to talk to him so i can find out what is going on before he takes the road that I traveled when I was his age. I love that we disconnect from the world when we are there since there is no phone service or internet. It is great for the kids!!!
I’m not sure how I’m going to do it yet but I am you going to do it. I will get it done. Not sure how much more I can handle with out falling apart . I think I’m about to break. I’m about to explode inside. I just need to escape. Not that escaping fixes anything but I just feel like I need time to breathe. So I knew that the news wasn’t going to be good news but it sure wasn’t what I expected. I wasn’t expecting that I needed my neck operated on again. I’ll admit that I’m scared. Scared of the unknown. Scared that I won’t continue to be healthy and heal again. But I know that I’m strong so I’ll bounce back. What truly scares me the most is not being able to read and write after my surgery. The last surgery I had it took 3 weeks for me to be able to read and write again .So this time I imagine it will be even longer and I hate being not being able to read and write. It’s the only form of communication I have when I can’t talk . Having that taken away from me, it feels like I lose my power. Maybe I’ll have to take up sign language. So now knowing that I need my neck operated on top of the fact that the next step down from that will be my thoracic spine because that has bone spurs growing into my spinal cord. He also told me that my lower spine has lost all its disc height and there’s no more fluid left. That it’s starting to fuse together on its own there’s nothing they can do about it expect give me some steroid shots for the pain which that’s useless. So I’ll just continue to exercise and do ab workouts to strengthen my muscles so that way all the pressure is not on my bones. It is so hard to stay positive when all of this stress is weighing down on my mind. Which makes the simplest of simplest tasks that much more difficult. My brain is constantly going a hundred miles an hour . I can’t even focus. Then all the stress it puts on my family. What are they going through? What’s in their minds. My husband has a hard time communicating on how he feels which to me is a problem because I really want to know what he thinks about it. Obviously I’m going to go into my next surgery more prepared. Each time I have a surgery I’m more prepared than I was the last time . I have a team of people in place that are amazing. With them I put together my rehab, visiting nurses, my plans, my living will, (in case something happens). I have a medical proxy and I have a pain team in place. At this point I’m stronger than I’ve ever been going into an operation. I feel the healthiest I’ve ever been. My recovery time should be pretty quick. I’m just so scared of the unknown. I’m trying not to focus on the what ifs. How do you explain to your friends what’s going on in your mind. You just can’t. I don’t want to hear the I’m Sorry’s or I feel so bad for you. I don’t want people to Pity Me. I just want to surround myself with positive outgoing people. People who want to strive to do the best they can do when all the odds are stacked against them.
And me being the nut that I am, I asked a neurosurgeon if I can run a marathon. He told me no but I can do 2 to four mile runs a week so I’ll take that. I guess I’m just going to have to live my life like I’m not having the surgery . I’m going to keep planning things like I have a healthy body. I have such a hard time accepting that I’m not normal but I don’t have a normal body. I keep pushing myself and pushing myself to the limits. I’m exhausted every day. Every day I wake up in excruciating pain and I don’t think anyone truly understands what it’s like to be me. It’s so hard trying to take care of my 3 kids and keep my marriage going on top of focusing on myself. Trying to just be happy. I just feel so lost right now
May 15 2017
Setbacks, we all have them and i just had a huge one. It’s so frustrating. I have a goal . I want to become a finalist in something called the isabody challenge. I’ve been working so hard towards it for the last for months and it is only two weeks away.It’s been so difficult.
When you’ve been down and out for so long your body starts to shut down. I only ate once a day for a long time. Sometimes I would go all day without eating . Now I am trying to eat 6 times a day. It is so tough and meal prepping sucks. It kills my back to stand in one spot for long periods of time to cook all that food for the week but I have to find a solution to this issue . I been working on me as a whole. Getting healthier, working out everyday, meeting new people, trying to be a better version of myself while still taking care of my family and animals. Managing everything is crazy and then my setback came in the form of my MRI results.
I can always tell when somethings wrong with my spine. I can tell because my perception of things is off. My body doesn’t work right, its the little things. 2 weeks ago I got into 2 car accidents in one day. They weren’t bad car accident I missed judged pulling into the parking lot by like an inch and then a woman stopped short in front of me as I was pulling out of a side road .She jammed on her brakes to let another car out and I rear ended her. So I knew something was hitting my spinal cord because my reaction time was a few seconds off. But a few seconds could cost me my life .
I didn’t want to go get my MRI results because I’ve been doing so well lately. Its like I finally got a chance of what it feels like to have a healthy lifestyle. A taste of the good. I did not want to ruin that by having another spine operation. So I waited till after I went to strong camp even though I knew that results were in. I’m trying with all my might not to let it get me down. At the end of the day its in the back of my mind weighing on my soul because I know I’m going to need another operation. In my heart I feel like I’m healthy so the recovery shouldn’t be too bad but I know what it entails. I know that now when I wake up I’m not going to be able to read or write and it is going to take longer than last time to come back. It scares the ever living fuck out of me. I just keep pushing the fear out of the way!
I sat in the parking lot of the doctors office with big fat tears rolling down my face as I read the MRI results. My lower back is messed up ,which I already know that and not a big deal. I have a tear in my disc, spinal stenosis, , disc protrusion, some narrowing ,and some other stuff. No big deal everybody has something going on in the lower back. The thoracic spine which I just had an MRI in 2016 and 2015 now states T5-6 disc Protruding, T6-7 mild spinal cord impact with some protrusion. Okay no big deal but here is where it gets tricky, T 11-12 I have already had operated on now went from mild to moderate spinal cord compression with more protruding and bone spurs growing. The cervical spine they could not see because I have so much metal in there already. I will need another test for that. So I find out more results next week when I go to the neurosurgeon. I’m trying not to let it bother me. Just paste on the fake smile . I’m just going to keep on keeping on.
I wrote this on May 17 2017.
Today is my one year anniversary from my last Spine surgery. I thought it was going to be tomorrow but it’s not. I had a t7_8 mammoplasty something and a right T 7-8 something something. Hahaha it is all a foreign language to me. They put some micro titanium plates down my spine and cut out the nerves in my middle back . All I know is I woke up with 30-plus staples going down my back and he said it would take a year to heal. Exactly a year before that I had a cervical surgery and a shoulder surgery a month before. Each time I wake up from surgery it takes me about 2 weeks to get my reading and writing back it’s crazy. This morning I went to the gym with my friend Blanche. It was an awesome way to start the day. What a killer workout we had . Today when I took the picture after we were done I just could not believe it’s actually me. I’m still in shock. I’m still in awe. I’m doing better than I ever thought I would. Although I know right now I have some more stuff I need done. I’m not going to worry about it . I’m just going to Keep On Keeping On.