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What can I do? What can WE do?

What can I do?  What can WE do?

What an interesting space we are in right now.  With so much uncertainty swirling around, I feel oddly calm.  I am normally ridden with anxiety, so I am not sure why I do not have an unusual amount around this situation.  I am not sure if I am like a bird with my head in the sand, but I feel oddly positive about the future.  I feel a need to take a pause or slow down with what is going on.  Life and work have been so busy lately.  A little time to step back and refocus just might be the silver lining here?

When I was in the hospital 7 years ago, it was insane to me the medical bills that we accrued.  While I was not 100% with-it and my husband dealt with them all, it blew my mind the little tidbits and numbers that he shared with me.  Thankfully, we had insurance and an insanely powerful support system.  I believe that I wouldn't have gotten through that time in my life without the help of every single meal delivered, babysitting; without the unwavering support of my mom who moved to our town for a month, and when I still needed help came to drive the kiddos and me home every day and stayed with us when my husband was traveling for work overnight; my dad driving me to Duke multiple times that year to have my eye sight repaired with two surgeries and follow up appointments; and most importantly the support of my husband who carpooled the kiddos to two schools and me to my office and then worked all hours and fought with the insurance company over every bill and dealt with my memory lapse and grumpy attitude that I only let him see.  You are a saint, Tyler Cooper.

What do people do who do not have a support system?  Parents who can't drop everything and come running to help you raise your own babies?  Or the means or know how to dispute the insurance company over the bills?   I have thought about those people a lot over the past year, and how I want to do more to uplift women and children in need.  I keep thinking how can I help? How can WE help?

Everything I keep seeing is that there are children who get two meals a day at school.  With schools being closed, how will these children get meals?  I want to help. I hate to think of a child not getting the basics they need.  I have decided to donate a portion of sales while schools are shut down over the upcoming weeks to help feed children who are not getting meals because they are not attending school.  I will make a weekly donation to a food bank that provides food for children and mothers in need.

I have been talking about starting a foundation for the past year.  I get asked to donate items to many events throughout the year. I love to donate, but have felt over the past couple of years that I want to attempt concentrated efforts to increase my impact.  This only fuels my desire to start my foundation... for situations just like this where mother's and children need a leg up during difficult times.  My goal is to periodically make donations to charities with a strong mission to help women and children locally, nationally, or globally.  For now I will be making donations weekly to help feed children affected by school closings due to the coronavirus.

Stay well and positive about how we can have an impact on those less fortunate during this un-chartered territory.

BIG LOVE, Jane

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This is 40 - Getting Real

This is 40 - Getting Real

Well, here we are at the end of this little journey.  I thought I should wrap up this series up by saying, THANK YOU x 1000 for reading, for your sweet comments, and for your kind words.  I am in no way a beauty or health or fitness or any kind of blogger, but it has been fun to share my little successes and finds with you. I hope that I have made this milestone feel a little less "over the hill" and more climbing to the top.  ha!

In summary:  I feel great.  I am truly happy.  I am beyond thankful for where I stand today.

Because I think it's important to hear truth with all of the beautiful images and hyper positive attitudes we see on social media, I would feel unreal if I weren't honest.  Of course everything isn't always perfect.  Midway through this blog series I had an MRI which showed that my brain cavity, which is already enlarged and has a lot more fluid than normal, showed increase fluid.  Since I am not having extreme headaches, my surgeon suggested that we continue to monitor it closely. If I were to have bad headaches or any other symptoms of the pressure, he would suggest having surgery to have a permanent shunt put in my brain to drain the fluid and relieve pressure.  The fluid has been increasing gradually over time, which is not good, but without symptoms there is not much to do but watch and wait.  I always think, when I go into an appointment, that with all of my exercising and eating well and not using toxins, that they will let me know that it has not increased or even better that it has decreased.  This was not the case.  It was the first time my overly cool as a cucumber doctor has ever seemed concerned.

Of course this was a gut buster when I am in the middle of talking about how amazing I feel.  I wanted to quit writing the series, feeling a little bit fake for claiming all was so great,  when in reality I was terrified of having another brain surgery.  It's not a terrible surgery.   But, any surgery into your brain has risks, or they would be doing it right now as a precaution.

As the days went on, the anxiety about it subsided and I realized that the scan cannot determine how I feel.  Only I know how I feel and I can't live in a state of fear and anxiety.  I do feel great!!  Besides letting Tyler know if I have headaches, so he can monitor them, all is as well as it ever could be.  I am hoping the fluid in the cavity doesn't continue to increase... or that it goes down.  The do-er in me wants to eat better and workout harder and do whatever I can to make the fluid decrease, but this is a situation that I cannot control.  There is nothing I can do to fix it, so I will ride this out and do my darndest to let go.

I am one lucky lady to have an amazing, super handsome, husband by my side; two precious, strong willed children; supportive parents and extended family; to have had my own business for 17 years; to be back in a city that I adore and gives me life.  I have no complaints.  All days are not without worries, but they are fewer and farther between.  I can't ask more than that considering where I was 5 years ago.

xx jane

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