How Soon is Now? Surprise! Surgery.

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So a thing happened. Many things happened. Most of all I survived them. Even the one that was out of my hands. The universe must have some more plans for me, what can I say.

Upon doing yoga with a friend (Emma) I must have twisted a unknowingly deformed small intestine in my inner scar tissue from my cesarian. I didn’t feel it. We went to work and eat from the comfort of my dining room. I ate a delicious burger that Mister Educated made for me. Then.. pain. Immense pain. Is this food poisoning? It doesn’t feel that way. I’ll lay down and take a nap. No, no I won’t. I begin breaking out in sweats and chills, losing consciousness. Is this for real? I have a high pain tolerance but this is insanity. Emma? She takes me to the dr. My blood pressure is so low they think the machine is broken. Emma rushes me to the ER. They think I’m lying. I must be some sort of person wanting pain medicine because there is no visible injury. No, please no. No pain medicine. I won’t take it. Just right the wrong in my body.

The nurses, they tell me to put on a mask. They assume I just have a stomach bug. Ebola perhaps. But no. No this is not a virus. This is my body shutting down.

This is probably appendicitis. Your gallbladder is probably acting up. You must have food poisoning. This will clear up tonight. Tomorrow you’ll be fine. Really? Thank you! This will all go away! But it feels so much worse already? *violent retching*

The next morning. The surgeon. This could clear up on it’s own. The tests seem like it’s hopeful. Or we can take a look surgically. WHAT? It hurts.. but I want to go with Mister.. What do you think? It’s up to me? I feel like something could be very wrong. I think you should take a look. I will then.

Stomach sick, in a daze, can’t stop vomiting on the operating table. Everyone is telling me it’s going to be ok. My husband is here and I will see him soon. It will all be ok. Everything is probably just fine. It will just be a small incision for our camera. Breathe in the anesthesia. Relax. Go to sleep…

Yes, we removed a foot of her small intestine. It had died. It was caught in scar tissue. She had a cyst. If we had’t operated she’d have died. She’s very lucky. Yes, here’s your husband. He’s here.

Tears of joy. Then. The pain. A new pain. Three stab wounds? A large cut along my midsection? Staples? It’s ok, you have a man that loves you. No one will even notice in a few years. You would have died if you’d have waited. You were very sick.

I know. I know I should trust my intuition more strongly. Thank you for saving my life, dr. Thank you for being the one surgeon who believed me.

Life is limited, treat it with love.

Crafting a Better Life of Love This Holidaisy

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I’ve been feeling a need to write. It’s been awhile that I have felt compelled to write a personal entry but I miss doing such so here I find myself plucking at the keyboard. I don’t often write personal entries these days because of what I’m still going through and an attempt to keep it under wraps mostly until it is long over. I’m still in the midst of a divorce and custody battle and I feel it’s best to keep it to myself and my family in order to protect myself, my ex and most importantly my daughter. It has been very draining to say the least, to start my life again from scratch after I had given most of myself to another for so many years. However even in the midst of this I have found love, happiness and the beginning of a family I always wanted that came easily and without negativity. Our home is filled with love and once everything is over I can fully start a new and devote myself to my new family, the family I had always wanted for myself and Colette.

So anyway, I am living many of the dreams I never really thought I would acquire. I am a housewife of a beautiful man who is a genius realism artist and gorgeous home in the city where I have everything I need to cook decadent meals and delicious desserts for family and friends. I get to spend my days working on beauty and fashion graphic design from my home office while chatting with my boss who becomes a closer friend everyday. I keep only true friends around and the rare free time I have for having fun I get to spend with amazing and creative women (such as Jamie Sucre) chatting and enjoying the finer things in life like sparkling cider, fairy lights and skittle-flavored shisha. I spend my evenings relaxing by the fire and crocheting with my mister by my side, taking a motorcycle ride through the city for a tasty dinner or playing games with our total of 4 children which include tons of laughter and imagination. I’m so inspired by this life filled with love and whimsical creativity and color that I cannot stop creating and planning for new projects for our family and for our work. I get to do many things it seemed I had no time or energy for in the past because I was so down about things I felt I couldn’t change.

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For instance this year I crafted my daughter’s costume because I couldn’t find a Chibi Moon costume small enough for her size and we dressed up together and Sailor Moon and Chibi for trick-or-treating! It was her first time to actually go and it was a blast. We traveled through the colorful leaf covered sidewalks to houses with lights and faux spider webs to fill our bags with candy. It was like a dream. Then Colette and I hung our tree very early this year, Nov 1, and decorated it with candy sweet adornments. I hung my stocking, sewed a French-y damask one for mister to complement my Versailles style stocking and promptly bought gorgeous, fluffy fabrics for the children’s stockings and embroidered characters on the front. Theirs are still pinned and waiting to be completed but they are oh so excited!

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Winter is my favorite time for yarn crafts as well, don’t you feel the same? I’ve currently got a crochet project going on for Jamie and a knitting project using a magic yarn ball someone made me last year. I was so excited about this yarn ball I saved it until I got settled in my new home so I could look forward to knitting my mother a scarf this winter. It’s not my style of colors and happens to be her favorites: muted forest greens and soft blues and purples all woven together in wool. I’m so taken by this yarn ball surprise I’m crafting one for a penpal friend online and we’re swapping soon so I will be sure to do a feature on that for you to participate in the fun! I feel there was a period in my past I was almost so excited because I spent most of my time crafting things for friends and family while my baby cooed in the background. It’s so fun now that she’s 3 and can actually help me or give me advice on things she likes most. She will always be my little cherub, the center of my heart. She is too perfect and I cannot wait to spend my whole life with her and my soul mate crafting a better life of love, color, whimsy and true, internal happiness which I once thought unreal. I hope you are also feeling reminiscent and content at the end of this year seeing what resolutions you will make and what things you are most grateful for.

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Also for some random updates I finally got my hair done for the holidays as I had planned, scary change but I felt it was time for a big change to match the way my life has changed. I’ve also become really into American Horror Story on FX — I watched seasons 1 & 2 around Halloween and now I’m caught up with season 3. I had stopped watching horror entertainment for my whole previous marriage because my life felt so chaotic without it. Now that my life is secure and stable for the most part, filled with love and calmness, I have gotten back into horror for fun. What are you into this year? XX

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Ask a Healthy Life Stylist and Coach


Greetings & Salutations, Miseducated!

As your new virtual healthy life stylist, I am thrilled to be your guide through the wonderland of wellness. In the coming months, I look forward to answering your most burning health & wellness questions, but first, allow me clear up a few common questions about what I do:

What is a Healthy Life Stylist?

A healthy life stylist is like a fashion stylist for the health world. Much like a fashion stylist would help you makeover your wardrobe [getting rid of the items that don’t flatter you & giving you new items that allow your inner goddess to sparkle], I help you makeover your life. From what to eat to feel your best to what steps to take to achieve your dreams, my job is about creating health for your whole being. Health and wellness aren’t just about eating vegetables; they’re about loving yourself, loving your job, developing healthy relationships, and cultivating a spiritual practice that makes you feel enlightened & at peace. I’m here to help with all these things and more.

What kind of questions do you answer?

Because I like to think of myself as a nutritionist, a life coach, and a therapist, all rolled into one, I can answer questions about any area you’re feeling less than fabulous about. I’m here to help you feel your best.

How can I learn more about your services?

If you’re in need of more than just a few questions answered or you want to receive an individualized lifestyle plan, consider signing up for my Health & Happiness in Half a Year program. You can check out the details & pricing for individual or group sessions on my website.

That’s it for now, darlings. <3 I look forward to answering your deepest health ponderings. xoxo, Michelle Shea Walker, H.C.

Just make sure you are clear about if you mind your question/answer being published on Miseducated and if you’d prefer to be anonymous. All questions will be answered by Michelle regardless so ask away!

Photo of Michelle by Aaron Ehinger Photography.

Five Simple Ways to Love Yourself Now

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Hard as it can be to realize sometimes, no matter what you think, you are good enough. With the onslaught of picture perfect images in the media and culturally defined ideas of what we “should” look like, sometimes it’s so hard to just do one of the most basic things — love ourselves. To me, loving yourself is the very first step to living a positive and present life. If you can’t love yourself, you’re going to have a hard time truly loving the world around you and enjoying the life you’re living. However, loving yourself is no easy task sometimes. It actually takes a lot of hard work, which is why I’ve come up with the top five ways you can start loving yourself right now. 
 

1. Stop comparing yourself to others.

The entire world encourages us to compare, to want what others have, to want to be like others. In the post I wrote back in 2009,  Stop Judging: 4 Reasons, 5 Things, 6 Ways, I talked about how much we lose when we waste time judging others and ourselves. If you truly want to love yourself, you must stop your comparisons. Focus on you and what’s great about who you are, what you have, and what you do. Don’t waste any more time comparing yourself to those around you. This is the first — and most important — step to loving yourself now. 
 

2. Focus on your achievements — big and small.

To often, we focus on the things that went wrong (or could go wrong) and not on the things we did right. We’ll dwell forever on a conversation that went poorly, but hardly think at all about a wonderful interaction with had with someone. Likewise, people are often more likely to focus on their failures than their achievements (probably as some sort of self-protection in order to avoid future failures). It’s okay to acknowledge the things that didn’t go swimmingly, but if you really want to love yourself, you have to spend most of your time thinking about what you did/said right. And, remember, even the little things deserve a pat on the back. 
 

3. Look past the mirror to your true self.

It’s all too common for people to define themselves by the way they look. Remember: you are more than what you look like. Yes, it cannot be denied that appearance is important and has some merit, but it is not everything. The way culture is set up, it’s hard to remember that sometimes. Next time you look in the mirror and find yourself filled with negative thoughts, remind yourself that you are more than what you see in that reflection. Your worth is more than the way you look. Once you convince yourself of the truth in those words, it will become much easier to love your true self. 
 

4. View yourself from another perspective.

We all have the tendency from time to time to get wrapped up in our own minds. Our thoughts and ideas take over and we tend to forget that there are millions and millions of other opinions and ideas out there in the world. The next time you find that you’re giving yourself a hard time, take a step back and try to look at the situation — and yourself — objectively. You may soon realize that the way you were looking at yourself or the situation is not the way that others would. Taking a step back and looking at yourself with fresh eyes will help you to realize that you are worth more than you realize — and you are certainly deserving of your own love. 
 

5. Make a list of all your awesome traits.

Feeling like you’re not quite up to par? Stop. Drop what you’re doing. Grab paper and a pen. And get to work. The activity might seem like a silly one, but, seriously, taking some time to write about how great you are will help you to realize that, no matter how you might feel about yourself sometimes, you really are pretty awesome. And if you find yourself struggling with this exercise, enlist the help of friends and family. Hearing their input about your awesomeness will make you realize that, hey, if all of those people can love you, you can certainly love yourself! 
 
As I said, loving yourself isn’t easy. It seems like the kind of thing that should come naturally, but I think most people are filled with reasonable amount of self-doubt and, as a result, their minds fill with self-deprecating thoughts from time to time. It’s okay to struggle with self-love, but it’s not okay not to give it a really solid try. You deserve to love yourself because, no matter who you are, you are awesome. So start embracing your awesomeness and use the five tips above to start loving yourself now. There’s no time like the present to learn to love yourself!