NATALIEMICHAELE   5,627
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NATALIEMICHAELE's Recent Blog Entries

ONE YEAR RESULTS AND CELEBRATION 5K

Sunday, August 31, 2014

So it's been a year. In some ways it seems that it can't possibly have been that long but mostly it just seems like it has to have been longer. Not in a bad way... in a "this is just how I live and completely normal" kinda way. I can't imagine not eating this way. Yesterday my 18 year old, Harmoni, saw some horrible food advertised on tv and said, "I sometimes wonder why we ever wanted to start eating like that to begin with. Now it feels like I should have always wanted to just surround myself with fruit and salad and juice. Why would I NOT?!" Made me a proud and happy mom, I'll tell you that. (You should hear her go OFF when pharmaceutical commercials come on. LOL)

So on my one year anniversary I completed a 5K with my gorgeous and amazing oldest daughter, Bonni. It was literally surreal. This was me, Natalie, at a 5K in the late August heat! I won't go all into just how sick and in pain I was one year ago, I described that pretty thoroughly in my early posts. We all know I was headed for a wheelchair and an amputation and not long for the world the way I was headed last year. This post is my victory song. This post is about JOY. But standing there in the heat, waiting in line for my packet for about 2 hours, the old Natalie couldn't have even been outside on a day like that much less on my feet the whole time. A year ago my main focus when out in public was to remain as invisible as possible. I didn't want to subject anyone to noticing me any more than necessary. As you can see, that doesn't exactly describe me now;)


The little glow tubes we made our glasses and necklaces out of came in our packets but they were duds. No glowing:( So I bought the dreads and the bracelet and got my face painted. We then had another hour to wait in 95 degree heat in a big park for them to start lining people up for the start of the race. So we go looking for someplace to get some water. Well, no luck. They only sold beer. At the 5K. In AUGUST. No joke. I am thinking of writing to them about that because that is dangerous. Most of us brought a bottle of water but only one. We assumed water would be available at a 5K! That is not only foolish but dangerous. Thankfully I am very conscientious about staying well hydrated. The only water available that entire hot afternoon and evening (nearly 5 hours altogether) was one 12 oz bottle at the halfway point and one at the finish line. And many people stayed for the after party as well so even longer for them with, I'm sure, plenty of beer:/ But enough griping about that. Once it got dark, they lined everyone up at the starting gate and boy were there a LOT of people! They had people start in waves and since I'm pretty slow compared to most of these youngsters, we joined the last wave - wave 6. So that means we stood in line for another half hour. LOL In my old life I was extremely claustrophobic and a bit agoraphobic and really, really needed my personal space. I couldn't stand to be in big crowds; couldn't stand to be bumped and jostled. I would have full blown panic attacks. But there I stood in the middle of the road with hundreds of people crowding up to the starting line and all I could do was thank God for bringing me there. For allowing me to fulfill the dream that began a couple of years ago when my Bonni took up running and, one day after watching the Biggest Loser, she said to me, "Wouldn't it be cool if we could do one together some day?" Inwardly I wept because I fully believed that it would never be possible. I knew how rapidly I was declining but I hadn't told my children. It would become obvious to them soon enough. But my God wasn't done with me yet. And when he placed the way before me, I took it without hesitation and guess what...

There you have it. My celebration of my rebirth. My declaration to the world that I am back. That August day in 2013 when Fat Sick and Nearly Dead popped up on my suggestions in Netflix, I knew immediately that everything was about to change. I NEVER EVER took pictures of myself. But I took one that day. I had my kids help me out to the yard and I took a picture. I knew I would need the proof one day of how far I had come. I knew I would need to remind myself from time to time of just how bad off I was. I usually didn't write doom and gloom in my journal but I had written very openly of my despair just the week before. God knew I would need to remember just how far I had sunk into that despair. The way was prepared before me in so many big and small ways. It is really amazing to look back on.

I still have a long way to go. Anyone want to put money on how far I will go by next August? I'll be riding horses again on a regular basis I can promise you that. I'll be completing more 5Ks with and even without my daughter and this time I will run them the whole way. Me with the tore up, bone-on-bone knees and the leg with damaged circulation that would need to be amputated and TWO crippling bone diseases in my back WILL be running 5K. Running is actually starting to feel good to me now so I know I'll get there. I feel like I have probably lost about half the weight I will eventually need to but I know that as long as I keep my tunnel vision locked on my health that the weight will take care of itself. Over the past few months there have been periods where I maintained my weight loss for a while and then got into "reboot mode" and lost some more and then maintained for a while again. How fantastic and liberating to know that I have the tools I need to do both. To lose and to maintain.

I knew I would need to put together a new progress picture when I hit one year. My last one was done at about 9 months I believe. I was a bit worried I would feel let down as would my friends and family since I haven't lost all that much weight in the last 3 months. I don't know exactly how much since my scale quit working and I'm not going to replace it for a while. I need to put my money where my mouth is, so to speak, and focus on health and joy instead of numbers on a scale. But I dutifully went into the bathroom to take my progress picture. As I was taking it I thought, "I should probably change into some nice tight jeans to hold that gut in.... except my jeans are all baggy so I'd have to borrow some from my daughter, Gini. ... Oh ugh that double chin is just never going to go away... Wow my hair has gotten long!" And then I looked at the picture. I pulled up the picture next to that one I took last year and I wept. I look like me again. I am excited about losing more weight, sure. Big time! But I really have to stop under-valuing what I have already done. A few observations... my hair has NEVER grown very fast. I couldn't believe how much it had grown in that year. And because of hypothyroidism, I didn't have any outer eyebrows at all and now they are coming back! And best of all... sorry if this is TMI, my boobs stick out further than my gut again! Been a long while for that!! LOL

So even though I had intended for that to be a test run and I would fix my hair and put on cuter clothes and then take the one I would share with people, I just used that one. It's real. It's me. And for today I'm 100% happy with that. Now bring on year number 2! Life is good on da juice!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AMARILYNH 12/8/2014 11:49AM

    I was traveling when you posted this in August so I'm just now seeing it. AMAZING!! Reading how you've changed your life just made my day!! So thanks!!

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NETGYRL 9/15/2014 2:33PM

    You look great. Congrats on all you have accomplished. :)

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KENDRACARROLL 9/5/2014 1:03AM

    Great job! Congratulations!
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CHANGING-TURTLE 9/1/2014 2:03PM

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JUNESHOPE 8/31/2014 8:40PM

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You have done sooooo well. I am so proud of you in your accomplishments, and thankful for sharing your journey and advise with us all.

emoticon Here's to another GREAT year!

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DS9KIE 8/31/2014 6:59PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FAVALL 8/31/2014 5:14PM

    What a lovely blog! Congratulations on your accomplishments and amazing progress. Praise God!

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TIKITAMI 8/31/2014 4:32PM

    WOW!!

Congratulations on your one year anniversary and for having an amazing year!
What an inspiration you are and I love that saying, "love foods that love you back."

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KIPSTER52 8/31/2014 12:55PM

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Wheelchair or 5K... I think I'll RUN!

Thursday, July 03, 2014

So let's review. Last August, I was writing goodbye messages to my kids in my journal and challenging The Almighty to finish up anything he had for me to accomplish in this life because I was done. I was in constant debilitating pain. The doctors had long since let me know that there was nothing to be done to improve my lot, they could only treat the symptoms. Since I clearly didn't have the "willpower" to lose weight and I wasn't a candidate for weight loss surgery due to my history of blood clots, I would just have to try to manage the symptoms and accept that I would be in a wheelchair soon. There was talk of amputating my leg because of the damaged circulation from a massive blood clot 20 years ago. My knee had been a mess since 1982 when I shattered the knee cap and it was now bone-on-bone with bone spurs and arthritis and scar tissue. My right shoulder was also "permanently" compromised from multiple tears in the rotator cuff that they couldn't operate on so it also had scar tissue, bone spurs and arthritis. I had undergone physical therapy which helped a lot. I was able to effectively use my right arm again at least. Couldn't do overhead tasks with it and it caused me a great deal of pain but it was at least functional. The stated goal of the PT with my shoulder and knee were to give me enough mobility to perform basic personal tasks on my own. Like dressing myself and going to the bathroom.
I also had ruptured discs in my back twice and had others that were deteriorating. I was told I had "degenerative disc disease." And then, in early 2013 came Paget's. The pain in my back started becoming really unbearable over the 2012 holidays and I was afraid I had or was about to rupture another disc. It turns out I actually had developed a disease called Paget's disease of the bone. It was causing the bones in my pelvis and hip to become very soft and the combination of that with my severe obesity (I was about 320 at that point and eventually ballooned up to 340) was causing remodeling (deformities) in the bones. It caused excrutiating pain to even have to sit upright in a kitchen chair or the seat of a car. Walking was... torture. I had become effectively house bound. Rarely left my bedroom.
I had other medical issues; autoimmune disorders - Hashimoto's thyroiditis, myasthenia gravis, fibromyalgia - high blood pressure, irritable bowel. Needless to say I took a number of perscription pills each day. In July of 2013 I was a serious mess and had also started having symptoms of congestive heart failure. I hid this and avoided my doctor as I had made the decision that I wasn't going to seek treatment. That I was, in fact, going to stop taking ALL the pills and let nature take it's course. I figured a stroke from the blood pressure would put me out of my, and everyone else's, misery quickly enough.
On August 17th, I was watching movies on Netflix and a movie came up in my "recommended for you" section called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and the rest is history! That was a Saturday. Thursdays were my husbands paydays so on the 22nd I cleared out every single thing in my house that couldn't be juiced and stocked up. I started my juice fast on August 23rd, 2013. I consider that my "rebirth-day." I don't live in pain anymore. I swim and walk for exercise and have no issues with sitting, standing, walking, getting up and down off my knees, squatting. But I haven't run yet. I haven't run on land in over 25 years, maybe closer to 30. I used to jog in the water, which I'm sure looked pretty crazy, because I didn't want my body to lose the muscle memory of HOW to run.
So a couple of weeks ago I was on Facebook and my oldest daughter, Bonni, posted that she had set up a team for the Tulsa Glow Run. If anyone wanted to join her, it would be on August 23rd. It took about a nanosecond for me to say, "I'll do it." WHAT?!?!?! Nine months ago I couldn't even walk across my yard without my son or husband to lean on! Even when I was active in my teens and twenties, I was into horses and swimming. Never ran a race in my life! Was I crazy?! Well, maybe so. But just watch me run, baby. I have 7 weeks left to train. I will be doing the Couch To 5K program 3 days a week, meeting with a personal trainer once a week and doing the assigned strength training from her two more days each week. I don't know how much of it I will run and how much I will walk but I promise you I WILL finish:)
JUICE ON YA'LL! I GOT THIS!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AMARILYNH 7/22/2014 2:46PM

    I'm so happy I just saw you in my Friend Feed! I guess my subscription to your blogs ran out because I'd missed this. I'm SOOOOO happy for you - you have truly transformed your life. I can just imagine the joy your children are experiencing at having their mom back! You ROCK!!!!!! emoticon emoticon

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KENDRACARROLL 7/7/2014 2:22PM

    I'm so happy you're still here and still working your program.
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Looking forward to your race report :)

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SWEDE_SU 7/4/2014 7:36PM

    absolutely awesome! emoticon emoticon

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DYNAMICDEB53 7/4/2014 1:48PM

    Your journey is amazing and so glad that you found something that works for you and given you a happier and healthier outlook on life. Whether you walk or run that you are motivated to do this is quite something special for yourself and family!!


WTG
Hugs and smiles
Deb

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QUEENIEDMI 7/4/2014 9:03AM

    What an awesome, inspirational story! Against all odds you have overcome! It really is mind over matter! You are awesome! emoticon

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NATALIEMICHAELE 7/4/2014 2:07AM

    Thanks ya'll:) I had to change doctors because of my insurance so this doctor just acts like the other doctors (20+ years worth of them) must have been mistaken about the severity of my condition. He even made a comment that made it seem like he doubted my former lab results accuracy because it just "didn't seem likely" for me to have improved that much in that short a time. Especially the Paget's and the thyroid. LOL I don't care. I'm just thankful!

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BUSYGRANNY5 7/4/2014 1:26AM

    Fantastic! Love your desire and "GUMPTION!" Keep on keeping on!!!

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PENNYPEARLS 7/3/2014 11:20PM

    I am so proud of you! You are doing great and have a very positive attitude. Thanks for sharing. emoticon

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DS9KIE 7/3/2014 11:13PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

that is amazing how you went from incurable to running a race.

So have you seen the doctors that told you they could not cure you lately?

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My New Puppy

Monday, February 17, 2014

I was blessed to have the most amazing dog ever in my life for many years. When she died, I really didn't think I would ever want to get another dog. My health was declining badly and I didn't have the energy or strength to be a great companion for a dog for one thing. Plus, there is that nagging doubt that you can love another dog as much when you've loved one that much.
Well, my daughter-in-law's dog Zoe had puppies by my daughter's dog Gadget. They lived with us from the time they were born. I kept telling myself not to get attached. I told myself I don't need another dog! We have a dog and 2 cats already.... We are getting ready to move and didn't need the hassle of another dog. I'm not up for housebreaking a puppy... etc etc. I told myself all this but... Haymitch didn't take no for an answer. He decided that he was my dog and I was his person.
So... meet Haymitch, also known as Squeeky Boy.

And here is Gadget, Haymitch's daddy and Haymitch in the background doing his best Gadget imitation.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NETGYRL 9/15/2014 2:34PM

    Too cute!

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RAYLINSTEPHENS 2/26/2014 11:45AM

    having been picked myself, you are truly blessed!

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GOULDSGRANITE 2/25/2014 6:06PM

    Oh - he picked a good family. emoticon

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MAVERICK59 2/23/2014 2:59AM

    You have been blessed again.


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_KATHY 2/20/2014 1:15AM

    Makes me miss my "granddog" Cisco... Enjoy your new family member :)

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DS9KIE 2/19/2014 10:30PM

    how cute

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SIRIUS2014 2/19/2014 9:30AM

    Beautiful baby!

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DYNAMICDEB53 2/18/2014 7:10PM

    They do chose us...sweet. I know he will be a nice addition.

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NICOLERZ 2/18/2014 7:03PM

    Aw

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PATRISNA 2/18/2014 6:20PM

    I felt that way when we lost Louie and then a month later we were lucky to find Ginger at the shelter. She has been a wonderful dog. Then on Labor day my son brought home Haley. She was wandering around the neighborhood. We decide to keep her and she is part of the family now. Still a puppy until July of this year. The vet figured she was two months old when we found her.

Your little guys are so cute!

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NATALIEMICHAELE 2/18/2014 6:02PM

    His daddy, Gadget, is a Pekihuahua and his mama,Zoe, is a Rat Terrier/Chihuahua. Other than his color, he looks exactly like his daddy. He has be wrapped around his little paw already. LOL

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NYARAMULA 2/18/2014 1:15AM

    So cute!

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ABRANDNEWSTART 2/17/2014 10:34PM

    OMG, what a cutie, he looks like he i already part of your family.

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DIFROMWYOMING 2/17/2014 10:28PM

    What a cutie! He will be yours forever now. emoticon

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PHYLISSCR 2/17/2014 10:24PM

    Oh my goodness so cute, you made a wise choice. emoticon

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CHERIRIDDELL 2/17/2014 10:22PM

    Haymitch is delightful, I love him!

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USMAWIFE 2/17/2014 9:38PM

    what a sweetie.. there was a reason he picked you

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DOGLOVER426 2/17/2014 8:05PM

    Love your new baby!

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DIANEDOESSMILES 2/17/2014 7:32PM

    OH MY WORD !!! What a CUTIE TO THE MAX !!!

I also do,, as does our FAB ML, MaryAnnS,,, believe that our pets DO CHOOSE US !! They can sense which owner is especially for THEM !! When I went to the shelter, to get an ORANGE CAT !! I was looking ONLY AT ORANGE Ones,,,, I was going to go around for the 2nd time,,, to see which one I WANTED THE MOST !!! Well almost around the 2nd time,,, when suddenly a little tiny brown tiger,, stuck her paw Outside the cage,, and had her paw upside down,, and moving her paw back and forth !!! I UST KNEW IT !! This little one,, wanted ME !!! And than the shelter lady said "she's been here for a week, and she IGNORES everyone ,, though many have shown an interest in her". SO I KNEW she was MINE !!

ENJOY Those PRECIOUS WOOFERS and of COURSE the MEOWERS also !! May ur life with that ADORABLE Puppy be a VERY LONG TIME filled with NOTHING but LAUGHER and SNUGGLY HUGS !

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MARYANNSQUEST 2/17/2014 7:01PM

    Enjoy that cutie! I love it when the furbaby finds a forever home. I truly believe the dawgie always picks his owner. Natalie he pick a pawesome awesome mom!

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MaryannS

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POLYANNA2 2/17/2014 6:14PM

    I can see why you couldn't say "no." Enjoy your new bouncing baby boy!

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GOOSIEMOON 2/17/2014 4:04PM

    My heart is melting...he's a darling!

Chihuahua?

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I Am Literally in Tears...

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

I started this journey nearly 6 months ago at 340 lbs and miserable. Because I had SO far to go, I set up 10% goals. You improve your risk of certain diseases fi you lose 10% of your weight so I lose 10% and then decide to set my next 10%. So I lost the first 10% pretty quickly, about 6 weeks. I looked at my weight at that point, 306, and set a goal to lose 10% of that by my birthday. Well, it's my birthday and to have lost that 2nd 10% I would need to weigh 275.4. Now I haven't been in the 270s for about 10 years! Today I just weighed and I kid you not, I weigh exactly 275.4! Exactly! Oh and, by the way, my BMI has come down 10.4 pts!! Happy birthday to me!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RAYLINSTEPHENS 2/26/2014 11:44AM

    What an awesome birthday gift!
WTG dawgie!! emoticon

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SUSHIMAMA1 2/20/2014 3:40AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DYNAMICDEB53 2/18/2014 7:11PM

    AWESOME!!!!!

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ROSALIEESTHER 2/15/2014 8:16PM

    You ROCK! What a wonderful thing - you are really taking care of YOU! emoticon

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DELIA38961 2/13/2014 4:00PM

    emoticon you rock

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HAPPYJUNEBUG 2/13/2014 3:24PM

    So proud of you! Happy birthday and great job on that weight loss!

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Junie
100+ Pounds Team
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DIANEDOESSMILES 2/13/2014 2:14PM

    HI Natalie !!

When I first saw "I am tears" I wondered why the EL's hadn't notified the team,, than as I read this,, I discovered them to be HAPPY TEARS !! PHEW HON !! ur doing GREAT INDEED !! Just remember in "General" one slows down to 1 to 2 lbs a week,, and that's also FAB !!! So when this happens, plz do NOT fall apart,,,, than it slows down to some weeks a little loss or even UP a little,, which DOES go back down again quickly,,, we ARE females,, need I say more?

Hon,, the scale is going UP ON ME !! AND I HAVE been IN HEART BREAKING TEARS !! but, a Leader,,, and another Dawggie where so KIND to remind me,,, I have had 2 surgs ,, one in Aug, one in Nov,, that DOES take it toll,, not only am I not hardly able to walk,, but the anthesia, they use,, stays in ur body for up to 6 months,, so the one in aug,, hadn't even out (I knew this for I get NIGHT MARES til it is !) when I SO QUICKLY had the 2nd one. I AM of course STILL having night mares,, ALMOST died the night b4 in that one ! Woke up panting HARD and NOT able to breathe it was SOOO BAD !!! So yeah,, I've got that, PLUS I take 28 meds (pills ) a day,, and almost ALL of them have the side affect of "weight gain" so now I am CHANGING my goals to NOT gaining more than 10 lbs a yr. HOPEFULLY NONE, but I NEED to be realisitic here. MAYBE I NEED to go on maintance so I DO NOT hurt the team???? I PROB Should ! I need to talk to Ceri about this. I have changed so MUCH of my eating habits since Joinging SPRAKS,,, I NO longer have CHEESE CAKE NIGHTLY or a triple LAYer CHoc cake,,, and PIZZa, Italian sands,,, (made in maine,, has OIL on it ,, I ALWAYS got DOUBLE EXTRA !) twinkies by the EONS, etc. I Never eVAH touched a freggie,, now it 's my goal to have 3 a day,, I also used to drink 6 to 8 cans of Regular papsi,, so much so,, that I am now HIGHLY allergic to caffine,, landed me in the ER on the verge of a stroke from having JUST A SIP of a super drink !) so yes,,, I KNOW without SPRAKS,, I'd EASILY be 350lbs OR MORE !

So I am THANKFULL as I KNOW you are,, for SPRAKS and how it's HELPING us ,, though in diff ways,, to be ACHIEVABLE !! KEEP going forward hon,, and remember DO NOT get upset,, which is why I wrote you what it is, I go thru,, if you do gain in the future a little,, it WIl lgo back down for you !!

HUGS !!

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RENLLY 2/13/2014 12:25PM

    AWESOME !!! I also love the way you set up a bunch of 10% goals - I know I lost 10% of my starting weight, but I wonder if I have lost another 10% yet?

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STORYCRAFTER 2/12/2014 11:19PM

    Well done, Natalie, and happy birthday!
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AMARILYNH 2/12/2014 5:45PM

    emoticon Happy Birthday and congratulations!! You are doing so awesome - you are changing your LIFE which is just amazing!! You ROCK!! emoticon emoticon

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DMUERHOFF 2/12/2014 2:09PM

    AWESOME JOB!!! THAT'S 20%! emoticon emoticon

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2015TODAY 2/12/2014 1:22PM

    Congratulations! Wonderful job. Your blog brought a smile to my face! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Happy birthday!

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NETGYRL 2/12/2014 11:55AM

    Woohoo!!! That is so great!! You are making it happen! Keep up the incredible work you are doing!!
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ADARKARA 2/12/2014 11:43AM

    AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

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GOULDSGRANITE 2/12/2014 11:10AM

    emoticon To the power in your 10% goals.
emoticon on your hard work to your change your health!
emoticon to you ~
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KIMPAINTS 2/12/2014 10:52AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MRSP90X 2/12/2014 10:37AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon That is so Sparkling Fantastic!!!

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DS9KIE 2/12/2014 10:26AM

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What an great birthday present to yourself.

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NICOLERZ 2/12/2014 8:38AM

    That is just awesome!!!! I am so happy for you! Keep up the good work!

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BARB4HEALTH 2/12/2014 7:02AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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YENGLISH100 2/12/2014 12:58AM

    Yes that is amazing for sure. Keep up the great work. emoticon

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NHES220 2/11/2014 11:59PM

    Well done and Happy Birthday to you!

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CHERIRIDDELL 2/11/2014 10:34PM

    Awesome and Happy Birthday!

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EMMACORY 2/11/2014 9:54PM

    emoticon emoticon Blessings on your journey! emoticon

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MAVERICK59 2/11/2014 9:48PM

    Amazing!

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ALIIDA 2/11/2014 9:39PM

    Congratulations and Happy Birthday. emoticon

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THINFITFEMINIST 2/11/2014 9:20PM

    What a wonderful blog. Congratulations and happy birthday

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PHYLISSCR 2/11/2014 9:06PM

    Awesome!! It took lots of HARD work!! emoticon emoticon

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MSHEL7 2/11/2014 8:35PM

    Woo Hoo, good for you. That's great, and a happy birthday present to boot!! Congrats!!

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POLYANNA2 2/11/2014 8:33PM

    YOU ARE emoticon !!!! You have given yourself the perfect gift! emoticon

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DBEAU57 2/11/2014 8:23PM

    What wonderful news! Weight in the 270s, BMI down over 10 points, AND your birthday! You go, girl!

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QUADCMOM 2/11/2014 7:49PM

    Happy Happy Birthday !!! Awesome report !!!

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TRYNAGAIN194 2/11/2014 7:45PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KENDRACARROLL 2/11/2014 7:37PM

    Happy tears :)
Keep up the good work!!

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MARYANNSQUEST 2/11/2014 7:31PM

    Way to Go Natalie! What a beautiful birthday present! Keep pushing and the next 10 % will come off . Love your Goals!

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MaryannS

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KNEWTON11 2/11/2014 7:25PM

    good job

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DEE1221 2/11/2014 7:13PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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"Permanent Damage.. Eventual Amputation" ... Oh really?

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Let me take you back nearly 20 years. I had just had my 4th baby and I developed a huge blood clot in my right leg. It was pretty far gone before we figured it out. It went from my groin to behind my right knee. My right knee was already a bit of a mess because I had shattered that kneecap in college. I was on blood thinners for 6 months and then went on with my life. A couple of years later when I had my last child, I had to be on blood thinners during my pregnancy but other than that, I didn't feel like the issue had really created any significant problems for me. When my youngest was 2 years old, however, the blood clot reformed and I threw a PE (pulmonary embolism) and was put back on blood thinners for a year. The doctors wanted me on them for life but I had no insuranance and couldn't afford lab fees to have the levels in my blood monitored safely. So one year of therapeutic coumadin and I was off again. I felt like a ticking time bomb. I think that was when I started to believe I wasn't detined to live to be very old.
A couple of years later, the blood clots developed again. The doctors strongly advised coumadin for life. My leg was quite damaged by this time. The knee was bone on bone as well. That leg was considerably weaker than the other and was constantly discolored and several inches larger than the left leg. The doctors said that because the risk of surgery was too high for me (this had actually come up before so I already knew I was not a candidate for any surgery other than the emergency, life-saving variety) this damage was permanent and the leg would very likely have to be amputated eventually.

In the meantime, while all of this was going on, I was diagnosed with several autoimmune disorders and my health and quality of living was going downhill at an alarming rate. I accepted that I would be very lucky to live as long as my mother had, which was 68.
For those on blood thinners, you know that you are advised not to eat much of certain vegetables and things that actively thin the blood because the combination of blood thinners and blood thinning foods can be deadly. Well, last August I made some decisions that I know will be controversial to some but let's remember it is MY life. When I discovered just how much switching to a totally plant-based diet supplemented with fresh made green juices and smoothies was healing my body (all autoimmune disorders in complete remission - symptom free - totally, including hypothyroid now normal, oh and my blood pressure and cholesterol are now normal without meds as well) I decided to take a leap of faith and I once again stopped the blood thinners AMA and began eating tons of all those things that naturally thin the blood. I haven't taken any medication, prescribed or otc since September and this is the result:

There used to be nearly 7 inches difference between right and left calf. Now there's less than 2" difference. I have talked in previous blogs about the complete relief of constant, severe, chronic pain. It kind of amazes me that people will see that I have corrected supposedly permanent conditions like hypothyroid, put MG and Fibromyalgia into complete remission, corrected blood pressure, cholesterol and corrected damage that the doctors said was permanent and still say that what I have chosen is "too radical." When someone says to me, "I would love to stop being in pain all the time, but I just couldn't give up meat." Or sugar or bread or cheese... whatever. Fine. Admit that X food is more important to you than your quality of life. You have a right to your choice! But don't tell me that what I've chosen is radical or dangerous because you are still buying the ridiculous lies being sold to you by the food industry and a complicit fda.

Stepping down from soapbox now. We now return you to your regularly scheduled cheerful Natshell:) And, for the record, I fully intend to outlive my sweet mama by about 30 years.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

COOKWITHME65 11/17/2014 11:35AM

    Great blog. Wonderful that you took action to promote your own wellness.

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GOOSIEMOON 2/17/2014 4:06PM

    Good for you for taking charge of your health!
You are an inspiration!

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YENGLISH100 2/12/2014 1:04AM

    Your are truly courageous and amazing. I found your story very inspiring. THanks.

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PHYLISSCR 2/11/2014 12:02PM

    Such an inspiring story. Thanks for sharing! We can change our life by changing our choices! emoticon

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MRSP90X 2/7/2014 1:10AM

    That is awesome and totally understand your decisions! I just decided to follow Dr Fuhrman, and so so glad I found him!! It is also the fitness industry that promotes heavy on meat and saturated fat based Paleo / Primal "cult" type followings. CrossFit culture is totally promoting Paleo diet. There are also althletes who even go to lengths saying fuits and veggies are toxic! Out in the hardcore power lifting and bodybuilding realm is this nonsense. I coming out of this from a few years of being exposed to this in the athletic world. No wonder why I am still sick! Very inspiring!!

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SLIMMERJESSE 2/7/2014 12:31AM

    Wow, good for you! Wonderful!

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DS9KIE 2/7/2014 12:27AM

    wow wee that is so emoticon

emoticon emoticon lets here it for fruits and veggies emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KENDRACARROLL 2/5/2014 3:00PM

    Great job! Keep up the good work!!

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ROSALIEESTHER 2/5/2014 11:16AM

    So inspiring!

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DMUERHOFF 2/4/2014 2:56PM

    Fantastic! Prove those drs wrong! I love it!

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MAVERICK59 2/4/2014 2:40PM

    Using common sense over the fda???
I think I love you. emoticon

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BIGBRIGHTSTAR 2/3/2014 8:25PM

    Great blog post. You are an inspiration when one makes their mind up to be proactive about their health. You look great.

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RENLLY 2/3/2014 11:45AM

    Wow - your leg looks so much better Natalie. It's amazing the effect diet can have on more than just our weight loss. I am glad that your choices are working for you.

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DOGLOVER426 2/2/2014 3:14PM

    Thank you for posting this awesome inspiring story! You are living proof that a Vegan lifestyle HEALS! Thank you for also addressing the lies that we are sold wholesale about meat, dairy, and processed foods! You rock, keep up the amazing work you are doing!

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MOMMABEE24 2/2/2014 10:24AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Keep up the great work.


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CHERIRIDDELL 2/2/2014 1:20AM

    That is awesome .I love a good news story !You and I would get on , I was told in 2004 that I was a paraplegic , I don't think so ! I walk with crutches and I have issues but I walk !

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HAPPYJUNEBUG 2/1/2014 11:44PM

    Gosh, Lady, I'm so proud of you for your decision to go on a plant based diet. You did the right thing. Your legs look amazing in the second picture!

Keep doing what you're doing if it works for you!

Have a great weekend!

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Junie
100+ Pounds Team
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ALFBUNDY 2/1/2014 11:22PM

    I feel EVERYONE has the RIGHT to make choices about THEIR BODY! NO ONE should be force fed medications against their will; & it should be up to the individual to choose how they want to live! YOUR CHOICES seem to be working VERY WELL FOR YOU!
That's GREAT! I would MUCH RATHER control health "issues" with FOOD than with pills!

BTW.....WHO will YOU be rooting for in the Super Bowl tomorrow? I haven't got a CLUE looking at your page! emoticon emoticon
I'll be rooting for the Broncos, too!

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USMAWIFE 2/1/2014 10:18PM

    emoticon emoticon

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2HAMSDIET 2/1/2014 10:06PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DIFROMWYOMING 2/1/2014 9:24PM

    Wow. I'm facing so much of this town the barrel right now....I've been feeling hopeless. Maybe I'm not. emoticon

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NICOLERZ 2/1/2014 9:11PM

    Wow! I had no idea. It is wonderful that the diet is working for you. I hope you have a long life and that your leg and autoimmune disorders continue to improve.

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POLYANNA2 2/1/2014 7:36PM

    I am a total believer in how you have handled your health and I am so excited to see how you have succeeded in helping yourself. Well done!!!
Great blog!

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RAYLINSTEPHENS 2/1/2014 5:05PM

    emoticon emoticon

what an inspiring blog! thank you so much!!

p.s. love the doggie pic

Comment edited on: 2/1/2014 5:05:57 PM

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SIRIUS2014 2/1/2014 4:05PM

    I'm so glad you are regaining your health : )

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GOULDSGRANITE 2/1/2014 3:30PM

    Wow - What an inspirational story in taking responsibility for your own health. WOO HOO! When I was riding my stationary bike the other day, I watched the documentary - Food, Inc. For anyone struggling with food "Products" I highly recommend watching it. For all of us converts looking to manage our own health and be a lean mean group of strength for a screwed up mess, I highly recommend watching it - Food, Inc. as a way to make a positive impact in your own neck of the woods. emoticon
Soap box returned - blushing. Have a Super day!

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DYNAMICDEB53 2/1/2014 2:38PM

    You are right it is your life and you have made wonderful changes by following your own instincts. WTG.
I have reduced certain foods in my diet to help my thyroid and I dont mind it at all. I am not sure it is helping greatly bit it doesnt hurt.
I say you are going great and there are times we have to look outside the box to find what works for us.,

You go girl!!

Hugs and smiles
Deb

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NATALIEMICHAELE 2/1/2014 2:09PM

    Marilyn, my mom died from diabetes too. Renal failure. And she had already been crippled to a wheelchair from neuropathy and gone blind. She had had several mini-strokes and 3 heart attacks. Her health started tanking badly at age 48. And she was not obese. She was overweight but not obese. I figured I was doomed. But I know now that I am not.
For the blood pressure, you might try making juice with beetroot, ginger, apples, carrots and spinach with a lemon. It is really good for both circulation and bp. And it's yummy! I have 16oz of that a day.

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AMARILYNH 2/1/2014 1:25PM

    I LOVE your attitude and I SO agree with you! I too hear people there is no way they can ever give up this or that - and frankly it just mystifies me! I'm at my goal weight but I STILL have to take a low dosage BP med to keep my BP in control so I'm trying various types of nutrition to see if this is the one that will do it for me. And when I find it? That WILL be how I'm eating!! No matter WHAT it is! Because my mother lived to 76 (died of complications of diabetes) while my dad lived almost to 92. I've already decided to try to outdo my dad!! And since I feel FABULOUS at 66 I may just do it. Meanwhile I'm eating as many freggies as possible and as little processed as I can manage. I don't do it perfectly but I've made huge strides. Because like you, I KNOW I am WORTH it!! Hugs, Marilyn

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ELRIDDICK 2/1/2014 1:06PM

  Thanks for sharing

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ALICIA214 2/1/2014 1:05PM

 


Well said... We all have to make choices, and you made the one that has worked for you...

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