Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Canellini Pasta Salad




So lately I have been addicted to Pinterest and have made some awesome meals from the pinners on the site.  I have been so inspired I have created some of my own recipes and I would like to share them with you.  This recipe above reminds me of my italian grandmothers recipes, it is very simple and easy to make takes about 15-20 minutes with prep.  

Ingredients:
1 cup chopped Red Onion 
1 15.5 oz can of Canellini Beans (rinsed)
1 pkg. of Baby Spinach (only use about 1/4 of the bag) 
1 pkg. (1 lb.) of Gemelli Pasta or similar ( I used Rotini)
1/4 cup of Olive Oil 
1/2 cup of Red Wine Vinegar (or less depending on your taste)
3/4 cup Shredded Parmesan
Salt to taste

Cook the pasta according to the directions on the box, drain and rinse with cold water. 
Using a large bowl combine all ingredients and stir.  


Here is your finished product :0)

Note: You can make this a hot or cold pasta salad it tastes good either way.  




Thursday, June 23, 2011

Planning Parenthood

In May my husband and I started trying for a baby, and I have become fully aware that you really can't plan parenthood, let alone your whole  life.  That my perfect plan of  having a baby right away is not realistic and that I need to give it more time.  I tend to be the impatient type so this is really hard to do lol.  Anyways I realized that life has other plans for everyone, sometimes they fit our plans and sometimes they don't.  When we came back from our trip to Colorado to see my family I wasn't feeling well, and when I went to see my regular doctor she advised me my symptoms could be pregnancy related but that it was too early to tell and I would have to wait till I miss my period.  I decided not to get overly excited by the news because there is a chance that I am not pregnant, and I don't want to be too dissapointed.  When my husband and I started on this journey I thought that it would be easy to not really try to get pregnant and to just let nature take its course.  However now that we started I realized I want to try, I want my little bundle of joy ( and by bundle I mean 1 child, not twins ).  I am sure my father will read this and he will be thinking he knew all along this would happen :0)


On another note a person that I hold very dear to me has reappeared in my life after a very long time of being away.  When I was 19 years old I met my best friend, my soulmate forever, my twin soul.  We were in the same training class at Dish Network, she was the perky blonde who was coy, very smart, loving and funny, full of joy and life, and her smile and laugh could light up the darkest of rooms.  There was an instant connection, we liked the same movies, styles of clothes, music, etc... we were so alike it was scary.  Most people did not and still do not understand this connection, nor did they think that our friendship at times was a good one.  For me my best friend and her baby boy were my life, we had good times and bad times but I loved her more than I have ever loved anyone, and she loved me the same.  I was there for her through a divorce, through her whole pregnancy and delivering her second baby boy, she was there when the love of my life moved to Texas to go to school and when he broke my heart, we spent so much time together we actually practically lived together. 


At this time in my life my parents and I were not getting along, they were trying to push me to have the life they wanted for me, or moreso approved of, and the more they pushed, the more I ran the opposite direction.  My best friend and her family accepted me for who I was and they were my escape from my problems. We made our own world together where we existed, where we escaped.  I feel very lucky that she is back in my life she has a wonderful family now and a husband who takes care of her, everything she deserves, and for that I am so relieved. 


I also want to thank her family for taking care of me, like my own should have, and for seeing in us the things we saw in each other. 


My sunshine, the rays that fall like honey silk upon your face,
Your smile and love are never erased,
Oh how I have missed you,
The peanut butter to my jelly,
My best friend face,
We will always be together
Our love will never fade. 

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The 7 Stages of Grief

I recently talked to my grandmother on the phone, I hadn't heard from her in awhile and I wanted to see how her and my grandfather were doing.  She explained that one of my cousins had died on my grandfather’s side, and that someone else in her family had passed away that she was very close with.  I thought to myself this may be why I haven't heard from her for awhile, maybe she was in the process of grieving.  I realized that thinking about the seven steps of grieving and how they apply could be broadened to more than just death.  I realized that we process the steps of grief for many things that happen in our lives; a breakup, a job loss, being fired, an illness, etc... I wanted to make sure to express that these steps are a normal process and that sometimes we stay stuck in one step or the other for an undetermined period of time, and this is ok, this is part of the process. I talked to a very dear childhood friend of mine today, he was very upset because he had just been dumped, I felt so bad for him.  Just by talking to him I could identify right away he was in the early stage between Pain and Guilt and Anger and Bargaining, and I was trying to be supportive and help him through this process.  I think these phases are only natural and can easily be identified through observing our own and others processing of grief.


 Here is a link to a great site that describes the Seven Stages of Grief:
 http://www.recover-from-grief.com/7-stages-of-grief.html


The link explains that people who are not aware of the stages of grief may have the attitude that you should just get over it, and that things aren't that bad, this is an outsider’s point of view and not a very helpful one.  I find that there is no timetable for healing, and that thing we may have thought we are well past can spring back up at anytime and it can feel as if the event is happening all over again.  There are not any specific rules to grieving and its process, and why should there be, pain is pain and only the person going through it can truly understand what they feel.   

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Symptoms and Misdiagnosis of Endometriosis

Here are a list of some common symptoms of Endometriosis and the Misdiagnosis that accompany them. 

Common Symptoms: 
  • Menstrual Cramping (can be moderate to severe)
  • Back Pain normally lower back pain
  • Heavy Bleeding during Menstruation
  •  Leg pains like aching or sometimes described as shooting pains
  • Diarrhea
  • Painful urination or bowel movements  
  • Pain before and during periods
  • Pain with intercourse
  • Fatigue
  • Constipation
Other symptoms which may or may not be related but are frequently reported:
Low grade fever, depression, anxiety, Hypoglycemia, headaches/migraines, frequent infections. 
Common Misdiagnosis:
·         Clinical Depression
·         Ovarian Cysts
·         Irritable Bowel Syndrome
·         Chronic Fatigue
·         Ovarian Cancer
·         Ectopic Pregnancy
·         Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
·         STD’s
·         Fibroid Tumors
·         Appendicitis
·         Colon Cancer
·         ME Hypothyroidism
·         Fibromyalgia
·         Rheumatoid Arthritis
·         Menopause


















Addressing Your Own Reality

I have been reading a wonderfully inspiring book by Ashley Judd called, "All That is Bitter and Sweet," and I wanted to share some of the realizations that I have come to experience while reading her book.  First thing I noticed is that when her sister Wynonna is in therapy there is a healing process that the therapy center uses, and it is about addressing reality.  What this means is that the person in therapy or who is in the healing process is able to address their own reality of situations they have experienced in their lives that led to their addictions, or whatever they are being treated for.  The person who is in treatment explains their reality in a safe place where no one can contradict them or tell them they are wrong, or that it didn't happen that way.  I find this process one that I would like to explore in my own life, that has so much value to it.  There are so many different reality's of a situation depending on who you talk to that was involved in them.  This process is so important, because like myself and many others we feel that is it hard to speak up against what has been done to us, because we are frequently invalidated when we express our reality to the ones who have hurt us.  I know when I have brought up certain situations with my family, certain family members immediately argue with me and question my reality, especially if they feel that I am pointing out something they have done wrong.  I find the idea of allowing someone to have their own reality so freeing, and that others can realize that everyone's reality is different but that's ok, we are all entitled to our perceptions it's what is so genius about being human, we are not meant to be the same.


One example of a hurtful situation is one that happened when I was a teenager.  When I was in High School I didn't eat right, I have been a very picky eater my whole life, also I worked at Dairy Queen and ate alot of crap from there.  Also in being picky I did not eat alot of the meals my mother or step-mother made for me, I ate other food instead, and I was constantly criticized about my weight and what I ate.  I was not a fat teenager I was actually very, very, skinny, so I couldn't understand this abuse.  I began to eat in my room alot away from the criticism of my family and away from anyone who would look at what I was eating.  I also ate alot, but I was always very skinny.  Then I began to feel hurt by my friends who would approach my husband and even my family, including some of my best of friends who would ask if I had an eating disorder, or whether I was on drugs????? because I was very, very, skinny.   This has really hurt me to this day, I have always wondered where this attitude came from, was it jealousy? worry? or both??  I never really have addressed this issue with any of the people who have thought this knowing that they really didn't know me well enough to begin with to assume I must have something wrong with me.  What hurt me most in this was that no one could just ask me to my face, and then when they were told I didn't have an eating disorder, and no I wasn't on drugs they still couldn't believe it.  It also made me feel bad about myself when I was constantly criticized for what I ate, and my weight, I used to think I was chubby in high school and it made me feel fat, even though I was a size 00-2.  I am thankful that this criticism and abuse didn't ever change my eating habits or make me obsessed with my weight because so many women out there go to dangerous lengths to be skinny.  It also made me feel worse that anyone would wish I had something that seriously wrong with me. I hope one day I can say to those people that their actions have hurt me and caused me pain, only then will I be able to find my voice.


I also hope anyone who reads this finds their voice to tell someone they know about an incident that hurt them, and to express their own reality because it is in fact our world that shapes who we are and others who can choose to hurt or heal us. 

Monday, May 16, 2011

Undoing the Undone

I recently have been thinking about a certain situation in my life, one that evokes a sense of shame and a deep hurt but is just as important to me just the same.  I am the type of person who if I let you in and share deeply about my life, this is a special gift because this does not happen very often.  Those who know me know I am a very, very, very, private person; I do not like to put my business out there, or to be told what to do, or how to live my life, unless I trust you completely.  However others know me as exactly the person who would write this Blog because I must admit I like to shock people just to see their reactions, and also because my Endo book encouraged me to write about what has happened to help me heal. Just when anyone thinks they know me the picture changes and I cease to be what they pinpointed me to be.  Confused yet?  Well that's ok I don't like to be pinned down as one thing or the other, I am very two sided like a coin (not two faced, two sided).  I can see everything from multiple points of views, just like most people cannot empathize with a criminal, I know that most serial killers have had traumatic childhoods, not like this is an excuse for them to kill, don't get me wrong!! But that the trauma they experienced changes them and turns them into monsters because of some monster in their lives.  Let's face it we all have monsters.

My moment as a monster occurred in 2006 when I announced I was getting engaged, my best friend at the time got very excited and immediately made it clear that she would not wear an ugly bridesmaid dress.  Innocently enough she told the whole world we were getting married before I had a chance to tell them myself.  Anyhow at one point she was very angry that I didn't ask her to be my maid of honor because I had asked one of my other best friends to be.  It blew up out of proportion with threatening voicemails made to my phone by her and harsh words exchanged. Being young at the time and very different than I am now I was torn, and I did not handle it well.  My best friend’s family was very close to me and we had known each other since we were like 8 or 9 years old so they were like my second family, I called to invite them to my wedding while insinuating that my best friend was not invited, and then switched over to the other line that my husband was on and started bad mouthing my best friend.  I don't recall all of what was said but I know it was horrible, I made comments about her being Bi-Polar and very harmful things that I never would have said had I not been angry and felt threatened by her voicemails.  Needless to say my whole conversation was recorded on the answering machine because that line pulled over into my call waiting.  I was very ashamed at this behavior on my part especially because I have family members that are Bi-Polar and lots of friends and no matter how angry I was I should not have said the things I said, especially because I truly did not mean any of them. 

It was too late the damage was done and I lost a whole family over this incident, now I know I was suffering from PMDD which meant when I got mad I would become upset more than usual over small things, lash out harsher than before and completely hang on to any and all anger.  I was impulsive and reckless and could not control my emotions around the time of my period, and with all the hormone problems I had it made me a horrible person at times. 

Now I don't want anyone feeling sorry for me because I did this, but this is a prime example of what a disease can do to your life it can take a wrecking ball and leave wreckage behind that is irreparable.  Every day I wish I had not said what I said, however at the same time I felt abandoned by a family I really loved, and I began to question how much they really loved me to not accept my apology and to realize that I had made a mistake and wasn't perfect???? But there was no undoing what had been done.
   
  

Babies and other Musings

So it is official my husband and I are trying not to have/have a baby!!! Basically since I know it could be tough for us trying to have a child with the Endometriosis I have decided not trying is the best thing for us.  I really don't want to be the kind of couple that schedules sex, and having to take my temperature, or use an ovulation stick etc.... I have no desire to do anything stressful in creating our wonderful family.  Now I know that this situation may change if we don't have any luck conceiving but I have made my peace if I am unable to have my own children, and I may look into adoption as an alternative, and hopefully adopt later on in life.  I love my life with my husband just the two of us and our 4 kitties so if it is just us, I am ok with this too.  I have such a big heart and there are so many children out there that need good homes and you don't have to go to other countries to find them, we need to take care of our own children here in the United States first, at least that's how I see it.


To be honest I am terrified of motherhood mainly because it is the one thing that no matter what you do to plan for it, it cannot be planned completely.  There are no guarantees you or I will be good parents, or are good parents, or that we can do it all right.  This is what scares me the most since I am a perfectionist, doing it perfect, and  being the perfect mother are what I will strive to be.  I know that striving to be perfect is not something that is necessarily a good quality, and I know it is also one that is unrealistic, but I tend to think if you set the bar high then when you get even close to reaching it then you have done a good job, and the best you can do, is all we as humans can give.  Failure for me is not an option. 


I plan on being in school finishing my Bachelors in Criminology and Criminal Justice, which I have about a year and a half to go, and being a mother, and working full time, but maybe going to work part time if I can.   I cannot wait to move back home to Colorado and be around everyone who knows me, really knows me.  I miss that feeling when I am around my best friend when we can just have long conversations about everything under the world while sitting on the side of a mountain taking the view in, just being one with nature.  I miss my family being able to be apart of their growth and experience.  I also like the fact that we are missed when we are gone, that when my husband and I aren't around it really gives everyone time to reflect on how we touch their lives and it is good to be missed. So wish us luck on our baby journey, we are having fun so far making one :)