Look Out World… I’m Back In The Saddle Again!
A few years ago I got thrown from my horse. OK, who am I kidding? I am a Brooklyn girl at heart, no horses for me. But literally I felt like I had, if not been thrown from my horse, I was certainly thrown off my game. Life kept throwing me obstacles and I found it harder and harder to get around them, get through life and back in the blogging game . I know everyone has problems and in reality mine were no greater than anyone else’s, but I felt I couldn’t talk about mine. More importantly for me, I felt like I couldn’t even write about them either. First I struggled through a nasty divorce. Are they ever really amicable? Then I lost my dear grandmother and godmother, who had both always believed in me and supported me unconditionally. Medically I succumbed to not 1 but 2 strokes, which left me weakened on the left side and wearing leg braces for six months each time. To make matters worse, the strokes also left behind confusion at times and memory loss. I didn’t feel creative, of spunky or positive. I didn’t feel like talking, let alone writing. The stroke took my ability to speak clearly away, but I grew too comfortable in the silence. Not exactly helpful for a speaker and a writer. I was done. I was off my horse. Throughout the last few years I didn’t want to show a negative attitude because after all I was the girl behind Butyoudontlooksick.com. I was the smiling chick with a laptop and a sunny positive attitude. I was a mom and I was going to smile for my daughter even if it killed me! Underneath it all I felt like a fraud with nothing to offer. I wasn’t just off my horse, I had lost my horse. I wasn’t in the race, I was out of the race looking in at everyone else running as fast as they could. Those other horses (bloggers)and those other jockeys (moms) looked so put together, so talented and so positive. They were all finishing the race I had started on so long ago. Family, friends and beloved spoonies, would encourage me to try and give me a boost back onto my saddle. I would get a surge of energy, confidence and creativity, but it was always short lived and Lupus would either physically or emotionally rear its ugly head. I would fall off my horse over and over again. Thankfully, no one gave up on me. Last year something began to happen. Slowly things began to fall together without any major upset. My father encouraged and helped me to start a 501c3 not for profit, called The But You Don’t Look Sick Foundation. A dream of mine that I can now cross of my bucket list. My mother and friends helped organize my yearly fund raiser, The Purple Party, where I received a Proclamation from my local representative for my work in the community helping women and raising awareness of invisible chronic illness. I attended last year’s IRETREAT Conference in Hershey and met bloggers from all over the U.S. Who encouraged me to jump right back in with both feet. This year I had the extreme honor to be chosen to speak on a panel of patient advocates at the Klick Health Muse conference in Philadelphia on the same roster as President Bill Clinton! Yes, the President! In his keynote address one of the lines that screamed out to me was that “the worst thing someone can steal from you is your voice, but that is only if you let them.” It was then that I put my foot down. A divorce can hurt your feelings, or put you in debt, or worse take your child. Lupus can steal health and physicality. Death, depression, moving, etc all these things can rip me down to the bone, but I refuse for them to take my voice. No one should be silenced by fear. I started writing more. I started to believe in myself again. So this year I attended this years IRETREAT Conference in New Orleans for bloggers. I looked forward to being further inspired, encouraged and motivated. I wasn’t disappointed. I learned tips and tricks to make this blog and my social media presence even stronger. Tomorrow I am attending Blogger Bash in NYC. I am excited to see old friends and make new ones. I’m going to walk right up to the brands, sponsors and companies I used to work with and with a smile and a hustle in my step, let them know that I am alive and I am back! I am ready to put the message out into the universe. I am back in the saddle again. look out world, I found my horse!! – Christine Miserandino find me on http://www.Twitter.com/bydls