Corter Moon
Monday, February 4, 2019

A Few Words On World Cancer Day



Today is World Cancer Day. I had never known anyone with cancer until November 2013, when my stepfather, Dan, was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. He hadn't been able to keep food down for months. Due to the lack of accessible healthcare, he didn't get checked out until months down the road of not being able to eat. After an initial endoscopy was done to see what was going on (we thought maybe harmless ulcers), they found a tumor, did a biopsy, and sure enough, it came back as cancer. Our worlds were turned upside down, especially my mom's. He had surgery in 2014, and they were able to remove the tumor. We celebrated, we were so excited!



But because they had to remove part of his esophagus and hook it to his stomach, a stent was needed. Initially, it was a metal stent that had to get changed every three months. Then, the doctors thought that a mesh stent would last longer. Fast forward to late June 2015. Dan wasn't feeling well AT ALL. He ended up at the ER, with a collapsed lung and not being able to eat again. The doctors did a swallow test to see why he wasn't able to eat, and found that the mesh stent that was placed in his esophagus, ate right through it, therefore essentially creating a hole that could not be repaired.

He was sent home to us to become comfortable. Suddenly, we were faced with having to say goodbye to one of the most incredible people that had ever been in my life. Despite having two grown daughters of his own, he took in my sister and I and treated us like we were his very own. Even going as far as tattooing mine and my sister's name on his arm, along with his own two kids. He left this world on July 9th, 2015.



My son had his first encounter with death. He was five. They were "buddies," Dan adored Syrus so much, and vice versa. Perhaps if he would've gotten checked out sooner, he may still be here. But then again, if my dad didn't stick a needle in his arm, he'd still be here, too. Sadly, I cannot look at the "what-ifs," and I can't look backwards. Cancer stole somebody who loved us unconditionally, and whom we loved unconditionally.

Life certainly hasn't been the same since you've left, Dan. But I really hope that we're all making you proud. We miss you so much. I keep one of your favorite hats hung up in my room. The Christmas card you gave me, the last thing I have with your handwriting on it, is pinned to my cork-board. The "special gift" that you gave me hangs in my closet. I cherish the memories of you and Syrus playing around, and how he would just contently sit next to you and play on your iPad. It just isn't the same without you here.



You taught me patience, resilience, when to speak up, and when to keep quiet. You were there for me at the roughest points in my life. I am forever grateful that I knew you for the nine years that I did. You were an amazing person, who everyone got along with. But, before I start crying, which I know you wouldn't want me to do, I'll just say this:

PLEASE, if you or someone you love is having strange symptoms and you do not know WHY, I implore you to visit your doctor or local hospital. Sure, I know that the bills can be hard to think about. But your life is irreplaceable, and there are people in it that need you to stay around. Early detection is the best protection. 

Please visit WorldCancerDay.org to see how you can help out!


I love and miss you, Dan.


Love always and forever,

Monday, December 17, 2018

How A Home Loan Can Put You On The Fast Track To Becoming Homeowners

This post was sponsored by DiamondLinks



So, after searching and searching, high and low, you and your partner have found the house of your dreams. Now you are ready to get the process going and get the ball rolling. This is what you've dreamed about! So, how can you kick start the process? Well, you could get a home loan. Especially if you are someone like me, who is self-employed, you could check out self employed loans Tampa.

Home Loan vs Mortgage

A home loan is a loan that is advanced to a person to assist them in purchasing a house. It is not the same thing as a mortgage. With a mortgage, the property itself is reserved as collateral, in the event that payment can no longer be made, a mortgage allows the bank the right to sell the property.

A home loan enables buyers to purchase a property in its entirety. The loan is a type of relationship between borrower and a lender.  They generally consist of either adjustable or fixed-rate payment terms.

Why Go With A Home Loan

Home loans are helpful to you, not only when you are purchasing a home, but for other reasons as well. It help you to build good credit, helping to secure your future, should you want to make any other large purchases, such as automobiles. Not to mention, come tax time, you can save big time! A home loan is just the easier and makes for a better choice when it comes to purchasing a home.

Purchasing A Home

Purchasing a home is a pretty big deal, and you want to make the right choices. The smart choices, if you will. It is always best to go over what you want to do with your partner. But if  you are both ready to jump into buying your dream home feet first, you both need to consider a home loan.

It is the quicker and easier way of buying a home. Just think, the faster you purchase your home, the quicker you can get to the things that really matter, like making memories and having fun in it! You will get to decorate just how you want it, and all the fun things that go along with owning your very own home.

Researching

Even if you are only thinking about buying a home, it is still a good thing to do your research. You can find all kinds of information on home loans online. Or, you could even go to your local library. If you happen to have a friend that is also a realtor, that is a bonus. They can clue you in on the market at that moment.

There is so much that goes on with purchasing a new home. Buying a home is exciting, it is a whirlwind of emotions, a wild ride. But one thing for sure that is a guarantee? It is all going to be worth it in the end. Because in the end, it is all about family, and the one you will raise in your new home.


Monday, December 3, 2018

For Purpose Kids Subscription Box Review

I was gifted a free product in return for my honest review. All opinions are my own. 

It's not often that I come across a subscription box - and you guys know how much I love my subscription boxes, that I find one that really touches my heart. When I found For Purpose Kids, I was really kind of pumped! When they allowed me to review a box of theirs, I won't lie, I did a little happy dance! 



The whole center of their box is to Be kind. Do good. Make the world better. I love that. My husband and I have and always will teach Syrus to be a kind-hearted little boy. And, we've seen it in him. He is a little gentleman. He holds open doors for people, says please and thank you to others, and even cheers up his fellow classmates if they're being picked on, or just look lonely. He even has an elderly pen pal he writes to from second grade, and they plan on meeting up again soon! 

That's why I was excited for this box. I knew my Sy would love it. And he totally did. Everything came packed beautifully and neatly in a lovely package. 


Now when we get inside the package, we are welcomed with an exciting message about being ready to learn all about meeting your child. Syrus was really excited!


After that, we meet the For Purpose Friends! A group of fictional global kids of various ages that are out doing varying good deeds in their part of the world, inspiring your child to do the same!



We were also provided with cut-outs of the For-Purpose Friends and Popsicle sticks so that we could make puppets out of them, and so that they could even help us on our quests to do good! But we haven't quite gotten to that part yet, as you can see. A certain little one had an ear infection and sinus issues. 


But let's get down to business here! We have our Commitment To Action here, where Syrus vows to always be helpful! You can see that below!


Now when we opened the box he got really excited because he saw books! This kid loves books! One of the books is called the The Giving Book by Ellen Sabin. There is also a space below the author's name for your child's name to go. And there is even a place right where that little globe is to stick a favorite picture of your child in there! This is essentially there go-to "good" ideas book. It has all kinds of ways that teaches them in what ways they can give back to their community, what they are thankful for, etc. Here is Sy being super-excited about the book!


We also received a "Journal of Purpose and Action," where Syrus can write about all the good deeds that he has done, or some ideas that he has come up with about doing! 


Finally, we have Syrus actually working in his Giving Book! Here, he was filling out what he was thankful for. I'll keep it private to respect his privacy, but I will tell you it was sweet and it was kind. Let me tell you what this kid asked Santa for for Christmas? Friends and family being together. And in school he asked for world peace. This kid. A sweetheart he is. But anyway, here he is filling out his Giving Book!


All in all, I fell in love with the For Purpose Kids box! There is no doubt about it! I love the whole idea behind it, I love what it stands for, I love everything about it! I definitely recommend it to any parent who wants to introduce their child to the world of giving back to the world around them! 

Want to try it for yourself?!


Monday, November 12, 2018

Nancy Behrman: A True Go-Getter



Nancy Behrman, a self-motivated and highly motivated career woman is at the forefront of her industry. She currently owns and runs her own business, Behrman Communications. She began her business out of her studio apartment approximately thirty years ago. Behrman wasn’t satisfied with the PR options of old, and decided to go her own way and jump in with both feet, beginning Behrman Communications. Since then, she has earned respect from all kinds of people from all walks of life including celebrity aestheticians, doctors of dermatology and plastic surgery, makeup artists and more.

When asked how her life experience made her the leader she is today she says that going out at 25 years old was definitely a motivating factor for her. She said, “Failure simply wasn’t an option,” for her. She had begun her own business venture, and thus she needed to wear a lot of hats, like owner and leader of her own business. She steadily grew into the leadership role more as time went on.

With a fierce work ethic, she made certain to get to know the right people in the media. Even at the tender age of 22 she made friends with magazine assistants, often going out for drinks and renting beach houses together in the summer. This industry soon became her lifestyle and gave her the connections needed to start her own business.

Behrman had started her career at Kiehl’s Since 1851, and shared a special relationship with CEO Jami Heidegger, with them both being the same age. They shared a symbolic relationship. Heidegger let her try what she wanted in the way of PR, no matter how unconventional it was. Soon, Kiehl’s wasn’t a brand name only heard in the underground, but one that everyone was hearing.

Behrman’s advice to women who want a career in the PR industry is to be “whole heartedly comitted; ambivalence is no good in this industry, or in any aspect of life for that matter.” She is also a big advocate of owning your mistakes.

In her thirty years in business, the importance of achieving a balance between her work and personal lives are one of the biggest lessons she has learned. Even now she says that it is still a work in progress. There were times that she recalled being so committed to her agency that her personal life suffered, with the exception of her children, they always came first to her. Since realizing her personal life had suffered, she now has started working remotely from her home, exercising and even taking vacations. She says it gives her a “greater sense of balance” to her life, and makes her a better boss as well.

Behrman admires many other female leaders, with some of them being Tina Brown, Gwynne Thomas, a TV producer, Nicky Kinnaird, founder of Space NK, and Jami Heidegger, founder of Kiehl’s Since 1851. In the coming year, Behrman hopes to accomplish many things like having every person that is ready to be promoted to be promoted with a new title and salary. She would also like to see her own team to seek out new businesses on their own.

All in all, Nancy Behrman is a go-getter, highly-motivated self-starter who jumped right in, and wasn’t afraid to take risks. She is a successful businesswoman and is an inspiration to all girl-bosses around the world.


This post was sponsored by DiamondLinks

Saturday, October 27, 2018

InterStim Update #1

If you've been following this blog for a while now, you'll know that I've been in chronic pain for years. The pain has caused me to pass out, and as a result, I have had my license taken away. I'm a mom who basically has to rely on her own mom (when husband is at work) to shuttle myself and my son around. Yep, it's kind of a crap situation to be in.

For years, doctors went back and forth, as to whether or not I actually had endometriosis. One said I did, another said I didn't. Earlier this year, I began seeing a doctor who agreed to do a surgery to see once and for all if I did have endometriosis. He at least did the right thing, and biopsied the tissue, instead of eyeing it up and judging it that way. Biopsy came back positive for endometriosis. But, I digress.

I proceeded to tell him about my chronic left-side pelvic pain, that's been there since Syrus was born. I even passed out in the office once, but that's a tale I'll regale you with another time. Point is, this guy, this doctor, must actually have human emotions. Because let me tell you, he tried everything for me. He even prescribed me pain medication during a particularly bad spell. I've come to his office crying. One time in his office, he thought of a possible out there solution. Sacral Neuromodulation. It's a device, also known as InterStim. It stimulates certain nerves, as you can tell from the link. He thought that maybe, just maybe that it would be worth a shot. At this point, why the hell not?

It's a two-step process, though. It's about a week trial, with the stimulators in my back, stimulating the nerves, with me controlling it via Bluetooth remotes. This is to see if the stimulators will actually work for me. Boy-howdy, though. The first surgery, I had to be awake for as they shoved needles into my back and jiggle them around to find the right nerves. But then the table I was on didn't work. So he had to take the needles out. Move me to a different operating table and re-insert the needles. I will admit that I totally bawled like a baby in the operating room. But I have my temporary stimulators in. I did it. #BadAssStatus

And GUESS THE HELL WHAT? I have taken barely a thing for pain. Sure, a Tylenol here and there for some post surgery pain or a headache, but that's it. I do not feel my left side pain. Can you believe it? After seven years, seven straight years of hell, day in and day out? I give my final decision as to whether I want the semi-permanent InterStim batteries (they last 5 years) put in underneath my skin on Wednesday (Halloween!), and my answer is obviously going to be a resounding HELL YES. My second surgery to implant the batteries is already scheduled for Friday, November 2nd.

Can you imagine? My life, no more passing out? No more curled up on the couch crying?
Playing with my son? Getting involved in his school activities? BEING A MOM?

Now, obviously, this has nothing to do with endometriosis. That will always be there. It will grow. I will likely have to get surgeries every couple of years. At this point it's wrapped around my left ureter, and I have to see what to do about that. He also had found it attached my bowel to my abdominal wall. So, we'll see what happens with that. But no one could ever pin down exactly what the left-side pelvic pain was. Still can't, but at least I have the option of no more pain. I can't wait to see what the future holds.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

World Mental Health Day 2018: Looking Back & Moving Forward



Looking back, they say that you shouldn't do that, because you're not going that way. But for me, looking back is actually a good thing. It means that I can turn around and look at the experiences and learn from them, and then turn right back around and walk away from the past, and right into my future. 

Mental illness began very early on for me, settling in, and making its home inside my mind at the tender age of nine years old. I remember it vividly. The depression, hitting me like a ton of bricks. Sure, I went to school like any regular kid would do. But when I came home, I would do my homework, and then I would proceed to lay in bed and sleep, or even better, hide behind the couch and cry, where nobody could find me. 

Sure, it most likely stemmed from me learning of my father's diagnosis of AIDS, and as time went on, my parent's got me to a psychiatrist, who put me on all the wrong medications, of which my parents then proceeded to pull me off of. Then my OCD began to come 'round and play. Those days were always so much fun. That was sarcasm, if you couldn't tell. 

I live with Purely Obsessional OCD, amongst other things, but these intrusive thoughts, thoughts that are fleeting for the typical human mind, play about over, and over and over in my head, like a broken record that won't stop playing, and I can't reach the record player to make it stop. Luckily, my psychiatrist and I have been working together for a long time, trying to find what works and what doesn't for me, and after about 6 years, we found that delicate balance of what medications work and their dosages. 

I'm not going to lie and sugar coat things, living with mental illness can be downright scary at times. I mean, a good chunk of the year I was in a depressive episode, sleeping all day, wanting to cry when I was awake, not wanting to do anything, even eat, or take care of myself. But I had to pull myself out of that rut, that vicious and harmful cycle, not only for myself, but for my family. It was hard to do, I won't deny that. There are still days that I want to lay down and cry, but I have to tell myself no, I have a life to live.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Dear Syrus

Dear Syrus,

What can I say? You're eight years old now. And you finally have a cousin on the way! Aunt Jessy is pregnant! I know that's the greatest gift that you'll want, because for so long you've wanted a playmate. Though you two may be years apart, I know you will both be close and lifelong friends.

Gosh, there is so much to say, little man. So much. The fact that you are a little man now. Going into the third grade...where did that time go? I constantly ask myself that question, as I am sure a lot of moms do when their babies grow up.

You make daddy and I so proud each and every day, with your handsome smile and your infectious giggles. You do bring sunshine everywhere you go. You're growing up, there is no denying that. In growing up, you're learning so much more about the world, and I love it when you come to me with your newly learned facts and tidbits. Third grade is going to be so much fun for you!

You are such a gentleman and very well mannered. There isn't anything that I would change about you, my little lovebug. I've had a blast this summer learning and growing along with you! I look forward to many more summers with you, #SummerSy.