Every Little Step I Take…

You know that infamous “Jar of Rocks” analogy that’s used to describe time-management and life priorities?  The first time I heard it in college, it instantly became my favorite analogy EVER!  Who came up with that?  I want to meet him and have his babies!  It was so new, clever and innovative to me, I thought it was genius.  Such a novel Jack Handy moment… not knowing how extremely popular and probably overused it was already by then.  LOL!  (For the record, I thought the same thing about the “When life gives you lemons” quote until people kept finishing my sentence every time I used it.  Oh naivety, how I miss thee.)   Well, I still think the lesson is genius, and I still focus on its message whenever I get overwhelmed or wander a little off-path, and so far, it’s led me true.

Jar of Rocks

Life…in a jar. Wish it was that simple!

For anyone who’s been under a rock for the last 30 years (see what I did there?), the lesson is that if you try to fit all of your smaller, less-important priorities (ie. the pebbles and sand) into your life (jar) first, you’ll never be able to fit your larger, more-important priorities (the rocks) into your life.  However, if you focus on your larger rocks first, everything else will easily fall into place – with room to spare.  Well, I’ve taken the time to prioritize my larger rocks (like, oh, staying alive, keeping my job, loving my family and friends) into my snazzy little jar, and we’ve already discussed the pebbles I’ve squeezed into it (dealing with/conquering the medication/side-effects, travel, food), so today, I’m all about the sand!  I just wish that entailed lounging on it next to a much larger “jar” of salty water…in Hawaii!  😀

Taco in a jar

Berta’s life jar…yes, that is a taco in a jar. With no beans. 😉

It’s always the little things in life that fascinate and thrill me.  As an event planner, yes, I not only plan for the final event, but have an extreme amount of small details that have to be completed in order for that large event to take place.  People forget those smaller items exist (“Oh, wait, we need to order bottled waters for the booth staff?”, “You mean, someone has a nut allergy, so we can’t eat at XYZ restaurant?”, “I forgot that Joe Schmo just broke his leg, yes, let’s have our training on the first floor!”), but those details excite me!  It’s the same way in my life outside of work.  I’ve complained about the side-effects of my transplant medication, but honestly, it fascinates me that such a small little pill can make such an obvious physical change to someone!  While most people would not have noticed a few extra hairs added to their eyebrows, I celebrated!  😀  Well, here are some additional small bumps and accomplishments that’ve been made since the last post:

Weight – Ok, so this is a bump, and not one I’m excited about, but when I first started my meds, I thought I was maintaining my weight.  Turns out my body was just slowly filling out as it began to properly process my food/nutrition…which is absolutely a good thing.  Problem is, it hasn’t stopped!  LOL!  I’m now about 10-15 pounds heavier than my usual weight.   My doctors have told me that this is normal, and due to my steroids.  Apparently, one mg of Prednisone/steroid adds about one extra pound.  which sounds pretty much what my weight/dosage ratio is at right now!  As I mentioned earlier, isn’t it crazy how such a small amount of medication can change you so drastically?  So, the sand I’ve added to my jar has been to keep my weight maintained at this weight or less until I can finally get off the steroids completely (which I hear they typically do about a year post-transplant).  I’ve stepped up my excercise, have started to try running, and am focusing on my tennis to help me stay fit.

Hair – Another bump, figured I’d get these out of the way first.  Whereas my eyebrows have been Kick A** lately, the hair on my head has been disintegrating.  What???  I have literally been shedding like a dog!  I find clumps of hair in my shower, in my brushes, when I blow dry it… I have so little of it on my head that if a light was shining behind me, I’d just have an “aura” of what might be a hair floating around my head…with a perfect solid outline of my skull.  So, enter the sandman with Biotin and Nioxin shampoo.  I just started the shampoo, so I can’t report on it’s success yet, but I’ve heard it’s pretty good stuff.  I just don’t like the minty smell… reminds me of a dentist.  I don’t want to smell like a dentist.  The biotin, though, has been amazing!  I’ve got baby hairs all over my hairline, so it’s definitely growing back.  My sister teases me because there is one particular patch on my left side that sticks straight up, as if I cut it that way…a side-ways, short mohawk of sorts.  Even my hairdresser asked politely, in his sassy way, “GIRL, WHAT are you DOING?”  Whatever works, Robert.  Whatever works!  😛

Nails – As an added benefit of the Biotin, one of my lifetime New Years goals (which I never made public) has finally been achieved!  I’ve quietly been getting my nails done to prevent me from chewing them anymore, and the Biotin took it from zero to 100 (miles?  Inches? Who cares, you know what I’m trying to say…) in a few short months!  I’m now FINALLY the owner of beautiful long nails that actually go past my fingertips!  😀  You have no idea how proud I am of this…I have seriously NEVER had fingernails I wanted to show off in my LIFE!!!!


Check out these babies! That’s the actual length, just painted! 😀

Involvement/control – Lastly, my most important addition to the jar, which should actually be more pebble-sized than sand, is the fact that I’ve been extremely focused on educating myself on how to improve myself, which has inadvertently caused me to be more involved in the support groups and community events supporting my issues.  I’ve joined the Dallas GIG group (the Gluten Intolerance Group) which meets monthly to discuss new products/findings in the Celiac/Gluten Intolerance community via speakers, etc.  I’ve also attended several speaking events about how to better control your blood sugars and preventing further complications.  It’s all proven extremely helpful, and I strongly believe that just learning what I’ve learned in the last year has made me a much healthier person all-around!  My blood-sugar levels have become a LOT more stable, and when it isn’t, I know why….which is a puzzle my doc and I have been struggling with for YEARS!


This, folks, is as close to “normal”, steady sugar levels as I’ve ever had…EVER!

There have been several other landfills I’ve been making to my jar, of which I’d have to share in another post to come soon, but these are the ones I’ve been most focused on/proud of to date.  I want my jar to be as unique and fun as possible to view once everything is finally stuffed into it, which means there are going to be lots of adjustments, changes and chances to take.  I’m ready for that adventure, and I can’t wait to see the final product!  Wait…no, I don’t want to see the final product… not ready for the “final” anything just yet!  LOL!  I’ll settle for the ongoing metamorphosis of whatever this jar turns into… a large bowl?  Maybe it’ll be a vase?  Or a human-sized aquarium…


Things I’m thankful for today:

1.  Being able to travel – I’ve now not only been able to get out to Boston, but I’ve also already made a few long-overdue trips to Austin!  I love being able to jump in my car and just take off if I wanted to.  I also had an amazing time catching up with all of my friends there… some of which I hadn’t seen in almost 14 years!   Juh, love you, you’ll always be family to me and one of my best friends for life.  😀  Dave, you always have my back, and make me feel loved… love you too!  Maggie, your friendship has always been special to me, I always feel like no time has gone by when we hang out.  I hope that never changes!  Rich and Pruh, I had so much fun seeing ya’ll again… so wish we all didn’t live so far apart!  Long live “the Fam”!

2.  Sense of Humor – I heard a speaker last week talk about how she was dealing with her Celiac issues, and she literally had me crying I was laughing so hard!  If you can’t laugh at your difficulties, you’re in for a very miserable life.  I’m so glad I’m laughing!  🙂

3.  Networking – I’m convinced that sometimes it’s not WHAT you know, but WHO you know that gets you through life.  When I was desperately looking for another endocrinolgist (a story worth another post), several people stepped up with options for me to try and excellent recommendations.  Thank you!  It makes searching for a needle in the haystack that much easier!

4.  Santitas Tortilla Chips – for coming up with a chip that rivals Julio’s…and is easier to find!  😛


One response

  1. I have been losing tons of hair since being diagnosed with thyroid condition. I also know that as we approach 40 it is normal too… so double down on hair loss. that is partly why I keep it short. It is more becoming anyway.

    Your nails look awesome! No more stubbies!

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