Posts Tagged ‘stories’

Radiate LOVE.

Radiate LOVE: Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

St. Valentine’s Day never been a big fan of the day. I always felt it’s such a forced day, where couples must show proof of their love, affection and respect for one another. The poor guy/girl who have the unfortunate timing to begin their dating ritual during  Valentine’s week. SUCH PRESSURE to perform on that one day! I’m really not ANTI-VALENTINE’S DAY. However, more of the belief that such expressions of love, affection and respect should come naturally and be expressed throughout the year for your partner. Over the years I have watched this day come and go, observing couples who partake in this pressured filled day.  This has given me a unique perspective of the “so-called” romantic day. 

Does the day ever really meet anyone’s expectations? In my opinion …NO! Every year I see couples who go “all out” on that ONE special day trying to impress. Sky writing their partners name in the sky with the “words I love you” seems to be the gift of choice for many these days. Or the exciting and romantic hot air balloon ride with champagne and flowers. My first thought when I see such extravagant gifts on Valentine’s Day; do they radiate that same LOVE and RESPECT for each other throughout the year? 

This past 1 1/2 years of watching my parents cope with my father’s Metastatic Bladder Cancer, has really made the definition of the words love, affection and respect clear to me. My father has just finished 21 rounds of radiation therapy. To his credit, he handled the intense treatment with grace and dignity. By my father’s side everyday was my mother, showing her love, affection and respect for him during this difficult time. With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, I recently pondered just how many couples truly attempt to show their partner concern, emotions and feelings 365 days a year. Why is it couples place so much importance on this ONE day a year and not the entire year?

 Some might believe as a society we have become so busy in our everyday lives it’s only natural for partners to lose that “spark” and over time less romance will occur in the relationship. I don’t subscribe to this way of thinking. Watching my parents express the same love for each other during his cancer, was all I needed to become a true believer that everyday romance is possible in committed relationships. Looking at how much time and effort is given to Valentine’s Day and not the everyday maintenance of relationships, makes me a big believer WE as a society need to step up our game. 

I feel very lucky to have watched my parents attempts to show love, affection and respect to each other throughout their 55 years of marriage. Most recently, when it was most needed … during severe illness. In my opinion, my parents are a perfect example of expressing Valentine’s Day …everyday of the year.

Raw Apple Cider Vinegar With Side Of Fries.

Raw Apple Cider With Side Of Fries: By Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

We all know an ice-cold soda and greasy french fries go hand in hand. For goodness sakes, it’s almost apart of every college students breakfast, lunch and dinner on campus.

We have all heard the obesity rate in the United States is SKY-HIGH. I believe more than JUST kids and college students are stuffing down the soda and side of fries. Hey, we all are guilty of the fast food drive-thru hit and run late afternoon “pick me up.” My weakness-lemonade and side of fries from In & Out Burgers. Yummy!

Would you ever consider a healthier option to drink along side those yummy fries? One that might even make your acne clear up, or make your hair glossy. Perhaps regulate blood pressure, help create strong bones or cut bad cholesterol. OMG! Is pretty much the response I get from people who are not hip to this “murky” brown liquid you can drink as a “shot” or combine daily in your favorite juice .

Raw Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) Bragg  the brand I prefer, can be found at SPROUTS Markets, Fresh and Easy and most the local supermarkets. Although, there are many brands to choose from in your local stores. My parents and I take (ACV) daily in our tomato juice in the morning for various health issues. Apple Cider Vinegar used for thousands of years for medicinal purposes. Dating back to the Civil War and WWI (ACV) was used to treat wounds and indigestion.

In 400 BC Hippocrates, the Father of medicine, actually used it as an antibiotic. It is important to buy (ACV) with “mother” which is the living nutrients and bacteria. You will be able to actually see it settle at bottom of bottle like sediment, it gives it that “murky” brown look. You must use Raw Apple Cider Vinegar, (no other) as it is not pasteurized. You can read all about the benefits of using (ACV) by clicking on the website.

My family, dedicated to living a healthy lifestyle even with our most recent health issues. We are achieving goals we set for ourselves by educating ourselves on different products.  An additional product we have also started using this year, which can boost your immune system is Raw Honey. Raw Honey has been used for centuries. 

I enjoy passing information to people. Especially If I know it may help someone feel better or live longer. Funny, the other day my mom and I were in SPROUTS Market buying more (ACV), they had two small bottles left on the shelf. The very knowledgable customer service gentleman was helping us. He looked at us and said “ya know, all the old-timer movie stars who have lived to be ancient drank (ACV) for years, so do all the gorgeous ones,  it’s a well-known FACT.”

The Gift Of Time.

The Gift of Time: By Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

This Christmas was supposed to be the BETTER holiday for my parents. The morning holiday ritual begins. Mom awakens far earlier than my papa these days, he now deserves to be a bit of Rip Van-Winkle. Mom makes sure the fireplace is warm and toasty; the Christmas tree lights are all lite and the coffee pot is ready. Mom plays scrabble on her Kindle Fire and waits patiently to hear papa’s slippers shuffling down the hall. The special sound of my papa’s slippers, lets her know her attention is needed and wanted by him. His cup of coffee and paper in hand and the morning slowly begins by the fire.

In exchange for the cozy morning ambiance, every holiday evening starts out with my papa lighting the fireplace for my mom. They have the lovely fireplace to enjoy-chilly desert evenings and mornings-the Christmas tree all a glow just like a Macy’s tree. Celebrating this year, papa is home with us for the holidays; after battling 1 year of  Bladder Cancer, as a family we had made it through in one piece. This was to be a joyous celebration this December.

On Monday, December 12, 2011 the holiday took an unexpected turn. I received a call from my parents to meet them at their home around the corner. My mom consumed with emotion, I knew they were coming back from my papa’s 6 months Oncology appointment. Once meeting up with my parents, I calmly sat down next to my mom. She looked at me with tears in her eyes and said “It’s stage 4 and it’s gone into his bones, lymph nodes of the abdomen area, they want to begin radiation and chemotherapy immediately.” Metastatic Bladder Cancer, I  could actually feel my heart breaking … what happened to our perfect holiday? Why was this happening again? The only real gift my parents wanted this holiday, was my papa home and cancer free. Now we are looking at the Gift of Time!

During the holiday season people tend to focus on what type of gifts they are giving or receiving. All consumed on how much to spend and the brand of the gift. Is the gift a Gucci or Kate Spade bag? Did the gift come from Tiffany & Company? My god … I must have a pair of Manolo Blahnik shoes as a gift! Being a Cancer Survivor myself and having faced the possibility of  my mortality at an early age;  I have felt for a long time Christmas gifts should be a complete after thought. The real gift at Christmas should be … your Gift of  Healthand your Gift of Life. Now for my parents, it is the Gift of Time. There is no bigger or better gift my papa can buy my mom other than more time with her. This is the type of gift you can’t find in a box, or on a ring finger, or on a pair of feet or even parked in someone’s driveway. The Gift of Time is priceless.

Without missing a beat, my papa made clear their Christmas Eve celebration will remain the same. My parents will be celebrating with dear friends in their home this Christmas Eve.  Celebrating the Gift of Health, Gift of Life and Gift of  Time!

Contest Contribution: Xmas with Mom Contest

CHRISTMAS WITH MOM CONTEST: By Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

Christmas in November!  Mom made sure Christmas came early for my dad and I last year. Dad was spending the entire month of December in the hospital recovery from Bladder Cancer surgery. Due to my Mom, Santa arrived early in our house last November prior to my dad leaving for the hospital. Mom made sure every inch of the house received the holiday glitter treatment with Christmas decorations. The Christmas tree was perfect and beautifully decorated; like a Macy’s tree you would find in New York City. Mom you are  one CRAZY, WONDERFUL elf!

Thankful for Good Old-Fashioned Funny

Good Ol Fashioned Funny: By Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

With Thanksgiving fast approaching this month, I decided to give real thought this Holiday Season to what I was truly thankful for in my life. I definitely believe this year, of all years, I bring more  insight to the table. Gosh, a tad more clever than the typical cliché line, “I’m so thankful for.”

Then it hit me this past weekend,while celebrating my parents 55th Wedding Anniversary.  I am thankful  for good Old-Fashioned Funny!  While sitting next to my parents at The Fabulous Palm Springs Follies; I noticed my parents had not stopped laughing or smiling for 3 solid hours.

Laughter is the best medicine, laughter is healing. It was JUST what the doctor ordered!

The follies are an elaborate theatrical revue consisting of music, dance and skits. The follies provided the perfect outlet needed for my family that day. Old-Fashioned Funny comes in various forms, even down to the cartoons being played on the big screen prior to the follies. There is nothing better than Bugs Bunny and his pals to bring a HUGE smile to an adults face. It’s the perfect Old-Fashioned Funny! There are many acts in the follies my parents enjoyed, the show took them back in time -if only for 3 hours- to a more “simple” time.

My family suffered through a very tough and painful year, due to my father being ill with his Bladder Cancer surgery. He is now on a remarkable journey of healing and doing exceptionally well. My father has handled himself with pride and dignity. I can say with complete certainty, “there is nobody like my father.” My Mom and I began this journey with my Father one year ago, wow seems longer. This weekend we finally looked at each other and said “we made it.”

I began this blog post hoping to have more insight this Thanksgiving Holiday. This I do know, I am truly thankful for my parents. They have given up many things in their lives over several years, to aid other people. Never asking anything in return, except respect. I am thankful to have been given the opportunity to share in my parents lives as they grow older. I truly am thankful to wake up every morning, able to share in great conversation, laughter and in some tears with my parents.

This past weekend, I was thankful to share with my parents a day of Old-Fashioned Funny. I hope to have many more days like last weekend … FUNNY is very healing!

I Love Medical Technology!

I Love Medical Technology: By Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

 The phrase “A picture is worth a thousands words.” I LOVE TECHNOLOGY! Pretty much sums it up for me.

On August 24, 2011, I so proudly blogged about my new Bionic-ness! Is bionic-ness even a word? If not -it is now! Since becoming “Bionic Woman” and receiving my Medtronic REVEAL XT heart monitor implant, I have been nervously awaiting any useful feedback from my cardiologist.

I am certainly doing my part, pressing the camera fob when I feel the slightest bit of irregular heart beat activity. Is it my imagination? Could the flutter I feel in my chest be overwhelming emotions building up from all the hunky heart throbs sitting next to me at my local coffee shop? You know the guys, barely able to say, “whazzz up?”

Naaah, I have  Atrial Arrhythmia, a change in the hearts’ normal rate or rhythm, normally between 60 and 100 beats per minute. I can NOT believe the heart monitor has already transmitted life saving information. I am skipping  from 5-6 beats to 8-10 beats randomly throughout the day. If this is the first 31 days of transmission, I am nervous and excited to wait for the next transmission of information on November 7th. I find this technology AWESOME! Lucky for all of us to be living in times of crazy technology. There are several types of Atrial Arrhythmia and several treatment plans.

See Link – and Procedures

I am currently discussing my plan of attack and treatment plan with my medical team- including a possible pacemaker- The pacemaker, another wonderful little life saving device. Boy, has the pacemaker come a long way. Whatever the outcome, I know technology will have saved my life! Some give technology a bad rap. I say, you take the good with the bad with technology. I LOVE MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY.

Celiac Disease-Not A Food Allergy.

Celiac Disease-Not A Food Allergy: Kellie Kennedy-One Baby Boomers View On Life.

Celiac Disease (CD), Ever heard of it? Not the  Gaelic pronunciation of “Celtic” Disease. Friends often have a puzzled look on their faces when I divulge that both my Mom and I struggle with this complicated and often debilitating disease. Most of my friends and family have not heard of celiac disease. If they have heard of the disease, their information tends to be just slightly incomplete or completely incorrect. I guess my job as someone living with the disease, is to better educate people on celiac so they understand it.

Cause of (CD), also known as celiac sprue or gluten sensitive enteropathy (GSE), is still a mystery. One out of 133 people in the United States is affected with celiac disease. CD occurs in 5-15% of the offspring and siblings of a person with celiac disease. In 70% of identical twin pairs, both twins have the disease. It is strongly suggested that family members be tested, even if asymptomatic. Family members who have an autoimmune disease are at a 25% increased risk of having celiac disease.

Celiac Disease (CD) is unique in that a specific food component, gluten, has been identified as the trigger. When people with CD eat gluten, the villi (tiny hair-like projections in the small intestine that absorb nutrients from food) are damaged. This is due to an autoimmune reaction to gluten. Damaged villi do not effectively absorb basic nutrients – proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals and, sometimes, water and bile salts. If CD is left untreated, damage to the small bowel can be chronic and life threatening, causing an increased risk of associated disorders – both nutritional and immune related. Celiac Disease is not a food allergy – it is an autoimmune disease. Food allergies, including wheat allergy, are conditions that people can sometimes grow out of. This is not the case with Celiac Disease.

My mom and I do our very best to live a healthy lifestyle. We both know the pain of living with celiac disease. It is always an up hill battle everyday of our lives even trying to eat the correct foods. We both are on a “gluten-free” diet and do are best to stick to our special diet as closely as possible. Lord knows we are only human, we stumble and fall on this new journey. I tell my mom,”we can either let Celiac Disease take over our lives, or we can take control over Celiac Disease.” My mom is 82 years young, she does a marvelous job at trying to control her celiac by monitoring herself closely. I’m not sure many kids today stay as committed to a “gluten-free” diet as well as my mom does. On days when I feel like I am failing with my gluten-free goals; I think of my 82-year-old mom, kicking ass and determined to beat celiac disease.  If she can kick ass, even at age 82, this 49-year-old should be able to do the same . Next time I hear people speak of food allergies, I know I am helping others and providing life saving information about this disease. Celiac Disease is not a food allergy.

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