A New Chapter

I can't believe it has been almost exactly one year since I decided to leave my dream job in fashion. I worked so hard to build a career in an industry that I felt I was destined to be in. Little did I know that God had another plan for my life!

Let's take it back a few years to when I was in college at the University of North Texas. After pain for several years I decided to have the surgery that would officially diagnose me with endometriosis and PCOD. After the surgery things went from bad to worse and I had to go through induced menopause to help find relief from the pain that was taking over my life. During that time that I felt some relief I thrived. I landed a Merchandising internship at Lucky Brand... I was moving to Los Angeles, California! If you had asked me a few months prior if I thought I would be moving to the city of Angels, I would have laughed in your face! I was in so much pain that I considered moving back in with my parents because my short-term disability was going to run out and I couldn't get through the pain enough to get out of bed, let alone go to work and make a living! 

Fast forward a couple of years to me landing a job with Lucky Brand after my internship and working my way up the ladder. The menopause helped relieve the pain for a few years, but then it returned with a vengeance along with my PCOD. I started seeing a new doctor, an endometriosis specialist that I thought would help me find permanent relief. After continuing to struggle to find an answer with pills we decided that the best course of action would be to go through the induced menopause again. After about 2 months of hot flashes and misery I decided that I no longer wanted to go through the menopause. It didn't take long for one of those pesky little cysts to burst causing me to go through the worst pain of my life. I was prescribed hydrocodone to help me cope with the pain that we couldn't find a cure for. I had talked to my doctor about a possible hysterectomy... I was considering it so seriously that I even talked to one of my best friends about being a surrogate for me down the road. 

Fast forward a few more years and I am now in San Francisco still taking extreme medications for my endometrial pain. Now I am working at a billion dollar company that I worked for 6 months to get a job at and thriving... until I wasn't. I began to get debilitating headaches. These headaches would cause me to see spots, throw up, pass out, you name it... they were taking over my life. I went from doctor to doctor, test to test, and diagnosis to diagnosis. I had leukemia, then I had MS, then I had migraines... It was a circus. No medicines worked. There were never any results. You should have seen my medicine bag... It was overflowing and I would take a cocktail of medicines daily that didn't. even. work!

One day on the train I was listening to one of my favorite fashion podcasts and a Holistic Nutrition & Lifestyle Coach was being interviewed. She spoke about how she had stage 4 endometriosis and found relief from her pain through health & lifestyle changes. I thought about it for a few days, but then decided to reach out to her. Even if it wouldn't fix my headaches at least I could hopefully find some relief from the endo which would be a few less pills/a few more functioning days a month hopefully. 

It was a rough start... I was always fairly thin but never knew how to eat healthy. The first day I remember trying to eat a salad and gagging all the way through it. Over the course of 2 months I experienced a lot of ups and downs, but I found relief from the endometriosis AND the headaches.

I owe so much to my health coach and mentor, but the biggest thing that I owe to her is helping me to realize that I wasn't fulfilling my life's purpose. I was unhappy in my "dream" job and in fact I believe that the lack of balance in my life created by that job was one of the main causes for my headaches. I decided to quit my job and attend a year of schooling at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.

Fast forward one more year to where we are now and I am officially a graduate of IIN and a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach. I feel so fulfilled knowing that I am going to be able to help people the way that my coach helped me. I am scared but so extremely excited to start this next chapter of my life!

-SS