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Hooray! The new ChronicBabe Academy Membership program is here!

Posted by on Oct 2, 2018 in announcements, ChronicBabe Academy, membership, Secret Club | 1 comment

Babes, I am SO excited to share that the new ChronicBabe membership program is here: the ChronicBabe Academy! This membership program replaces the Secret Club membership program. While I loved the old way, I am now able to offer a new approach that has SO MANY MORE bells and whistles. Head to this page to learn all about it. So exciting! And: A bit scary. Anytime I launch a new offering, it’s a little stressful. So be kind—and patient—as launch day progresses. Thank you! xoxo,...

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Art and Poop: Why Chronic Pain Patients Need to Talk About the Icky Stuff

Posted by on Aug 28, 2018 in activism, Creativity, featured, pain, sponsored | 6 comments

Salix Pharmaceuticals provided me with a stipend and paid for my travel and accommodations related to the event. However, all opinions are my own. Most people I meet hate talking about poop, but I don’t mind. Poop is one aspect of life we all have to deal with, and I’ve recently learned it is an important topic for those of us with chronic pain. So, I’ve never shied away from talking about it or any of the other “icky” topics. When Salix Pharmaceuticals asked me to participate in a blogger event, I was wary at first—I so rarely do projects with pharma—but when they explained that it was a unique art event designed around learning about “Painstipation” (the constipation caused by opioid pain medication in chronic pain patients), and that they were presenting findings from a survey on opioid induced constipation (OIC) sponsored by Salix in partnership with U.S. Pain Foundation, I just had to say yes. I mean, art and poop talk – this was going to be interesting. I knew a good bit about OIC before the event, because I have chronic pain and have taken opioids in the past—and because I’ve heard about OIC as a volunteer and creative partner with U.S. Pain Foundation since 2010. So many people in the chronic pain community rely on opioids to help manage their pain. This means many of them also have to deal with OIC. A bunch of feisty bloggers Salix invited me and three other bloggers out to California to attend an educational, creative event about “Painstipation.” Leslie Vandever is a blogger I’ve known for ages; she has rheumatoid arthritis, and she writes at Rheumablog, among other venues. She has openly shared that she relies on opioids to manage her chronic pain so she can continue to work and advocate for the chronic pain community. Brittney Wilson, BSN, RN, also joined us; she’s been blogging for years as The Nerdy Nurse, and has a reputation as a popular health care blogger. Charis Hill was the other blogger with us, and although I had not seen her blog at Being Charis, we clicked right away—she’s a firecracker. (In her blog, you’ll learn that she lives with ankylosing spondylitis.) For a moment, I wondered if Salix understood that they had a room full of feisty advocates on their hands? None of us are quiet bloggers—we’re all fighting the good fight for better health care for all. Once I recognized the potential for all of us to get creative together using art, I really appreciated the thought that had gone into the event. The research: opioid-induced constipation and chronic pain Before we made art, we talked about the survey. Salix, in...

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It’s time to make ourselves BIG in the face of illness, even while the world wants us to be small…

Posted by on Aug 15, 2018 in activism, featured, Kick-Ass Sick Chick, resilience | 21 comments

Last week, I had the honor of speaking at an event organized by Katy Brennan for Suffering the Silence, where a bunch of women stood in a room together and talked about how they’re living incredible lives even though they have chronic illness and disability. To be among women like me—to hear their stories, hopes, dreams—was profoundly moving. When called to speak, I changed course from reading from my book to instead read something I wrote more recently. It’s about the importance of making ourselves BIG instead of being forced to be small. Here’s my quick piece. I hope you like it! If it resonates at all, please join the conversation in the comments and share your perspective. Thanks! It’s time to make ourselves BIG as a child… and as a young woman, and – heck – even today – my parents emphasized the importance of not making trouble. of not getting in anyone’s face. of not being too “different”. and WOW, society sure has reinforced to me that i need to stay small. don’t ruffle any feathers. don’t make anyone uncomfortable. don’t be too needy. don’t be too noisy. don’t be too weird. to be a “good” girl. to stay in line. to respect elders. to respect men. to respect doctors. to respect everyone else but myself. so i learned to make myself small. and that has done me an enormous disservice when it comes to my health. here is a brief list of the ways in which i’ve made myself small when it comes to my health: i’ve said yes to medications i was scared of, without asking questions about side effects. i’ve held my questions when a doctor tells me they’re sorry, but they’re in a hurry to see the next patient. i’ve hidden how much i was hurting from friends, family – even my health care providers – because i didn’t want to seem too “needy.” once, in agonizing pain, i waited an hour to leave the house for the emergency room because my ex-husband didn’t want to miss an episode of the tv show ally mcbeal, but he also didn’t want me to go to the E.R. alone. i thought it wasn’t a big deal. it was: i had a ruptured ovarian cyst and the physicians were shocked i was even able to walk myself into the E.R. i’ve changed clothes before a doctor visit because i want to look “nice enough,” like i’m taking care of myself. but i have to be careful to not look “too nice,” like i’m not sick enough to warrant care. and i’ve stayed with doctors years longer than i should have because i thought they would be disappointed...

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Please take a moment to endorse me in the WEGO Health Awards

Posted by on Jul 24, 2018 in activism, awards, featured | 0 comments

Hi! I’m doing something I don’t usually do today, and that is beg for you to tell other people you like me. The WEGO Health Awards are happening again (I’ve won a few in previous awards) and this year, I’m up for three awards. I can’t get to the finalist category without your help. Please read on for information about how to endorse me so I can move into the finalist category. One of the best ways for me to spread the word about my work is to win awards; they put me in front of huge new audiences, and that means I can help many more people. It feels weird to ask for your help, but I do need it; in the WEGO Health Awards, finalists are chosen mostly by how many endorsements they get. And we are many, babes! So we should be able to rustle up a bunch of endorsements. Head to my personal WEGO Health Awards page now and click “Endorse Jenni Grover” to submit your endorsement. While I would love for you to endorse me in all three categories, if you only pick one, go for the Lifetime Achievement Award. I mean, I’ve been blogging for 13 years, which basically makes me a dinosaur, so I feel like it’s an appropriate award for me.  It will also be a huge help to me if you share a plea with the folks you care about, asking them to endorse my work. I know it’s a lot to ask of you, but if you love what I do, or if you’ve benefitted from ChronicBabe in any way, would you consider asking your friends and family to take a moment to endorse me? How can I thank you? By continuing to do this work, which I plan to do. Thank you!...

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A step-by-step process for creating a morning routine #AWAPwednesday

Posted by on Jun 20, 2018 in ChronicBabe Basics, featured, practicalities, resilience, self care | 4 comments

Do you struggle to make your mornings meaningful? Are you feeling frustrated because you’re not getting enough done early in the day, and you run out of steam by the afternoon? (I relate to that so much!) Do you want to prioritize self-care? Then a morning routine is for you, babe. We’ve been talking about this process in the Secret Club membership program, but this process is just too good to share only with my members. My meaningful morning: To create a more meaningful morning, I first review all the things I would like to do in my morning routine, and I make sure to get clear about WHY they are important to me. Here’s the list I created today during a Facebook Live video: wake up at 5:45 – so I can be sure to accomplish all that I want drink a big glass of water (equivalent to three cups) – hydration helps reduce pain and inflammation, and we wake up dehydrated, so this is the first thing I do heat up my back – I’m always stiff in the morning, so a heating pad helps me get loose work in my planner – I love my daily planner, and I fill my day while I’m on the floor with my heating pad do yoga – a standard 20-minute routine helps me limber up for the day; when I don’t do yoga, I feel awful all day drink tea – my only source of caffeine during the day, a couple cups of black tea have a healthy breakfast – protein is important for powering me up, and I try to sneak in as many fruits and veggies as I can in a big smoothie, so if my diet is not healthy the rest of the day, I know I’ve met my produce needs bathe – this might be washing my face, or taking a shower or bath, depending on how much time I have meditate – I’m trying to build up to 45-60 minutes a day, so incorporating a meditation moment in the morning helps me meet my goal creative time – this feeds my soul, so I try to do some hand sewing or coloring Whew! That’s a lot, I know. I’ve worked on this routine for years, and I know what I need to start my day right. I try to do most of these every day. Your first task: Make your own list Think through your ideal morning. It’s the time to get you pumped for the rest of the day, even if your “rest of the day” is going to be spent on the couch. What do you want? What do you need? What...

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WE’RE NOT DOCS!

Info posted here should not be considered medical advice; it's not intended to replace consultation with physicians or other health care providers. 

Every Babe needs to find her own path for achieving optimal wellness. While we do tons to help guide you, it’s up to each of you to make well-informed choices and live with the consequences. ChronicBabe.com assumes no liability or responsibility for stuff that goes wrong.

Links to other web sites are provided as a service, but do not constitute endorsement of those sites by ChronicBabe.com; we are not responsible for their content. We do our best to find the most rockin’ resources but hey, we’re human.

Take what you like from this space, and leave the rest. Use what you learn to make your life better. Be responsible for your own choices. And please don’t sue us. XO!

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