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Day 4 of the Blog-a-Thon

Day 2 of #getitout

 The Current Situation:

 So here I am again, one side filled with stones. We knew they wouldn’t stay clean, but I was really hoping for a longer time in between.

 I‘ve been passing stones again, and it’s sucking the life out of me. Remember the “I can’t do that” declaration? I can’t / won’t just take pain meds and be zoned out.  After evaluation, the doctor and I have decided that a repeat of the previous procedure is necessary.

 I will be undergoing this procedure on Dec 30. I’m sharing this not for sympathy, but for growth. Talking about pain is not easy for me. I am one of the best at faking not being in pain, but this is the true reason I am doing the blog-a-thon.

 I will be chronicling my journey to prepare for and undergo this event.  I have several friends who, like me, don’t discuss their health. It’s almost taboo. I also have friends that turned to social media in times of pain and distress. I am attempting to explore the latter.

Please connect

 So do you get kidney stones? Are you a doctor or nurse or somehow in the medical field? Have you used social media to find support? I want to talk to you. Tweet me, Facebook me, or just comment here.  (If sending an e-mail or fb request please tell me who you are.)

 Don’t forget to follow the other bloggers in the blog-a-thon, and let me know if you want to join us, I will add you to the list!

Facebook has quietly rolled out another change. I said it on air last week when we were talking about the new profiles layout. I suspected that Facebook would make some major changes to the business profiles.

Fan pages. Like pages… Whatever you want to call them. Business pages are a tremendous resource for people to connect and communicate with businesses, and for businesses to respond and communicate to the people they serve.

Over the past year we’ve seen a growing number of social media companies that specialize in page “bling”. These companies are worldwide, and have been selling to the general business population a well done graphic, some slick code, and a lot of hype. They don’t talk to their clients about strategy and planning, and they don’t teach them how to utilize the basic factor that SOCIAL pages are all about – relationships.

In comes the silent killer; Facebook changes their design once again. There was little to no chatter when they slipped the big switch in on us today. The custom tabs are now all under the profile picture and are all <<>> coded in the FBML gray logo.

Along with this new profile layout they had a few other features there as well. Like logging in as an admin to the page, and notifications for the page comments.

This layout change came amid a really lagging response time for facebook this afternoon. And before this post was finished, they reverted back to normal. So I predict that this change will take place very soon.

 This sucks for the graphic only based business, but it also sucks for Pizza Hut and Harley Davidson who had some really useful Facebook tabs and customizations.

How will you deal with this change? (Hint: complaining won’t help… it’s free, so you take what they give you, like it or not!)

Usually a change like this is the precursor to something better. People will fuss for awhile, but after they do, the changes will stick and people will adapt and get use to the new layout – just in time for Facebook to change it again. They don’t want to alienate people. After all, look what happened to Digg when they changed their interface.

Day 3 of the Blog-a-Thon

Day 1 of #getitout

The History:

Kidney stones. Ever had one? If you have you would not wish them on your WORST enemy. I get them. Plural. I get them a lot! You see I have Medullary sponge kidney disease.

Meaning? Means my kidneys are stone formers. When this really hit me, it was sudden. I thought I was dying for sure. That first one passed ok. (<– That is relative. It still hurt like hell.)  They got bigger and more frequent. The doctor told me my scans looked like I had been hit with buckshot in both kidneys.

Standard Treatment

I was offered medication to comfort me. (Knock me out and keep me from losing my lunch.)

In tears I followed my doctor out of the room and begged him to fix me.

I can’t do that

At the time I was passing 3-6 stones a month. They took anywhere from 2 days to a week to move through and get out. He contacted come colleagues in other cities and offered me a solution that involved open kidney surgery and the equivalent of a medial dust buster. They were just going to suck them out. This option was not a good one and he knew it. It was really risky and he knew with my condition that I would be right back to full kidneys within 2-5 years.

He cared enough to find a solution

After talking to more colleagues, he came back with a different idea and one that could be done right here in Evansville. I would not have to travel to a larger city.  They proposed a ureteroscopy with lazer lithotripsy to be done. This is a “standard treatment” for stones, but only when they are in the ureter. They proposed that they extend the ureteroscope up into the kidneys. They would then go up into each of the 5 or so pockets in the kidneys and blast the stones away.

The happy ending…

I underwent this procedure with great success. I was mostly stone free and after a longer than I expected recovery, I felt like a 100% new person. Amazing how good you feel when your kidneys have room to actually work!  <– That was a little over 2 years ago…

No seriously. I am a real person on twitter. I love to have conversations on facebook. I talk about a variety of things in my life, not just about my business.  But I have a few “off the wall” subjects.  These are things I hold to as private and I just don’t feel the need to share.

One of these topics is health. I don’t with the exception of my toe, which was not thought out, tweet or post about my health. I might mention a cough or a headache, but not much else.

So here goes. I am getting real. Real personal for me. I am going to take the next 30-45days to do a few different things.

I am going to blog daily. This is a technique I have seen others use or suggest to help build the blogging habit and to help overcome the fear of content creation. *I encourage you to join me in this 30 day blogathon. You can blog about whatever you want! I am going to need the reading material! J

I am going to blog and tweet about a health matter from the point of the patient.  So Medical fields are more and more jumping into the world of Twitter, Facebook, and youtube to get better connected with their patients.  But here is the thing; patients have been here for a long time. They find each other and use Social Media as a world wide support system.  For the next 30-45 days I am going to actively seek and have conversations with other people that are going through the same or similar situations, as well as doctors in general and doctors in the field, nurses and researchers.

I am going to try to keep a good attitude. <– That is not a promise, just a goal. This is going to be a tough journey for me physically. But mentally to open up and share what I am going through is going to be just as tough. My friend Stacey Shanks who teaches Yoga is always encouraging me to stretch. I in turn am making her stretch mentally.  So now it is time for me to do as I say and hit the downward dog with my brain.  Because she is doing the Blog-a-thon with me , it will be easier to keep the attitude in check. 

I am going to encourage others. I am going to challenge others to do this blog-a-day with me to be a better writer. I’m going to post tips, tricks, recommend books and tweeple to help us all get through this process.

Please comment on this and let me know if you want to join me (include your twitter handle and a url to your blog.)  I will update this post with the people who are on this journey with me.

Name                                                            Blog

Stacey Shanks                        


 Zachary Long                         

Shanna Hall                              

Bonnie Schnautz                     

 Paula Diaco                             

Jennifer Tallini                      

“The more frequently you write, the faster you’ll improve, and the stronger you’ll get.” (from Copyblogger)

  • I need to get better at writing
  • I need to be a better blogger
  • I am so not inspired to write
  • I don’t have enough ideas
  • I don’t have enough time

 If you want to be a blogger, but hid behind the excuse cloud, you can come out now. It’s ok. I will be right here with you.

That quote from Copyblogger is from a post in which he compares it to going to the gym.

I am going to get more specific and say aerobics class. We have all been there. Decided to go to aerobics and there is this cute little instructor that seriously worries you that her legs are going to snap if she starts jumping around. But then she does and so does everyone else. And you feel like a fish trying to dace at a performance of the NYC Ballet. Everyone else knows the moves and you… you’re just a cod standing there with your sweats on.

Ok. So the good news is that I am the one with the sweats on. I might be here all by myself. But you are welcome to jump on in here with me. And if you do, you won’t be alone. We will all be looking at that skinny instructor together and wondering if her legs are going to snap.

So take the 30 day blog a day blog-a-thon challenge with me. It is about building a habit, being creative and having people here to encourage and support you while you do it.  Are you with me?

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