Autoimmune Fitness Journal / Day 2 Week 1 


Oy. Just, Oy. 

Yesterday though I cut back drastically on the amount of work I did in the Nike training App and hardly ran on day 1 I’ve already managed to push my body too far. (dammit) I woke up day 2 with swollen joints and feeling sore in almost every part of my body. It’s an interesting prospective to now know that the swollen joints has nothing to do with my body posture during my work outs or the millions of other things I use to blame the pain on. To know it’s my body reacting to a hyper active immune system from the session helps me feel somewhat in control. Does it make the pain less knowing what’s going on? No. I spent the entire day shuffling around my house like Ozzy at his shaky worst. Forget about bending over for about 48 hours here. Feels exactly like flareups in my past that were induced by a variety of things. 

In hopes to shake some of the pain I drank a ton of water and while the work out plan called for a 3 mile “steady run” that day I took to the gym in all my painful glory for a mile and half brisk walk instead. More importantly was the rest I gave my body after. As part of the plan I equally rested to my work out but also knowing my body was fighting back just from the first day I gave myself a larger window to nap and relax. G happened to be home sick from school too so it was win/win restorative rest and snuggle time. 

Even with the pain I’ve already endured honestly the hardest part of this will be letting myself rest it seems. It’s SO hard to just turn my brain off. I feel guilty to not be working or doing something in the house. My biggest issue (and a contributing factor to my diagnoses) is my struggle to slow down. But, I’m working on it and learning. I’m off to a good start with this massive mid day nap on day two. 

Work Out Review Day 2:

1 1/2 miles walking on treadmill

(1-10 for 1 being weakest 10 being strongest) 

Strength During - 2

Energy During - 6

Energy After - 7

Soreness After - 9

Auto Immune Reactions: Swollen Joints 

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Autoimmune Fitness Journal / Day 1 Week 1 

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After I had moved to California and signed up for healthcare I was finally able to meet with the specialist I had researched and found knowing he was the Dr for me (before I had even moved to the state). The doctors I’ve started seeing are some of the best on the west coast and I’m so thankful to be able to have them treating me. Yet early on when they started to think I may have an autoimmune disease tears filled my eyes when they answered my biggest question. I had asked him what I could do to regain my strength and start to get back in shape. He recommended starting easy “walking 15 minutes a day”. WALKING. As an ex NY’er that walked everywhere (and still does in LA) this was hard to hear. 

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Somewhere on the internet in the past couple days I saw this image of this quote from F. Scott. Fitzgerald and it struck a chord with me. Firstly F. Scott is one of my ultimate favorite writers of all time. How he writes, the images he creates, I love everything about his and his generation’s work. A large part of my first trip to Paris was spent tracking down that group’s old haunts. I’m not sure what developed first, my love for these writers or my love for this european city, either way it works out since both this group of people and the magical city are so associated with one another. 

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My Open Letter to Charlotte Kauffman

*Some of you may have been following the recent story of the family rescued at sea, it strummed up a lot of emotions for me and I wanted to write an open letter praising this mother who is currently being attacked*

Dear Charlotte, 

Fuck them. Fuck them all. This may seem harsh sounding and drastic to readers especially for the F word to be gracing the pages of a parenting blog but I can’t say it enough to you right now, F-U-C-K them. I’ve been there and don’t let them steal your flame. 

I heard about your story as many did when the press blew up days after your saving. I forwarded it to my dear friend Dana Glazer who wrote the recent Huff Post piece on rebel parenting but didn’t spend much time beyond that reading about the horrible thing you and your family lived through. It wasn’t till yesterday I was turned on to the horrible backlash, comments, and aggression, from onlookers particularly the parenting community you and your family are facing. My heart felt heavy reading over the oh so familiar comments of people jumping to “child abuse” and the like. I have been there girl, I feel ya. 

Just as you through my protesting career I was subjected to many judgements being labeled so many things and even being tracked by CPS for bringing my family to peaceful protests to act on our civil rights. I engaged my child in politics of our own country and in turn was labeled a “bad parent”. I received endless hate emails, calls, and blog/article comments. Nasty horrible messages were left for my family that I doubt people would have the balls to say to my face if the safety of the internet was removed and they had to look me in the eye. 

As I suspect of yourself (from the little I’ve learned about you) we both while undergoing scrutiny also happen to be highly engaged and highly involved in our children’s life’s. My daughter is growing to be a healthy, happy, balanced, and educated little girl. No though, that counts for nothing with these people. We were labeled bad mothers all because of our decisions to make the call on what we felt was safe and beneficial for my family. Interesting thing is most (if not all) of these hater I dealt with had never even been to a protest such as I imagine many beating on your internet door have never sailed.  

We have such a messed up prospective these days as to what is “good parenting”. Yes, it’s a dangerous world out there but does that constitute locking our kids away and living the homogenized version of childhood from behind the glass or the screen? When did letting your children experience life first hand become such a crime and when did having the ability to offer your child a well rounded experience of the world become bad parenting? 

It’s people that live in fear that hate on parents such as us. Fear of not looking beyond their own yards, cities, countries and closed minds. Fear of the unknown, fear of taking risk even safely planned ones and even when the outcome is fruitful and rewarding. I for one want my daughter to grow up with an open heart and an open mind. With a life full of first hand experiences and and adventures that will enrich her life so much with every breath that she feels alive. We will not let fear hold us back from offering everything good in this world to our children. I understand the pain being called a bad parent by strangers can hurt, confuse, and enrage oh too well. Doing your best for your children only to be treated otherwise because people don’t understand. Again I feel you and want you to know you are not alone.

I commend you for being a fearless mother and parenting your children how you see fit. You’ve offered them the real nectar of life through living it fully and first hand. Also for being graceful in facing the backlash from so many small minded people hiding behind the internet when your family lost so much.

I look forward to the day you relaunch on the Rebel Heart adventures with a new home and tell the story about offering everything to your two little girls. You’re brave for letting the world know you’ll be back and standing by your ideals. 

Bravo and be well,

Kirby Desmarais 

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A couple weeks ago we rented a car and headed out to the country for a much needed escape. We hiked and because of a wrong turn also climbed the mountains of Malibu. For the first time in a long time we were nowhere near anyone else only listening to the sounds of the forest. 

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Culture Shocks.

G’s new school is awesome. Not only does she come back every day exhausted and covered in dirt head to toe but she’s also getting a first hand cultural experience like non other since most of her fellow students are Japanese.

This kid is going to be SO worldly. It’s one thing I’m really proud of when it comes to how we’re parenting. Between her family in Canada, US, and now Portugal and India she’ll grow to see the world beyond her immediate environment. She’s already had influences of English, Spanish, French, Portuguese, and Japanese language in her normal day to day life. 

Our goal is for her to grow up with an open mind and heart to all new and foreign experiences as small as trying new food as big as adventuring the world fearlessly.

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Last weekend we had the pleasure of attending one of G’s classmate’s birthday parties. The host and most of the other guests were Japanese. The language barriers were a bit eye opening, helping us get a clearer prospective on G’s everyday challenges at school. It was like a peak into this little girls world we don’t get to be part of often.

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The traditional home/garden where the party was held were breathtaking. The front of the building was very modest but when you came through the back gate you found a magical garden including a traditional Japanese fish pond. 

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A New Adventure covered in Coconut Oil.

No “new life” is complete without a new path and direction. And we have left no stone unturned in this quest for better living and simpler life. I left my music career behind me after almost 10 years making a name for myself. It was scary. Naturally I’m a stubborn person. This creates a wonderful work ethic and a (sometimes unhealthy) drive to be the best of the best no matter what it takes.

I’ve wanted to leave the industry in the past but before I had always felt a sense of failure in doing so. The biggest turning point for me was when I recently started working with someone in the top of my field. He was famous for his business over the past 40 years in the industry. Being associated with this man alone helped my career but as I got to know this person better one thing became clear: when I’m 50+ I don’t want to be him or really anyone at my age in my industry I have the pleasure of knowing. So I changed. It was a messy jump leaving the business I loved and sacrificed so much for. But, I’m excited and hopeful for this new beginning. 

When I stopped to really think what I wanted it was to “live in love”. And really what did that mean to me? To my new family? Well that meant doing something authentic, truthful to myself and others around me, something I can truly feel happy doing while not killing myself to do it. So the idea for ilubeu was born….

ilubeu is a 100% coconut oil packaged in fun time friendly single serving “Little Cuties”. The concept is straight up out of my life and my relationship, and family. We love coconut oil in our house and use it for so many things; love making, cooking, hair/skin treatments to name a few. Not a single day goes by where we don’t use coconut oil in one form or another. Hating the traditional packaging of coconut oil and not being able to ever bring it along on the many flights I had to take for work because the amount in the jars is more than you are allowed to fly with these days I dove in to creating something I love, ilubeu. 

I sourced the oil, found the factory, tested the packaging, created the website, and launched the presale all leading to hitting the ground running last week. Sounds so simple typing this all out! But really it took almost two months to turn the vision for ilubeu into a reality. 

Now I’m in a learning phase. I’ve spent so many years in the music industry selling other people’s creative work….I need to learn how to sell my own! It’s a crash course in everything all over again from social media (wanna help us follow us on instram: ilubeu or twitter loveilubeu) to learning how to place product in stores. Everything is taking that much longer because I’m learning everything as I go.

The major difference between this company and my others from the past (besides it actually being product based) is that I’m taking it a bit slower. It’s less about the race to the end and more of a joy ride as I learn what possibly the new normal could look like. 

I’m hoping as I learn how to do this I could act as an inspiration to my children when they are grown and learn my story here and from my words. We all face points in our life where we need to grow, change and reinvent. No matter how big or small the need for change is it’s scary and this is all still scary for me only a week in! But if I can float this and any other inevitably coming life changes the universe will toss at me with a little more grace, gratitude, and experience each time I’ll be satisfied and that much closer to the dream life we’re creating.

Also a lot more of this:

And this:

Because silly faces feel good.

If you haven’t yet check out our presale yet head over to www.ilubeu.com. If you want to support purchase something! Each presale order comes with a couple fun freebies including a love and good vibe filled thank you card from yours truly.  

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The new minimal in daily doses.

Holy cow earthquakes! This morning I awoke my same 6amish this time getting up to check on G who the previous night was running a fever. No more than 3 mins of getting out of bed the whole loft began to shake. I could feel the walls and the building structure almost like for a moment my body and the building became one (yes I know that sounds odd but it’s how it felt!). Being new to California my mind rushed to “OMG an explosion”, but when the shaking continued I realized we were in for our first full out west coast earthquake. Not really sure what to do I ran over to G’s bed and leaned over her holding the wall as if it would do anything if the quake we’re to get any worse as W ran out to us from our bedroom. I panicked, my breath got the best of me. We’re on one of the higher floors of a really tall building so we felt the effects as the world moved beneath the city intensely.

 While this earthquake was small in comparison to what could potentially hit the west coast it was still one of the larger they have seen in years. I’m actually grateful for it being now we realize we need a family emergency plan just to be safe.

Even though no one in the city was hurt and the quake was relatively harmless it for sure shook me up a bit (no pun intended) in the sense that for those first few moments I felt the same feeling that I felt during the first days of the hurricane in Brooklyn. A sense of being so small, so helpless to mother nature. I’m not sure if the universe keeps tossing this emotion over for a particular reason but I hear you loud and clear lady!!!!! 

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(can someone please tell me why my iphone is suddenly taking horrible photos? Always blurry and dark, and yes I turned the HDR on…so odd)

Besides from mother nature making herself known in our new city we’re settling in very well. We moved into our new loft last week and are in love. I feel spoiled rotten by having a dishwasher and washer dryer in the space, turn them on head out for the day come home and everything is clean!

The funny thing is we currently have exactly: Two mattresses, two shelves, one couch, one table, one bench and two chairs in the entire large space. It’s nearly empty and you know what? We love it. Even if it echoes…..

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(prior to getting the new furniture) 

W and I had an intention of living a minimal life focusing on what we feel really matters outside of material goods with our move to LA but to be in a space and feel this intention come to life is really inspiring. We’re trying to not waste, reuse everything we bring into the house, and just have our home life as simple and natural as possible. Slowing down to do this has felt really lovely.

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G’s really blossoming here in LA. Loving her new Japanese dance class. Her new school is really incredible she comes home everyday filthy from their outdoor playground and is learning writing/reading skills like a pro. She just seems so much more satisfied at the end of her days which is a good feeling for any mama. 

This new life is pretty sweet guys! So much potential on the horizon now that we’re getting settled into our new home. We’re really starting to live up to what we’re calling our family motto: Keep it simple, make it awesome. New home photos to come soon as we break out the real camera! 

Happy Almost Spring Everyone! 

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Our Travel Bug

I’m going to totally be one of those annoying braggy parents for a moment about how awesome this little girl is. Really really awesome at traveling that is. I see so many posts from around the web of “traveling with kids” and how to make flights better etc (I think I even wrote one myself at one point on here) yet sometimes kids just shine in certain areas and we’re realizing travel is totally one of those areas for G. The Baby G 2013 Tour was awesome proof of her skills too that even surprised me at times! 

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My recent streak of bad luck on my own flights makes me oh so thankful for this behaved child. My last flight I had a small baby next to me, while she was behaved most of the flight the sudden shrieks weren’t the most pleasant. Flight before that a little boy enjoyed digging his toes into the back of my seat but mostly would stop with sudden “mom glares” through the little crack between the seats (what is is about the mom glare that transcends all languages?!). But by far the epic of all epic child/flight interactions and the reason I no longer will fly Delta was on my return flight last summer from Paris. I was severally sunburned returning from the french coast. Piece of advice: never nap on the Brittany beach without sun protection when you’re as pale as me, you will regret. Sitting in the tough airline seats hurt enough with the burn that had just started to blister but to make it worse there was a devil child sitting directly behind me not occasionally kicking my seat but having full force tantrums where he would grab my seat and SHAKE it violently. The parents weren’t doing anything to the shock of all the people around them. Did I mention the child was around 7?! This wasn’t a toddler we’re speaking of here. Epic. 

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Anyhow that is not G thank god, girls got mad travel skills and patience. Maybe it’s the fact she has traveled with me since birth? Or maybe it’s that she loves stimulation and traveling offers a change of environment and excitement that actually makes her calm? Whatever it is, I lovelovelove doing everything travel related with this little girl. She’s so good at rolling with the punches for both long long drives (our record is 8 hours with just the two of us) or long flights. She absolutely rocks sleeping and bunking up in all sorts of environments either friends or hotels. And never ever phased by “road food”.  

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Most flights start like above and end like below with her passed out on me in some awkward position. Add W to the mix and it will be me on him with her on me, full family pile. 

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I hope she grows to keep this skill since we have some exciting ideas for family travel soon. If as an adult she ends up being anything like or taking anything from mine and W’s influences she’ll be off world traveling as soon as she’s old enough to wander alone. 

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(Curious blow fish from our recent Kansas City Aquarium visit.)

As for tips and hints to help a kid gain these skills I have absolutely. no. idea. We’ve never worked on these skills in the past and for sure don’t have any “go to tricks”, just pure dumb parenting luck I guess. 

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On one of our recent flights G got to go into the cockpit and push what ever buttons she wanted. Who knew they still let kids do this?! Leave it to her to find the ONE single button tucked under the chair’s arm to make the pilot jump up in panic yelling “any button but THAT one” haha. 

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Hello DTLA.

And we have arrived. Well we arrived about three weeks ago but we’re just getting on a grip on our new home and lifestyle. So many changes being made from to how we’re living daily to how we’re making a true effort to be more healthy and curate a fabulous life. More about that later now I would like to rant a bit about our amazing new city, Downtown Los Angeles. 

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I absolutely adore DTLA! Honestly I haven’t missed NYC once yet. The energy is so simular to what I caught ten years ago in in the NYC LES (for the short time it still lasted as you long term NYers can understand). The area is still growing (so quick google maps can’t even keep up) but it’s infused with quirky little new businesses, a younger environment, and lots and lots of colorful art. There are downsides for sure to the area, the noise and pollution are much worse than NYC ever was and OMG the amount of homeless is unbearable but if you look beyond that you find a really beautiful city which is full of such a hopeful energy.

On our first full California day we headed to the coast to celebrate the move. Both G and W adore the ocean (myself not so much). Seeing them bond over their shared love of the sea is so special to me. It was a sunny but cool day and we told G she could dip her toes in the water. We turned around for two mins from her to steal a kiss and when we turned back she was fully clothed and diving into a wave. Oh my little free spirited child. 

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These two. Just these two. 

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We’ve spent a lot of time walking the streets checking out the new neighborhood. The old architecture makes it feel like each building has a book of a story to tell, it’s just incredible. I’m looking forward to diving into the community more, meeting other parents (there’s a family in our loft building with 5 kids!) and  getting out in this sunshine as much as humanly possible in the coming weeks. 

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We found our new apartment our first week here. While we don’t move into the new space for a couple weeks yet we’re very happy with it. It’s a typical industrial downtown loft but unlike our dusty old NYC space (oh how we miss that home) this space has a modern renovation with things like a dishwasher and HUGE tub. The roof top gym and pool don’t hurt either! First time in our life we’ll be living in modern construction, my inner house wife is a little excited. 

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G’s learning how to swim! 

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Biggest news, actually shocking news, two weeks ago I quit my job! It was time, it was past time actually I’ve just become brave enough to make the leap. I have a few projects I’m currently working on including a new company (not anything at all music related) I’ll be writing about that soon. It’s been an adjustment finally having the mental space and time to really be the person, mother, and partner I want to be. There’s still growing pains, as there should be, but the freedom is incredible. 

New City = New Haircuts (and bed head) image

 We’re settling into our new life as a family of three. Personally I go back and forth between complete and utter bliss and panic since everything is: so. damn. new. G’s as happy as can be…. “family hugs” all around all the time! The move has been a sweet start to something incredible that’s for sure. Now if G would let us get an actual family photo…..haha! She’s such a happy ham. 

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