A lot has happened in the last year, and I apologize that I haven’t done much writing here. I must like to save it all up and write a lot when I do write.
I guess I’ll start with the positive. My wife and I had a baby girl on May 9, 2011. We named her “Jeyli Ayane Steadham,” pronounced “jay-lee eye-yah-nay.” She’s a wonderful, happy little girl who’s been an amazing blessing to our lives. We also have two sons, ages 16 and 13.
Another positive was that in my day job as a tech geek, I got a promotion and raise. That’s always good when there’s another mouth to feed.
ISAA has had several good media opportunities this year: an interview with FOX News regarding the Marie Claire blog debacle over the “Mike and Molly” show, a South Texas newspaper article on size acceptance, and our New York City representative, Catherine Schuller, was on the Dr. Oz show.
But it was a tough year, too. I had to make one of the hardest decisions in all my years with ISAA: I released Fatima Parker from her volunteer capacity as a representative of this organization. I won’t go into all the details because that’s not necessary. I felt that Ms. Parker was not accurately or appropriately representing ISAA. Attempts were made to resolve the situation but in the end, it was not possible.
I always try to keep professional matters separate from personal matters. That way, people can maintain a friendship even if there are professional matters they have an honest disagreement about (same goes for politics and many other topics). That also wasn’t possible in this instance, and a 10-year friendship ended, too. I regret that loss but I won’t compromise principles when it comes to ISAA’s integrity, what it stands for.
Earlier this year, we released the original Without Measure (WOM) domain and obtained the withoutmeasure365.com domain. Unfortunately, a few months ago, a pornographic company obtained the original WOM domain and set up a porn site. So, several weeks ago, I updated the ISAA website to remove links to the original WOM url and replace them with links to withoutmeasure365.com. If you come across any ISAA webpages that still have links to the original WOM url (withoutmeasure dot com), please email me at email@example.com and let me know the url of the page(s) that needs to be updated with the withoutmeasure365.com link.
And then there’s my health/medical condition: In the last month, I’ve been hospitalized twice.
The first time was for 8 days and we believe the circumstances (rapidly lowered blood pressure, dehydration and nausea) were caused by a bad virus that didn’t interact well with my unique gastrointestinal (GI) tract. But I seemed to be better by the 8th day and was released from the hospital on the Thursday after Halloween.
Following what seemed to be a normal several weeks, I got very ill (with nausea) the Monday before Thanksgiving. After three days of not being able to keep down food or liquids and three Emergency Room visits, I was admitted to the hospital for violent nausea, dehydration and stomach pain from stomach cramps. Soon, the doctor discovered that I had an elevated white blood cell count and began treating me with anti-biotics, in addition to the anti-nausea and pain medicines plus the IV liquids they were giving me. So, yes, I was admitted to the hospital on Thanksgiving Day (a Thursday).
It took until that Sunday for me to be able to drink and keep down liquids, but the antibiotics were working well. By Monday, I was able to eat a regular diet and any liquids. It’s still odd to think that I hadn’t had anything to eat in 7 days prior to that. Still, we (the doctors, nurses, my wife and I) wanted to do things right and not risk a recurrence of my nausea and previous symptoms. And the doctor did confirm that my white blood cell count had come down.
That Tuesday evening (November 29th), I was released to go home again. Fortunately, my strength, my appetite, my humor and my love of cooking have all returned to normal. I will still need to follow up with my GI and other doctors but the dreaded nausea has not returned.
This leads me towards future plans. Next year, I do have plans to have surgery to hopefully correct a number of my GI issues and reduce or eliminate the daily abdominal pain I experience from my condition.
I’ll write again soon, more specifically about ISAA and the Size Acceptance Movement.
I would appreciate your comments.