Marta Rode – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Marta Rode

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I wish I knew more about autoimmune disease. I wish I knew how hard life is with so many of them and that if any of my family had one of the 100+ diseases I was at higher risk of getting one myself. I wish that I knew that if you had one, even a minor one like eczema that this opens the door to some potentially deadly ones and being aware of what goes into my body can be the difference between a healthy productive life or a life with chronic illness and way too much time spent in doctor’s offices or hospitals. I wish I knew that 1 out of 5 Americans (and by association Canadians) are dealing with an autoimmune disease or disorder and out of that 20% of our population 70% are females. I wish I would have known that autoimmune disease is one of the top ten causes of death for female children and women under 65 years old.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

I learned my lesson the hard way by acquiring one of those diseases. There are about 140 some of which are rare, some are very rare and some are not rare at all like MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Ciliac, Crohn’s, Type 1 Diabetes, and on and on. I have one of the rarer ones, Wegener’€™s Granulomatosis, but when you look past the part of the human anatomy being affected, it’€™s no different from all the others on the list. All of us have an immune system that has stopped recognizing the difference between self and non self and is attacking its own vessel. My lesson was that there is a gaping hole in the information about this disease group as a whole that can help people make more educated and conscious decisions in their life that could eliminate contact with a possible trigger if you happen to be predisposed. I got motivated. Motivated into action to do everything in my power to change this and unite all of those with autoimmune diseases to stand together and raise that needed awareness that can save lives.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time?

Had I known this info before I got sick I would have done greater research into foods that can help prevent and deal with minor inflammatory responses, I would have stayed away from having contact with anything that would increase the normal immune response to higher than normal levels. I would also have gone in the right direction at the onset of symptoms (currently getting diagnosed with an autoimmune disease is a long, difficult process rife with insinuations of hypochondria and melodrama from society and the medical profession – through no fault of their own, it’s a lack of knowledge and education in this field) and possibly could have had the possibility to reverse the process rather than being stuck with a lifelong incurable disease.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

Yes, I convey this message to my daughter, to my friends, my community and anyone willing to listen. I wish everyone knows now what I wish I knew then. I started Pajama Day to raise awareness and we have now had two with it growing exponentially. We now have interest from large corporate sponsors and I will make sure this piece of info snowballs forward and reaches maximum velocity to a point where we will find the common thread to all these diseases and autoimmune will no longer be a problem.

5. Anything else you`d like to add?

Here’s a page on my blog that will give you a rundown of our last two PJ Day events in Jasper. We managed to get a TV Breakfast Show to come up and shoot their entire 3.5 hour show live from our town where the Second Annual PJ Day was taking place. You will find links to those live shots, as well as photo links and viedos of our evening show.

– Marta Rode

Paige Arnof-Fenn – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Paige Arnof-Fenn

1. Your message to kids today that you wish you knew back then what you currently know now. Be specific.

I wish I had realized that my definition of success would change over time so that I would not have gotten so hung up on things that really did not matter (office politics, bad bosses, top bonus possible, etc.). I was in such a rush back then to be promoted and receive recognition for my career achievements but really it was much more important long term just to learn my craft and build a strong reputation which I was doing but did not appreciate until much later in my career. I had no idea back then then I would not stay on the corporate path and become an entrepreneur instead and that would in fact be a much happier route for a fulfilling life. I ended up learning a lot more from my tough bosses and career setbacks than I would have if things had gone smoothly. Sometimes not getting what you think you want is actually a gift but that can be hard to see at the time. At 47 I am very grateful for all the bumps and bruises along the way.

2. How did you learn your lesson or what was your lesson? Did you get hurt, did you upset someone, did you get scared?

As the motto of my high school states, discumus agere agendo, you learn to do by doing. I have learned patience, compassion, humility, gratitude through my life experience.

3. What you would have done differently back then if you could turn back time.

I would have chilled out more, gotten less stressed over little things, taken more creative classes in college, and never take my health for granted.

4. Do you convey this message to children in your life today?

I try to share these lessons with my nieces, nephews & godkids every chance I get!

– Paige Arnof-Fenn, Founder & CEO, Mavens & Moguls

Jacqueline Marcell – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Jacqueline Marcell

I Wish I Knew What Sugar Addiction Was When Young

After a lifetime of misery battling my weight (same 30-40#’s again and again), compulsive eating and through every imaginable diet and psychological program known, I have finally solved this issue and it has been the biggest SHOCK OF MY LIFE. It has been over a year now that all my cravings have magically gone away—but only after going through a month of BRUTAL withdrawal—from eliminating all insulin spiking foods: sugars, starches and grains. I had been eliminating them 80% for many years, since my Brst. Cancer in 2004 because I was told sugar feeds cancer, but I still had cravings I just thought were normal. it wasn’t until I immersed myself in studying the science of leptin/insulin/adrenalin resistance and dopamine/serotonin and sugar/carbohydrate addiction that I finally understood what had happened to me. I learned how to go off those foods 100% and get through the withdrawal and get to the other side without drugs. IT IS HEAVEN ON THIS SIDE.

I am so FURIOUS I didn’t know any of this when I was young (numerous doctors and weight loss programs never told me), because I could have had a much happier life and I believe even prevented my cancer. I will never go back to those foods, as I so clearly see them as the poison they are for me. Finally, no white-knuckling determination trying not to eat them, incessant exercising—instead, eating is simply effortless. I am on a mission to spread the importance for people to understand the science of chemical food addiction, which removes the shame of being unable to control yourself.

Additionally, Alzheimer’s is now termed Type 3 Diabetes, so I am doing everything I can to spread this science.

Jacqueline Marcell, Speaker, Consultant, Author of ‘Elder Rage, or Take My Father… Please!, How to Survive Caring for Aging Parents’, Book-of-the-Month Club, Print/Audio/eBook

Kim Randall – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Kim Randall

My message to kids today is to educate yourselves on nutrition. Know what foods are doing to your body long term and learn how to make healthy changes now rather than later in life where lifestyle changes become harder to make and keep up with. Get out and walk or run daily, start a routine and stick with it. The reason why I am so focused on this is because I am an overweight 30-something year old that never really had the proper nutritional knowledge growing up. A hot home cooked meal was considered healthy where-as today it would be seen as not the healthiest. Trying to reboot your schedule and create new routines is extremely hard as an adult and I do wish that I had started exercising more often when I was a teenager. Start early so you aren’t running into the issues and problems adults my age are. Eat fresh and raw more often and save the processed foods for an occasional snack.

My last piece of advice for kids today is to go ahead and be different. It’s OK to be unique and it’s highly applauded and sought after as adults. No one wants to hire all the same “clone-like” people. Diversity makes companies thrive so yes… go ahead and flaunt those red polka dotted pumps you git at the thrift shop. They’re just as unique as you are.

Kim Randall, CEO and Social Brand Strategist, KiMedia Strategies

To our readers: Are you interested in participating in our If I Knew Then What I Know Now series? If yes, use the contact form above to reach out to us with your story! Your message may inspire children to make a right decision in life. Look forward to hearing from you.

Emma Hunter – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Dr. Emma Hunter

No One Is Thinking About You!

I remember being in fourth grade, it was my birthday, and the annual book-fair was taking place in our school library. Soon, it would be our class turn to visit the library, and buy all the books, pencils, erasers, and other cool items we wanted. Before departing to the library, my teacher announced to the class that there would be a drawing. Whichever student’s name she drew from the box would be able to get any free item they wanted from the fair. She stuck her hand in the box, and I couldn’t believe it—my name had been called! I was so excited. I loved the book-fair, and now I had the chance to get any item I wanted for free. The moment she called my name, I knew I wanted something special. Maybe stickers, pencils with cool erasers, markers, or a paint-set.

Just seconds before we were to leave for the book-fair, the teacher made a comment to the class that sent my heart twirling into sadness. She encouraged us to go to book-fair, and buy a book that was at the fifth-grade reading level. Doing so, she noted, would help us improve our reading comprehension, and prepare us for the reading/writing sections of future MEAP tests.

I knew my teacher would be very pleased if I bought the book. But there was a problem. I wanted to color! Not read a boring book!

All the students in my class were huddled around the right section of the book fair. That’s where all the fifth and six-grade level books were located. And the teacher was even helping students pick out which books to buy. I stayed with the crowd for about 30 seconds or so, but wasn’t entirely happy.

Nervous of the repercussions of what would happen if I strayed, I hesitantly started making my way to other sections of the book-fair. Lo and behold, located at the left side of the library, I found an item I fell in love with. It was a plastic purse, and inside of the purse was a “Clifford The Big Red Dog” book with cool coloring utensils, a pencil, and Clifford eraser! I started fantasizing about how fun it would be when I got home, and had a chance to start reading, coloring, and using the cool eraser.

While I knew it was what my heart wanted, I kept the purse on the shelf and proceeded back to where my classmates and teacher were. There I felt safe, but not happy. I was doing what everyone else was doing. My teacher would be happy, and no kid could possibly make fun of me for choosing an item for a little kid. I picked up a fifth-grade level reading book that I thought might interest me. “Just maybe,” I thought to myself, “I can enjoy reading it.” But as much as I tried to convince myself, I couldn’t. Should I stay with the crowd and get the book? Should I go back, and get my Clifford package? Would the teacher be disappointed if I didn’t challenge myself with a “big-kid” book? Would the other students make fun of me for choosing Clifford—a book for babies?

booksI slowly proceeded back to the left-side of the library to admire the Clifford package one more time, but didn’t dare pick it up. I reluctantly started walking back to the crowd. But as I was heading back, something from within caused me to stop walking. There I stood in the middle of the library—half way from what I really wanted, and half way from gaining the approval of others. I felt trapped. Maybe I could get my Clifford without anyone noticing? I could keep it on the down-low, hiding it as much as I could with my hand. And so that’s what I did. I had made my choice: Clifford it was. No one was going to notice anything.

Our shopping time was nearing the end, and I was keeping the package on the down-low. While I was making my way back to the crowd, my teacher came up to me and asked: “What did you get?” I reluctantly showed her the package, and what came out of her mouth shocked me! “That’s a nice choice,” she said with a big smile on her face. I couldn’t believe it. What!?! It was a nice choice? But I thought she would disapprove because she was encouraging us to get a fifth-grade level reading book?!? But no, I was wrong, she thought it was a nice choice. And for the other students thinking I was a “baby” if I got Clifford, you know what? They didn’t even notice what I got. They didn’t even care. They were all caught up with their own books, and what they had bought. Both my assumptions of what my teacher and classmates would think of me were wrong.

I didn’t realize it at that time, but that experience offered a great life lesson. It was a lesson I would have to learn over and over again in my own life: You are free to live the life you are meant to live. The choice to be true to yourself starts and ends with you. People can tell you whatever they want. They can share their advice. They can tell you their opinion about the choices you are making. But at the end of the day, it’s completely up to you as to whether you follow your dreams in life. I know now more than ever in my life that my happiness will be derived only by having the courage to pursue my dreams. And no matter how it looks to others, you come alive when you know deep within your heart that you are living the life that is right for you.

Emma Hunter, PhD, Life Coach and Author of Where’s The Love?, Confessions of a Soccer Mom, and Failure: The Key to Success

Toni Carter – If I Knew Then What I Know Now

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Life Lessons From Adults To Children
Today’s Guest – Toni Carter

Young People – be honest and share what is in your hearts with your parents. As antiquated, as they may seem they’ve been where you are now; and they want to do what is right for you. Since no one person knows it all, if you believe they’re not fully understanding you, respectfully tell them so. But don’t let your discussions descend into bickering, since progress is not made in such a place. If you want them to understand your position, be ready to truthfully explain what you need, mean and intend. If you are not truthful, no one can effectively help you. Even if you eventually get what you want by deception, you’ll undermine your relationship with them, and damage the trust they have in you. Not a good combination and can take years to rebuild your relationship with them. I learned my lesson by ruining many relationships. Sometimes I didn’t tell the truth because I was scared of the consequences (my mother was an abuser). However, lying usually made things worst. I would have asked for help from other family members who cared about me. I’d raised my two adults children to tell always tell me the truth, because I will help them even if they’ve done something wrong, but I need to know the truth.

I wish someone would have shared this with me. It could have saved me from a lot of hard times, and spending years trying to rebuild relationships.

– Toni Carter, HR Consultant, Chief Inspirational Strategist, Author