The reality for most women I know is that we take care of our kids, spouses, parents, brothers, co-workers, neighbors, community, and brothers. (Did I say that already? Well, mine can be exhausting.) We take care of everybody else, but rarely take the time to care for our own bodies.

Unintentionally, we proclaim our manic lives like a greeting between friends.

"Hey, how are you? Would love to chat, but I'm so stressed."

There's a silent agreement that the most stressed mama wins!! But really, she loses out on a lot more in the long run. Especially when, like me, there is a history of cardiovascular disease in the family.

When my mother had her first massive stroke, I wanted to be with her as much as I could. I would take care of my business obligations during the day, take care of the kids in the evening, and then take care of my mother through the night. I was getting eight hours of sleep...per week!

To energize myself I would get large milkshakes from the hospital cafeteria almost nightly. Ice cream is a wonderful medicine—just ask Dr. Baskin or Dr. Robbins or Dr. Daz, as in Häagen. This probably wouldn't have had a huge effect on my weight except that because I didn't have time to eat all day, I would grab a cheeseburger and fries or taquitos with guacamole or even an ice cream cone with guacamole on the way to the hospital. There's nothing like combining your five servings of fruit with your three servings of dairy in four servings of ice cream! I was starting to look like the food pyramid with legs.


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