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Why You Should Never Stop Fighting

Last weekend, I went to Michigan, with my boyfriend and I learned a very important lesson. My boyfriend and I were walking on a boardwalk while the sun was setting. The sun was in the process of dipping into the cool blue lake. The air was warm but the sight was breathtaking. As we were…

via Why You Should Never Stop Fighting — Life with an Illness

October’s Featured Blogger: Mae Clair

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Art by Rob Goldstein

Author Mae Clair is October’s Featured blogger in this, the second re-boot of my monthly featured blogger post.

In our interview, Mae shares some of her history and ideas about writing and success.



In your profile, you say you like to blend genres; does it happen as you write?

It developed as my writing progressed. I never liked being pigeon-holed to a certain genre, so my early books were a mash-up of mystery and romance. The romance eventually fell by the wayside and mystery took center stage. I do, however, blend that up with elements of the supernatural, paranormal, and psychological aspects. One book also included a bit of sci-fi with UFO sightings and Men in Black.

You wrote your first story at six; what was it about?

I don’t remember the content. What I do remember is being given the assignment and my classmates scrawled out a few lines…

View original post 1,408 more words

You Have a Diagnosis, Now What?

You receive a diagnosis, which is a great thing. I know, sounds absurd that it could be considered a relieving thing to hear. For those with a chronic illness, you’ve been suffering for possibly months maybe even years. At this point you want the diagnosis. So you can work on your health to get into remission, however, receiving it can also make you feel overwhelmed. A thousand thoughts will go through your head all at once. You try to think about what the next step is for you. All you want is to get better, but sometimes you just don’t know what you need to do. Here is a list of what to do next after you get diagnosed.

  • Take a deep breath.

Now I know this seems a little obvious, however, after years of suffering, countless appointments, endless testing, and hospital stays the search is over. You can now put to rest all of the doubts people had that you were “faking” it. You now have a reason why your joints make you feel like you’re 70, when you’re actually 21. You can now put your mind at rest of feeling miserable, but the reason was unknown. You now have a name to blame the pain on. Take a deep breath, the detective work to figure out what you have is finally over.

  • Study, study, study.

I’ve learned when you are diagnosed, your mind can be all over the place. You have a lot to think about. The best thing you can do is study everything there is to know about what you’re going through. There is no such thing as knowing “too much” about your illness. The truth is, with most chronic illnesses there will be limitations, diet preferences, and learning to adjust to your new life with your diagnosis. When they give you a prescription, it is in your best interest to study your medication. Learn the side effects, the benefits, and what to watch for incase of a reaction.

  • Find support groups or a therapist.

I know some people aren’t keen on the idea of seeing a therapist. I wasn’t, but when you have gone through agony, pain 24/7, and your life changed in an instant, it is good to talk to someone. You’re under enormous amounts of stress, and the more you keep it in, the more it will build up. It truly is okay to ask for help. They really are there to listen to you, like a friend. I have learned techniques by going to therapy, and just by talking to someone, it honestly has helped me cope with being ill. I also recently joined a POTS support group recommended by my doctor, and it was the best decision I have made during my illness journey. It is always nice to talk to a friend or love ones, but you will always have the feeling that they don’t fully understand. Support groups are amazing in the fact that, there are people going through just about the same thing you are going through. Check online to see if there is a support group for your illness locally. They understand you’re hurting and they are there for you to help each other.

  • Inform your love ones what you are going through.

I know this may seem strange, because you tell your love ones most things. I have learned that with a chronic illness you tend to hide some aspects of your life, due to not wanting them to see you struggle, bother them, or always tell them bad news. To be honest, it’s important to tell them what is going on to keep them in the loop. For example, I hid a situation where I was constantly throwing up for a while, and having migraines from my love ones because I didn’t want to bother them about my struggles. So they thought I was doing okay and would always ask to hangout, but I had to cancel and it made them think I was blowing them off. It wasn’t the case at all. When I explained what I had been going through, they absolutely understood. Its important to keep your friends and family updated, the more included they are, the more support you will have. They are there for you, and just want the best for you.

  • Don’t give up.

They are finally starting to understand what you are going through and finding some answers. I know this life we have been given is tough but you are tougher. Hang in there and show not just others, but yourself how strong you are. You will get through this, don’t stop fighting.

For those with a chronic illness, you’ve been suffering for possibly months maybe even years. Remember, I know this life we have been given is tough but you are tougher. You deserve as quality of a life as the next person. Stay strong, stay positive, and never give up.❤

*I’m not here to treat, diagnose, or go against Dr. Orders. Just here to provide support comfort and help. *

This post was first seen on lifewithanillness.com

Mystery Blog Award Nomination!

Im so excited to be nominated for the Mystery Blogger award! I want to thank Kaitlin, for nominating me! I really appreciate you for considering me! I love everything this award represents, and I am so thankful to be nominated! Please make sure you check out her blog here! I love reading her posts and you will too! Now, let’s get started!

*This award is “an award for amazing bloggers with indigenous posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging and they do it with so much love and passion.”*

HERE ARE THE RULES:

• Thank whoever nominated you and include a link to their blog

• Tell your readers three things about yourself

• Nominate bloggers you feel deserve the award

• Answer the questions from the person who nominated you

• Ask your nominees 5 questions of your choice, with one weird or funny one

• Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog


3 THINGS ABOUT ME

  1. I just got a puppy and I’m in love with him! He’s a 4 month old golden retriever, and will one day become my service dog. He’s a very happy and lovable furbaby! I can’t wait to share my journey with him, to y’all!
  2. I am allergic to seriously everything! I am gluten free, dairy free, and soy free! Dont ever let me cook dinner for you, unless you like very healthy food!
  3. I love ice cream! I could seriously eat ice cream for every meal and never get tired of it!

QUESTIONS FROM KAITLIN:

  • Why did you decide to start your blog?
  • I started my blog because I became chronically ill. I got in a very very dark place, and I knew I could either let my illness take over me, or I could use my illnesses as a tool to help others. All I ever wanted to do was share my journey to help others in my situation, share tips, let them know they aren’t alone, and also spread love and positivity.
  • What is your favorite breakfast food?
  • Pancakes and syrup! Yum!
  • Who motivates you? Or is your inspiration?
  • My mom is my biggest inspiration. She is the strongest human I know, and I’m so lucky to have such a positive and inspirational woman to look up to.
  • Do you have a favorite book or movie?
  • My favorite movie of all time is Sweet Home Alabama, and my favorite book is Fault in our Stars!
  • If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? And why?
  • Australia! I have always wanted to go there! It looks absolutely beautiful, and I really want to see a kangaroo!
  • My questions for my nominees:

  • Who is one person in your life you look up to?
  • Do you like cookies or cake better?
  • What made you decide to start a blog?
  • If you were given 1 million dollars, how would you spend it?
  • What is one place you want to travel to?

My nominees

Thank you again for nominating me, Kaitlin! To my nominees, I cant wait to read your answers! I hope everyone has a fabulous day! Never give up, and always stay positive!♡

This post was first seen on lifewithanillness.com

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~PAIN~

Pain has a way to rope and lasso you in, All you want to do is scream and escape your skin. In this tortuous and arduous situation- life has basically come to a hault, Never believe that this obstacle has ever been your fault. For, you will overcome this horrifying pain, Utilize the strength your…

via ~PAIN~ — Life with an Illness

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The Positive Side of Having a Chronic Illness

Having several chronic illnesses, I’ve learned that with a positive outlook even during the hardest times you can still find the good in situations. Everyone endures a difficult trial, it’s the way you look at it, that determines how you will get through it. There are a million negatives of having a chronic illness, however,…

via The Positive Side of Having a Chronic Illness  — Life with an Illness

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Pushing Through when your Chronic Illness is Pulling you Down

A chronic illness is life changing. It changes your life totally, and completely. It changes you. The pain you have to endure, and the constant pressure of knowing you are sick, you are different, and you have restrictions is heartbreaking. A chronic illness can really rock your world. The hard part is pushing through, when…

via Pushing Through when your Chronic Illness is Pulling you Down — Life with an Illness

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The Diagnosis- Poem

The moment you hear your diagnosis for the first time, your breath that you lost, is something you try to find. You finally figured out why you’ve been suffering for so long, you try not to react, you just strive to stay strong. Tears unwillingly welt up in your eyes, all you want is a…

via The Diagnosis- Poem Style — Life with an Illness

Tips for Going Gluten Free

So, you’ve just heard you have celiacs disease, or a gluten sensitivity. When you are told to cut out gluten it can become extremely overwhelming. You look in your cabinet and literally everything seems to have wheat in it. So, what do you do next? Here are tips for going gluten free. If you cut…

via Tips for going Gluten Free — Life with an Illness

My 2 Year Anniversary of Being Chronically Ill

My journey officially began 2 years ago. Wow, it’s truly insane to think I’ve been chronically ill for that long. It’s strange to think after countless amounts of tests, Doctors appointments, and trials of treatment; I have been going through this for 2 years. I have experienced more in 2 years, than some people go…

via My 2 Year Anniversary of Being Chronically Ill — Life with an Illness

Having to Drive Out of State to a Clinic for Treatment

Having a chronic illness, or a rare illness can be stressful. Not every doctor has heard of all the different types of illnesses, let alone knows how to treat them. In most cases, for instance, in my case I have to drive out of state to a Clinic for treatment. Unfortunately, going to an out…

via Having to Drive Out of State to a Clinic for Treatment — Life with an Illness

All about Lupus

Lupus is an autoimmune disease, where your immune system attacks your own tissue and organs, mistakenly. According to Womenshealth.gov, 9 out of 10 adults with lupus are women. Unfortunately, there’s no cure, but it can be managed by a doctor and medication. Lupus causes inflammation in the joints, and organs. It also comes with a…

via All about Lupus — Life with an Illness

Mystery Blogger Award Nomination

A hugeeeeee thank you to Tasha for nominating me for the mystery blogger award! My heart is so happy to be nominated! Please take a second to check out her blog! I always enjoy reading her inspiring and absolutely amazing posts, and you will too! Go and check out Tasha M.’s blog Painwarriorcode! Well, let’s…

via Mystery Blogger Award Nomination — Life with an Illness

What I Blog About

I had the pleasure to be featured on -what you blog about. Thank you so much for asking me to share my story on your blog! Please make sure you click on his link below! Life with an illness blog My blog is about sharing my journey with others of having several chronic illnesses. I…

via What I Blog About — Life with an Illness

How a Chronic Illness Forces you to Grow up too Quickly

A chronic illness brings darkness to your life. It brings a cloud of sorrow over you, and everyone around you. A Chronic illness changes your life. You have to learn how to shift your life, to fit this troubling illness into your schedule. Here’s how a chronic illness forces you to grow up too early.…

via How a Chronic Illness Forces you to Grow up too Quickly — Life with an Illness

Grieving with a Chronic Illness

With a chronic illness, there is no cure. It is all about treating the symptoms and learning to live life with it. It’s like an enemy you can’t get rid of. Its hard to cope with at times. For me, I was working, in college, and training for a half marathon, and one day it…

via Grieving with a Chronic Illness — Life with an Illness

Inner Strength- Poem

Your world feels like it is crumbling at your feet, All you want to do is climb in bed forever, and hide under your sheet. You know you won’t ever give up, But you just pray and wish the pain will just let up. You have a little piece of light in your heart,that the…

via Your Inner Strength- Poem — Life with an Illness

Switch It Up

Originally posted on April 28, 2018 on Journey Into A.

A couple nights ago I was having some real nasty, dark thoughts and I just needed to refresh somehow and home decor is one of my facets that really helps me out of that trench. I love it, I’m inspired by it, I strongly believe that what’s in your environment is what’s basically in your head. So I started reworking one section of my room and the final look is about 90% different than it was prior.

Here’s a little of the “before” and I guess a bit of background. (Side note: I pulled these pictures off my Instagram so they’re not all edited the same- bear with me here.)

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This was what I put together when I first moved in. Featuring Spaghetti (RIP)

Now, I have enough furniture (minus a couch and bookshelves) to decorate a 700 sq. foot one bedroom apartment- which is what I lived in with my ex for 3 years. So moving into a smaller room (12’x11′), I’ve got to “store things” in it by maximizing the space I have. That wall has 4 pieces of furniture on it. One being a smaller little thin table, one is a (heavy) confessional chair from the 1800s, and the other two are larger pieces- a dresser and a rustic thin table. Two of those items I cannot move, one is just perfect for storing smaller things and housing things I like to look at- so those three are permanent. What is on top of them or added to them, however, is not (except for the TV, there’s no other outlets).

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When I first moved in, this is the wall to the right of the one pictured above. My headboard is opposite it. Featuring Millie.

There wasn’t a whole lot I could do with this wall because of those doors and it doesn’t have any outlets. The piece that stuff is on top of is a big rectangle table- like the size of a set of drawers, but open inside with one prominent shelf (I’ve got a plastic drawer that houses my winter accessories on there, some journals, helmets, random knick knacks) and one that’s more hidden underneath it (perfect for things I don’t know where to put/cleaning products/old paperwork, etc.). This piece especially had to go here because on the other wall, there’s the only vent and if it were to sit there, it would cover it which is a huge no-no for me when this girl needs her warmth big time in the cold winters. I mainly made the top of this prettier because it would be something I’d see more often when I woke up in the morning.

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Reworked this section about 6 months into living here.

I had those baskets under it to house more books. The bottom shelf had books lined up vertically. I went through more of my things under my bed (boxes) to sell some items I should’ve prior to moving from CA- books, DVDs, etc. I sold a bunch of books that I really didn’t need anymore- none that would inspire me again- and I pulled out more that I had had on my list for a while. So then this area became one where I housed the books I wanted to read and this way I could see them and have easier access to them. The remaining books under my bed are ones I’ve already read or ones that I’m not in a hurry to read. I added a bunch more books than there was before, which meant I needed to make them all fit- which is how the stacking variations came into play. Those stacking variations led to openings to fit vases or knick knacks I didn’t have a place for previously. Then on top of the table, I got a Himalayan salt lamp, and the rest were just some knick knacks I had to make it look nice.

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This is a minor rework I did about 9 months after I moved into this room.

This was mainly moving that round mirror over and removing/adding knick knacks. I also got some fake florals from Michaels that I made into fun, bright floral arrangements for pops of color. To the right, hanging on the door, I moved a picture hanging garland that used to be strung around the mirror. I felt it added extra color and love to an otherwise bland/normal area.

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Yesterday morning. After partially reworking the area. Featuring me.

The main thing I wanted was to move that mirror over which meant I had to move a top table organizer (not the actual name for it, but that’s the best I can describe it as right now) and a bigger piece of artwork. Not a whole lot happened here, but it spruced it up, definitely. The left wall, however, didn’t feel right at all. I had to move the organizer (thing) on top of the dresser because it was longer than that thin tall table which then lead to the TV put on top of it.

Now there was a lot of added height to that space which I hadn’t originally expected. I didn’t think that organizer was longer than that table, but I wanted so badly for that mirror to go on the other wall and the mirror wouldn’t lean safely on that organizer’s smooth top (it could fall after the dog jumps off the bed). Having started this project 30 minutes before bedtime, I had to leave most of the (very) impromptu project for the next day.

Like I said before, I was having dark thoughts and I kind of threw my hands up (at how I was feeling inside) and thought “okay change something”. My environment is always a good one to change up because I have to live in it and if it’s not inspiring me or making me happy, I need to find a way that will. I wanted these two walls now to be more colorful and come alive again. This photo was after I had looked around in the morning sunlight at what I’d done which was the catalyst to my brain then reworking the puzzle and for the rest of the day I was coming up with ideas on how I wanted it to look and feel, how I could have even more storage space, how I could be further inspired in my day to day.

See the finished product and read the last 466 words here.

Migraine Remedies

Unfortunately, most people have experienced the excruciating pain of a migraine. The agonizing feeling when your head throbs, and pulses. Light and noise can cause a piercing pain. The pain is so violent that you feel sick to your stomach, and maybe even throw up. It’s absolutely horrendous, and terrifying. Due to the excessive amount…

via Migraine Remedies — Life with an Illness

Never Give Up

Life will always throw trials and tribulations your way. There are times where you just want to give up, and go back to bed. It’s a lot easier to just say I’m done, I can’t do this anymore. It takes a truly strong person to pick themselves up, and continue the fight. It takes a…

via Never Give Up — Life with an Illness

Sabbath Bloody Sabbath

Originally posted on April 21, 2018 on Journey Into A.

Black Sabbath.

My top artist. I think they just may be my favorite band of all time (which is huge for me to say). I could listen to them all the time… in fact, I did for months just this past year. Only them on repeat.

I’m not entirely sure why, but they literally make me happy. I listen to them and my mood gets better, I feel relaxed. Any anxious feelings go away. Perfect for the car before I go to do something that makes me feel anxiety. Even writing this post now makes me really happy.

The song I’ve probably listened to the most is “Sabbra Cadabra”. It’s upbeat and just fucking great. If I were a runner, that’d probably be the one I’d start out my run with. It’s definitely high energy and gets me moving.

My next most listened to is “Killing Yourself to Live” which is really one of my current theme songs. It’s about the way people are living their lives in misery. I see it as that end goal of “if I work hard enough now, I’ll get to live my life after” whereas life should be lived now and you’re dying already.

Read the last 135 words here.

What’s in my Infusion Bag?

Infusions are used for several different illnesses.When your doctor tells you that, you will now be receiving infusions, it tends to make you feel very overwhelmed. There are also several different types of infusions. Infusions can also range in how long they will take. I had to get an IVIG infusion for lupus, and now…

via What’s in my Infusion Bag? — Life with an Illness

Secrets – Part Two

Originally posted on April 20, 2018 on Journey Into A.

It’s been a few weeks since my last post (part one) and honestly it’s because that one brought up a few things that rocked me a bit. It was also a post where more people read it from my Facebook page, meaning a lot of family or family friends read it, and seeing those numbers kind of freaked me out. This time, I’m just not going to look. It’s all memories that I’d like to get out of my head for my well-being and I can’t get anxious about those I know reading it.

Moving on, let’s dig up some more.

How about the relapses?

There were a few that I had witnessed. It was quick and rapidly terrifying. Most of the times were at a hotel where there would be a fully stocked mini fridge. Other times, she’d bolt to the local liquor store. Usually prompted by a fight between her and my old stepdad or otherwise it seemed to just happen out of the blue.

You knew before seeing her or smelling her. The energy of the “break” was always palpable. It was a certain kind of energy that I don’t wish to feel ever again. It was a downward shift mixed with shame, guilt, and a crazed excitement (for lack of a better word). It was disgusting and it clung to you and filled your whole body.

Then when you saw her, she was flighty, impulsive, and grasping desperately onto pretending everything was fine. I couldn’t hide my facial expressions so the moment she’d see my face, she always realized I’d known what happened and that I was scared. She then couldn’t hide so then she would try to pick fights with my old stepdad to make it  seem like there were reasons within reality as to why she relapsed.

– This is only with alcohol, by the way. I couldn’t tell you much about the drugs because I wasn’t aware of them until much later. I also am only speaking about the times I was around. –

She’d tear around the room, spinning this wild energy around until I couldn’t breathe. There was nowhere to go and I had no clue what to do. I’d hang on the outskirts of the room and try my hardest to pretend I wasn’t there. I’d watch TV or listen to music. It helped a little, but never enough. When her attention would come to me, I’d pretend I hadn’t been listening or that I didn’t see what she’d just done and she would turn away again and I’d be invisible all over.

Read the last 211 words here.

Calling Those with a Chronic Illness Lazy

Having a chronic illness, is honestly brutal. We are always faced with hard trials, and dealing with intense pain. It’s like constantly living in a nightmare, that you can’t wake up from. It’s extremely hurtful, and a huge letdown for someone to call those with a chronic illness lazy. Unfortunately, it’s common to hear. A…

via Calling Those with a Chronic Illness Lazy — Life with an Illness

Easy Ways to Organize your Medication

With having several chronic illnesses, my medication list is extrmely long. It can often become overwhelming looking at my list and trying to organize it. It’s also very easy to forget I took a pill, or take a pill and forget I took it. Here are easy ways to organize your medication. Use a pill…

via Easy Ways to Organize Your Medication — Life with an Illness

The Power of Staying Positive

With having a chronic illness you are constantly being thrown difficult trials. Having several chronic illnesses myself, its been the hardest thing I have ever been through. Even though I struggle, I always get asked how I stay so positive and how I have a great attitude through all of this. Everyone has their bad…

via The Power of Staying Positive — Life with an Illness

A Chronic Easter Poem

Bright colored eggs everywhere, Love and sunshine fills the air. Laughter and hugs are being exchanged, Kids sneak around switching the eggs, so the original hiding spot is being changed. You hope your chronic pain won’t ruin the day, But you hide the pain at your family gathering so you can stay. Hug your family…

via A Chronic Easter Poem — Life with an Illness

Secrets – Part One

Originally posted on Journey Into A on March 26, 2018.

I’m not sure how many times I saw my mom pass out drunk. A handful of the times, she just fell to the floor. I was so little, I didn’t understand what was going on, but I knew it wasn’t good. I’d cry and wail.

Luckily, it never happened (as far as I can remember) when I was alone with her. My old stepdad (he was her boyfriend/fiance for the majority of time that he was in our lives, this story mostly contains bits from before they were legally married, but I call him “my old stepdad”) would always be there. He’d pick her up, wake her as best he could, and move her to the bed or couch.

One time that comes flashing back to me is the time where she decided to leave him. Wasn’t the first time. This time, she’d gotten an apartment not too far from our house. My old stepdad and I went to visit her (why I was with him and not her, I’m not sure of) and they got to fighting again. I think now the reason they fought was because she was drunk, but I’m not entirely certain.

Read the last 182 words here.

Thank You for 2,000 Followers!

Wow! I am speechless!♡ I just want to take this time to thank you. Thank you, for reading. Thank you, for your support. Thank you, for helping me spread awareness, and helping others. Two years ago, I got sick. After countless amounts of tests, doctors, trips to clinics, and hospital stays I still am fighting…

via Thank You for 2,000 Followers!! — Life with an Illness

Secrets – A Foreword

Originally posted on Journey Into A on March 24, 2018.

Time for another series.

With this one, I want to be clear that these are actual secrets. They’re things from my childhood that I witnessed that I never told anyone about. Not my dad, not my therapist, no one. If I had told them about it, it was years and years later when nothing could come out of it.

I was extremely protective of my mother and knew if I told anyone these things, they’d take me away from her. I was terrified of that. I thought it was the right thing to do. If I had spoken up sooner, maybe I would’ve been able to save myself from the things that pop into my mind now before I go to sleep (that’s mostly because I’ve been releasing things that used to keep me from falling asleep – look up my things that broke me series), but at the same time, I wouldn’t have known I was saving myself from anything at all and instead I would’ve most likely been resentful that I was taken away from my mother.

If I’d spoken up sooner, who knows who I would be. I seriously doubt I’d be the strong person I became through those experiences. I try not to wonder about those things. The point is, these experiences shaped a lot of my life and the decisions I made.

Read the last 79 words here.

Easter Wreath Suitable for the Chronically Ill

I decided to get into the holiday spirit with this fun and colorful wreath! Having POTS and several chronic illnesses, I always have to battle extreme fatigue, and my hands become numb after awhile. There are a lot of things I am not able to complete but I decided to get involved in the Easter…

via Easter Wreath Suitable for the Chronically Ill — Life with an Illness

The Godfather

Originally posted on Journey Into A on March 23, 2018.

For some reason, I crave watching The Godfather (and The Godfather Part II) every once in a while. In the past, it’s usually been when I do a deep cleaning or something- I’d have it on in the background. This time, however, I watched for the love of it… three times in one week.

I couldn’t help myself! and I couldn’t stop. I think it could possibly be because I hadn’t watched it in a couple years? Or I’m just making up excuses for no reason. I enjoyed every minute of watching those two movies over and over. It never gets old!

Read the last 67 words here.