Resume Challenges

Writing up a resume with a history of disability is a tough one. I’ve literally been working months on rewriting and developing my resume and learning to deal with online platforms like Linkedin and Indeed, both of which have automated arranger’s that do not work for me. I am getting there. I feel I am two thirds of the way there. My wording needs to be more verb than noun, right now its more noun than verb. I’ve sought the help of friends over career centers for critique of my resume reincarnations. I went the career center route first and was pulled in twenty directions without assistance on my resume. Which, was what I most needed help with, given the challenges I have to present myself in a way on paper that will get me an interview, that is where I need help. Once in the interview, I’m not worried, presenting and selling are what I am best at.

To make it more difficult is the fact that I have a lot of experience and many skills that have been honed over the years of my life, but many not in the usual sense. I have many blank spots in my work history, not just the last disabled reasons. Starting with seven years as a feature dancer in an industry that one can’t mention on a resume or in an interview. I’m saying it here, stupidly probably, because I’m sick of constant omission. I had worked my way up to the top of that line, it was a better deal then. Kicked out of school in the 7th grade, I got my GED at the age of 33 in 1996 with a 6th grade education and didn’t need to study for it, I took it and passed. I worked as a Mental Health Technician on a locked crisis psych unit at a community hospital for seven years. In a time when you didn’t need a degree, it was heavy duty on the job training. It was a college education in and of itself, but I have no paper that says I can do the job.

I stayed home to raise my son in 1994 moving to Quebec in 1998. Aside from little part time jobs, I have no paid work history here till 2001. But, during this time, I founded and incorporated a 501c3 non profit, multifaceted, four-day festival that in its third year attracted 4,000 campers and attendees and became solvent. I created a successful seminar that involved two languages, two countries and speakers from New York, Quebec, Massachusetts, Maine, Connecticut and New Brunswick, in the middle of no where Fort Kent, ME and revived a three day Convention. All events were successes, all events asked me to stay on or recreate them. The festival, started in 1995, is still running today. The other events were one time events. I have orchestrated many fundraisers, concerts, and dinners. But, all of them were unpaid, non profit events to support and promote a sober way of life. “Sober way of life” events vs “Drunk way of life” events, which one do you think I could easily put on my resume.

In 2001 I went to work at MBNA America, which has since closed its doors in the US and sold out to Bank of America. When I worked for them, they were the third largest credit card issuer in the world. They sold credit cards for over 300 businesses, institutions, banks, clubs, stores, etc. They were the first bank to do so. I worked as a telemarketer for them, three years. I was a sales coach and was frequently listened to by others struggling to sell certain cards or at all, to learn from my approach. My strongest cards were the cards for lawyers and the high end Quantum Card for the elite. I never once missed my commission. Then, I got sick in 2004.

On temporary disability,  after having an operation and hoping the two lesions I had in the brain were because of a compression on the neck that had been fixed, I set to work going to school to give my self more options for work. At this time I was a single mother of two ages five and fourteen. The plan was to go for a Bachelors in Business Sciences with a minor in writing to back up my organizing events experience and become a professional for profit event organizer.  I made it half way, with a 3.76 GPA, of which all of my business and writing classes were 4.0. I loved every minute of it, starting out the way I have in life, it was a dream come true, I loved school, always have. I had a bad MS attack cognitively and that knocked me out. But, I did successfully complete 64 credits, but I can’t get my transcripts. I was forced to file a bankruptcy on the government loans. I recently learned that one small one was over looked and nine years later has tripled. Till that’s paid off, I can’t get the transcripts, which would be nice to have, because they show my marks. Suffice it to say, I can’t pay that off till I have a job. That was 2009.

Several years to recuperate and then an attempt to build up my 26-year skill in jewelry making into a business. I opened an Etsy shop, organized and built up enough product for shows and entered the Fire Mountain Gems international contest against some of the best beaders in the world and won Gold. I was building and doing very well, but was progressively getting worse from MS and couldn’t keep it up. I took down the Etsy shop, I declined invitations to enter other contests and stopped the shows.

I worked for Suzie Q’s Beads, Buttons and Bijoux for 2 years, 2013 to 2015. I did well at her store. Here I sold high end costume jewelry, jewelry making supplies and taught patrons basic jewelry technique. I worked 11 to 15 hours per week. Suzie downsized and then closed her shop and I was let go. That one hurt, I very much loved working there and worked with a great team of people. Suzie told me that I was the best sales person she’d ever hired or known.

I have presented successfully in one form or another for non profit causes, my own art work, credit cards and services and a sober way of life for decades. I am a starter upper, I have vision for business and I am tenacious. I have overcome and healed a broken childhood, an alcohol problem (26 years sober), quit smoking, and most recently, put MS into remission and am reversing damage via the Wahls Protocol, which really does work. I am thoroughly trained in crisis intervention including giving Mental Health Status Exams, Intake, admissions, and suicide watches. I am proficient in Microsoft Word, Power Point, Desk Top Publishing, and am becoming proficient in Excel. I am well versed in online platforms such as Word Press, Etsy, Facebook, and Instagram. I am a research hound, strong writer, and I can type 60 words a minute. I am 55 with a disease that most know as “unrecoverable” and complicating matters further I have mostly my word on my skills having no degrees and no certificates to prove it.

I do have many professional friends who will give me references.  My aerobics and gym Instructors, who watched first hand my transformation right before their eyes, will also give me references. One suggested I get certified and coach others, but after looking into it, its $1,200.00. Again, need a job to get a job.

Anyway, who wants to hire me?!

Line on up, I’m dying to hear from you…..have I got a deal for you!

 

Bonne Sante

 

Picture from Pexels: https://www.pexels.com/photo/man-and-woman-handshake-567633/

Its a question of patience, initiative and time.

I am diligently working on preparing myself for the workforce. I am career counseling with one center and will make an appointment with another tomorrow. The two centers have different strengths. I am utilizing an online site run by the Alberta government as well. My resume was a challenge to configure due to lapses in time making my resume look like hell in chronological order. Dealt with this by grouping my experience and listing them by years rather than specific dates. I finally called my university to inquire about the hold on my transcripts. I had to drop out in 2009 due to a MS attack and qualified for a government bankruptcy due to disability of my student loans. However, one small one was overlooked and that loan has now tripled due to nine years of fees and interest. Until that is paid, I can’t access my transcripts. I gave them my information and expect to be hounded by them soon to pay. Which will have to wait. Oh, the wreckage of Multiple Sclerosis!

I had thought to start right away on full time and actually applied for a full time job, than had a heart attack over it. I’ve been cautioned to start with volunteer, then part time first. Which, I am doing. I applied for a reasonable job and hope to hear from them. If I take on too much, too fast, I’ll lose track of my commitment to the Wahls Protocol, which is the reason I am able to work at all. Fatigue is the other problem, there are still days where I need to sleep and do nothing. How will that work with a full time job. My ultimate goal is to eventually and slowly build myself up into a full time job situation while successfully incorporating the Wahls Protocol into that schedule, thereby, if this goes well, allowing me to wean off of disability. Time will tell that story.

Time….I’ve been held back for so long, I am raring to get out there and do something! I am ambitious by nature. A self starter. Patience is needed or I can set myself back. Not the plan! This month, I want to get to a registry and learn what is required for me to get my license. That’s a priority. I have the use of a friend’s car to practice with once I get my Learner’s Permit. I am sure it will be like riding a bike, I drove for 25 years, but its been eight years and I will need to rebuild my confidence behind the wheel. In the mean time, I am anxious to begin a part time job, I am sick of being flat broke all the time due to the cost of the Wahls Protocol. I have debt to pay on, a driver’s license to obtain, citizenship to file for (I’m on a Landed Immigrant Status) and, eventually, a car to finance. I am getting there….one carefully stacked boulder at at time.

 

Bonne Sante

 

Note: The monthly symptoms page has been updated.

Picture from Pexels: https://www.pexels.com/photo/background-balance-beach-boulder-289586/

A discussion about three major autoimmune diets.

I’m excited to share a podcast that I was invited to participant in to represent the Wahls Protocol and my experience utilizing it. Podcast: https://dinosaursdonkeysandms.com/2018/03/13/dizzycast-ep-3-a-dietary-dizzy/

The podcast introduces the diets for MS (really all autoimmune illnesses will benefit from these diets). They are The Wahls Protocol, Dr. Swank’s and Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis (OMS). The podcast was conducted by Heather of “Dinosaurs, Donkeys and MS” Blog. Heather is from England, has MS and follows the OMS diet. Her blog has been voted one of the best 50 MS blogs worldwide. My interview is first, followed by interviews with Jen, Robert, and Heather on their experiences with Swank and OMS (the latter being a variation that has roots in the Swank diet). All in all, I think it was an excellent introduction to these three methods. I appreciate Heather’s inclusion of the Wahls Protocol, even though she follows OMS. I was thrilled to take part in it. I believe it is important to offer information on all these methods and the Autoimmune Wellness’ method (AIP). No one during this interview touched on AIP, but it is equally as good as the others, in the vein of Dr. Wahls. I did talk about Dr. Ashton Embry’s work being the roots of Dr. Wahls’ Protocol. And, important to remember is that all of these diets owe their beginnings to Dr. Swank, who realized a connection between MS and diet in the 1950’s.

Because I believe that there is more than one way to skin a cat, I have looked into each of these till I found the one that suited me best, which for me was the Wahls Protocol, others may fare better on Dr. Swanks, OMS, MS hope’s, or AIP. I heartily encourage anyone considering pursuing one of these, to look at them all, which is why I have links to each on my page research, websites and books   You’ll find that there are similarities between all these, feel free to research each with an open mind. I hope that you’ll take the time to listen and pass it on. If you care too, I’d love to hear what you thought.

 

Bonne Sante

Join me!

This morning was something for me. I have been swimming with the same ladies for four years. They’ve seen me at my sickest. I have had individual remarks from them here and there on my recovery. This morning, the group talked about it. One asked me for information for her daughter, which I said I would compile a list of resources for her tonight and bring it with me tomorrow morning. Another said and this floored me, that I could be a model for what a healthy lifestyle can do. At the start of this ten months ago, I needed to bring my walker into the pool area with me as far as I could, then hang onto walls to make it to the pool. Today I freely walk strong without aids, my skin glows (I hear remarks often that I look ten years younger), my muscles are toned and to date, I’ve lost 39 lbs. I think I’ll keep doing this….what do you think? Join me!

Sources continued:

Autoimmune Wellness AIP – https://autoimmunewellness.com/

AIP uses a diet that is a complete elimination method. By removing everything that could cause inflammation or a reaction. All that the Wahls Protocol eliminates plus nightshade vegetables, nuts, etc for the first year. Then reintroduces some foods to see if there is a reaction, such as eggs and nuts. Excellent website, even though I follow Dr. Wahls Protocol, I am signed up for emails. Today’s AIP email featured a new food plan website that AIP merged their 250 recipes into. I am definitely going to subscribe to it, it’s financially doable for me and looks like a fantastic subscription meal planning website: https://realplans.com

I hope to see Dr. Wahls merge her recipes with this site as well. What is really nice about it is having all these recipes available in one place where I can save the ones I like, it keeps a profile of my specific diet requirements and creates meal plans and shopping lists that I can tweak, add too or remove and that I will have access to from my I-phone. I’m going to try the one month version to be sure that I like it enough, then upgrade to the annual subscription if I do.

The MS Gym: https://themsgym.mykajabi.com

I am signed up for their emails and I pay attention to discussion about this on the Wahls Facebook page. People swear by it, it is a paid membership, however not a super expensive one. I am doing very well in the gym on my own and I’ve had specialized direction for my left leg from a local physical therapist. I can’t afford to sign up for all that I would like, but I got something out of the informative emails that Trevor sends and the discussions from other Wahls Warriors who swear by this.

The Paleo Boss Lady: http://www.paleobosslady.com/

Diane V. Capaldi is a profound living example of how far healing can take you no matter where you start from if you’re will to go to any lengths. A lot to see on her website and every word worth if your seeking inspiration to make a badly needed change for the better.

 

I will include more sources in the next blog.

 

Bonne Sante