After earning a Bachelor's from MIT and a Master's from MIT's Sloan School of Management, I worked as a Federal Reserve Bank Examiner. After a year I quit and became a stand-up comedian. Over the next couple of decades I performed throughout the country and on TV (Tonight Show with Jay Leno, SHOWTIME's "Fierce Funny Women," Comedy Central, and more) and wrote for the sitcom "Roseanne," and FOX's "Saturday Night Special." I also wrote a couple of illustrated satiric books.
But all the while I battled with an autoimmune disease, which made it difficult to keep up the career I wanted, and eventually to even get off the couch. At 19 I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's Disease (autoimmune thyroiditis), but was told that my thyroid function was not affected, and I would have to wait until it was to start treatment. I was, however, treated for many of the symptoms of low thyroid--depression and fatigue, most notably.
Finally, when I was 40 and, unable to recover from a mild flu, the one thyroid test that most doctors use to determine thyroid health, finally showed that the autoimmune damage had reached the treatment stage. I got some thyroid replacement, which helped some, but I was still feeling fatigued, depressed, and generally unwell, and usually needed a long nap just to get through the day.
That's when I started researching my condition and found that diet and lifestyle changes could make a big difference in not only easing my thyroid symptoms, but more importantly, preventing my immune system from running amok. Since those who have one autoimmune disease have a better than 50% chance of getting another, I decided to get serious.
Fortunately, there is a lot of good information out there, and many patients and healthcare workers who have figured out a lot of this. I read, listened, went to conferences, met with professionals in Western, alternative, functional, and integrative medicine, and tried a great many things to manage my condition. I have had great success, and as a result became the go-to person in my community on thyroid disease. I loved being able to share this knowledge and teach people how to get the help they need from their doctors and about the self-care, which is perhaps the most important component of healing and disease management. But there was one piece missing. We all know we should eat better, exercise, manage our stress, etc. But doing it is a whole different thing. That's where the wellness coaching comes in.
I trained at the Mayo Clinic to learn and practice how to help people make those changes in a way that is sustainable. In 2017 I became one of the first National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coaches. It has been a great joy working with my clients to achieve a greater quality of life, and often more than they ever thought possible.
Nurse miep, los angeles
She can lower your blood pressure, teach you how to live without stress, and carry a couple of small bandages in her tiny backpack. She works in the LA office. Follow her on Facebook.