Today marks the 6 year anniversary of Thomas and I dating! I had picked up an extra shift as a house manager for the WWU performing arts center on February 15th and while I was waiting for the show to start a very handsome, bearded man sat across from me in the lobby. Once I finally got out my winning pickup line, the rest was history. He waited until March 1st to ask me out because I was convinced that February was cursed back then. What a wild ride it has been! If it’s at all possible, I think we like each other even more now then we did when we first fell in love.
The most exciting thing I have to share with you all is that I have a new doctor - Dr. Dublin - and a new plan for my health! I only got to talk with her for 20 minutes on Wednesday (with more appointments for the next few weeks), but it was an entirely different experience to any other doctor I’ve met on this journey. I was somewhat expecting that, as I have know of Dr. Dublin for 3 years, she is my Grandpa Jim’s PCP too and really turned his health around. As a family we have all been very grateful for her and now it is my turn to get help.
Dr. Dublin gave me advice that was not only unique, but also counter to anything I’ve been advised to do in the past. Namely that I am not to put myself through any excess strain because she doesn’t want me getting tired out and that I’m not to do any trauma therapy or put myself in situations to get re-triggered by past stress. The most important things for me to manage right now are the anxiety and panic attacks that hit me every few days, I need to focus on preventing them and calming them quickly. I’ll be tracking all my symptoms for her as we go along. She doesn't think we’ll find a complete diagnosis, that what I have probably isn't medically understood yet. She thinks that it probably has to do with fibromyalgia, but that isn't all of it. Mostly she has given me hope because she is confident that we can get me to living a full life again one day even without a diagnosis if we go slowly and don't give up.
I haven't ever been this optimistic!
When I've "taken it easy" long enough that I feel I might burst of boredom, I work on Sapient Living as much I can. As I was sitting at BECU, filling out the paperwork to open a business bank account, I stopped to reflect on all the steps it took to get where I am now and was somewhat overwhelmed by the thought. It has been so very hard, but I can’t wait for what happens next. My desire for having a successful business is one of the elements of my life propelling me forward. If you haven't noticed, I'm a tad ambitious. Illness has not changed this in the slightest.
I have my heart set on moving into an apartment just for Thomas and I ASAP and to do that we need more monthly income to afford rent. Not only will having a place be good for our marriage and my health, I know it will be the launch pad for all the programs and products we hope to offer one day. For now we keep things straightforward, focusing on working smarter, not harder and just trying to add enough income on top of Thomas' full time job to move. What a complicated and challenging world we live in, but I hope the lessons I am learning will help others thrive one day.
We are in the process of preparing to market our first Sapient Living offering. We call it the “Executive Check-In” and it includes a comprehensive assessment of internal and external business systems preceding a final report and further recommendations. We decided to start off with this program because it’s simple, we can do it from home without much setup and these reports will equip us with the information we need to do further work for our clients in the future. It’s thrilling to finally combine the best of what Thomas and I have learned over all these years into one project.
So, nothing too out of the ordinary for me last month. I’m still sick, but I’m hopeful and I’m making progress on Sapient Living every day. Anyone else ready for some warm weather?
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Welcome to February and the 42nd edition of this monthly newsletter. Time sure is flying in 2019.This month I have a fairly basic update for you because I don't have much to report. Mostly I'm focusing on my health right now and it's really not very glamorous and often pretty dull, but there is some good news.
Mostly I've been tired and in pain every day. I should know soon whether or not I have fibromyalgia. A diagnosis won't really change my daily life right away, but maybe it will give me more answers of what can be done. My daily successes include getting ready every morning, doing chores and eating enough to keep my weight up. I occasionally drive myself to appointments and run errands, which I’m quite proud of. This is actually a giant step up because I wasn't able to take myself anywhere for about three years!
My medical team now includes two therapists (one through Kaiser and one through BetterHelp.com), an occupational therapist and a physical therapist, a rheumatologist, an acupuncturist, an allergist and I'm still seeking the right primary care provider to captain this ship. I anticipate more specialists going forward. It’s been challenging setting up care again, but I’m staying positive. I have an appointment at the end of this month with the same doctor my grandfather sees and she really turned his health around so there is a lot to be hopeful about.
The good news I have is that my blood work is impeccable. Couldn't be better. My blood, bones, tissue, liver, kidneys and nutritional levels are wonderful. My body is actually quite healthy and surprisingly there is no inflammation or damage. The only things flagged were my B-12 and Vitamin D levels which were too high from my super good supplements. I was overcompensating for being mostly vegan and staying inside all the time, but now I'll only have to take half the dose!
I can never do as much as I'd like, but I'm slowly but surely working on Sapient Living. Some days my hands and arms hurt too much to type and my mind gets pretty foggy, but Thomas helps as much as he can at night and on weekends. We are currently exploring ways to share our original work and deciding who we would like to connect with next. RebeccaEWebber.com is looking nice and I have been enjoying learning about new sustainability projects through Twitter.
I'm sure you can imagine that I’m not exactly doing what I thought I would be doing as a 28 year old and that not everyone has been particularly understanding of my situation, but I see the progress and I’m happy. My priorities these days are to be curious and compassionate with myself. Through all of this I have grown to appreciate myself and even the smallest of things I accomplish. I really like myself now, my self talk has improved a lot and these changes really help me get through the days better than before. I'm optimistic that I'll figure this all out one day and I will have gained otherwise impossible perspectives and skills along the way.
I hope this message finds you well and I wish you peace in the days ahead!
Welcome to a bright and shiny new year! I'm truly excited for all the possibilities a fresh start can bring. What are your goals for 2019?
I enjoyed the holiday season last month which included my 28th birthday on December 27th. I spent the day in Seattle eating and window shopping and finished off with a generous plate of homemade sushi that night. My anxiety levels have not been great, but I'm getting through.
One of the aspects of my life that I am most excited about right now is my startup, Sapient Living. My mission is to lead humanity onto a more sustainable path and I have quite a few strategies to accomplish this goal. All paperwork to found the company is completed, but I still have the opportunity to learn more about taxes and being a good boss. It feels great to be at this point in my journey!
Since founding Sapient Living my work with food has taken on a deeper and broader perspective. I still work on the Sapient Diet every week, including sourcing and recipe development, but right now I'm in the middle of creating a report on the state of food systems in America which includes my vision on where I believe we can get to as a society. The research is very fun for me.
I anticipate even more adulting this year between the business and earning an income, continuing to work towards moving to a new place, working on understanding health insurance and generally becoming excellent at personal and professional finance. There are so many new things to handle all the time, but I can see that I'm learning lessons that will make me more effective in the future.
Self care, routines, and compassionate communication have all become extremely important as Thomas and I continue building a life together that we truly love. What are some things that you do for yourself that help you achieve your goals? I'd love to hear about it!
Love + Light
I always feel frazzled when December gets here. How about you? I can't be the only one wondering where all the time has gone! This is always the busiest time of year around here. The house is in full on “Christmas Mode” and I'll be 28 at the end of the month. Today Grandma Mary hosted a dozen ladies for their monthly Red Hats gathering. It's always a gift to spend time with these women who have known me my whole life and have known each other twice as long. I hope for community like this one day.
November was both a time to heal from October and the time to make progress on my career. I’ve been spending time determining my limits and articulating what it is that I really want to spent my energy doing. As I've been working on those tasks I realized that it's been a little while since I introduced myself and I don't think all of you are up to date. Here is a little about me as of today.
I am an Applied Anthropologist and I have a startup called Sapient Living. My main goal with my work is to resolve obstacles that hinder sustainable progress. Presently I am working to bolster the Modern Masculinities Movement in an effort to heal the programming that keeps men away from and in opposition to sustainable action. I support the work of coaches, content creators, speakers and facilitators who are successfully championing these and other sustainable causes by providing them with a variety of mentoring and consultation offerings.
I also work to raise awareness of and provide alternatives to synthetic chemical toxins in everyday consumer products. As a woman with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) and other health challenges it is important to me to create safe and supportive spaces for everyone to live and work.
My third area of work is in food. I invented the Sapient Diet to heal my husband Thomas's arthritis and we have followed the plan together for over two years with great results. Together we work to create and test recipes while also finding new cooking styles. Ultimately I want to write a complete guide on how to eat delicious, ethical, sustainable food all the time.
I enjoy stepping back and making sense of the whole picture, going beyond the scope of the project or obstacle at hand. It is rewarding for me to help a group or individual strategize, problem solve and achieve their goals. I enjoy helping a team understand the ecosystem their ideas exist in, making the best use of the current movement of ideas to help hasten progress effectively.
There is nothing I want to be more right now than an Applied Anthropologist, but there is still a lot to learn and room to grow. I feel like I am somewhere between a sage and a diplomat in my thinking, but it's like I'm always stuck in the planning stages of my work. Ideally, my next steps will include a larger network and many more collaboration opportunities. I appreciate making and sharing new connections and I am looking forward to taking on new clients starting in January.
In preparation for some of the opportunities ahead, I'm doubling down on my self care. I am eager to work but I don't want to get burnt out ever again. Starting today I have new health insurance and I'm optimistic that establishing care with a new team will help me get ahead. I'm ready to make more progress on my health!
Here is a link to a mood board called "Dear Mrs. Claus" that I created for a Christmas themed project a few years ago. I love looking at it and I thought it might also make you happy. What are some of your Winter holiday traditions? Are you working on manifest anything into your life in time for the new year? Hit reply and let me know what you're up to.
Love + Light
Welcome to November! Did you all have a good Halloween? Thomas and I dressed up as Harry and Meghan (the Duke and Duchess of Sussex).
October was the biggest and fullest month I've had since I got sick back in early 2015. There was a lot of trying things for the first time with my limitations.
I worked outside my house all day for the first and second time. I spent one day at The Riveter on Capitol Hill and the other in coffee shops and someone else's office in Pioneer Square.
I attended a startup and investor meetup to talk about Sapient Living (which is on hold right now).
I celebrate 1 year of successfully using the Fertility Awareness Method (FAM) for birth control. I learned how to do FAM from Hana Wellness, if you are interested in trying it yourself.
I attended the Pacific Northwest Events Expo and after party. I ended that particular Tuesday on a rooftop bar in downtown Seattle sipping champagne.
My oldest nephew, Joey, turned 18!
My house survived more plumbing and electrical issues. All the upstairs pipes and some of the downstairs pipes had to be replaced. I handled the emergency by myself (calling around, finding the right help) when the pipe sprung a leak.
I've started planning my 10 year high school reunion.
I went out with new friends to get tea, go shopping and go out to eat. It was a little nerve wracking being in other people’s cars, in unfamiliar places and not having anyone around who knew how to take care of me if I got triggered. I ate a lot of Pho which is my favorite (and kind of only) option when eating out.
All of this was extremely encouraging and I was so excited that I didn't feel triggered at the events or even much the next day. Unfortunately, it did all end up hitting me in one big wave later on. So… I’m not out of the woods yet and I've spent the last 5 days or so in, on or around my bed letting myself recover.
These experiences have taught me a lot including what I can and cannot do at this point. I know I can attend an event even if it's a little scented, but I will still pay for it at some point.
What this means for my business is that for the immediate future I am releasing any plans I had to do physical productions and networking. Instead I'm doubling down on all things web based.
In the next few months you should keep an eye out for my consulting and influencer work. I'm pretty pumped about it!
What's in store for you next? I'd love to hear what you are up to. If you have a minute, hit reply and send me a little status update.
Love + Light
Welcome to October. I’m eager to do some traditional Fall activities this year! It’s been awhile since I was in the habit of going out, but I really want to go to the u-pick pumpkin patch down in Kent, maybe go through the corn maze and DEFINITELY go to at least one costume party. I’m also ready to switch to more autumnal foods like roasts and soups. If you have any favorites to share, please send them along.
My biggest piece of news this month is that I have filed to create Sapient Living LLC. After 6 years of work “leading humanity onto a more sustainable path” I thought it was the right time to make things official! While Thomas has helped me every step of the way and continues to be my biggest supporter we ultimately decided that it was best for me to start the company as a solo-founder. We’re trying out just being husband and wife for the first time, giving each other the space to explore our own paths which has turned out to be a lot easier on us. Who knew?
I have more plans for Sapient Living that I could possibly put into one update, but my starting point is to develop the public relations side of the company. One of the main ways I plan succeed at my mission is to promote sustainable consumption. I will do this through events and media production featuring ethical and mindfully sourced products as well as their brands and any affiliated action groups.
The research and networking so far has been incredibly motivating. I have been reaching out to a lot of sustainable luxury brands and posting about everything that is inspiring me on the Sapient Living Twitter - check it out!
To help me create a solid strategy on how to achieve my BIG DREAM I have registered for my friend Joey Chandler’s Crazy Dream Mastermind course which will span over the next five months. I was looking for a digital space to spend some time in where I would be encouraged to be as bold as I possibly can about what I want to achieve and Joey offered to add me to the group. I’m pumped!
If you want to join us, you should schedule a discovery call with Joey. To do so, click HERE.
This month I will also be re-starting the Dynamic Neural Retraining Program. I need to at least lessen my MCS, but I’m hopeful that if I dedicate myself to the work, I can heal my MCS completely. I felt better after starting it a few months ago, but the counselor I was seeing at the time felt it was too much for me to take on and encouraged me to stop. I’ve stopped seeing her and I am ready to try the DNRS again!
This decision to stop and heal is having some impact on my work with Sapient House. For months you’ve seen me talk about founding a house, dedicated to being a safe space for people with environmental illness. Well, not only did that never come together, no matter how much energy I put into it, I’m also exhausted from all the emotional labor. So, when Thomas and I move to Seattle it will have nothing to do with Sapient Living or House and will simply be a home.
I had been thinking that running Sapient Living, especially the events and media productions, out of my house would be more convenient, but now I see how difficult that would actually be. I have spent over four years in isolation. If I can, I’d rather experience what it’s like to have an office and event space separate from my home. The part of me still holding onto my limitations thinks this is impossible, but the rest of me says to do it anyway.
Thank you for taking the time to read a little bit about my life right now and what is on my mind. I hope you are enjoying your day!
I don’t know about you, but for me, September always calls for some big changes and this year is no different. Autumn is also my favorite season so I’m a happy camper.
The biggest news I have this month is that Thomas recently started working as a clinician for Sound Health on Capitol Hill in Seattle. He is specifically working to serve chronically homeless and mentally ill clients. He just finished his 3rd week and is really loving it already.
In a few weeks Thomas will be giving a talk to his colleagues about Multiple Chemical Sensitivity. Neither of us has ever formally spoke about my condition, but he thinks that is it important for the staff for know about environmental illness as some of the clients also suffer. He plans to encourage the staff to switch to all natural, fragrance free products around the office.
The work at Sound is really exciting and I am grateful to have opportunities to be involved. I already got to consult on a case with one of Thomas’s co-workers. Mostly just gathering resources about how to help someone with disordered eating, but I felt a little bit like my old self again. Opportunities like this let me explore what I might want to do next now that I am really starting to feel a lot better.
Speaking of my health, today was a really fun day and I don’t think I would have been able to do all that I did even a few months ago. It started with brunch with some of Thomas’s co-workers. One of the absolute best things about Thomas working at Sound is that it has given us the great opportunity to reunite with our friend Sarah who works there and helped Thomas find this job. Sarah was my resident in Nash when I was an RA at Western and also helped me with the mental health department at Middle Women.
It seems to me like when the Universe wants you to know someone or go somewhere they make it really easy. One of the other things I got to do today was to attend an open house hosted by The School of Sacred Rebellion where I had a reading and healing by the owner, Anna. I felt so light and whole afterwards, it was amazing!
I really have been feeling more vibrant. The main things that I think have been helping are getting up at the same time every day, listening to guided meditations and affirmations when I’m doing chores and working to eat more intuitively. I would still like to get moving more often, but I am happy with how much I’m getting out. I still get triggered sometimes when I’m in public, but it’s not as bad as it was a few years ago and I’ve just learned to take the next day off if I need to.
Now that we know where Thomas is working, we also know where abouts we would like to live next. I am still work to coordinate Sapient House and I am optimistic that I will find the right group of lovely people and a great location very soon. Prayers appreciated!
As always, I hope this message finds you well. Try to find a moment this weekend to show yourself some unconditional love. Life is so much better when you are best friends with yourself.
Thank you all for your patience, I know that is has been a very long time since I sent an update about Sapient House. I was specifically waiting to know where Thomas would be working next so I could determine roughly where to look for houses. He’s all settled in now as a clinician on Capitol Hill working with chronically homeless and mentally ill clients, so let’s make this happen!
If you have already applied to live in Sapient House, would you please send me a reply letting me know if you are still interested or not?
I’d like to get everyone interested in living together and all of our community supporters into the same Facebook Group. If this applies to you please join → Sapient House Community Group
If you have yet to apply or know someone who you think would be a good fit, here is the link to the application for you to use and share → Sapient Housemate Application
For more information about the origin of Sapient House, who I think an ideal housemate is and what I will be looking for in a rental property visit → Sapient House via RebeccaEWebber.com
Again, thank you so much for sticking with me. I hope to have more good news to share with you soon and as always, let me know if you have any questions.
If you know me, you know that I am obsessed with all things health and wellness because I've been fighting for it my whole life. Today, I thought that I would take some time to talk with you all about the supplements I use to help my husband Thomas and I get complete nutrition while also treating our various health concerns. I use a variety of supplements to treat my depression, anxiety, PTSD and sleep issues while Thomas mainly takes extra supplements to keep his Juvenile Rheumatoid/Idiopathic Arthritis in remission. There are a lot of similarities in treating these different conditions as they both have to do with inflammation.
Scroll down to the bottom of this post to see my video on this topic!
Below I have linked the the exact brands/products we use, so if you would like to add something we take into your routine you can quickly find and buy it. Most links will be to products on Amazon and if you use the link and buy that product or any product on the site during your session I get a commission which helps me create more content. Also, just a quick reminder that I am not a certified health care provider, but I have a bit of knowledge that I can give you which just might help and I'm happy to do it.
What I Take In a Day
Folate - 1 capsule (400 - 1,000 mcg)GABA - 1 capsule (750 mg)
Camu Camu Powder (2.5 mg)Psyllium Husk - 3 capsules (1.5 g)Fish Oil - 3 capsules (3000 mg)B12 - 1 capsule (1500 mcg)Vitamin D - 1 gel cap (5,000 IU)Chlorella Spirulina - 5 tablets (1 g)Turmeric Complex - 1 capsuleSelenium - 1 capsule (200 mcg)
Melatonin - 1 tablet (1 mg)Calcium (1000 mg) Magnesium (500 mg) - 2 capsulesGABA - 1 capsules (750 mg)
Additional Supplements for Thomas
Glucosamine (1500 mg) Chondroitin (1200 mg) & MSM (1000 mg) - 4 capsules
Refilling Our Pill Cases
I made this video to show you what it's like for me to refill our pill cases every Tuesday and to talk a little more about our stories, what we take and why.
I hope that you learned something useful from this project. If you know anyone who might be helped by my work please pass it along. Thank you!
Today is the day. Thomas is off to his first day of full time work. He's been gone for less than 5 minutes and I already miss him. I feel myself starting to cry. My stomach turning over. What will I do alone? What will happen on my personal journey? Now is the time for me to find myself and work towards my own goals. For the record, we've spent almost all our time together for over 5 years. We hit 10,000 hours of face to face conversation over a year ago.
Over the past 10 weeks Thomas and I have spent all day, every day together. Thomas had broken his leg and couldn't walk or work (as a bus driver, his previous job). We were just in separate rooms sometimes, but I could always walk into the living room and see him. It was really hard at first to share so much time and space, but then I think we found some balance. The last few days I've really been looking forward to today. I want to watch whatever I want when I want, go back to sleep, eat when and what I want, research and grow. I have several lists of things I can do by myself.
The two words going through my head right now are enmeshment and codependence. These are so true about Thomas and my current relationship. I'm scared, this is all new, but I want to know us as people who want each other, not who need each other for survival. That's what it's felt like all these years. We finally now have the change in circumstance that will allow us to explore new parts of ourselves and reunite each day with a new perspective.
I hope to take this time and discomfort and turn it into content. One of my goals is to generate enough income online so that Thomas can one day decide that he'd like to do the same. I'll help figure out the production model and then in a few years Thomas might join me in content creation. We both still want to tour in a tiny house and own a Waystone where we and our friends can live when not traveling.
All that being said, I've never seen Thomas so excited for anything. He will be working for Sound Mental Health as a clinician serving homeless clients in Seattle. When we were talking last night he said the only 2 things he'd change about the job is that he'd rather make $20 and hour vs $19 (which will go up in 6 months) and that he'd like to have more hands-on experience with homeless camps. When I suggested that he probably will be spending time in homeless camps because part of his job is to go out and find his clients, he lit up. Kind of like a 6 year old, eager to go on an adventure. The most important things for me right now is supporting us both in this great transition, I know he feels the same.
My name is Rebecca Elizabeth Webber and I am a practicing anthropologist working to show humans how to achieve their sustainability goals.