There's no way I can fit in work without any play! This week has
been a huge blessing.
Valentine's Day is one of my favorite holidays since I've met
Ryan! It's just an excuse to go eat a fancy dinner and watch a
romantic movie. Everyday is Valentine's Day for us but we always
get to pick a place that's more expensive than we would normally
eat at and just enjoy the day!
Well my cousin, Rosie, is probably the biggest fan of this
"Hallmark holiday" and always throws a big get together every year!
Her theme this year was "Red Carpet" and it was so much fun to
dance the night away and spend time with friends and family. I also
got to spend the day in the city with my two best friends Maria and
Rosie, which is long overdue. Eating "good eats," walking and
window-shopping, and catching up was definitely what we all
My cousin Rosie and I at her Red
Well, when I came home, I realized I had a lot of work to do. I
had to work on my Grand Rounds presentation, which consisted of
sifting through tons of research articles, ten or so books, and
surfing the internet for more resources. It is not anywhere close
to being done but I will be spending my day off (President's Day)
working on it all day! It definitely has been a learning experience
since I picked such a difficult topic but I am excited to share it
with my colleagues next week! The title of my presentation is
"Dream catching: reaching your inner healer." I will let you know
how it goes!
Then on top of the Grand Rounds topic, I got an email from Dr.
Solecki concerning my case study report I worked on with him on a
patient about a year ago. It has been published and accepted for
poster presentation at the Sports Symposium but now it is being
reviewed for another presentation in Portland, Oregon! However,
that means I have more corrections to make, which I will be working
on today, as well.
It's so important in our profession to not only graduate, pass
board exams, and get licensed but to contribute! Many things that
"Complementary and Alternative Medicine" practitioners use as
modalities do not always get published so sometimes modalities we
choose to use, we know work, but the public can be skeptical. Case
studies are the place to start. It's an isolated event that can
examine the success of a treatment you have done with a patient
that may have been more complex but it can encourage more research
on it or can encourage other practitioners to try your treatment
modalities. It's exciting that Dr. Solecki and I have been accepted
by multiple presentations, and I can't wait until I put more effort
in the case study to get it published into a medical journal.
Well hope you all enjoyed time with your loved ones during this
LOVE week but remember, Valentine's Day is everyday!
Hello everyone! I hope you all had an amazing Thanksgiving
weekend to share with your loved ones.
This week I only had clinic for two days due to the holidays and
I got to fit in a couple patients, but I was so excited to get out
of Illinois and see our extended family in Minnesota. We drove the
whole 7 hours (super long) but it was more than worth it. There was
an endless amount of amazing food, laughs and love. And yes, I did
visit the "Mall of America" on Black Friday! :)
I've dedicated this blog to all the things I am thankful
for--like my little "niece" Rhyin, (pictured above), my little
person full of JOY this weekend! We shouldn't only use one weekend
of the year to reflect back on the things that are awesome in our
lives, but it's definitely a nice reminder to give thanks!
My thanksgiving list:
1. My mother:
She exemplifies beauty and strength to me. I am definitely my
mother's daughter. I love her so much and I am so thankful for all
the sacrifices she has made for our family!
2. My husband:
Ryan is an amazing man and I am so lucky to have him. Through
all my complaining "girl" moments and everything else, he loves me
more and more every day. He is going to be such an amazing dad one
day and I can't wait to share more life adventures with him.
3. My brothers (and sister-in-law):
Having three older brothers with a strong mother has definitely
made me who I am. They are always supportive of me! Plus my oldest
brother and sister-in-law gave me my amazingly awesome nephew,
Xander, who makes my life so much more than I could imagine.
4. My two best friends, Maria and Rosie:
We've been friends for over 10 years and they definitely
complete me. They were both my maids-of-honor in my wedding and
will always be in my life forever! They are amazing!
5. My family and friends:
From my strong-willed grandparents to my hilarious and
fashionable cousins to all my colleagues at NUHS. I am a lucky girl
to have all these amazing people in my life who make me strive to
be the better version of myself and show me that life is about LOVE
and LAUGHTER--with a couple bumps in the road. :)
I could probably go on and on and on with what I am thankful for
including the food I get to eat every day, the house I come home
to, and the education that I have. What is on your THANKFUL
I started clinic on Tuesday thinking that my week was going to
be very slow and also anticipating a slow schedule next week due to
Thanksgiving. However, it was actually the opposite!
I finally got to see my first pediatric patient! It was exciting
and very challenging to take a history from the mother and then do
a physical exam on the tiny human patient! I will have to say that
I was very blessed and lucky with my patient because he loved
everything about the appointment and was so entertaining!
I've always wanted to go into women's health and pediatric
health. This tri and last tri, I had so many patients with women's
"problems;" it was difficult but still very rewarding. And now that
I had my first pediatric patient, it definitely cemented my
decision to do women's and pediatric health! I only hope we can get
more pediatric patients in our clinic because it really gave me
such a positive and very necessary experience.
One of my best friends, Rosie, playing "bride" while
for our other best friend to change into wedding
My weekend was amazing as usual. I got to spend time with my two
best friends as we shopped for Maria's wedding dress! After
spending an entire day dress shopping, we went to support a very
good friend as he had to say goodbye to his mother for the last
time after losing her battle to breast cancer. Having two funerals
in two weekends is definitely not expected, but celebrating life
and being thankful for those people in our lives is just
My best friends and I went back to my house and I hosted a
"girls night." We cooked together, laughed a lot, and celebrated
each other and life! It was a great reminder of all the things I am
thankful for, which is family and friends! What a great segue into
this Thanksgiving Week!
Waiting for Maria to come and show us her first
Stay tuned for next week's blog that will consist of my thankful
list and food pictures! :)
Have a happy thanksgiving and enjoy each other...enjoy life!
Blissor: Having a holiday that lets us all enjoy family, good
food--and an excuse to stay in pajamas all day! :)
This week began with a very bad start with the news of the
sudden passing of one of my friends, Zandi. The week seemed surreal
as the entire campus (students, faculty and staff) grieved the loss
of such an amazing and positive person. Walking into Janse Hall and
seeing the outpouring of love people shared on a huge poster of her
that her boyfriend made was so inspiring and touching. It started
to feel more real after reading all the messages from people that
were very close to her to people that had the chance to witness her
beautiful smile while passing in the hallways.
Friends of Zandi
It was very refreshing and touching to see the outpouring of
love from the faculty and staff that also felt the loss but also
knew the loss the students were feeling. Everyone was unbelievably
understanding, which can demonstrate the camaraderie we share on
the campus. Among all the hustle and bustle of studying and
worrying about clinic numbers, a large number of people attended
Zandi's memorial service on our campus. The program that her close
friends put together was so beautiful and couldn't have been more
perfect. We all felt Zandi watching down on us with that big smile
on her face. After the program, individuals had the opportunity to
pay personal tribute to her with funny and touching memories of why
they loved Zandi so much! It definitely made me contemplate what
people would say at my memorial!
One of my memories actually relates to this blog. Zandi and I
emailed me prior to her attending NUHS with questions about campus
life to Chicago life. Well, one day I was walking on campus and I
see this woman approaching me with open arms. I was a bit petrified
as I looked around and realized that she was running towards me and
no one else was around me! I braced myself as she embraced me with
the best and most genuine hug ever. Then she said, "Hi Miravone!
I'm Zandi!" (ha ha) We both started laughing as I explained that
although she knew what I looked like from all my pictures, I had no
idea what she looked like! :)
As we celebrated her life and mourned her death, I still
attended clinic and had patients to care for. It was a rough lesson
to learn--moving forward no matter what.
Ryan's surprise birthday party.
On Sunday, the day of Zandi's funeral in Raleigh, N.C., I threw
my husband a surprise birthday party, celebrating his life. It was
bittersweet to realize that Zandi was being put to rest while we
were having family and friends over for a get-together celebrating
another year of Ryan's life, but it was the best therapy I
Ryan was completely surprised and so appreciative of everything
that was done behind the scenes for the past two weeks for him. It
was definitely what I needed this week as well. I was able to
grieve over everything at the beginning of the week and then
celebrate life at the end the week. It was the best medicine I
could take. I hope everyone has a great week and remember to
celebrate life every day!
Blissor: Life! All my complaints, problems, blissors, etc. are
all worth it because I get to live! :) I need to work towards
leaving an amazing legacy like Zandi did.
I am sitting here thinking of how I could write about my break
and all of the hardships I endure when I can't help but think about
last night. I received a horrible phone call about the sudden death
of an NUHS colleague, an inspiration, and most importantly, a
I cannot imagine of one time in all my years of
being here at National, when I have had to say goodbye to a
classmate and friend that we've all grown to love. I use the word
"we" because I truly mean that. Zandi Fennel (in the photo) was a
light at National. She could walk into the room and smile and
instantly your day would get better. I always told her, "You bring
the sun into my day." And she always laughed and said, "Ohhh,
Miravone!" But I hope she knew that I truly meant it from my
I actually met Zandi through this blog. We emailed back and
forth for about 6 months when she was deciding to make the big move
from North Carolina to Lombard for the program. She started as a DC
and eventually became dual enrolled in both the DC and ND program.
The last time I saw her was Friday (Sept. 9th) and we shared our
stories about our break and how much I was suffering through
"senioritis" as I was pushing towards the finish line. I
complained…complained…and complained, and she smiled and gave me a
big hug and said, "Be strong." Those words just echo in my head now
that I know those were the some of the last words she said to
Campus will never be the same. The people she has touched will
definitely never be the same. Her time on earth was so abbreviated,
but I know she was a huge follower of God and He truly infiltrated
every aspect of who she was, which I believe is why she was so
loveable. I hope some of you reading this blog had the opportunity
to be touched by her.
A fond memory I have of her was walking through campus and
waving to her while she was on the other side of the pond. I was in
a hurry to get to clinic and she shouted across the entire campus
"Miravone!! Happy Birthday!! Have a good day! You deserve it!" I
just laughed because she really SHOUTED and everyone looked at her
like she was crazy! (Also, it was a week before my birthday but she
told me later, she thought it would brighten my day more since it
was so unexpected!) But that was Zandi for ya! She would do
anything for anyone if she knew it could bring some happiness into
your long days here.
The best part of being on this small campus is the camaraderie
that you build whether you plan to or not. I have grown to truly
cherish the people I am finishing the ND program with, as well as
all the people finishing up behind me (like Zandi), that
continually remind us in clinic what the bigger picture is. Among
all the hustle and bustle of numbers, patient cases, treatment
plans, etc., it is so easy to get caught up and lose yourself in
the midst of it all. Zandi was one of those people that did not
have a problem with shaking you back into reality with her amazing
love and heart.
I will miss seeing her positivity that exuberated through her… I
will miss her curly hair that I told her I wish I had… I will miss
her hugs that she gave out freely… and I will miss her smile that
truly lit up any room she walked into. I wasn't as close to her as
some people on this campus, but I truly cherish the time and the
friendship I had with her.
Please keep her family and close friends in your prayers. She is
originally from North Carolina and we were her home away from home.
We love you Zandi and will never forget you. Your legacy lives on
in all of us!
• ND Clinic Format
• Love Your Profession
• MD vs. ND
• CAM Day
• Working During School
• Q&A with Readers
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