Keeping Up With A New Kind of Normal

If you haven’t heard the news, Google has announced it is closing the doors for Google Reader July 1 so if you are like me and keep up with your blog reading using this service, you may want to start exploring options now!

Some ways to keep up with all things A New Kind of Normal are:



Subscribe via Email

If you want to keep reading in a reader-like format, you can Follow my blog with Bloglovin‘! You can also check out this blog post on transferring your Google Reader subscriptions to Bloglovin’ quickly & easily!

Follow on Bloglovin

chronic stylefaith

Changing The Way I Shop

I will be the first to admit that I love shopping. I do. I do more online shopping these days because of illness but I still love it. Whenever I need to think and process, one of my favorite things to do is to go shopping by myself (even it it is just window shopping). I got it honest from my mom. If she is in town, there is a pretty good chance we are going to end up at the outlet mall nearby.

Speaking of the outlet mall, what I love even more than shopping is finding a good deal! There is just something exhilarating scoring a bargain!

The problem is that up until recently I did not take the time to consider how I am getting that super-awesome cheap price.

My husband is one of the youth pastors that helps organize a winter youth conference called Winterspree. They always have a mission focus for each conference and for the last two years, they have chosen to highlight human trafficking. I think so many times we (myself included) believe that this is something that happens in other places, in other countries, but the truth is that it is happening here, in our country, in our own backyards. Another misconception is that human trafficking is the same as sex trafficking. While sexual exploitation is a big part of the trafficking problem, it involves so much more including economic exploitation (such as being forced to work for little to no wages and being subjected to violence).

These are some statistics from Un.Gift – A Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking:

  • An estimated 2.5 million people are in forced labour (including sexual exploitation) at any given time as a result of trafficking.
  • People are reported to be trafficked from 127 countries to be exploited in 137 countries, affecting every continent and every type of economy
  • The majority of trafficking victims are between 18 and 24 years of age .
  • An estimated 1.2 million children are trafficked each year .
  • 95% of victims experienced physical or sexual violence during trafficking (based on data from selected European countries)
  • Estimated global annual profits made from the exploitation of all trafficked forced labour are US$ 31.6 billion and 49% of that profit is generated in industrialized economies
  • In 2006 there were only 5,808 prosecutions and 3,160 convictions throughout the world. This means that for every 800 people trafficked, only one person was convicted in 2006.

Have you picked your jaw up off the floor yet? A profit of 31.6 BILLION.

You see many of those deals come at a price. The price of human dignity and justice.

And that makes me angry.

It makes me hurt.

It makes me ashamed.

I can only imagine what it does to God’s heart as He sees how we treat one another.

As a believer and as a human, I cannot stand for this. I cannot stand behind the shroud of ignorance and pretend that it is not going on or that I cannot do anything about it.

It is time to make some changes. Beginning with the way I shop. Saving a few dollars is not worth it when I know the costs.

Will you stand with me?


Next week, fellow blogger Emily from Scribbles From Emily will be sharing on how we can change the world through fashion!


Some recommended resources:

United Nations Global Compact

bloggingchronic illness

Blogging for Endometriosis: Social Impact (Week 3 Link-Up)

It is no secret that I am an introvert. As I read the post Nine Signs That You Might Be An Introvert, I found myself nodding along with every one. I even wrote An Introvert’s Guide To Blog Conferences after pushing myself out of my comfort zone to attend Bloggy Bootcamp (my plans to attend Type A Conference this fall are really exciting but a little scary too).

So despite the fact that I’m not a social butterfly by nature, it does not mean that endometriosis and chronic illness have not had an impact on my social life. True, I love my alone time but being bedridden in pain is not the same thing as alone time and it hardly counts as relaxing.

I am not sure if being an introvert and being Type A are related but being both, I like being able to plan for social engagements (you know since my calendar stays so full and all). I am very much a scheduler and list keeper but since my diagnosis and as my illness has progressed I have had to learn to let go of some of these tendencies. I have had to learn to say no and that sometimes I will have to cancel a night out because of a flare and that it is okay to do so.

The problem I am having as a result, however, is two-fold. First, I have the tendency to beat myself up and feel guilty that I may be letting someone down. Second, I have the fear of trying to plan anything because I don’t know how I will feel a week or even a few days from now and the guilt from canceling hits me in advance so I am scared to even commit in the first place.

This has been equally frustrating on my husband’s part.  He wants to be sweet and romantic and plan date nights out for the two of us but doesn’t want to put added pressure on me if I’m not feeling well and can’t go out. He feels guilty for not being romantic enough and I feel guilty for him feeling guilty when I know he has no reason to feel guilty in the first place. My husband is the sweetest, caring, and compassionate person I know and does such an amazing job being a husband, father, and caregiver (although I doubt he thought he would have to take on that role so young).

There are some major life changes are on the horizon but in the meantime, I am trying to learn how to balance. While I am very much the textbook introvert, my husband is a classic extrovert and it is important that we find ways to meet in the middle and enjoy a social life together as a family and especially as a couple. Date nights may not be as exciting as they once were (as in late nights out on the town) but may involve a simple dinner out or a trip to the local coffee shop where we can talk and laugh.

Trying to reclaim a social life with chronic illness can be a challenge but I believe it is crucial in maintaining your total health and in helping you keep the mentality that you are so much more than your illness.

How has illness impacted your social life and what are things you have done to stay socially active despite it?

Please link up your posts for Week 3 of Blogging for Endometriosis using the linky below! After linking up please visit at least the to links in front of you to help spread the love and support!