I don’t have any fancy credentials for you, even though I am highly educated, but I do have a ton of life experience. At 19, I lived through the tragic murder of a close friend that affected the entire community. That event determined a path for many people, me included. Since then, I’ve had miscarriages, been married, had a baby, got divorced, had a miscarriage, then had another baby, then got married to another man (current husband, and better be last!) In between having my children is when the chronic medical issues started. At this point, I’ve had over a dozen medically necessary surgeries, numerous diagnoses, treatments, and procedures. I used to be extremely physically active, but now I am lucky to have four usable hours a day, and even then, sometimes I can’t really do much at all.
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My name is Candida (Kinder) Reece. People who know me call me Candi or Dida, depending on how well they know me. I’m 39 years old, have two kids who aren’t really kids anymore (almost 13 and almost 19,) and I live with multiple chronic illnesses. I’ve been divorced before, but met my current husband in 2006, and we’ve been together ever since. He is very much the opposite of me, and is great at building and creating things. I made him his own Facebook business page to showcase his work.
I was raised, and still live, where West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky meet. The area is small, but has made national headlines a few times. Once as being where the movie “We Are Marshall” was filmed, based on the college football team we lost to a plane crash. Marshall University is just a few minutes away from me, as well as the site of the crash and the memorials. The movie got most of the facts right, so it’s a decent representation of the event.
Unfortunately, it has also made headlines for being the place that saw 26 overdoses within 4 hours, one of the most obese areas in the nation, a distant “drug suburb” of Detroit, and……somehow in the midst of all that..won the title of being America’s Best Community. I’m not lying. I linked all of these so you can see this really goes on here.
I’ve included that little history of my area because I believe that understanding where I’m from is important to understanding my writings. There is a lot of struggle in this area, for various reasons, and I have a fairly unique perspective on the world because of it, and the other things life has thrown at me.
All of it together has made me become someone who is bluntly honest. I do not have the time, energy, or desire to look at things in any way other than for what they really are. I am appropriately civil and polite, but I won’t sugarcoat things for anyone. It doesn’t help them in the long run. It only makes them feel better in the moment, and my goal is to actually help.
These qualities are sometimes also faults, but even if I only reach, and help, one person with my writings and tools, it makes all the work I put into this worth every minute. The world is a pretty wild place these days, and struggling is a real thing. My hope is that my own struggles and experiences will help you feel less alone in the world, and maybe help you get through the day. One minute at a time, if that’s what it takes.
To see things I love such as businesses, websites, social media accounts, etc., go to the Good Stuff page
I hadn’t planned on including any pictures of myself, but I really started thinking about it and decided that wasn’t really fair of me. It also doesn’t support that I am proud of what I accomplish despite my body fighting me. So here are two pictures. The first is me before chronic illnesses started affecting me. I was already dealing with the anxiety and ptsd at this point, but I was still physically capable of functioning at the level I wanted because the physical conditions were JUST starting to show. I chalked the symptoms up to working two jobs and going to school. The second picture is me now, 18 years later and after battling chronic illnesses. I have to admit, I look better than I feel. Yeah, think about THAT for a minute.
Things To Know About Me:
I don’t do the normal niceties, facades, and keeping up of appearances that at least 80% of modernized society take part in. I’ve been through too much and now recognize how much of my time and energy I wasted trying to keep up with all that. When you get to where you have to choose between having the energy to function and using that energy for frivolous things- you start determining rather quickly that many of the things people commonly do are kind of unnecessary. They are just doing them because it’s what they grew up learning. I don’t have the time or energy for that. I have to limit my focus to what is actually needed to survive.
I don’t entertain delusions- meaning- I’m not the one you really want to talk to if you don’t want someone bringing you down to earth. I am capable of being tactful and sensitive to appropriate issues and emotions, but those are as far as I go. If you’re in some bubble where everyone is doing something to you, and nothing is ever your fault- I will pop that bubble. Not because it brings me joy- but because someone has to start telling people these things or it’s gonna get way out of control. In just about every situation there is something we can do to improve the scenario, even if it’s the tiniest thing like waiting one extra moment before reacting. To believe that there is nothing else we can ever do in situations is unreasonable. We have to be willing to accept constructive criticism and make necessary adjustments.
I am respectful when appropriate, and I truly care about people, but not whether they like me or not. I will call you out on whatever it is you need to be called out on if it’s necessary. People tend to mistake the fact that I advocate being real and compasionate for me being weak. I am far from weak, and can take anything thrown at me. I will stand up for what’s right against whoever. If you’re acting stupid, you’re acting stupid– I don’t care whether you’re homeless, in a position of authority, a celebrity- whatever. I’ll tell one about themselves just as fast as I will the others. That goes for social status as well as for race, gender, sexuality, and any other demographic you can think of. I don’t care what color you are or country you’re from. The way I see it, we are all equal. I don’t do preferrential treatment, negative or positive.