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Shannon Ashley
Hey folks! I am a top writer on Medium, and a single mom with a chronic, progressive, and painful condition called LIPEDEMA. I first knew something was wrong with my legs when I was 12yo but I wouldn't find out what it was until I was about 33 years old. Lipedema causes an unusual and atypical amount of fat in body which is extremely painful. My lipedema is processing and I am in major need of surgery to get my life and mobility back. 7/31/22: All three surgeries went well, though recovery has been a pain. I will still need skin removal surgeries and most likely lymphedema surgery on my calves, but there are still many moving pieces as we wait to see how my swelling resolves. 1/1/22: Happy New Year! My first three surgeries are scheduled for January 18, February 22, and March 24. The surgery dates for excess skin removal are TBD. For now, my focus is getting through these surgeries and doing everything I can to maximize my results and reduce swelling. It's going to be a challenge to keep up with my responsibilities as a single mom (my daughter Sophie is 7 and in first grade), my work, and my health. The good news is that the whole process will be worth it. Just to regain some energy and mobility will change our lives. Unfortunately, this entire process to date (juggling Sophie, work, and the presurgical treatments) has been more challenging than I hoped. I'm not yet as productive as I'd like or need to be. I tend to move slowly and am still behind on lots of tasks for supporters. That said, I am so grateful to everyone who believes in me and I will continue to fulfill perks (although slowly) and hope to be timely as I recover from my surgeries. I also do plan to include all of my supporters in future endeavors and surprise benefits as my energy increases. Thank you so much for your encouragement and support. There are many days where you alone have made all of the difference in the world to me and Sophie! 6/25/21: MEMBERSHIP TIERS ARE HERE ❤ For those of you who've asked about Substack, Patreon, GoFundMe, or disability, etc, please know that I've created member tiers through Ko-fi as an alternative to all of those other options. For each membership tier, you are welcome to purchase the minimum "Ko-fi" or more. The rewards for each tier are just a small token of appreciation, but I do have a rather aggressive goal to bring on 200 newsletter members ASAP and 500 by the end of the year. My desire is to put together a beautiful and engaging newsletter that enriches your life and allows me to write at a healthier pace. Of course, the ultimate long-term goal here is to get the surgeries I need to remove the lipedema tissue. THANK YOU so much to everyone who supports my work, THANK YOU for your encouragement, and THANK YOU for even considering to support my writing. It's equal parts humbling and heart-warming to share this journey with you and to keep doing the work that I love—even though I must slow down. 6/24/21: I am OFFICIALLY working on the self-care prescription I received on 6/23 get through to 2022 in much better shape. This includes getting up to take breaks from writing every 20 minutes, purchasing costly compression garments, and taking my time to work instead of pushing myself to work constantly without minding my disabilities. It's a scary time, but I'm aiming to produce better work in the long-run. 4/28/21: this is a brand new page, so, it's not fully stocked yet. As a supporter, you'll get access to various highlights, blog posts, polls, pictures and videos. If you already follow me on Medium, you probably know what I'm all about, but here's a quick summation of the topics I cover: - Mental health and family dynamics, including abuse. - Exvangelical issues and negative experiences with evangelical Christianity. - Feminism and parenting as a single mother. - Navigating life as a very fat woman with a disease called lipedema, and how I've quit chasing diet culture. - How I'm dealing with late-in-life diagnoses like autism and inattentive ADHD. - Sometimes, I write about relationships and some of my more serious--or even, ridiculous--life experiences because I've made lots of mistakes. - Equality and white privilege. - I sometimes get into politics, and I'm a Lefty, but I'm critical of all sides, including the Democrats. - Pop-culture/celebrity happenings and how they relate to bigger human issues in our society. - How my journey is going as a writer and various tips or ideas I've learned along the way.

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