My name is Gabby.  

I lost half my body weight through exercise and eating right.

 I'm here to motivate you, inspire you, and make you laugh on your journey to a healthier and happier lifestyle.

A Comedic Memoir: Because If You Can't Laugh, You're Screwed

A Comedic Memoir: Because If You Can't Laugh, You're Screwed

Warning: Adult language. 

*Please do not read any further if you are offended by adult language and adult content.


Hi Everyone! I thought I'd take a little break from the health and fitness world on this fine Friday to bring you some comedic relief. But don't worry! I'll be back Monday morning with some health and fitness encouragement! In fact, next week I'll be featuring a different bodyweight workout each day!



Okay, right out of the gate, you need to understand one thing. I have no shame. Now don't get me wrong, I'm fit for public and I know how to act. But when it comes to telling stories, I leave nothing out. Nada. I've always operated under the assumption that if you want somebody to totally understand what you've been through, you gotta lay all that shit on the line. If you don't believe me now, you will by the end of this story. I'm going full monty on the details so saddle up, my friends.

I found throughout my life that the one thing that's consistently gotten me through my toughest times is humor. If it weren't for finding the funny side of things, I'm not sure where my ass would be by now. This summer, for instance, has been one giant ball of WTF. To say we've had a few hiccups is a gross understatement. But the biggest hitch happened on vacation, or should I say the vacation that didn't really happen. At least not the fun one we planned, that's for sure.

On our second day of vacation, I fell very ill with viral meningitis. We came home from vacay, I did a 7 day stint in the hospital, and then was bedridden for a month. Let me tell you, I've had a full body lift surgery and pushed two kids out of my Coochie Maroo and I have never felt the pain that came with having a swollen brain. I didn't even know that kind of pain existed. Ya, I know, this isn't quite sounding like comedic relief. Just give me a sec, it's coming. I promise.

So after a month of writhing around in bed and clutching my skull, the excruciating pain started to ease and I started seeing the funny side of life again. I still have a long recovery ahead until I'm 100% me again, but I'm grateful to at least be me enough to look at the humorous side of a really shitty situation.

7 Reasons Why Meningitis Blows Goats

1. It Sucks Major Ass

Like I'm talkin' serious, colossal, nasty, donkey ASS. Okay, ya, I just had to get that out of the way. I know it's general and non-specific but that's my number one and you can't make me change it. 

2. The Hospital Stay

Can somebody please tell me why hospital food tastes like Alpo? I mean we're not prisoners, we are pathetic sick people. Last time I checked, I wasn't wearing an orange jumpsuit. Although, that would be far preferred over a one-sided gown that's missing three quarters of the ties. Are you serious with this shit? You have me wearing some dingy rag that wouldn't cover my ass even if all the ties were attached. But now I gotta sport a tie-less piece of fabric and be forced to go backside commando. It's like I'm wearing a giant bib.

And speaking of bibs, let's get back to the food. Uh, can you please feed us something that won't make us sicker? Along with the Shoot-Me-In-The-Head head pain that comes with VM, you also get this wonderful nausea. Oh yes, it's just lovely. And let me say for the record that when you're nauseous like a muthafucka and they roll up in that piece with a tray of slop, the nausea shoots up to DEFCON 1. One day I had "country fried steak". I had to put that in quotes because I can assure you that that was most certainly NOT country fried steak. It honest to God looked like a dog crawled up on my tray and took a deuce. And the sauce, omg, forget about it. I can't even. {gagging} 

Do you wanna hear something even more sickening than my dog deuce entrée? Probably not but I'm gonna tell you anyway. After they brought me my country fried dogshit and I of course declined, I looked over at my husband a few minutes later... and he was eating it!!! Sweet baby Jesus. This man had been by my side for days without moving. He was so hungry, he ate dogshit. Omg, my gag reflex... Must. Change. Subject.

3. The Chewbacca Syndrome

 I don't think it would take a lot of imagination to picture what a woman would look like without shaving for a month. But I'd like to interject here and remind you that I am 100% Italian. For those of you who are not Italian, you need to understand that an Italian's hair growth is beyond comprehension. It grows at the speed of light. Thousands of studies have proven that we are barely human. Scientists are now refusing to do any further testing. They were having complications that were occuring around the one month mark into the studies. There had been attacks. The attacks have been a direct result of the 'Transformation' that occurs without proper Italian grooming. One scientist who lost a limb named this transformation 'The Chewbacca Syndrome'. 

I too fell victim to this syndrome. I lost all of my distinguishing characteristics and I became a hideous, hairy beast. I became Chewbacca. My pits and legs were so thickly covered, it was hard to tell I once was a human. And in my nether region, uh, let's just say I looked like I had Don King in a leg lock. Ya, it was that bad. 

Jay, my poor husband, had to lay next to Sasquatch and listen to animalistic grumbles and snarls while he was trying to sleep. I'm sorry, Hunny. I'm sorry you married Gabbaca. 

On that disgusting note, I'd like to end with mentioning that my first post-VM shave was an all day affair. It was particularly sucky after the hot water ran out and I had hair popping from my goosebumps where I had already removed my fur. I went through 24 razors. But I came out of it pretty much unscathed. I only needed 82 stitches.

All that blood and gore and clogging the drain was for nothing. This was a pic of my legs three days later.

photo credit: pixabay.com

photo credit: pixabay.com

4. The I'm-Effing-Starving Syndrome

So for 12 days, I couldn't eat. I mean nothing. Zilch. The nausea was beyond description. You just simply cannot eat in that state. I would let a bite of saltine cracker disintegrate in my mouth before I took medicine but it didn't even make it to my belly. 

So on Day 13, I am finally ready for food. I eat an English muffin. It was glorious. You would've thought Jay brought me Maine lobster and filet mignon. It was delicious. I moaned. I moaned in pure ecstasy... in my Chewbacca voice. 

Okay good, appetite is coming back. Sooooo, because I'm a raging idiot and I operate on that all-or-nothing logic, I felt an English muffin on Day 13 meant that I was cleared for take off. By the end of Day 15, completely on my own, I had consumed three of my mom's famous turkey meat loaves. Yes, you read that right. Three full meatloaves. I'd like to blame it on the fact that my brain lining was extremely inflamed but that just wasn't the case. No, this was simply a straight-up dumbass move fueled by the fact that I was friggin' starving. 

I mean if you're starving in the middle of the woods, you'd eat anything, a damn twig or bark off a tree. Here I was starving with delicious meatloaf in front of me. I don't think I was really in a position to use self-control. And I think it's safe to say that when my family would walk in the bedroom and I was lying down making love to meatloaf while grunting my Chewbacca grunts, they weren't gonna say shit. They couldn't stop me. Nobody was willing to put their life on the line. I cannot even fathom the sight they were forced to behold. 

I wonder how long my children will need to be in therapy or how long it will be before my husband can look at me without that frightened look on his face. There was scarring that occurred.

5. The Meatloaf Aftermath

Well, in case you were wondering what happens when your body has absolutely no food for 12 days and then you proceed to overdose on giant mounds of meat, the suspense is over. I'm about to tell you exactly what happens. You shit out your organs for three days.

Being a lifelong IBS sufferer, it goes without saying that I'm very familiar with what it feels like to be stricken with either extreme. That being put out there in all it's disgusting glory, let me add that The Meatloaf Aftermath made any and all of my past IBS nightmares look like a Sunday stroll in the park. For three days, I camped out in the Loo. In this time, I pondered what I could've done in a previous life to deserve such anguish, questioned why I was made to live this Hell on Earth, and wondered what the chances were of my vital organs being able to grow back.

I'm talkin' crying while rocking back and forth, yelling "WHY", and promising God you will never say, do, or think anything wrong, bad, or mean again. You know it's a sad state of affairs when you rather have The Devil Gut Virus.

How in the world does 10 pounds of meat turn into water? OMG. There are no words.

I had been told by all the doctors and nurses that one of the biggest downfalls of the pain meds was being constipated. What? Constipation? Um, hello, I just fought on the front lines in the Battle of WaterLoo for three fucking days. I think my liquefied organs tell a different story. 

Maybe I stumbled upon a cure for medication-induced constipation? From now on, anyone who is given pain meds also gets a prescription for turkey meatloaf. One slice per pill. I'm like the modern day Fleming, accidentally discovering life-changing medical breakthroughs. Okay, okay, I'm not trying to say my medical meatloaf is on the same level as penicillin but talk to someone who hasn't shit in a week... I bet they'd think I was a genius.  

6. Mental confusion

One of the side effects of VM is mental confusion. Ya, like I needed any help in that department. When I was told of this common drawback, I didn't take much stock in it. For the first three weeks, since I was in so much pain, there was absolutely no thinking going on at all. In fact, I could not even speak for weeks so there was no way to know if mental confusion was even a factor. Once most of my severe pain and nausea was gone, I was left with a constant 'regular' headache (which I still have while writing this). As the Shoot-Me-In-The-Head pain eased, I started being able to think and concentrate more. I for one, believed I was operating on a full deck of cards and free from any confusion.That was until I found myself standing in the kitchen topless eating rice pudding. 

It was only because my mouth missed the spoon and pudding spilled that I even decided to look down. I looked down to see rice pudding all over my naked self, wearing only underwear and Nike slip-ons. 

Okay, I should probably add here that you can see directly into my kitchen through my front door. Aaaaand the front door was open. Aaaaand we have a full-window screen door. 

I'm not sure if anyone got a glimpse of my meningitis mammaries but hey, it wouldn't be the first time. Just ask the D-Bug guy, and the neighbor lady... And some random solicitor guy who I never answered the door for because I was too busy dropping to the floor and doing a naked army crawl across the foyer. Okay yeah, so maybe we should invest in some sort of window coverings, but whatever, that's a whole other matter. Back to my brain damage.

Another time, a few nights later, Jay was tucking in the girls. We have always put the girls down together every night. We have a whole family routine that we've done since they were born and I hadn't been a part of it for nearly a month. In the middle of him singing to them, I heard my oldest say "Uh, what the?" It wasn't until that moment that I realized I was in fact NOT lying in bed but was standing in the hallway... topless. I was watching the bedtime routine go down yet I was not saying anything. I was just standing outside the door like a zombie, a topless zombie. They all turned around and started cackling at me in all of my Gabbacca Boobie Zombie glory. I have no recollection of how I made it to the hallway. Jay escorted me back to bed, helped me get my jammie top on, and left the room laughing his ass off.

I'm happy to announce that my mental confusion phase really only lasted a few days. My mind has been kind of fuzzy ever since then but I am certainly aware of what I'm doing. If I've learned anything from my Hazed and Confused days, it's that when I'm an old woman and dementia starts setting in, I'm pretty much gonna be flashing everyone at the old folk's home. 

7. The Rat's Nest

Okay, for those of you who don't know me, I have long hair down to my booty. Do you have any idea what extremely long hair looks like after it's been in a ponytail for a week without being washed? Ya, I know, a week without a shower is disgusting. It couldn't be helped. If it makes a difference, there's not much sweating that goes on when you're lying flat on your back and can't move. Ok, back to the hair. Normally, I would never be able to lie in bed with a ponytail. Ever. It drives me insane. But while I was bedridden, at any given minute, I needed to be prepared for puking. Every woman knows when there is upchucking involved, you need to get your locks out of the way. So let me try to paint a picture. Imagine you're holding a bird's nest. The twiggy texture of it, the color, the knotted up twine all through it. Okay, now picture that bird's nest three times bigger. This is necessary to do because I have three times the amount of hair a normal woman has. Then take 24 inch strands of hair, like a bushelful, and wrap it around the bird's nest you already have. This giant thatch of mangled up nasty is what was on the back of my head. There was no length anymore, just an enormous hair ball. It was a gargantuan, twig bun. It kinda looked like how Chewbacca's mom would wear her hair. 

Here's an accurate visual for you. This was the back of my friggin head.

photo credit: pixabay.com

photo credit: pixabay.com

I looked like I had escaped from an insane asylum and had been living in the woods for six months. It was really bad. REALLY bad. In fact one night I heard Jay chuckling next to me in bed. I couldn't turn my head without pain but I was curious so I looked over anyway only to find him taking pictures of my hair. I'm dead ass serious. He was taking pictures of my rat's nest Bacca bun. Are you for real? Apparently he wanted documentation of my 'Transformation' so that when 60 Minutes ran our story, there would be proof. Proof that Bigfoot really does exist.

So there ya go, folks, seven reasons why viral meningitis blows goats. Count your blessings... and go shave your legs! As for me, I'm going to continue healing and hopefully fully recover from this sucky shit very soon. Nature seems to really reset me so I think I'll spend a lot of time in the sunshine and wilderness. I think it'll speed up recovery. I mean, just look how peaceful I look walking in the great outdoors. It's like I belong there or something.

photo credit: pixabay.com

photo credit: pixabay.com


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*The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content in this article is for general information purposes only. I am not a doctor, nor am I a dietitian. Talk to your physician before making any changes in your diet or exercise regimen. The information found in this article is from various sources which include, but are not limited to, the sites listed above. I encourage you to do your own research and talk with your physician before making any changes in diet or exercise. What has worked for me may not work for you. This information in this article or on this website should never replace or serve as medical advice.