Welcome back to Mind Over Motherhood!
This week’s episode of Mind Over Motherhood is incredibly powerful and inspiring. I was so honoured to host Kat Inokai to have an important conversation about navigating chronic illness and disability as a mom and woman.
Kat is an absolutely down-to-earth, authentic and honest woman who uses her platform to advocate and inspire others. Sharing her story of living with multiple chronic illnesses and using various mobility aids, Kat is a fierce advocate for self-love and self-acceptance and shares her wisdom and inspiration with all who meet her.
Please allow me to introduce you to Kat Inokai.
Kat Inokai is a writer, content creator, and the host of Let It Land – a podcast about trusting the process.
She is a disabled mom of 2 who uses her voice and platforms to share her health journey managing multiple autoimmune conditions, and to be an advocate for those navigating chronic illness and disability.
This episode dove deep into all sorts of complex but important concepts in the field of health, women’s health, mental health and patient-provider relationships.
LISTEN TO THE EPISODE:
NAVIGATING CHRONIC ILLNESS AND DISABILITY
THIS EPISODE DIGS INTO:
- KAT’S STORY:
- In a compelling, raw and honest account, Kat shares her experience of being diagnosed with multiple chronic medical conditions over the course of her young life. What began as abdominal symptoms in her late teens became a diagnosis of Crohn’s Disease, after she had to fiercely advocate for herself and her symptoms to be taken seriously by her providers.
- Kat also experienced an incredibly rare stroke-like reaction to one of her biologic medications that ultimately resulted in her losing a lot of her motor functions, being admitted to a stroke unit and ultimately to rehabilitation.
- THE COMPLEX INTERACTION BETWEEN MENTAL + PHYSICAL HEALTH
- Carly and Kat discuss the complex interaction between mental health (especially anxiety) and it’s ability to impact physical symptoms, especially neurological symptoms.
- To further complicate the process, some physicians are quicker to label symptoms as anxiety rather than look deeper into them and consider that there could be true medical pathology.
- We discussed the importance of body awareness so you are able to accurately determine the symptoms that are arising from your anxiety and what is not.
- THE IMPORTANCE OF FINDING A PROVIDER YOU CAN TRUST
- Kat shared that her family doctor has been invaluable in navigating her health journey and has “quarterbacked” all of her specialists, appointments, tests and medications.
- However, she states that it is impossible to understate the importance of finding providers (including specialists) that will listen to you and trust your experience.
- “I am a doctor of one, a patient of one.” – Kat Inokai
BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE:
- How women have been conditioned to ignore or suppress symptoms of their illnesses because society teaches us that being unproductive or not being able to care for others makes us less valuable.
- Kat’s suggestions for navigating flares of chronic illnesses (whether physical or mental) including acceptance, breathing, mindfulness-based stress reduction and self-worth work.
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