Your Story : Lyzz

Feb 27, 2014 Your Story, Giving Back
it's been a FULL & busy start to the new year...
i am truly in disbelief that it is somehow already the end of February!
...although, the idea of spring being just around the corner makes me want to click my heels & do cartwheels around my house. #truestory

even with the 'busyness' of it all, i have continued to have the great honor to meet more incredible, inspiring & truly brave people.
i am honestly so touched & constantly in awe of those who choose to share their stories for i want to know YOUR story.

without further ado,
please meet Lyzz.
this is her story.

who are you, where are you from, what excites you, what is your PASSION... what's your story?

Here goes...
(and beware... I talk a lot! this is not a cliff notes version!)
I am Elizabeth (Lyzz) Wachler...
Wife first,
mom of our doxie rescue second
and everything else in life fights for the third spot, ha.

I have to begin with how I transitioned into the woman I am today...
the woman who is so blissfully happy and living in a reality that's beyond anything I ever thought was imaginable.
Since I was very young, I was always sick with "mysterious illnesses."
I was in and out of the hospital with random conditions that were considered too unlikely for a child or adolescent to have.
It did a number on me physically, mentally and emotionally.

I kept family and friends at a distance most of my life and I always turned to art and music to fill the void.
Friends were impatient with me because I "never felt good" and I cancelled plans constantly,
and my family struggled to understand the pain I felt inside that was rarely visible from a physical perspective.
Doctors eventually started dismissing my aches and pains and said I "looked fine."

It was a lonely world in my early twenties.
I lived on my own mostly since I was 18.
I wanted to stay away from the world and when I'd rarely venture out, I went out with a personality I didn't even know.

You're supposed to find your identity in your 20's...
and I was creating multiple identities just to get by and hide whoever was inside.
Finally, when I was 23, doctor's were able to diagnosis me with Lupus.
It's an autoimmune disease that can attack anywhere in the body.
It takes several years to diagnosis because it's such a complicated disease that takes various forms.
It creates other diseases along the way.
At this point, I was diagnosed with
Lupus SLE,
Interstitial Cystits,
Raynaud's Disease,
Fibromyalgia to name only a few.

I didn't know how to handle feeling sick every moment.
I did all I could to get up and make my way into work everyday (I worked multiple jobs just to pay the bills).

As in in true "Lyzz fashion,"
I know what I want immediately and I go after it with a vengeance.
I was dead set on finding happiness, whatever that meant,
in the most free-spirited manner I could allow.
I was overwhelmed with failed relationships, jobs and in incredible debt with medical bills and I decided to move to Florida.
I decided to take a leap of faith.
I left the contents of my life in a storage unit and I packed my car for Florida.

Almost immediately upon arriving, a switch started to click.
I was always independent, but there was something about this move that hit a reset button for me.
I was away from any doctor who knew me and could help me,
I didn't have friends to avoid,
and I had unfamiliar territory to travel.

I spent weeks traveling to different cities and visiting art galleries and art festivals.
I felt so sure that everything was falling into place,
but I quickly realized that neither a job nor a lifestyle I felt comfortable with was in Florida.

After only a short month (yup, a month! I am a very "changeable" person ),
I moved back home and lived with my dad and step-mom.
I was young when my parents divorced, so this was my first time living with my dad since I was just a little girl.
I saw this an an opportunity to try and open my heart to my family who I tried so hard to keep away.
My mom and I had a solid relationship, so I had some mending to do in other areas.
As the saying goes,
nothing in life comes easy or quickly for that matter.
Since I was still driven to find happiness,
I spent this chapter of my life trying to become "Lyzz"
and not "Lupie/Lupus Lyzz."

I cried nearly every single day during this dreadful journey.
It was such a struggle for me to find myself.
The only thing that kept me going was my innate stubbornness to keep my chin up and not succumb to my diseases.
I knew somewhere inside that I had a purpose and I was going to find it.

Even though the world seemed to open up and swallow me whole,
I was never a person without a flicker of hope (which happens to be my middle name ).
On my (and note: it was an absolutely horrific birthday that ended in a failed birthday party and tears ) 26th birthday,
I felt like a heavy blanket was sliding off my shoulders.
I know it's a weird description, but I don't know how else to explain it.

My relationship with God was lost time and time again, but he never gave up on me.
He spoke to me that day and somehow I knew everything would be okay.
It wasn't more than nine days later that I mustered up the courage to leave my phone number for this darling guy
who seemed to be the only reason for me to smile those days.
He worked at the Starbucks I frequented on my daily route to work.
I first noticed Dan suddenly many months previously.
We'd share a few words here and there, and I was always lifted up after driving away.
After months of innocent flirting
(if you consider brief eye-contact flirting and the occasional joke from him and a girlish giggle from me),
I felt confident now without this weight on me.

The day after I left my phone number with his co-worker, he contacted me and we met for coffee at Caribou
(a neutral java establishment considering I worked at Bean & Leaf and he worked at Starbucks).

There we were, on our first date,
and the second he walked towards the table I was anxiously waiting at, and our eyes met...
I knew I had found the one.

Believe me! I know how crazy it sounds.
I was the unsocial, negative and bitter woman who never believed in such a fairy tale.
From that first date forward,
we were and still are inseparable.
It was as if my soul was somehow cleansed of all impurities.
We were reverting back to our innocent and unjaded youthful spirits.
We smiled and laughed until we cried.
Everything was so right.
When he first held my hand,
he shyly reached for it when we were walking around a park.

Even the way his fingers touched my palm and then intertwined with my fingers felt so unbelievable.

I felt love, respect and for the first time in my life,
I felt whole.
I was nervous to tell him about "me."
The me with the diseases that disable me.

I eventually told him and I'll never forget how concerned he was for me.
He didn't care that he couldn't see my disabilities from the outside,
he could see the physical pain they caused me from the inside.
He researched my diseases and he made me feel comfortable with them.
As I had tried to accept them, he immediately accepted them.

Six months after our first date, he proposed.
That month I found out from my doctor that my health has done so much damage to my reproductive system
that I had a small window to conceive if I ever wanted a child.

Dan and I, both spiritual, believed in handing the situation over to God.
We kept with our plans to marry six months later.
While my reproductive organs were struggling, my bladder disease was also flaring up.
I went on disability from my job 4 months before our wedding. My pain was so great and all options for relief had been exhausted.
I had to have a device implanted in the base of my spine to help with pain.
The surgery was unsuccessful as my body had rejected it,
and a month prior to our wedding, I was back in the hospital having the device removed.

Dan stood by my side the entire time.
He was my rock and the reason I was able to happily walk down the aisle on June 10, 2011,
wearing heels none-the-less,
and join my Darling Danny in our heavenly marriage before God and our friends and family.
I still don't know how I was able to dance the night away on our wedding night, ha!

Our plans for a honeymoon were obviously put on the back burner since our honeymoon money went to my surgeries.
We took a little road trip and enjoyed every moment as newlyweds. We have yet to take a honeymoon.
Once were we wed, we immediately tried to conceive.
After a few months of trying, I was in immense pain and something didn't feel right.
One month shy of our one year anniversary, I had a hysterectomy.
Again, it's as if Dan and I are completely melted together in mind,
and soul.

He never left my side.
He went through all of the ups and downs with me while still staying strong for me when I felt weak.
He was at peace with the cards God dealt us.
He was okay adopting a child.

Well... it's now been 2 and a half years since we married and we have adopted a rescue puppy.
We believe he's the child God wanted us to have all along.
I may not have given birth to him,
and he may not have Dan's gorgeous green eyes,
but he is definitely our child.

We both believe that our decision to adopt our dachshund mix,
Mozzie -short for Mozart-
was the big picture all along.
While we love him so dearly, we know that any distraction away from one another pains us.
We want to spend every moment with each other.
We want to go on dates weekly,
snuggle on the couch together daily
and continue living our lives as soul mates hopelessly in love with one another.

Mozzie is definitely a great addition to our love nest, and we're completely satisfied with our family of 3.
Now here I am, months away from my 30th birthday.
I am a woman I wouldn't have recognized back then.
The only tears I cry, are those of joy.

My life is better than the biggest dreams I ever imagined.
While I have been diagnosed with more diseases,
my emotional and mental state almost always override my physical state.

I feel the happiest and healthiest I've ever felt in my life.
I owe it all to my loving husband and soul mate.

I married my best friend who has made me into the best version of myself....
and it's because I'm finally complete with him in my life.
On a side note,
Dan met me at a very similar transition in his own life.
He also moved to Florida and discovered more about himself.
He was searching for his own identity and had just found his path.
It was that month that he returned to Michigan that I met him for the first time at Starbucks.
Timing is everything!!
what do you love? who do you LOVE?

So needless to say, everything excites me!!!
I find joy and happiness in the simplest of things.
I get ecstatic over tiny things just because I'm so grateful for them.
Dan says I'm so "excitable."
Eventually he'll realize that I'm just giddy in love with him and therefore, everything is fantastic!

I'm passionate about
my husband,
our rescue pup,
art and music.
ps. ALL of the art work in this post is Lyzz's...
isn't she SO extremely talented?!
I have my own graphic design business,
Elyzzabeth Designs,
and I do custom artwork.

I have a home filled with paintings that express nearly every chapter of my life.
It's like walking into a book (but I left most of the darker periods out, ha ).
Dan is living his dream of going to college for engineering.
Even with full-time work and school, we spend every second possible together!

I have given you far too much information, but it all plays a role in my story.
what are 3 words that describe you & your LIFE?

Words that describe me...
and ....???? excitable haha
Obviously, I love my husband, my dog and my life.

last, but not least,
what is your most favorite quote?!

My favorite quote is something I found on a tank top when I was a teenager :
"Love this Life."

It has always stuck with me and I still have that old tank top
(now a mid-drift since the style has changed a bit these days hah).
You only get one life on this earth.
Love it.
Live it to the fullest.

thank you, Lyzz, for sharing YOUR story.
you are truly inspiring!
and don't forget to check out :

with love & admiration,


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