WHAT I AM THANKFUL FOR -
OVERCOMING MY PERSONAL HEALTH CHALLENGE
By: Attorney Michael T. Gibson
ones I love
We all have challenges to maintain our health.
For many of you reading this, you met me during
your own health challenge to recover from
injuries sustained in an accident. I know that
sometimes, it seems like we lawyers dispense
advice and recommendations as to your health
and recovery, and it probably seems or feels like
we don’t relate. Well, I do personally relate, and
for many years I have privately endured my own
health challenges and recovery. I made some
substantial progress in the last year, and wanted
to share some lessons I learned.
My health challenge is rooted in my stomach
and weight. For years, I have been dramatically
underweight. For the past several years, I struggled
with an undiagnosed GI issue that restricted
my diet and rapidly took pounds off me. Being
busy with work and my young family, I dealt
with it as best as I could, and tended to just put
the issue off to the side, thinking I had higher
priorities than fixing my own issues. However,
in both 2014 and 2015, I suffered through two
very intense, week-long episodes of symptoms.
During those, I literally felt like there was a
knife twisting in my gut. Despite the pain and
discomfort, I rarely, if ever, missed work. I even
endured a couple hockey games with the symptoms.
But as time went on, the symptoms got
worse, and my ability to power through them
So last year, tired of seeing me suffer, Jen applied
to and got me in the Mayo Clinic in
Jacksonville. I made a few trips, and let the
doctors there run every test under the sun. Oh
yes, those were a lot of fun! Within a few visits
though, I finally had an answer. I had a bacterial
overgrowth in my small intestine. I know, not the
sexiest of diagnosis. But finally, we had a name
and a condition from which we could start to
treat the problem. While there is no cure for this
condition, it is treatable via a special antibiotic.
At the time I started the drug, of course, my
insurance would not cover it. It cost me $700 a
month to get the medicine. But it truly was a life
saver, and it kept my symptoms under control.
Eventually, we got the insurance to cover it.
I have been on the medicine for a year now, and
for the first time in three years, I have not suffered
a major GI episode. But the damage from
years of suffering and having a very restricted
diet took its toll on me. Being a 5’9 male, I
should weight around 160 pounds. Now, I have
always been a very skinny person, and I have
always struggled to gain or maintain weight.
And that was before the stomach issues. I didn’t realize how
much weight I had lost until I went to try on suits for my ten
year law school reunion. Literally, none of the suits in the store
fit me. Like none. It was an eye opener for me. When I got
home and got on the scale, I weighted only 115 pounds. I had
not weighted that little since seventh grade. I knew I had to do
something, as that weight was not healthy for me.
A look at the heavier, healthier me.
The weight helps out on the ice.
So, I sought out a nutritionist, and committed to a diet plan. For
me, it was all about increasing my calorie intake and having
a meal schedule throughout the day that worked me towards
those daily intake goals. Being busy and on the go constantly,
I purchased some high calorie shakes. Now, I make sure that at
certain intervals in the day, I stop and down one of these. They
don’t always taste
great, but I found a
few that aren’t half
bad either. I also go
out every Sunday and
grill an assortment of
meats and pack them
for the week. This
way, when I get home
late, I still have meals
ready to go with minimum preparation.
I have followed this routine since May, and doing the same, I have
gained twenty pounds, and gotten to my first weight goal of 135
pounds. I still have more to gain, but I am at least back to where I
started a few years ago, before the GI issues took their toll. Going
through all this taught me a few things about health and weight
issues. First, you have to be persistent. If one doctor gives you
an answer that you know does not make sense or seem right with
what your body is telling you, keep looking for the answer, even
if that means seeing multiple doctors. I am very thankful for Jen’s
persistence on my issue, because I would not have gotten into
Mayo and gotten a diagnosis without the same. Second, consistency seems to be key. Whether you are trying to lose weight or
gain it, it doesn’t happen overnight. But with the right help and
guidance and a steady plan, you can make progress. It will be
slow at times and faster at others, but the key is to stay committed to the plan and work the same. And lastly, if you really want
to make a change in your health, do what Nike says and “just do
it.” There will never be a great time to make a significant health
change in your life. But there is no greater time to start then now.
Hey, I know – some folks are rolling their eyes at a skinny guy
complaining about being too skinny and having to gain weight. But
for some, like me, it is just as hard to gain and maintain it as it is
for others to lose. My personal health journey has made me sympathetic to all who struggle with persistent health and weight issues.
It isn’t easy, and there is never a day off. But for me, I know I don’t
ever want to feel the way I did that day trying on suits.
So for all of you enduring a health or weight issue, know that I
get it and I am with you. Stay strong and stay committed, and
with the help of God, you will overcome your own challenge as
well. I am firmly in your corner!
WHAT WE ARE THANKFUL FOR -
A MESSAGE FROM OUR ATTORNEYS AND STAFF
Nineth (Intake Department)
– I am Very thankful for this job, I was given a great opportunity! Great opportunities like this don’t
always happen, so I’d like say a Big thank you to Jennifer & Michael T. Gibson.
Tailyn Chang (Presuit Assistant)
– This year I am very thankful to be surrounded by my family and love ones, and look forward to
making new memories with them. Also, I am very thankful to be able to work in such a great work environment that appreciates me
and makes me feel like family, which would not have been possible if I didn’t surrounded myself, around good friends, which I am
very grateful for. Happy Holidays J
Raymond Rivera (Marketing)
– I’m thankful to God for the many opportunities and blessings he has given me this year. I’m
blessed to have my wife Jemima, my beautiful daughter and the opportunity to be a father again. In addition, I’m eternally grateful
to my co-workers and all the Pastors for your great support.
Patty Lopez (Office Manager)
– 2016 has brought many blessings, but the one that I am most thankful for is the blessing of being
able to spend more quality time with family relatives.
Amanda Diaz (Presuit Case Manager)
– I am thankful for my current employment with Michael T. Gibson & hoping to grow with
the law firm.
Mayra Lopez (Reception)
– I am very thankful just for the simple fact that I get to wake up every single day and get to see my
hubby and kids. I am very thankful for all my family and friends, but most of all so thankful for health, love and joy that I get from
all the people that I love and love me back unconditionally.
Fernando Salamanca (Attorney)
– I am thankful to have been able to buy my first house this year.
Jessica Perez (Litigation Paralegal)
- I am thankful for the lessons life has brought me this year. They have assisted in molding me
for a better future and better opportunities; beginning with the opportunity you have given me to work alongside your amazing team.
Juan Jose Rodriguez (Marketing)
- After spending a few days in a missionary trip in an area affected recently by an earthquake, I
would like to encourage everyone to count our blessings. So I would like to thank GOD for my family, my friends, my job, for the
freedom of this nation we live, for being alive to have an opportunity every day to help others, and even for something as simple as
safe drinking water. We should not take for granted what we have around us in this great nation.
Brady and Emery Gibson (Future Lawyers/Firm cute kids)
– We are thankful for our parents, and our teachers, classmates and
friends. We are also thankful and grateful for all the clients who trust our Mom and Dad! Thank you so very much!
FALL FUN WITH THE GIBSON’S
By Attorney Michael T. Gibson
Fall is in the air. We certainly hope that everyone made it through the Hurricane with minimal issues. It was a scary time, and I am very
thankful that the storm passed without damage to our business or home. Besides the Hurricane, it has been a busy fall season for us.
After two seasons of getting close, my hockey team, the YellowJackets, broke through and won our league championship. Yes, they gave
us a fake Stanley Cup, and yes, I skated it around the rink. It was so much fun though, I think because we have had ups and downs, but
we really learned to play as a team, and that was good enough to get us to the top. My teammates are really wonderful friends, and I am
honored to play with them. At home, we got a visit from Emery’s class buddy, Amy Joe. As you can see, she had a great weekend with
us, even helped me with the barbeque. Brady has decided that he wants to be like Dad and play hockey to. So, he has started skating lessons.
It is early, but I see some potential there. Most importantly though, he is having fun learning his favorite sport. Dad is having fun
with it too. We hope you all are enjoying the nice fall weather as well.
Corn Casserole Recipe
By Attorney Janelle Squire
- 1 can cream style corn
- 1 regular can corn, drained
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 8 oz sour cream
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1 (8.5 oz) box Jiffy cornbread mix
Preheat oven to
350 degrees F
- Combine all
- Pour in lightly
greased 9 x 13
pan and bake for
35 mins or until
mixture has set
Potato and Jalapeño Cheese Bake
By Tailyn Chang
- 2 containers (8 oz each) refrigerated
pre-chopped bell pepper and onion mix
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 bag (20 oz) refrigerated sliced potatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 8 oz reduced-fat jalapeño Cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups)
Heat oven to 400°F. Spray 11x7-inch (2-quart) glass baking dish with cooking
- Spray 12-inch skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Add
bell pepper mix; cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add garlic; cook and stir
- Arrange half of the potato slices in baking dish. Mix salt and pepper; sprinkle
potatoes with half of the mixture. Layer with half of the bell pepper mixture
and one-third of the cheese. Repeat layers with remaining potato slices, salt
mixture, bell pepper mixture and cheese.
- Cover; bake 40 minutes. Uncover; bake 10 minutes longer or until cheese is
lightly browned and potatoes are tender.
Michael T. Gibson , P. A.
2420 South Lakemont Avenue,
Orlando, FL 32814
Get Your Free Consultation Today Call 407-490-1271 or 855–WHAT–NEXT
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