Kathy Kalaf

Founder, President

Kathleen Marie Kalaf, Sea Bright, NJ. March 2009

Kathy Kalaf

I just lost eight years of my life. Even now, I have trouble comprehending it. I feel like I was in a sleep for eight years, and I just woke up in another location, in another home, with no job and a couple of new friends. Sometimes I feel like Humpty Dumpty. Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall, All the Kings horses and all the Kings men, couldn't put Humpty together again. The good news is that I am put back together again, and now, it's time to begin rebuilding my life. And it all could have been prevented if my doctors had told me to take probiotics, or if just a single one of them would have been trained to recognize the condition. I had constant bladder infections due to my pelvic kidney, and I was on antibiotics frequently, and then nightly for years. I worried about it at one time, and I asked if I would build a resistance, and I was told there were plenty of antibiotics, and that I wouldn't run out. This devastation could have been prevented.

I grew up in Port Huron Michigan. I went to Port Huron Northern High School, and was once a HomeComing Queen, in 1980, and the Varsity Team Cheerleading Captain. I was also named Miss Personality in this Class A school with 2000 students. I was a graduate of Michigan State University, with a Bachelors Degree in Marketing. Simply put, just an all American girl.

I spent my entire career in Corporate America, and worked in sales and marketing management roles for Owens-Corning, Exxon-Mobil, Allied Signal, and Honeywell over the course of 20 years. I lived in various cities, including Charlotte, NC, Somerset, NJ, Cincinnati, OH (Mount Adams), and back to Sea Bright, NJ.

All of my relocations were career moves, except for my last relocation to Sea Bright, NJ to be with my boyfriend at the time, Howard, of Sea Bright NJ. He looked after me during the worst depths of my illness. He was a saint, and my deepest heartfelt thanks go to him and his commitment to me and my well being. I am afraid I wouldn't have made it through without his unending support. His dedication to me during those eight years was beyond what any man would do. I don't know what would have happened to me without him.

Eventually, we had to part, as the stress of this condition is just too much for a relationship to survive. I moved out, and I found my own place, and I found comfort in the solitude. I knew very few people, and had very little local support. My neighbor across the street, Robert, is a contractor, and he helped me to get set up in my new home. As fatigued as I was, I began to do everything I could on the internet, rather than having to get up and physically move. I went to work, th<ough I struggled, and I would fall into bed when I got home from the exhaustion. I made it on my own for about a year, and then I lost my job as a regional sales manager for a large company. Uh-oh. Now what? Not only did I have my regular expenses, I also had all of these medical expenses. I had to stop most of my medical treatments. I lost my medical insurance, and couldn't afford Cobra. The candida moved into a dental problem, and I had to have oral surgery. I started putting everything on credit cards, until I could figure out a solution.

Necessity is the mother of invention. After leaving my job, I was so sick that I was unable to work. I was lying in bed most of the time, with little income. It's a very sad and yet funny story, actually. Let's lot lose sight of our sense of humor. I was using my healthy tanning bed (yes, there is such a thing), which I was using to give me a good source of vitamin D, which is known to help with depression. I had a minor problem with the tanning bed, and I called the manufacturer. The owner of this leading tanning bed company called me at home, addressed my issue, and sent me a brand new and upgraded tanning bed. I was pretty happy about that! I told him my candida story, and I asked him if he would be willing to let me sell their tanning beds on ebay and online. He agreed, and we formed a partnership. I now have a private label company, called Island Sun Tanning Beds. I was destitute, had no money, and the sale of tanning beds bought my groceries and paid some bills for months. These were the first sites that I began using to promote awareness of systemic candida. I started to receive phone calls and emails at home as some discovered the condition. Later, I decided to create a non profit organization with the sole purpose of raising awareness for systemic candida. This part of my journey is what triggered the non profit. All sites are operational today, and promoting awareness.

I am in a much better place now, and I would like to acknowledge the special people that helped me on my way to my new place of wellness. While my relocation to New Jersey was unexpected and undesirable at the time, and the uprooting at that time was devastating to me, in hind site I see that I was very fortunate. This is where I discovered integrative medicine, and the gentlemen below saved my life.

My heartfelt thanks go to these extraordinary Doctors in Integrative Medicine: They saved my life. Dr. Bernardo Merizalde, Health Horizons, Transformational Healing, An Integrated Approach Philadelphia, PA; Neurologist, Psychiatrist, and Homeopath, M.D.
Dr. John Ricci, Center for Aesthetic and Integrative Medicine, Manasquan, NJ.
Family Physician, M.D.

Thanks to my family for being there when I needed them, and to my special cat, Simba, who comforts me and never leaves my side.

Special mention goes to Frances Hofmeister, and Carol Veizer, who supported me through my trauma.

God sent me an angel and his name is Robert Bugay, my neighbor and contractor. He made sure I was set up and comfortable in my new home.

And my thanks to the Owner of an industry leading tanning bed company, who showed his generosity and compassion to a complete stranger.

I live on the Atlantic Ocean, and I thank God every day for my new gift of health. Hence, the name, Atlantic Journey to Wellness.

Based in Sea Bright, NJ, on the Atlantic Ocean, a place of peace and tranquility, I am back on my feet and began my journey to help others.

If anyone wants to help, there are; three things that you can do:

  1. If you have any contacts in the press, newspaper, magazines, anything, I want to get this published. The public needs to know about these risks. Use the form to the left under 'Contact Me' to reach me.
  2. This is a perfect topic for the Oprah magazine or the show. If anyone has contacts with Oprah, the women and men in this country need to know about this.
  3. Donate

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