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What I'm Doing Now

This is what I'm up to right now - I update this page regularly. If you have a website, why not make your own Now page too? Send me a link if you do!
- Debra Purdy, ShopEco Owner


We are hiring! If you're interested in a long-term part-time position, love skin care and makeup, and are ready to work hard and give exceptional service, send me your resume, cover letter, and availability at

Self Care

This week (and always), I'm pondering why it's so difficult to get our symptoms taken seriously, as women. Over the past four years, I finally got assertive enough to get diagnoses on conditions I've had for over a decade. Until now, my doctors, both male and female, dismissed my symptoms as anxiety and depression and tried to put me on antidepressants. And I'm still regularly dealing with condescending remarks and a hyperfocus on my anxiety and panic attacks, which are known to be symptoms of one of my conditions, not causes.

What I've found helps:

- Projecting calm, even if you don't feel calm. As soon as a doctor senses that you're nervous or upset, the likelihood of your symptoms getting dismissed as anxiety or depression increase dramatically.

- Bring data. Spreadsheets are your friend. Document when your symptoms started, and rate the severity of each of them. Indicate what makes them better or worse. Record body weight, calorie intake, blood pressure, heart rate, or oxygen saturation, if these figures are applicable to your symptoms. Leave a copy with your doctor's receptionist and ask them to request that your doctor review it before your next appointment. Bring another copy with you to your appointment, in case they lose it.

- Be persistent. Respectfully refuse to take no for an answer. If a doctor is unwilling to help you, ask who to speak to next. Talk to others with similar symptoms and find out who helped them.

Currently Reading

My goal is to read 64 books this year. I'm at 40. The idea was to get myself to prioritize reading every day, which is one of my favourite things to do. However, focusing on quantity sometimes makes me rush through things I want to spend more time with. What's really important to me is consistency and quality. Next year I'll just make the goal to read at least one page of a book every day.

Accessing the Healing Power of the Vagus Nerve: Self-Help Exercises for Anxiety, Depression, Trauma, and Autism by Stanley Rosenberg

The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials Book Three) by Philip Pullman

Indistractable by Nir Eyal

The Wim Hof Method: Activate Your Full Human Potential by Wim Hof

Excited About...

Moving to Phase 3 of reopening! Aren't we all? Looking forward to indoor dining at restaurants, larger gatherings with friends, and more visitors here at the shop.


Last year I developed a condition that appears to be POTS (postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome) after a bout of hyperthyroidism. It will probably be a year or two before I can get an official diagnosis. My top goal right now is to get back to being able to do the things I want to do, like hanging out with the ShopEco team at the store, visiting family and friends, hiking, yoga, cooking, and doing housework. (Who knew I would want so desperately to be able to do housework again?)

After a few really great weeks of feeling stronger and more able, I had a setback this week. It's hard not to get discouraged when this happens, but with health issues, all you can control are your actions. I'm trying everything I can think of including adjusting my medication (with permission from my doctor), making sure I don't miss a single day of exercise (just got this handy contraption for rainy days at the camper), using nasal strips and saline spray (they seem to help with my air hunger), and tracking vital signs to try to figure out what's triggering the flareup.

Last updated July 10 2021.