Let’s start with a few take-aways from the healing process so far:
1)Take care of your mind first. Don’t beat yourself up when you have to ease up on your plan.
2)Create a community of supporters who are fully enrolled in your being well. It may only be 2 or 3 other people but identify people to help you be accountable and inspired.
3)Be prepared to let some people go while on your journey. Some folks are a hindrance to wellness because the new you makes them uncomfortable. Bless them with love and create distance.
4)Own your choice to heal naturally. Thicken your skin. Be prepared to speak the truth to whomever needs to hear it. Set those boundaries and honor your own inner-guidance.
As a foodie and lover of all things tasty, I never imagined myself being so in love with the food lifestyle I’ve adopted. I’ve bought a 9 Tray dehydrator, a Vita-Mix and a food processor. Then I turned into an 8 year old on her birthday when my mom sent me a NutriBullet. I was so excited when I opened that box.
Still with all of these tools and equipment, I’m discovering that the first priority on my wellness journey is me. It’s not my diet or food plan, not the exercise, herbs or the acupuncture, but it’s me. When I say me I mean my mind, my attitude and my beliefs about getting/being well. One of my accountability partners is battling lupus like a fierce warrior. She’s incredibly physically fit now and committed to her work out activities, but today realized that her mind was a priority and the gym was secondary. She chose a peaceful walk in the park instead of her normal routine. Choosing peace sometimes means missing a workout. Once we’re centered we can actually get the true benefits from our healing activities whether it’s food or exercise.
Julia, an acupuncturist/ healer at Third Root Community Healing Center in Brooklyn often speaks about how important community is to making health changes and healing the body. Walking this wellness journey with women who have just as much at stake as me has made such a huge difference in my life. Having that exchange with one of my wellness partners this morning reminded me to focus on peace, to choose a few hours of quiet. My circle has served as a protective shield from loved ones who either with good intention and sometimes judgment say/think some of the darndest things about my choices.
People can be impatient, unknowingly insensitive and selfish. Unless one has been on a healing journey of their own, I’m finding that it can hard for them to have compassion. The phrases “but you look so good” and “but you don’t look sick” is so far from a statement of support. A person may not look ill and they may not carry the disposition of a “sick” person but it does not mean they don’t still need the same amount of love, support and encouragement on their wellness journey. There are so many women suffering quietly from symptoms triggered by tumors and cysts, lupus and other autoimmune related dis-eases, diabetes, sleep disorders, severe food allergies and insensitivities, fibromyalgia and the list goes on. This is more evidence as to why random kindness is a good idea. You never really know what another person is going through.
The changes I have made in my life have not been easy. It has affected my friendships, my interaction with family and loved ones, my social life, what I eat and how I eat it, my work and my schedule. I am reading and watching youtube videos for one to two hours a day so I can learn as much as possible about how to heal myself. I still have to navigate through a corporatized medical system that is designed for crisis care but not prevention and health care. Then I have to figure out how to afford staying alive while making time for the rest of my life. Oh, and don’t forget eating right and exercise. It’s possible to reverse most conditions but it is not without dedication and sacrifice. It can also be the unpopular choice. Still, I am choosing life.
Growing up on the standard American diet (i.e. SAD), being medicated (asthma/allergies) for the first 25 years of my life and having no awareness of how stress and sadness impacts the body all resulted in a toxic body and a compromised immune system that I am now patiently committed to healing. I choose wellness. I choose me. I choose life. I’ll continue to share insights that I’ve gained and please check out my video diary: Healing Naturally. It hasn’t been as easy to share as I thought it would be but I’m committed to doing posts at least once a week: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9U0tczpnNKk They will post on my Youtube channel: www.youtube.com/user/ToniB104.