On the way home, we stopped at my favorite natural market that caters to the raw vegan, Dean's Market, where I ordered a 24oz kale, spinach, and apple juice.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Hi, healers! I hope you all enjoyed your holiday weekends, and I hope they were vegan ;-)
Thanksgiving was low-key and vegan for me at my house. One of my favorite people came to spend the holiday with me.
And my mom made me one of my favorite fall treats, roasted Brussels sprouts.
Sunday was my birthday, and I turned 27 years old surrounded by love and vegan food. My parents and I went to one of my favorite vegan spots, Kaya's Kitchen, where they have a buffet style lunch on Sundays. My plate was packed with sautéed broccoli and kale in garlic, salad, and mashed potatoes. It was delicious, organic, and pretty Gerson friendly.
I'm a happy vegan camper!
On the way home, we stopped at my favorite natural market that caters to the raw vegan, Dean's Market, where I ordered a 24oz kale, spinach, and apple juice.
My parents gave me the Fenix Trigger Point Peg Board. This device is heaven for people with Fibromyalgia. It allows you to release your own trigger points with some discomfort and a lot of dedication.
They also gave me yoga paws! These little pieces of heaven allow you to do yoga without your hands slipping. They are also made from Eco-friendly materials.
Shorter is so thoughtful. Look what he surprised me with:
The perfect birthday for the vegan healer!
Today, my fur baby, Shorter, turns four years old. Happy Birthday!!!
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
When I have worked with the vulnerable, oppressed, and disenfranchised populations (from the sick and dying to the poorest of the poor), I have always been astounded by the amount of gratefulness they express on a daily basis, never missing a beat on the gratitude drum. One very poor client in particular, whose relatively young son was dying from an aggressive form of lung cancer, would always answer, “I’m blessed,” when you asked her how she was doing. In the face of so much adversity and infinite amounts of sadness (with her own child dying in her home), she had the whimsical ability to make ME feel better after our phone conversations or in person sessions.
This woman had very little in the material department, but in the love and soul department, she had it all. What could a woman most people would view as lacking so much be so grateful for? She was grateful to be alive, to have food on her table, to feel the sun shining on her skin, to have a roof over head, to hear the birds sing, etc. Her gratitude list was essentially endless. She was extremely religious/spiritual and found much of her gratitude and happiness in her relationships with herself, others, and her higher power. This is an interesting concept when you consider the sad fact that many of those who are not lacking in the material senses do lack the gratefulness that should be in their hearts and radiating throughout their beings. If you are to ask me who I think is more grateful, I would largely say that those who lack materially are often (not an absolute) more grateful for what they do have. Perhaps, this is because they are spiritually rich or rich in loving relationships? Perhaps, this is because their material lacking has allowed them to reevaluate their priorities? All I know is that I strive to be more like them.
My clients and this disease have been my gratefulness teachers, and they have taught me that gratitude is an energy that helps you to discern between what is important in your life and what is not. It allows you to shy away from sweating the small stuff as you remember your bigger picture, which is framed by love, wonder, and awe. Gratitude allows you to become aware of your morals and values as your sense of purpose and the meaning of your life become amplified over the feelings of lack you are so accustomed to experiencing in this society. Focusing on what you are grateful for soothes your fears and sadness and tunes you back into your feelings of pure love and joy and the present moment.
When considering what to put on your gratitude list, most people immediately consider the big stuff – your car, your home, your job, etc. I, on the other hand, am grateful for the big AND small because the small have been taken away from me due to a “chronic, progressive, and incurable” disease. I am grateful for standing up in the shower, for being able to drive a car at all, for being able to wear socks on my feet, for being able to be off of medications, for being able to do a little yoga, for having energy that I once totally lacked, for a good night's sleep, for not having to go back into the hospital to get ketamine pumped into my veins, for being able to do my own shopping, etc. My list is truly endless this year as I take into consideration where I have been, where I am now, and where I am going.
When you are grateful, your perception of the world and your position in it changes from that of a position of lack to that of a position of abundance, and gratitude is by far the greatest multiplier of good. Practicing gratitude is a decision to give up your belief in lack and invest all of your stock in the belief of fullness and abundance. Want more to be grateful for? Be grateful for more.
P.S. Gratitude is gorgeous!
Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Healing!
Don't forget to enter my NuNaturals Stevia giveaway!
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
Hi, healers! Look at all the amazing goodies the lovely people at NuNaturals sent me to try out!
I have to take a moment to RAVE about NuNaturals products. I firmly believe they are the absolute best stevia products on the market. For those of you who do not know, stevia is a zero calorie, natural sweetener extracted from a plant. Their liquid stevia extracts, especially the vanilla and cocoa versions, taste delightful and really wake up oatmeal, green smoothies, green juices, teas, etc. I have a major sweet tooth but also have a history of systemic candida, those nasty little yeast buggers that sustain themselves off of the sugar you ingest. Also with conditions like RSD and Fibro, it is best to eliminate stimulants (sugar and caffeine) because of their ability to worsen symptoms by increasing inflammation and acidity in the body. NuNaturals Stevia is the best way to enjoy something sweet without it becoming detrimental to your health.
I have yet to try the More Fiber Stevia Baking Blend, but I will certainly let you know when I do.
Now, for the giveaway! NuNaturals has offered to give four of my readers "ONE box of our NuStevia Packets, 50 ct. Box, AND ONE bottle of our NuNaturals Vanilla Stevia Liquid, 2 oz. bottle." This contest is open to U.S. Continental residents only.
I'm going to extend the giveaway for 10 days, so I will pick the winners on December 2, 2011.
To enter, leave a comment on my blog, write a blog post about my giveaway, post about it on your facebook, and/or post about it on your twitter. Leave an individual comment for each thing you do (total of 4 comments/4 ways to enter).
Also, IN ADDITION, take advantage of NuNaturals' "FREE SAMPLES" program to ALL Continental U.S. readers where you can receive "FREE SAMPLES" of NuStevia Packets by sending a SELF-ADDRESSED, STAMPED, # 10 envelope to them at the following location:
2220 West 2nd Ave. # 1
Eugene, OR 97402
Last but not least, you can take full advantage of SPECIAL DISCOUNTS on all future orders only available from ordering through the website. ENTER this CODE: BLG1211, and you will receive a SPECIAL DISCOUNT of -15% on your TOTAL ORDER up until 12/31/2011.
Orders over $35.00 always come with free shipping if you order off their main website.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Hi, healers! So what does a typical day look like for me? I’m not going to use times because they vary, especially on days that I am coaching or have doctors’ appointments, treatments, or massages. Generally, this is what it looks like.
-Wake up. Before I get out of bed, I do a few stretches lying down. Then, I go downstairs, prepare a cup of herbal tea, take my morning supplements, and sit down with Shorter for a half hour.
-Then, it’s upstairs for my first coffee enema where I read, answer e-mails or browse the internet on my IPhone, and/or listen to music.
-Time to make and drink my first juice followed by a breakfast of gluten free oats soaked in distilled water, banana, and maybe some dried fruit (dates or Turkish apricots). We make the juices in 25oz batches at my house.
-While I watch the previous night’s Dr. Drew on HLN (LOVE!), I work on my trigger points for 30 minutes to an hour and then stretch them out.
-An hour of yoga/meditation.
-Coffee enema #2 followed by second 25oz juice and lunch of salad with a baked potato and flax oil with raw apple cider vinegar dressing.
-Work on my trigger points again while watching some TV, do some writing, run errands, etc.
-Coffee enema #3 followed by my third 25oz juice and a dinner that is the same as lunch.
-Work on my trigger points again while watching some TV.
-Before bed, I do another 20ish minutes of gentle yoga stretches, read, and meditate.
Yesterday, I uploaded a vlog that I completely forgot about after a bunch of you asked that I make one again. Sorry!
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Hi, healers! We had our season opener on Sunday. The girls were VERY nervous, but once the second half started, they settled into a rhythm. I'm still going strong with Gerson Therapy and continuing to make improvements as each day passes. My ability to engage in more challenging yoga and strength building has substantially improved my overall health (anxiety, mood, flexibility) and pain (still off of all medications for pain). Like anything else in life, it is a practice and must be done consistently. Would it help if I wrote down a sort of rough log of what I do each day? Many of you have shown some curiosity. Just let me know. You can leave a comment here, through e-mail, on facebook, on twitter, or on my formsping page.
The holidays are approaching, and I have received some questions about how to deal with social situations during the holidays and your dietary restrictions and overall healing. Let me know if you would like me to write a blog post concerning these topics.
Yesterday, I was contacted by the Gerson Institute to do some writing for them. I am super honored and thrilled they found my writing compelling enough to want to use it in their publication. Yay!
Don't forget to check out my guest post on detoxification.
I snapped some photos of my Gerson experience. Here are a few:
Cooled coffee ready to go and a carrot, green apple, ginger, and parsley juice. Remember, my disease isn't malignant, so I have some wiggle room as far as juice combinations, etc. If your disease is malignant, it is best to follow the protocol as closely as possible. I do what works for me and constantly adjust and readjust when necessary,
Getting ready to juice.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Hi, healers! Check out the guest post I wrote for my friend Kelly's blog, Girl Gone Vegan. It is copied and pasted below, but click here to read the original version and check out the great blog she is putting together. Kelly has been diagnosed with Dysautonomia, which is a neurologically based condition like RSD/CRPS. I think many of my readers will be able to identify with her struggles as she navigates her way through dis-ease and toward healing - the vegan way :-) Enjoy!
"The human body is a brilliantly amazing, intelligently designed vessel kept thriving by involuntary and intricate processes that a majority of the human race uses, abuses, and takes for granted until a major health crisis materializes and one is forced to ponder where, when, and how he/she took a wrong turn into "Dis-ease Town." Not only did I take that wrong turn into "Dis-ease Town," but I drove the damn train off the tracks and ended up in a firey wreck far off in some ditch. I've spent the last seven years trying to emerge like a Phoenix from the ashes of my own creation.
Over the last seven years, I have attempted to treat a “progressive and incurable” neurological disease, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy/Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (RSD/CRPS) with toxic treatments, surgeries, and medications, including, at its worst, ketamine infusions, fentanyl patches (a narcotic 50-100x stronger than morphine), double strength vicodin (4x per day), neurontin, and ativan. And, yes, all at one time. Loopy Maria was a riot but my attempts at healing were nothing more than shoving a butterfly band-aid on an open, gaping wound and hoping it would just go away on its own. It wasn’t until I encountered a natural treatment, Gerson Therapy, comprised of upwards of 100 ounces of fresh, organic vegetable/fruit juices per day, up to five coffee enemas per day, and a VERY restrictive vegan diet that I was able to lessen my symptoms and wean and remain off of all toxic medications. Gerson Therapy believes that most, if not all, diseases are results of nutritional deficiencies and bodily toxicities, which is why the treatment centers on detoxification.
Detoxification is as necessary to the human body as breathing. As typical waste products of bodily functions, cells are constantly producing toxins that enter into the bloodstream and then the liver for detoxification. In our modern lives, we are exposed to a plethora of man-made toxins that our glorious bodies are not designed to handle and dispose of from the processed crap found in your Standard American Diets, to the gender-bending chemicals found in your beauty products, and the pesticides and neurotoxins found in, on, and around even the healthiest of whole, plant-based foods. These toxins create irritation, inflammation, and acidity in the body causing it to literally strip your bones and teeth of calcium, magnesium, and other minerals to neutralize the acid and damage you are causing it each and every day. Your bones are literally slowly dissolving because of what you eat, drink, and think. Hello, osteoporosis!
The body desires an alkaline pH (potential of hydrogen) of about 7.365. When foods are ingested and digested they leave either an acid or alkaline residue. Processed foods, animal products, alcohol, coffee, and sugar are acidic. Acidity = Disease. I was never great at math, but that is one equation I can comprehend and roll with. How does an individual combat bodily acidity? By eating mostly alkaline foods (a ratio of about 80/20), which include leafy greens and many other luscious plant-based goodies, by assisting the body in detoxification through coffee and wheat grass enemas, colonics, deep breathing, dry brushing, sweating, rebounding, and exercising, by avoiding environmental toxins as much as possible, and by controlling stress. What you think is just as, if not more, important than what you eat and drink. Negative, stress-induced thoughts actually create acidity in the body just as if you were to eat a big, honkin’ cheeseburger.
A topic worth spending a few moments on is that of NEUROtoxicty. It occurs when exposure to environmental toxins, natural or artificial, damages the nervous system in such a way that the normal brain activity is altered. These environmental toxins are called neurotoxins and can be found in the forms of drug therapies, heavy metals, pesticides, cosmetics, and cleaning solvents, amongst other commonly occurring substances that we come in contact with multiple times a day. Believe it or not, many of these substances are found in the foods you eat and the beverages you drink. Ever heard of MSG? Yes, these delicious neurotoxins are added to your foods to enhance taste and slowly kill off your brain cells one by one. How nice! Can you say, “Yum?” Some common symptoms of neurotoxicity include memory, vision, and cognitive disturbances, limb weakness or numbness, and headaches, and these symptoms may occur immediately after exposure or may be significantly delayed. The prognosis depends upon the length and degree of exposure, but a full recovery is possible under the right conditions and circumstances.
The subjects of healing and detoxification are vast and loaded with life-saving information, but they can take months and even years to sift through. The message I hope you receive today is that it is important to become educated and empowered as a health care consumer just as it is important to find a trusted medical professional to partner with, traditional and/or holistic. It is even more imperative that you strive for maintenance and healing through significant diet and lifestyle changes, but most importantly, healing is possible. It may take more time than you are willing to donate to your health at the start, but remember, slow and steady wins the race – and heals.
Maria Mooney, MSW, LSW, is a raw vegan, licensed social worker living with and healing from a “progressive and incurable” neurological disease, RSD/CRPS. Join her in her latest campaign, “Good Health is Gorgeous,” as she attempts to rewrite the societal standards of beauty, and follow along as she heals, grows, and conquers on her blog."
Friday, November 11, 2011
Today I am 24 and a 1/2-years-old. I am a preschool teacher. I am a student at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. I am a Health Counselor. I am active. I am an aunt to a beautiful 1-year-old girl. I am a girlfriend, who has picked out my ring. I am terribly fortunate. However, like most girls, regardless of age… I am often insecure, and I can my worst enemy.
Rewind 20 years, I was a happy, loveable, excited little girl who had terrible stomach problems. I loved my mommy and the outdoors more than anything. My (insert expletive) uncle and my sister (who was young and not to blame) used to tease me saying I was ugly… it NEVER phased me. That was until I grew up, and although I have been told I “grew out of that” and am now beautiful… I still have moments when I think otherwise.
Fast forward to middle school. I was confident. I had a great group of friends, and I even met the love of my life (my future fiancé, yep, we met and dated, and even were each other’s first kiss in the 6th/7th grade). But, I heard my mother talk about weight. All. The. Time. I watched my big sister who I admired so, so, much, battle with mean girls, and then become a walking stick. I heard my grandmother talk about “fat” people. My aunt talk about how she gained a pound from Christmas Eve to Christmas day. So, what did I do? I stole a few yellow pills from my sister. A few pink pills from my mother. And even Chromium Picolinate from my father, because I over heard my mom tell him that they may help him lose weight. He was taking them for his diabetes. Did I mention I had terrible stomach problems? Oh, and the scale? My new best friend. I was obsessed with numbers, and I was 12-years-old.
Throughout high school I was happy, confident, but building this obsession. I was very lucky, I could eat a lot, and really not gain weight… if anything it went to my bubble butt. The problem was that I would eat like crap, go home, get sick, and then beg my mom for a laxative because I ate too much. This vicious trend lasted until I was 18 and finally saw a gastroenterologist about my stomach problems. I had IBS, which pretty much puts me in a category with all other people in the world with stomach issues that they have no idea what they are. And, I had acid reflux. The cure: of course a prescription for Zelnorm and Prevacid.
My grandmother had mentioned how she never took her Prevacid, and that someone my age should not be on such a medication. So I never took it. Zelnorm on the other hand, I loved. So, Zelnorm did reduce my mysterious IBS, but Zelnorm was the fuel to my obsession. I was a senior in high school, within two months I dropped ten pounds, I weighted a mere 105/108lbs (I weighed myself so often that this my was range…) Being 18, I thought this was amazing. I swore I looked hot, I was skinny! Even my bubble butt shrank. So, with the weight loss I joined a gym, and although a healthy obsession, I became obsessed with exercise for all of the wrong reasons.
In the spring of my freshman year in college, I remember like it was yesterday: I had called my father to refill my prescription for Zelnorm. Then I received a call from my mom telling me that Zelnorm had been taken off the market for causing heart attacks and strokes. What did 19-year-old Amanda think? I need Zelnorm, I don’t care about having heart disease or have a stroke! I need to be skinny. I will get FAT. I begged my mom to find out how I can still get it. “I will get sick!” I cried. But, my mom, she knew better. She said to me, “Amanda, I know, your scared you are going to gain weight.” Nailed it on the nose, mom… I used to hate when she could do that!
So, I spoke to my sister who was now battling Crohns disease, and because of this, switched over to a plant based diet. She suggested I try flax seed. I put the ground seeds over my cereal every morning. My stomach issues pretty much vanished with just an occasional attack- usually after I ate too much crap! That conversation with my sister was the beginning of my journey to wellness.
That following fall, I moved into an apartment with my boyfriend (same boy I dated in 6th and 7th grade… and still together today). His one request: no scale. He and I had been dating pre Zelnorm, and he watched my obsession build. He was so sick of sitting at dinner with my family, and hearing everyone talk about how much they weighed that morning. So, I left the scale at home, and instead became obsessed with counting calories.
After a year of living with my boyfriend, I started to relax a bit about my weight. I gained a few lbs, and was happy at 112lbs. After almost two years of measuring my portions and recording everything I ate, I dumped the calorie-counting obsession, along with meat and dairy (thanks again, to my big sister’s suggestion). At this point in my life, I cared more about the nutritional aspect of my food, rather than the caloric intake. As a result, this vegan diet completely cured my stomach issues. I have had one attack in 3 years (when in France: butter). The vegan life style has transformed my health, my thinking, my entire life. I now exercise to feel good, not to burn calories. I may not weigh 112lbs anymore, but I feel great, I feel gorgeous!
Today, I am a teacher, a student, a Health Counselor, an aunt, a future fiancé. Today I am healthy. Today I am happy. Today I am gorgeous. Today I am grateful for my past, because valuable lessons were learned. Tomorrow I am going to help other girls like the 13, 18, and 21-year-old Amanda feel gorgeous!
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Hi, healers! I haven't written in a few days because I have been quite consumed with coaching, Gerson Therapy, doctors, treatments, and pushing myself physically as of lately with difficult and lengthy yoga, some PT I used in my distance running days at the University of Miami training room, and playing some basketball while I coach. It requires a lot of recovery time. I feel myself becoming stronger and stronger each day, and I can see my body changing, too!
I wanted to share this video with you from the lovely Jessica Ainscough, a fellow Gerson Person. She has uploaded a "How-To" video for one of my favorite subjects - the coffee enema. I receive SO many questions on this topic through e-mail and my social media sites, and Jessica does, also. I'm super excited because many of you have contacted me to let me know you are going to try or are currently trying Gerson Therapy after hearing how much it has helped me thus far. Yay!
Check out an earlier post I wrote on coffee enemas (I now use a stainless steel enema kit). Currently, I do three coffee retention enemas per day. Not only do they stimulate the liver and bile ducts to detoxify the body at rapid rates, they are also used as natural pain relievers. I have come off of all toxic medications used for pain relief in a two month period since beginning coffee enemas. These include ketamine, ativan, neurontin, advil, and even fentanyl and double strength vicodin in the past. They are fantastic tools.
Please watch and enjoy!
Remember, November is National Prevention Month, and coffee enemas can and should be done 2x per week when one is healthy for prevention.
Thursday, November 3, 2011
I have made a personal addition to the campaign slogan.
Good health AND WELLNESS is gorgeous! I wholeheartedly believe in the necessity of holistic health: physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, and sexual. Fulfilling each aspect of holistic health is unique to each individual, but with awareness of all these needs an individual with a chronic illness can feel complete. Happy. Whole.
I personally have had major gaps in each of these aspects of health.
When I was a mere child, I was diagnosed with a chronic illness. An illness that would plague me with excruciating pain, embarrassing symptoms, and a defeated self-esteem. I was only twelve years old when I first noticed symptoms occurring: bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and constant nausea. I was so embarrassed that I didn’t mention anything for an entire year. It wasn’t until my Mother noticed that I was unwell that I was sent to the doctor, then Internal Medicine, then Gastroenterology for diagnosis and treatment. I endured a battery of embarrassing diagnostic texts and physical exams until I was properly diagnosed.
I was diagnosed with Chronic Ulcerative Colitis. At thirteen years old.
Being an adolescent, there was a focus on the physical and sexual aspects of beauty. I never felt beautiful in any manner – I felt sad and sick. I had to take daily medication that reminded me that I was not a “normal” teenage girl. In the interest of rebelling, I acted as normally as possible to prevent any of my peers from discovering my secret. I participated in high school activities, got into some adolescent trouble, drank alcohol, and dated high school boys. Although I did date high school boys, I was often heartbroken by my fear of being sexually intimate with another person. This fear was that a sexual partner would discover my illness and be disgusted by it. I made a personal choice to wait as long as possible until I could be comfortable enough to share intimacy with someone I was certain loved me enough to make my Chronic Ulcerative Colitis a non-issue.
Despite being sick, I was determined to live my life as fully as possible. I traveled to Italy, Germany, Scotland, and many other countries. I learned to pole and hip-hop dance. I learned to surf (and learned that I am not a naturally gifted surfer). I indulged my love of food and cooking by preparing delicious meals for the people I am close to, even if I was far too nauseated to enjoy it. I indulged in learning more about cooking and had kind comments made towards me such as"You must love to cook, I've never seen anyone reading a cookbook for fun!” I felt an impending sense that I needed to live my life now because the future was so uncertain. It’s deep introspecting for someone in her early 20s.
During my BScN, I was absolutely in love with the career of nursing. I was also overcome with studying and high expectations of my university program. Studying plus a chronic illness leads to disaster. My condition was worsening. I was prescribed medications that caused me to bloat, have emotional mood swings, and prevented me from having a normal sleep pattern. This carried on into my professional career, with me having to call in sick when I was overwhelmed with side effects or overcome with nausea that was so bad it made my teeth chatter.
When I turned 23 it became clear that the steroids, 5-ASA drugs, and antibiotics were not helping. I was now diagnosed with Refractory Chronic Ulcerative Colitis, which means I don't respond to conventional treatment. There was talk about major abdominal surgery, which was a terrifying though. At 23, I did not feel ready to wear a colostomy bag and have my entire colon removed. There had to be another way.
My first glimpse of hope was when I was accepted into a Master of Nursing program. In fall 2010 I started my Masters degree to become a Nurse Practitioner, a passion of mine. I want to work in women's health and sexual health, providing services to girls and women that are low-income or high risk. I love every minute of school. Going to school, as it turned out, became a lifesaver for me as well.
Gaining my education also meant I was going to move back home. To the Northwest Territories.
The beauty of the cold Northern environment was healing.
I was later told by a kind-hearted Nurse Practitioner course instructor that when I started my program in September 2010 that I looked “positively grey” and sickly. I surely felt that way. I used what little energy I had to perform academically, but I spent most of my free time napping. Or eating chocolate and candy to keep my energy levels up.
In a last ditch effort to control my disease, I was started on a medication called Remicade. An IV infusion that is incredibly expensive and has dire side effects. There is a severe side effect of a rare lymphoma, a fact that terrified me as the first infusion flowed into my veins. This drug is also known for reactivating Tuberculosis and worsening respiratory infections, which meant that I need regular chest x-rays and need to be cautious of monitoring my health. Since I’ve begun Remicade, I am extra careful about washing my hands and avoid anyone with a cough. I was afraid for the first few months, going to the hospital for my IV infusion.
After the first infusion I began to feel better. My symptoms decreased and my energy began to improve. By the third month, all of my symptoms were gone. I had energy. I began to feel, dare I say it, happy and healthy.
I was told about a holistic nutritionist in town, and out of curiosity I decided to arrange an appointment. I have never been to nutritionist before, despite my bowel disease. She was warm, supportive, and taught me the greatest lessons I know about how food is a powerful healer. I learned about the benefits of a plant-based diet and did in-depth research into this dietary choice. I slowly realized that eating a plant-based diet was the best approach to eat an anti-inflammatory diet and ensure I had optimal nutrient intake. To improve intestinal healing I drank green juice, green smoothies, and soup. To go from a standard diet to a plant-based diet was a drastic change, but an effective change. My skin developed a healthy glow, I had outstanding energy, I slept better, and my gut felt better than ever before.
I also did more research into holistic health. I read endless books about veganism, chronic illness, alternative treatments, and meditation. I began integrating what I have learned from my readings and from my Holistic Nutritionist, into my healing journey. I started acupuncture and massage with great success – it improves my emotional stressors and relaxes my busy mind. Dry brushing mades my skin glow. Meditation improves my mental wellness and capacity to cope with my disease. I stopped “exercising” and started being “active” – taking part in activity that makes me feel happy and fulfilled. I bike regularly, an activity that makes me feel free and joyful. I started Yin Yoga, which assists in relaxation and improves my hip pain related to long-term steroid use. I started drinking aloe juice for its positive and soothing effect on the gastrointestinal tract. I started having detoxing baths with essential oils. I started practicing good sleep hygiene to ensure I have enough rest so that I can perform at optimal mental capacity. I began using natural and organic skincare and household products after becoming educated on the negative effects of parabens, pthalates, propelyne glycol, sulfates, and other nasty ingredients.
I even met someone wonderful and fell in love. My disease is always a non-issue, and he is wonderfully empathetic and caring when I am unwell. The experience of loving and being loved by another person has made this experience a little less scary and has created a lovely sense of companionship in my life.
My feelings of self-confidence have soared. I am empowered by all the positive changes that have occurred in my life. My disease had been my greatest motivator, teaching me lessons it would have taken me a lifetime to understand. I feel more in touch with each aspect of my holistic being, and predict that my journey will continue to empower me to develop into a proud and confident individual that is not defined by disease.
I feel complete. Happy. Whole.
The journey into wellness and health is continuous, but it can be gorgeous.
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Hi, healers! Just a quick post to share some of Addie's birthday and Halloween pictures with you. I have two guests posts coming up soon that I think you will really enjoy. Stay tuned! And don't forget today is the start of "National Prevention Month." Join Kris Carr and the crazsexylife.com team as we say, "Prevention is HOT!" this November. Check out my previous blog post about prevention.
Coaching has been a real blast so far. We have the best group of girls, and I even felt so wonderful last night that I played a few games of knockout! I haven't done that off of medication in seven years. Our first game is November 13th, and we have a pep rally coming up on Thursday. FUN!