Walking Seinfeld Episode

I know it’s been some time since I wrote my last blog post. I thought I would take this time to explain what’s been going on in my life and why I am ready to get back to writing.

Walking Seinfeld Episode

Every time a doctor asks me what kind of trauma happened to me to start my head-to-toe joint and bone pain, I laugh first then explain that I am a walking Seinfeld episode. I can just picture Kramer explaining to a doctor how he got attacked by a rooster. I laugh every time I think about it. The trauma that began all this pain was that I was attacked by a rooster. I never knew those birds could be that aggressive. I was helping out a friend by taking care of her chickens, gathering eggs, feeding, watering and the rooster attacked me (bit me, drew blood) three times. I hit it with a broom, but it kept coming at me. When I got home, I cleaned up the wound, it was kind of deep. I put on some natural antibacterial salve made with essential oils, then thought nothing of it. Except to laugh at how insanely funny it was when I was explaining it to my husband.

That was the beginning of May. In the middle of the month, I noticed that the rooster wound (try saying that five times fast) wasn’t healing and it was still hot to the touch, plus I started having other strange symptoms too. I had started getting severe migraines, something I haven’t had since I was a teenager. But these headaches were not like any migraine I had ever had in the past. These headaches started in the back of my head and moved to the top of my head. It felt like someone was gripping my head like a basketball and everywhere the fingers were gripping my head there was shooting pain. Plus, anytime I had one of these headaches I also had a problem with my eyes. Since I needed glasses on a regular basis, when I had the headaches I could see perfectly fine without my glasses. Then a couple of days later the tops of my feet hurt so bad I couldn’t put shoes on. This lasted 3 days, that’s when I decided to make an appointment with a doctor. Since I haven’t been sick in over seven years, I didn’t have a primary care physician, so my appointment was about six weeks out. I couldn’t take the pain anymore and really couldn’t wait that long, so I went into Urgent Care.

Urgent Care…

Let’s imagine Kramer going to Urgent Care, there is nothing urgent about it, and the entire waiting room is filled with people who should be seen by their PCP but can’t into see them because they are booked up. So the urgent care facility has taken on the role of our PCP (primary care physician). What a sad situation.

Want to get an appointment with a doctor lickety split? Just go into Urgent Care three times in two weeks. The urgent care doctor sped up my appointment and got me in to see the doctor I wanted instead of whoever had an opening.

That started my medical paper trail, and the hilarity of explaining to my doctor that yes, I am a Walking Seinfeld Episode. I have had 20 different blood tests to rule out Polymyalgia, Lyme Disease, Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B, Mono, RA and Lupus (although those tests can come back negative and you can still have the disease.) My inflammation level fluctuates so much the doctor doesn’t understand it. Especially since all my other tests are coming back negative.

There is not a day that goes by that I am not in pain somewhere on my body. If I wake up and hands and feet are cramped up, I know what kind of day I am going to have. But if I wake up with no pain that doesn’t mean I will remain pain-free for the whole day. What this has done to my life is horrible. I can only work six hours a day and some days if I am extremely stressed I will get a migraine back and need to go lie down in my dark walk-in closet and sleep the day away.

Never in my life have I ever experienced every bone in my body all feeling like I have shin splints. Try telling this to a physical trainer who told me that it was impossible to have shin splints in your bones it only happens with physical exertion. Well, I know what a shin splint feels like, and when every bone feels like that, it’s not something that will magically go away. Every day is a challenge, how will I get dressed, how will I bathe, how will I make food for myself, how will I get up and down the stairs (I have 2 flights of 13 stairs in my home.) These are questions I am now asking myself.

But some things are surely constant in my life. I always find the time to learn from God and take direction from Him. I always find the time to exercise whether I am doing some Classical Stretch or Pilates or taking a walk with my husband. I know that if I don’t move now, I won’t be able to move later. The Classical Stretch is my favorite as it keeps me in a good posture throughout the day. Another constant is that I try to make accommodations so I can continue doing what I love. Like wearing special gloves to crochet and using special homemade crochet hooks that make it easier to grip the hook. I make special accommodations at work right now working only the allotted time the doctor says I can work, taking an hour for lunch so I can take a nap, and using a special mouse that puts my hand in a neutral position.

We still don’t know the why, the how, and for how long I will be this way. Right now the doctors don’t have any answers to those questions. More doctor and specialist appointments are to follow. Sometimes we don’t know why we are experiencing what we are going through. Maybe it’s to teach us a lesson or maybe it’s for the benefit of others. I can say that I have learned so much with this pain that I would have never known before.

Lessons learned:

1. From a good friend who is going through her own health challenges: Greeting people with “Happy to see you!” instead of “How are you?” I kind of cringe when people ask me how I am feeling because I really don’t want to think about it.

2. Even though you can’t see my illness doesn’t mean I am not sick. Many people don’t wear their illnesses on their sleeves for the world to see.

3. Even the smallest tasks mean so much. Remember the book, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff”? Well it’s the small stuff that means so much to me. If someone offers to water my plants for me, I let them. If my husband wants to clean the kitchen, I let him. It’s those little things that speak volumes to me right now.

4. Flip Flops can go with every outfit. I have one pair of flip flops that don’t hurt my feet. I have worn them this entire summer.

5. I can’t control my pain but I can control my thoughts about my pain. When I wake up and my body is screaming at me, I have two choices stay in bed and wallow in the pain or get up, get dressed and take charge of pain focusing on the blessings in my life

6. Let people be a blessing to you. I think this is the biggest lesson I have learned so far. If someone wants to help you by doing something (washing dishes, carrying your bags, giving an encouraging word) don’t push them away by making them fit your criteria.

7. Do what you can do, when you can do it, in a way you can do it. So,  I use two hands to drink my cup of coffee in the morning. It takes me about an hour to unload the dishwasher. I don’t even try making my bed anymore. No one sees my bedroom but my husband and I. If I can’t make dinner, I instruct my husband in what to make for dinner. I can’t always do what I had planned on doing for the day, no problem I do what I can do, when I can do it, in a way I can do it.

8. God is still in charge. So, I have pain now, so what? That hasn’t changed my view of God in my life. A matter of fact, I am now more focused on God than I ever was before.

9. Eat this, don’t eat that. Do this, don’t do that. You probably have… People will come of the woodwork to tell you what you should eat, not eat, how to do this cleanse, that technique. They will even tell you they know what’s wrong with you, and it’s not real it’s all in your head. Well, they don’t wake up in your body either.

10. The pain doesn’t diminish who I am. I am still me, I still do the things I love doing. I am still me!

While I am a walking Seinfeld episode, I am still me.

The Good Morning Man

Each day as I disembark from my bus ride to work there is a man who stands on the pavement with his crooked body, white hair, walking cane, Seattle Mariners baseball cap and his smile greeting everyone with a “Good Morning.” I see him every morning and every morning with a smile on his face, he greets everyone with “Good Morning, Isn’t it wonderful to be alive?!”

I have no clue where this man comes from but the regulars on the bus say he’s been doing this for a couple of years. Rain or shine, he is at his post wishing all of us a Good Morning. Today, I met him on my little walk to my office as he was late to his post, said he usually gets there at 7:15am. He said he was late because he was listening to the sound of the birds. He wished me his normal “Good Morning, Isn’t it wonderful to be alive?!” and not only did I smile and wish him one back. But my whole day started out so much better.

Good Morning

How many times have we gotten up in the morning just to trudge through our day, just as nothing special? Many of us are not morning people, we wake up grumpy and barely put two words together until we have our first cup of a legalized drug (coffee). We need a drug to wake us up and appreciate the fact that we get to greet yet another day. We didn’t die in the middle of the night. But instead of wishing people a good morning, we put the covers back over our heads and want to spend just 5 more minutes in bed.

Just this simple act of saying “Good Morning” to complete strangers makes this man’s day better. Who knows maybe he endured a health issue, maybe he’s a walking miracle. His endorphins are exploding just by smiling and the rush he gets when people smile back at him. Just because we aren’t morning people doesn’t mean we can’t offer a “Good Morning” to our children, our pets, our spouses and even our plants. How about saying a “Good Morning, God. Thanks for keeping me verticle!” “Good Morning husband of mine (fill in the blank), It’s great to wake up next to you!” “Good Morning (children’s name), Today is going to be a great day!” “Good Morning my pet!” There’s no better way than to start your day with your endorphins exploding, it means you’re happy.

The Good Morning Man has really shown me that no matter our circumstances, you can make a difference in someone else’s life just by uttering two words “Good Morning!”

Good Morning World, Isn’t it great to be alive!?!

My Fatsimplistic Plan

I am in love with simplicity. If a plan isn’t simple, I won’t do it. My fatsimplistic plan is so simple, that it keeps me wondering why I have not tried this before. Everyone should jump on the fat bandwagon because it’s the best and healthiest way to eat. Believe the scientific evidence and the doctors who are proclaiming the benefits of eating fat, the right kind of fat.

A high fat diet can boost your brain power. Why? Because our brain is made up of 60% fat. When we cut the fat out of our diet, like we did for so many years at the insistence of the research back then we end up with more people with brain disorders, cancers, and other life threatening issues.  Now we know that fat doesn’t cause heart disease, high blood pressure or high cholesterol levels, that’s all sugar and carbs.

Sugar is not an essential nutrient, but Fat is a well-deserved and needed nutrient in our body. Sugar is the common denominator to most if not every illness. Good fats like extra virgin organic coconut oil, grass-fed butter, cold pressed olive oil (never used for cooking), avocados and oil, almonds, walnuts, seeds, seed and nut butters, high-fat fish, bison, organic grass-fed beef not only help our bodies heal, but also help us to lose weight.

Here is my fatsimplistic plan.

Upon waking: Himalayan Sole Water

Followed by hot lemon water

Then for the next four hours I drink dandelion tea (no sweetener) and water.

Around 11:30 I have my first meal: High-fat protein shake made with coconut milk (1 can full fat organic coconut milk mixed with two cans spring water), 1 avocado, 1 raw (yes, I said raw) organic farm-raised egg, 1/2 cup frozen berries (no strawberries), 1 cup packed spinach/kale/ or other leafy greens, 1 scoop Sun Warrior: Warrior Blend Protein Powder and my essential mix (ground up seeds, future blog post.)

At noon, I also have a cup of rocket coffee.

Then as a snack around 3pm, if I am hungry, I have a couple of almonds dipped in sunflower butter.

For dinner: I make the usual Paleo meal: Organic Animal Protein: Steak, chicken, wild caught salmon, bison,  cooked with coconut oil and non-starchy veggies and a nice leafy green salad topped with an olive oil and lemon juice dressing.

That’s the Fatsimplistic plan I follow. It’s simple. It works for me.

 

My Behavior Triggers

It’s no joke that I read many books and try to combine techniques to help me in gaining health and wisdom in my life. One such book I am currently reading is The Art of Persistence. I just started reading The Charge by Brendon Burchard, which I won for free. It’s been sitting on my bookshelf for a little over a year. The two books, while somewhat related got me to thinking about how my behavior triggers my success in all the facets of my life. Health, family, social, career, dreams, home, relationships, education, the list is endless.

Through the principles of these books, I have decided to write out my 30 daily habits. Yes, you read that right, 30. Each of us have at least 30 daily habits that either contribute to our success in any given life facet or its failure. While doing this practice for the last week, I am also concentrating on, meditating on, praying about, pondering, and applying different words that have meaning in my life. Some of these words include Consistency, Constant, Courageous, Complacent, Concentration, Determination, Empathic, etc.

Behavior changing

So what, right? Well, since I am always using myself as a guinea pig with different health techniques, why should this be any different?

Since the first day I started writing out my 30 daily habits, I’ve learned that writing them out makes me think about them and when I am doing them I am reminded of their impact on my success. Is this a behavior trigger? I think so because by doing this simple act of writing out the 30 habits, I am putting myself into a different frame of mind.

What do 30 habits look like? Here are some of mine. They change from day to day.

  1. Pray
  2. Study
  3. Exercise
  4. Bathe
  5. Dress for success (whether working from home or in an office)
  6. Tell my spouse how much I love him
  7. Set D.U.M.B. goals
  8. Drink one fruit/veggie blast a day
  9. Eat one salad a day
  10. Go for 2 walks a day
  11. Write one blog post a day
  12. Clean one room of the house a day
  13. Read one chapter in any of the books I am currently reading
  14. Hold my husband’s hand while taking a walk.
  15. Smile
  16. Make someone else smile.
  17. Write three pages for my upcoming book
  18. Make dinner
  19. Encourage someone else
  20. Plan next adventure
  21. Drink Sole Therapy water every morning
  22. Talk to my plants
  23. Do some form of art therapy
  24. Meditate on one word
  25. Get up when alarm goes off
  26. Make my bed
  27. Finish the laundry process
  28. Focus on work at hand
  29. Choose health
  30. Count my blessings

Your habits will be different. If you have animals, you will need to include those habits. If you have small children you will need to list the habits surrounding your family. This simple little behavior tool has helped me in many ways. I’ve lost weight. I’m exercising every day. I am managing my stress level. I am able to have more joy in my life.

While there are many behavior changing triggers, and this one isn’t the only that works. I would love to hear what works for you. If you have a resource or technique you use to change your behavior, please share it as long as it meets my criteria (no harm to humans or animals, no foul or explicit language,  no violence, and no judging.)

What I Need, When I Needed it

Have you ever noticed that things come into your life at exactly the right moment, not five minutes later or a day ahead, but at the precise moment that you need and are ready to accept what is being given? I’ve been working on a lot of different projects since my last blog post in January. I’ve pushed writing aside several times to focus on my full-time job. But now every turn in the road seems to bring me back to writing, not to help others (though I’m glad my writing can fill that need), but for my own sanity. I am really thinking God gave me this talent of writing so I can figure things out in my own head and have a hard copy of my thoughts. When I write for the sake of collecting my thoughts in one spot, I can read them and think “Do I keep them or should I toss them aside?”

As with other parts of my life writing is a constant companion. I am constantly writing in my job, but it’s more sales letters and emails, nothing that has anything profound about living, wellness, or change. Frankly, when I work all day on a computer I don’t want to spend the rest of my day working on a computer.

So what makes now so different. Last week I watched a Brendon Burchard video on “How Not to Set Goals“. This video stressed the importance of D.U.M.B. goals. This one video changed my focus since I watched it. Why this? Why now?

Well, I was looking for something motivating to watch as I was going through a tough time at work. My boss is very left-brained. She lives in her spreadsheets. Now that’s not a bad thing but when you try to control a right-brained person with left-brained tools the right-brained person feels like a fish out of water and balks at every turn. I am that right-brained person. I think outside the box, whereas my boss is the left-brained person and needs to put everyone inside the box or she feels a loss of control. Needless to say, it’s a bit stressful for me sometimes. So when I stumbled upon this idea of setting D.U.M.B. goals it made sense to me and helped me in understanding why I never made the S.M.A.R.T. ones in the first place.

What’s a D.U.M.B. goal?

D: Dream Driven (Thinking way outside the box) Something that fires you up. Something you contribute to the world. Asking yourself at the end of your life “What things would make your life meaningful?”

U: Uplifting: Our words matter. Gaining something rather than losing something. I want to lose weight today is not uplifting. Make the goal attractive, compelling and important to you. Turn I want to lose weight today into I am going to feel so fit, vibrant and beautiful to the world that it exudes out of my skin.

M: Method Friendly: What practices can you surround this goal that make it achievable? Can you make a map around it, what processes can you bring to this goal that makes attaining it achievable easier. These practices, processes, or map helps us to live in the goal consistently. Some examples of a method would be to go to a Pilates class three times a week, three times a week you’ll do some sort of High-Intensity Training.  Same thing when it comes to eating. Add a new method to your plan: Drink some Rocket Coffee every morning, have a protein shake for lunch every day. Make these methods something you can repeat over and over and over (consistency).

B: Behavior driven: Triggers set up to make you do this. Examples: I am going to think these five things right before I go to the grocery store, I am going to only shop the outside aisles of the grocery store, Every time I waiting in line ask yourself “What am I focusing on and How do I feel?” If you want to be vibrant you have to feel vibrant.

I’ve been using this pattern all week long and I’ve been able to gain vibrancy and peace of mind. Creating my D.U.M.B. goals this week for work had me thinking not so much on what I wanted to accomplish for the week, like a task list, but more on the big picture of where I want my life to be. My work goals became D.U.M.B. goals too. Did I accomplish them yes, and it was so much easier than writing in a spreadsheet all the things I did for the day.

Want to make your life less stress filled? Make some D.U.M.B. goals. If you’re right brained like me, it’s the smart way to go.

Has nothing to do with this post, but I love this photo of myself and my new friend Leo.

Has nothing to do with this post, but I love this photo of myself and my new friend Leo.

WRITING WHEN I DON’T FEEL LIKE IT!

Today was one of those days. I got up with the intention of writing but instead went on a little excursion with my hubby. Bought a couple of new books from Barnes & Nobles, went to my favorite organic grocery store, had some great soup for lunch (carrot pumpkin coconut soup), will try to recreate it for a future meal. We came home, put the groceries away, talked with a friend, made up some spice mixes, at a snack with my husband. All I basically wanted to do today was everything else but write. So I haven’t written anything, not my three sentences for the day, not a single page on my book, and even now as I’m writing this, I am reluctant to finish it.

It takes more than just discipline to follow through on a project, at least it does for me. I must be motivated to do it. Without the inner motivation I am in left field looking at all the pretty flowers while the world is running past me. My mind is everywhere today.

I guess I realized that I just needed a break and I took one. While I didn’t accomplish what I set out to, it was nice to take the time and just do something else. We all need to have that time to unwind from the world, our worklife, our serving life, and all the other items we put on our plates. Yes, I put so much on my plate probably because I have this innate feeling to help as many people as I can each day even at the cost of my own sanity.

So my three sentences are written for today, well a whole lot more than three. And I’ve written a blog post that is from my heart. Taking a break every now and then to collect my thoughts and unwind is a great way to start the week. What do you think?

Wishing you wellness for a new day.

 

Taking a Break

Relax! You’ll Be More Productive

Preventing Burnout

 

LESSONS FROM A DYING AVOCADO TREE

Sometimes I find myself talking to my plants as if they will give me the answers I seek. One such occasion is taking care of one of my three avocado trees. It’s basically dying from a mold issue. I have searched the internet over, talked with horticulturists, applied expensive treatments and some homemade alkalizing treatments but still the leaves develop dry tips and fall off. Then it dawned on me, this illness is coming from within; it’s in the roots, the stem and the leaves. To make it even simpler to my sometimes simple mind; the dirt is dead, the pot is contaminated. So how can anything grow if its roots are sitting in dead soil in a container that is also infected. Oh the lessons we learn when we take the time to seek these answers.

Relating this to my own life and to the peeps in my life, we can’t keep adding all the best nutritional products, alternative health therapies, and health supplements if we are not eliminating those things that are poisoning us. We can’t inhale essential oils thinking our blood pressure is going to go down if we’re not exercising or eating potato chips every night. We can’t see our liver healing if we are continuously doing things that make it sick. Adding all these natural therapies that I talk about here and on my facebook page is great but if we’re not overhauling our health, we live in a state of limbo, dying on the inside while our bodies are beginning to show the signs.

Living in Total Health

 

Here’s some signs for you to watch out for.

Hair falling out? You may lack vitamin D. But adding vitamin D3 may not stop your hair from falling out if your diet is filled with artificial sweeteners, processed foods and diet pills.

Twitchy eyes? You may be lacking vitamin B12. By adding the B12 sublingual drops, your twitching may subside for the moment but what are you consuming that’s destroying the B12 in your diet a.k.a. processed foods (they rob the body of nutrients just so the body can “digest” them).

Skin rashes, hives, eczema, etc is mostly caused by an allergy of some kind. While you may have taken out the offending little and big assassins from your diet, have you checked what’s in your lotions, body washes, shampoos, makeup and even the ingredients in your clothing?

If you want your total health to be the picture of vibrant living, then every part of your life needs an overhaul. You have to dig deep into what you really want out of life. Do you want to be like my avocado tree, which is showing the signs of dying but it’s still growing? Or do you want to bypass and overcome disease vibrantly?

The choice has always been in your hands, don’t let anyone take those choices away from you.

Wishing you wellness for a new day!

 

Total Health