Thursday, May 27, 2010

Procrastinating and Packing

I just realized something about myself.
Usually when I am packing, whether for a move or for a trip, I wait until the last minute. For trips this never bothered me and I never really thought about it. For moving though, it's been a struggle for me. I thought that I hated packing and that's why I always put it off until a couple of days before my move (although I have never been late with packing). I mean, I was really really convinced that I HATE packing. I would force myself, hating it every moment, to start packing early, a few boxes every day, to make sure I was getting it done. Well this time, I am done early. I got the last of my stuff packed up (except, of course, the few things I will need until Saturday) last night: a full 3 days early!

And now, looking around at all these boxes and things, knowing I have another 48 hours before they are put on a truck and dropped off at my new place, I realize.... it's not that I hate packing. That was just the reason I came up with off the top of my head several moves ago and I stuck to it; I made it true for myself. I totally convinced myself of it! The real reason I don't pack until the last minute is because I don't like the feeling of impermanence, of transience, oh lack-of-place-and-space that comes from having everything all packed up. I don't like the odd hovering between two homes feeling that I get from not quite being at home in either.
And, even more interesting: now that I have realized WHY I put off packing, I totally don't mind that I do! After all, I've never missed a deadline. All I am doing is making the moving process as easy as possible on myself. Until, of course, my silly rationalizing brain jumped in and made it "bad" to put things off.
Humans are endlessly fascinating, lol!

Net learning: trust myself to take care of myself, rather than rushing to doubt!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ants and Black Pepper

There are ants visiting my house.

Uhm, no. Not that kind. More like this:

Yeah. With big mandibles or whatever, that they bite me with. I remember this happening last year too. I got traps last year, and killed them. I felt kinda bad for the ants.

But in the end, I felt worse for me. this year, though, I am about to move from this house. I really don't want to waste money de-anting a place that is only mine for 4 more days. I also don't want to buy anything because I know it's gonna be one more thing I have to put in a box soon. So I am trying methods that involve items I already own.
Basically, that means the black pepper method. I don't own a whole lot. You sprinkle black pepper on their trail and it apparently makes them go away. The only black pepper I have was whole corns. So the ants got sprinkled with a hail of gourmet, freshly ground black pepper. At first they didn't seem to mind at all. They kept just marching along, doing whatever anty things they do (really, what do they do...? None of them were even carrying any food...).

I imagined them having tiny little sneezes from all the pepper, and that this is what would drive them away. I like to pretend I don't kill things.

I got pretty excited last night. The ants had disappeared from my chair and couch! I couldn't tell if there were any on the carpet, they kind of blend in. This morning, though, the ants were back on the chair and the couch. They had shifted their parade path to avoid the black pepper.

Really, the only thing the black pepper treatment did was make it so I can't tell which little black specks might bite me until they move.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Great Things, Part 7

I'm not posting this because I'm in the mood. I'm posting this because I'm not in the mood.

The postal service, that lets me share things with people far away.

Having my own washer and dryer soon

Being able to go to doctors and stuff when I need to

Hardwood floors, especially bare feet on clean ones


Sometimes in my quest for health (both physical and mental) I lose track of why I'm doing it. I have reasons. I have them written down. I have art pieces I've made based on them. And yet, when things get really tough, I still think " am I doing this, again? Surely it's not really worth it.... I mean, I survived 30-odd years how I was, surely I can do another 30ish." And I lose my energy for it. My enthusiasm. My excitement. Especially as this project, the improving me project, feels like such a very solo endeavor.
So, who has ideas for how to keep up my 3 Es (energy, excitement, enthusiasm) in this particular quest?
(While you think over how to phrase your brilliant answer, here are some amusing thoughts on motivation)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Heavy Metal and Me

The elements, not the music.
So, I got some med lab results back today. It turns out I'm pretty loaded with toxic heavy metals: mercury, lead, arsenic (! I associate arsenic with poisoning people....), and gadolinium (yeah, I hadn't heard of that last one either). The reason I got tested in the first place was because my doctor was concerned that the benefits of my current protocol had hit a plateau way before she expected them to. The metals I tested high in can cause (I'm only listing the things that are issues for me, there's a much longer list of general complaints they can cause!) weight gain, fatigue, depression, lack of motivation, thyroid problems, vitamin D deficiency, increased perspiration (ok, I don't know if I really do sweat too much, but I do sweat a lot), insomnia, gingivitis, and metabolic problems.
So, here's what I'm doing about it:
Right now I'm on a detox called The Master Cleanse. I'm currently on day 7 out of... well, out of who knows how many. After consulting with my doctor this morning, I/we have decided to possibly go longer than my original 10 day goal. On this cleanse, your tongue develops a white coating as your body detoxes. This is kind of an indicator for the rest of your body. As the toxins clear up and stop leaving the body, your tongue goes back to its natural pink color. So the idea now is to stick to my current detox until my tongue loses its toxic coat. If this extends beyond 14 days I will add all-natural fruit and vegetable juices to my detox plan, to make sure I don't go too long without too many nutrients
.When I am off the Master Cleanse and eating normally again, I will have a week of rest, detox-wise. In other words, I will just eat healthy, live foods and not work on clearing anything out of my body.
After that week, I will begin chelation. Chelation is the process of ridding the body of heavy metals. The way I will be doing it is my taking a pill called DMSA. Basically it is a substance that attracts and binds to heavy metals, so they can be excreted from the body. A lot of people do chelation with an IV medication, sometimes including a hospital visit. I won't be doing any of that. I will do about 6 rounds of a 2-week protocol of DMSA. Each 2-week round consists of 3 or 4 "cleanse days"; that is, days of actively removing toxins with the DMSA and then  9 or 10 "recovery days" in which I will be taking a lot of supplements and eating specific foods that build up some of the minerals and nutrients my body will have lost. DMSA doesn't bond to only toxic things, some needed things will bond ot it as well, so it's important to make sure you are building those things back up in your body.
Theoretically I will also be looking into getting my silver amalgam fillings redone. The amalgam contains mercury. While it is not usually a major cause of mercury in the body after a few days, it can still build up over time. And I still have a fair number of silver fillings in my molars. However. I totally hate the dentist. With a passion. So we'll see what happens on this front, lol!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Detox (Again)

I'm frustrated with myself. Today is day 5 of my detox. I've managed to eat 3 times (note: I am not supposed to be eating at all). What is it with me? Uber addiction? Weak will? UGH, I'm so... disgusted... with myself. I will be extending the detox, I am determined to do it fully.
(For those of you concerned: some people do it up to 40 days, so a few extra days isn't going to kill me. Remember, I am in close contact with my doctor about all of this).
Just... so damn frustrating. I'e been trying to keep myself distracted... reading, coloring, DVDs, packing for my move, word searches, online games...

So here's the plan for the rest of my detox:
Take a walk every day
Take an Epsom salt bath every day
When a craving hits, pray

People report more energy while they are on the detox... I think mine has been about the same as ever, with a little more mental spaciness. Of course, I haven't had a "real" detox have I... sigh.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Day My Mom Died

I had a dream last night, with my mom in it. It's the first time I've dreamed of her since she died, that I remember. she and I and my friend were in a car, and I was getting really frustrated with Mom for what I thought were silly decisions. Then I woke up. I kinda feel bad for feeling frustrated with her in the dream. So maybe that's why I've been thinking of her today, specifically the day she died and how it all played out. Also her birthday and of course Mother's Day are this month, so maybe that's part of why that day is in my head. Anyway, I thought I'd write about it.

I didn't live in the same city as my mum while she was ill. For a while I didn't live in the same state, but I decided to move when I realized her cancer was going to be a long term kind of thing (yeah, yeah, I know, it was cancer, of course its a big deal... maybe I was in denial or something). I think it was Monday that my brother called me and let me know that her condition was deteriorating quickly; she might die soon, and I might want to make plans to be there. I left about an hour or two after that call. When I got to mom's house she was still alert enough that she definitely knew I was there. She looked at me and smiled this really big smile. I'm glad I got there when I did... even the next day, she wasn't nearly as responsive.
The week was kind of just one big waiting. Me, my brother, my uncle from California and grandmother from Florida (mom's brother and mom) were there. Mom had 24-hour care, too, so there was always a worker there. And a family friend called Diane, who works with Hospice, was there a lot. There were a few visitors as well. Someone my mom had known a long time stayed with her for a whole night, while I got some sleep (I was staying at her house). Even though we had a night time caregiver, I just felt like someone she knew well should be with her. So she kept getting worse... less responsive, needing more pain meds, which in turn made her less responsive.... During the week my sister in law, and her and my brother's two kids, also came by to say goodbye. My nephew brought some candles and spent a long time arranging then just right for his Oma. I remember a time when my brother and I were listing people who were ready to greet her in the next world. I remember telling her that we looked sad, but we would be ok, and not to hang on for us. Sometime in there my brother and I arranged things at a funeral home, too. Chose a casket, a plot near my son's grave. There was a moment of giddy hilarity when we flipped to the back of the casket catalogue and saw a corrugated cardboard box for $99. Seriously. A cardboard box. I think the funeral home people were a little confused that we didn't know when we wanted the service, as she wasn't dead yet.
The last thing I remember her saying was when someone and I (I don't remember who.. maybe Diane?) and I were at her bedside, telling her that it was ok to go and things like that. Mom suddenly kind of startled awake and said "I'm not going anywhere!" Sometimes it bothers me that maybe she wasn't ready to die, but I usually believe that by the end, she was ready.
She died on Thursday, October 30. My uncle and I had gone out to lunch and just as we were finishing up, got a text from my brother. He said things were progressing quickly now, there were signs of death being near, and we might want to get back to Mom's house. We did. The family gathered around Mom's bed and said prayers. My grandmother singing Amazing Grace so sweetly to her dying daughter was one of the most beautiful things I've ever witnessed. Each person in the family took time alone with Mom, too. I don't know what anyone else said, but I told her that I know sometimes I had made choices for myself that weren't the ones she would have made for me. And that there has been anger and frustration and hurt between us. I told her that I forgave all that, and that now there was only love between us. I'm pretty sure she gave me a little nod.
We had scheduled some close friends to visit, and my brother and I decided to allow that visit to happen, but asked Diane to please ask them to leave if it looked like Mom was about to go. We wanted it to be a family time. The three friends were there visiting, and my uncle, brother, and Diane were in another room talking. Mom started having longer and longer spaces between breaths. Several seconds, maybe even up to 30. I went to the other room and told them, "You need to come now." I think maybe Diane had been telling them that it would be soon, too. I signalled Diane to please ask the friends to leave, and they did. One hadn't gotten her personal time with Mom, but they all left anyway. And then there was a time when as we were waiting for that next breath, it never came. It took a minute for me to realize it was never going to come. I said, "You did it, Mom." Her body had been ready to go for a while, and she was finally able to let go. My brother said "That is exactly what I was about to say." We all laughed, and cried, and said more prayers. Then we tried to make some phone calls. We had a land line and three or four cell phones, on at least two different carriers, but none would call out. After about half an hour, they started working again.
When the funeral home came to pick her up they seemed kind of surprised that we were all in the room still. When they were putting the bag over her, they asked me what I wanted them to do. I told them "whatever you normally do." So they zipped it up all the way.
I spent that night in her house, but I didn't sleep well at all. The house still felt... occupied, somehow. After that night, I stayed at my brother's place.
Of course there was body preparation, and funeral... memorial service, the cleaning out of her house, what to do with her stuff.... but what's been on my mind today is the day she died.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Pushing Myself

So, I've decided to hold off on detoxing until next week. The main reason is, I'm just not ready. I think I jumped into it too soon this time. I had a crazy month with lots of travelling and not much downtime at all, and then pretty much as soon as all that was over, I jumped into the detox. My head just wasn't in the game... I wasn't feeling motivated for it, I was unsure as to my reasons. And that made it very hard to resist cravings and stuff. So I'm giving myself time to kinda get grounded before I start again.
There are also two family events this weekend that promise to have very yummy food, that I really want ot fully partake in! So Monday, or perhaps Tuesday, is my goal date for starting my full 10 day detox/cleanse.
I've been feeling a little down on myself since quitting the detox after only about two days. I'm realizing that I don't think I push myself enough in some areas. But I don't want to get into a situation where I am not being kind to myself, either. It's a balance I'm working on finding. And while I am finding it, I am trying not ot be too hard on myself.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Frustrated. Or Disappointed. Or Both.

I'm feeling... something.
It seems like I'm hanging out with the wrong people. Or not wrong exactly, but... not the most helpful/ healthy. It feels like no one I communicate with on a regular/sustained  basis thinks the way I do.
I was recently accused of being "unnaturally positive." I really do believe that life is amazing, all the time, and all I have to do is believe that. But I sometimes feel surrounded by people who don't want to see it. Who are depressed, anxious, stressed... not occasionally, but constantly. They don't seem to understand me very well, when I go to them with a problem or a situation I want to discuss. Or when they come to me and I offer my ideas. And frankly, I don't really understand them a lot of the time either.
I don't know... maybe its time for a change. Or maybe this is just detox speaking... though I've been feeling it for longer than the two days I've been on the cleanse this time so far.
I miss Massachusetts and the network I had there. I'm not sure how to build that for myself now. I guess that's the part I will be thinking about.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Negative Judgments

I am having some negative judgements about myself.

1. My weight makes me ugly / disgusting.
2. I am lazy for not working / having income.
3. I am not healthy enough in my eating and exercise habits.
4. I am not compassionate / giving enough.
5. I am not good enough at being social.

So now... I will attempt to challenge them.

1. While I do carry extra weight, I can still be beautiful.
2. I am creating an ideal working situation for myself, and so long as I am not hurting anyone, how I live is my own issue.
3. I eat in a healthy way and work daily to eat even more healthily. I will exercise joyfully when I am ready to.
4. I give as much as I am able, while still being compassionate to my own needs and desires. How much I give quantitatively is not important; giving to my own capacity is.
5. It is ok not to enjoy large and boisterous social situations. I do quite well in quiet, intimate social settings.

1. That didn't really help much.
2. Yeah... but I really do want to be more proactive about it all.
3. I want the exercise part to happen soon! I will work on concrete ways to make it happen.
4. Cool.
5. Cool.