Sickness and Health

(This sat in my drafts for a few months, so it was really not this past weekend, but a weekend in November.)

This past weekend I learned and saw from very close up exactly how I got really sick, and how I got better in a matter of a couple of days. I want to share this with you in the hopes that it will help you get over anything you might have going on by looking in places that seem completely unrelated.

First the sick part.

I was set to spend what was meant to be a wonderful weekend with Chrissy and her family at a lovely beach house in Ventura California to celebrate her Grandmother’s birthday. IMG_6106The waves literally crashed against the walls of the outdoor area and the bedroom windows looked out on the beautiful Pacific Ocean and the small volcanic island of Anacapa. When you slept, you could hear the waves crashing, and when you awoke, the vast horizon stretched before you as if you were at sea. It was breathtakingly beautiful. Continue reading “Sickness and Health”

God, Why Have I Been so Inauthentic?

Why have I been so inauthentic? I’m not really asking God, but maybe I am. I have been hiding behind this veil of what I think I should be like, and what will everyone think of that person I think I should be? (Because they sure as heck won’t like the person I really am, or maybe they would really like it, and THEN what?). You know, so many brilliant people speak about authenticity, so I won’t plunge into that worthy and complex topic right now but what I will say is that I have been inauthentic. Continue reading “God, Why Have I Been so Inauthentic?”

Elimination Diet

I’m an artist/preschool teacher living in Seattle with my amazing husband, Pat. He and I have been really focused on our health over the past couple of years, this has led us to making many dietary changes. We implemented some pretty drastic changes to our diets and experienced firsthand how much diet can affect not only your physical appearance but also how you feel. My husband has a multitude of allergies to foods that I have no measureable reaction to so the two of us couldn’t be on the same exact diet because our bodies handle food differently. This brought me to the realization that there is no perfect diet for everyone. There are so many different factors that determine what your nutritional needs are and the only way that I have found to truly find out what your body reacts to is to do an elimination diet.

My husband’s naturopathic doctor recommended he try last year and he did, finding out even more about his allergies to food. I was hesitant at first because I don’t have a lot of food allergies- or so I thought. Recently, I have learned a great deal about how diet can affect hormones and how the right diet can help balance out your hormones as well as improve your overall physical and mental health. I have always struggled with PMS symptoms including mood swings, severe cramps, fatigue, anxiety, sleeplessness and acne. As I’ve gotten older some of these symptoms have worsened. My acne has also become much more of an issue over the past 4 or 5 years to the point where I was so desperate to try anything to get rid of it. In my research I came across an article that talked about how nightshade vegetables can cause acne and joint pain. I was floored because I LOVE all things tomato-y and spicy .Also, keep in mind, I have had joint pain since I was 10 or 11. I cut all nightshades out of my diet immediately after I learned of this information and the first thing I noticed was my joint pain disappeared. Then, my skin began to clear up. I still got a few zits around my period but my skin was noticeably clearer. I also noticed I would get zits almost immediately after a weekend of eating nightshades (pizza or Mexican food) and the joint pain would come back. After I made this discovery, I wondered what other foods in my diet were affecting me negatively. Aside from the basic things that we should all avoid such as soy, corn and simple sugars, I wanted to know exactly what I should and shouldn’t eat. A food reaction, no matter how mild seeming, can be a sign of inflammation and repeated, long-term exposure to these foods will likely lead to heart disease, cancer and a host of other health problems.          These experiences have led me to try beginning an elimination diet and I wanted to journal what my experiences are so that others who are considering it or are beginning one as well can use this as a reference point. I have been doing a lot of Googling and have come up with very little information on what to expect when starting an elimination diet or how one feels when they are on it. Also, this is a great way to keep myself motivated and keep track of my progress and symptoms. I will journal how I’m feeling throughout the process and what my meals are. If you are thinking about doing an elimination diet, this may help you know what to expect along the way, even though we are all different and unique, we are also more similar than not.Let the elimination diet begin!