Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Creative Living (Part One)

Rare night-time blog!  Rare because my desire to do anything at all productive almost always goes down with the sun, which should also explain why this week's blog is basically a link to a video.

This is a Part One because I will inevitably purchase and read (and I'm guessing - love) Elizabeth Gilbert's latest, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear and inevitably write about it.  However, this amazing little gem popped up through the magic of Facebook earlier this week.

There's a 18 minute video of actor and playwright Tracy Letts giving his advice for living a creative life, accompanied by an annotated list of his 10 top pieces of advice.  Because my attention span is as short as I'm guessing most people's is these days, I just read the list at first, but, at Marc's recommendation, I've now watched the video as well, and it's well worth the time.  Just think of it as 6 three-minute cat videos or Hamilton clips or whatever it is you typically waste your time with and it won't seem so big and intimidating.

His first piece of advice, for me, is the best one - Do Nothing.  He's not saying to meditate, just...Do Nothing.  Don't listen to anything.  Don't watch anything.  Don't mess with your phone.  Just. Sit.  Let your mind wander.  As he says, "...pretty soon you'll stop thinking about your problems or your schedule or your failings and your mind will start to wander and you'll start to fantasize.  You will start to daydream."

It's incredible how rarely we do nothing.  I'm honestly hard pressed to find a moment of my day where, if I'm not doing something, I am consuming something.  Podcasts, TV, music, a book, the news.  I can feel that my brain misses that freedom because there are times I'm walking down the street listening to a podcast and I realize I haven't been paying attention to the last five minutes - and then, and only then, do I turn it off and just walk.  I wait for my brain to beg for it and tell me out loud that it needs some free time.

It doesn't have to be a long time.  He advocates a half hour, which I'm ashamed to admit sounds terrifying and impossible to me.  But how glorious for our brains to get that space and that freedom!

Here is the link again, if you didn't click it up above.  If nothing else, give the list a read.  It's fantastic advice for tuning into your creativity - and whether you're an artist or an accountant, our own personal creativity helps all of us lead happier and more successful lives.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Whole30, Take 2

Happy Tuesday!

I had originally planned on doing a book report entry on Gretchen Rubin's Better than Before, but I loved the book so much that I feel like it deserves a second, closer look before I write about it.  It's so densely packed with fantastic, helpful information that it needs a better entry than I could write at the moment, as I'm a bit short on time.

Instead, I'll write about what many people are probably sick of hearing about - my second Whole30!

This is my second Whole30, but my first time doing it with friends who actually live in the city.  That's been a fantastic boost to the overall experience - in addition to sharing recipes and tips and commiserating with my awesome mom, who is doing the Whole30 with Jim, I can do the same with besties who live right here in Queens.

There are way more soups and fewer salads this time around, as opposed to gloriously warm June.  I have more kitchen toys to play with and have roasted and trussed my first few chickens - a delicious way to stretch my Trader Joe's dollars!

My favorite thing about the Whole30 - even more than feeling lighter and having more energy - is the mental affect it has on me.  First, it frees me from the daily mental battles I have with myself when I'm not eating Whole30 of how much and when to eat chocolate, cheese, tortilla chips, wine, and my other vices.  It's a constant battle between my desires and my manager-self and it goes on 24/7 in my head.  Gretchen Rubin actually talks about this - moderators vs. abstainers.  Sadly for me and my sweet tooth, I function much more happily as an abstainer.  More on that in the book report!

Second, it keeps me hyper aware and hyper accountable.  There is no room for cheating or slip-ups if you're committing to the Whole30 as written.  There's no crazy portion control or calorie counting either, but in terms of what you eat - no wiggle-room allowed.  This helps me to notice my near reflexive-like reach to the chip bowl at a party, it helps me to notice that I don't need alcohol to have fun and I don't need dessert after a meal.  So much of people's social identity tends to get wrapped up in what they do and don't consume and the habits therein - it can be scary to go a different way and buck expectation, but it's so freeing.

Tomorrow brings a new Whole30 challenge I have not yet faced - Traveling on the Whole30!  I'll only be gone for a day and a half, but I'm a little nervous about my plans for feeding myself while I'm gone - and my first ever opening night party with Marc without a celebratory drink! (or five!)  Luckily, I have an incredibly supportive husband who is well versed in the Whole30 rules by now, and I'm confident it'll go well.

Today is Day 18 of 30 - more than halfway there!  If you're interested in doing your own Whole30 or just learning more about it, check out http://www.whole30.com

Sunday, January 10, 2016

2016 - The Year of Kindness

Well hello!  Just under the three month mark - yikes!

Upside of a warm Thanksgiving in Jersey
Appropriate that my last pose was at the end of October, considering Halloween always ushers in the period of absolute madness.  Everyone's lives get more rushed and busy around the holidays, but with my family, we also have birthdays and milestones and just...madness.  From my sister's birthday, Marc's and my dating anniversary, to sweet Caleb's birthday, and Thanksgiving all in November, we then move to December for both of our birthdays and Christmas and New Year's.

This cutie pie turned 1 in November!
This year, we added another thrilling milestone to celebrate every December - our third beautiful nephew, my sister's third beautiful baby and second son, and our FOURTH niece/nephew overall (in under 17 months!!!) - Kai Arthur Arel was born on December 2nd, 2015.  He was a whopping 10 lbs and absolutely beautiful, looking like an combination of Jeremy, Jeremy's dad, and my sister.  So in addition to regular holiday travel, I left for South Carolina to meet this big chunk of love the day after my birthday - after nearly a week of celebrating my birthday by welcoming one of my all-time best friends ever from California, the incomparable Katie Parker, to stay with us.

Needless to say, 2015 went out with a bang, a full heart, and so much celebratory food and drink.  I'm so thrilled to say that I'm on Day 9 of my second Whole30 and it's going really well so far.  Marc's not around to be my accountability man this time as he's in Philly, but I have two close friends who are also doing it, which means girl dinner dates!

Zoe's in heaven (we were too)
More than that, I read and just finished this morning another fantastic book by the author of The Happiness Project, Gretchen Rubin, called Better than Before.  I definitely plan to write a "book report" post about that, so stay tuned if you're an absolute self improvement/habit nerd like I am.  Between the natural New Year's motivation to have good habits, the book, and Whole30, I've been feeling very virtuous and like 2016 has gotten off to a great start.

Every year I also choose a word or a phrase to strive toward or use as an overarching guide for how I want to think or feel or act.  I've been doing this since 2009 (which holy crap is seven years ago now) and some themes stick better than others, but I keep the practice up anyway.  More often than not, it's something geared more toward living happier, living healthier, being more disciplined - but it's always inward focused.  It's always about me.  This makes sense, as most people's New Year's Resolutions are about how they want to live their own lives.

My hair is delicious
I got to thinking, though, that there's a big danger of isolationism (for an introvert like me) or just plain narcissism in relentless attention to self improvement with nothing to balance it out.  So, I settled on a word that benefits me by helping me to treat myself better and be the kind of person I want to be, and more importantly, benefits others at the same time - and that word is Kindness.  Toward others, toward myself; in action or just in thoughts (for instance, not automatically spewing mental impatience and silent insults toward slow walkers...that one will take some serious practice!), I want more kindness.

Lord knows the entire world could use more of it, in its current fraught state, and since the only thing I can control is me - there you go.  There is a tendency for some in my family and in my city to be judgmental, to focus on the negative, and to complain, and that's not the kind of person I want to be.  That's not the example I want to set for my future children - or the kids I work with now, or my niece and nephews.  I believe even though I have that side of my nature, I also have an incurable optimist's nature as well.

Through reading Rubin's book, there were many other words and phrases that leapt out at me that would be great words, but I'm sticking to my guns (so to speak) and trusting that using the idea of Kindness - even if it means one tiny change in how I might think or speak a day - is what I need for this year.

Finally, before I close, I want to say how absolutely beyond grateful I am for sweet baby Kai's health, for my sister and her husband being spectacular parents, and for my mom and Jeremy's parents being such loving parents & grandparents.  I am so deeply, deeply grateful to my husband, his family, and my friends for their support and prayers past week when we had a big scare with Kai's health.  I've never been more frightened in my life than I was this past Wednesday, and never more relieved than I was yesterday.  Life is so precious and ridiculously fragile, and it's too damn short not to be kind.

Sweet Super-Kai, feeling strong.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Reset

When teaching my prenatal yoga classes, I always give the same schpiel when I first bring my class into child's pose.  I let them know they can come to this pose at any time throughout class for any reason if they need a break, even if I don't guide them there; that it's a chance to hit the reset button and come back to their steady breath, their intention, and to completely relax their body; and I say that it's just as important if not more important to learn how to tap into that relaxation and release as it is to master the more physically challenging poses of class.  I talk about that intention - something they are to keep their mind focused on throughout class with the expectation that the mind will 100% wander off and get distracted - and how each child's pose is a chance to come back to it, no matter how far off you veered, without judgement.

In labor, the body gives you a break in between contractions.  The body is designed to give you that rest and release in between the intensity (however maddeningly brief it might be), and if you're already in the habit of taking rest where you can get it - and as best as you can, not worrying about what happened before or about what's coming next - you'll be that much more prepared and present to take whatever comes at you next.

Today I finally started my day with my morning ritual I'd set out for myself that includes Brain Gym exercises (which I could have sworn I'd blogged about before but apparently not, so that'll be a future entry!), meditation, journaling, etc etc.  I traveled down to northern VA for five days earlier this month to visit one of my best friends of all time, her husband, and their gorgeous gorgeous baby boy.  And who wants to meditate when there's a baby to play with?

A few days after I got back, I developed one of those low-grade, nagging change-of-season colds.  I don't know if it was the preschoolers, the weather, or both, but something got me and just had me dragging for a week.  The travel, the cold, the various schedule shakeups - it was all I could do to drag myself out of bed in the morning in time to get to work, let alone meditate.

Now - I'm finally back.  My Tuesdays are finally just for getting chores done in Astoria (and the return of book club tonight!!!) and I got up extra early with Marc, who headed off to Philly before the sunrise for a day of workshopping the exciting new play he'll be working on this winter.

So - finally - ritual.

And it occurred to me while I was meditating for the first time in awhile that my normal reaction would be to worry and feel guilty and feel like the worst yogi ever for letting so much time slip since I had done my own practice, and how hypocritical, etc etc.  But how hypocritical of me to judge myself for being human when I continually tell my students - the mind wanders, we falter, but all we can do is reset without judgement.

Reset without judgement.  

Even if you do it a billion times during your class, your day, your life - you're still building mental strength and receiving benefits.

It also reminded me of one of the funniest quotes I've read in ages - a friend was sharing an article about the silliness of 'food guilt' on Facebook and pulled out this quote that has stayed with me all week:  "Unless you baked that chocolate cake with blood from a murder, there is no need to feel guilty about it."

I think we sometimes use the feeling of guilt as an effort to keep ourselves on track.  At least I know I do.  If I don't have the presence of mind to feel guilty for slipping up on something I care about, what's to keep me on track for next time?  It sort of makes sense except that a) it's unrealistic and b) why give myself negative motivation when I can give myself positive motivation instead?  And also just plain not take myself so seriously?

Meditation, eating well, being patient with people - insert whatever virtue you struggle with here - it makes us feel better.  When we do it, it's good.  When we don't do it - guilt is absolutely pointless.  If it served a purpose, we'd all be perfect.  Instead, just notice how the absence of whatever that virtue you strive for makes you feel and at the earliest opportunity - reset.

Life will knock you off your path with sickness, with a few random curveballs that make your busy week busier, and with just plain lack of motivation.  It's the coming back to your intentions and the ways in which you take care of yourself that matters, not whether you do it every single day perfectly.  Even if you get knocked off and have to get back on track a billion times, it's the coming back that matters.

This has gotten a little unwieldy and rambley and I feel like there's so much more I want to say on this subject, but I'm going to post it anyway in hopes that it at least resonates with someone.  I suppose the point is - less guilt, more love.  And more taking advantage of opportunities to reset ourselves.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Spontaneous Sunday!

For someone who likes schedules and plans and preparation, I can be extremely impulsive.  When I get excited about an idea, I often leap forward full speed ahead without a ton of deep forethought, stubbornly convinced it's a good thing to do.  This is occasionally a huge fault, and occasionally a huge asset.  I'm pretty sure this time it's an asset, but with all of my spontaneous decisions, only time will tell.

My sister and I at the 10K point of our
very first half marathon
Last night (so I guess on Spontaneous Saturday...) I read my first issue of Runner's World in a really long time - probably not since shortly after I got injured after the marathon in January 2014.  My subscription inexplicably ran out and since I couldn't run and felt depressed about it, I didn't renew.  It's an excellent magazine and I forgot how every single time I read it I get a massive burst of inspiration and excitement.  As a result, before I had even read the last page, I had decided to register for and run the NYC Half Marathon in March of 2016.  My big return to distance running was going to be the Brooklyn Half in May, but I counted out the weeks and my rough estimate of my training needs and decided I could do both.

From there, I naturally started thinking about one of the two things currently on my bucket list.  Item #1 - Have a baby.  Not ready for that one yet, and that would've been a weird thing to think of next, so it was obviously Item #2 - Run the NYC Marathon.

As a New York Road Runners member, I can gain entry if I run in 9 races and volunteer for 1 in the 2016 calendar year.  I've thought about it for a loooong time over the years, and my injury put an indefinite hold on my fantasies of crossing that finish line in Central Park after running through all five beautiful boroughs.  I'm feeling strong enough though - and more importantly, much smarter about my body than I was pre-injury - that I think it's time to put a real live actual date and goal out there.

November 5th, 2017.  It's gonna happen.


The next spontaneous thing is slightly less earth shattering...or at least it would be if I were a little less neurotic.

I deleted Facebook off my phone.

Half of those reading this probably wonder why this is a big deal at all, and the other half are probably shuddering in horror.

I'm not deleting my account  - there's no way I could cut myself off from that many baby pictures from all my family and friends and students and clients - but I have so much to read both for doula training, running, yoga, and pleasure, and Facebook absolutely dominates my commute.  More often than not, I stay on it longer than necessary and get sucked down a rabbit hole of political depression and upsetting news stories.  That's not to say I won't follow news or political issues important to me anymore, but I just need to be a better guardian of how much energy I'm putting toward something that isn't giving me a whole lot in return.

So there you go.  Spontaneous Sunday.  Decisions both big and petty - it's all happening.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Hashtag Blessed

Not being of any religious persuasion, I've never really felt compelled to wish someone a "blessed day" or to use the word blessing too often in describing my own life or someone else's situation.  (Also, my mom would look at me like I had 3 heads if she heard me wishing someone a blessed day.  She has a funny thing about it...)

The older I get, though...Between two of my best friends on this planet earth being devout and Christ-like Christians, my deep foray into the "Slumber Party Theology" (to crib a term Elizabeth Gilbert references in Eat, Pray, Love - which I'm falling back in love with, but that's another story) that is being a yogi in this day and time and place, and between my work and my life circumstances taking the direction that it has been taking...damn.  I feel the need to throw myself on the floor in gratitude sometimes for how ever-lovingly blessed I feel.  I feel the word cross my mind and on my lips more and more as the years go by.

Becoming a doula was really daunting, and I put off going down that road for a long time.  It had been on my mind, and my mentor, Juliana, saw it in me and kept predicting that it would happen and urging me to do it.  But it was too much time, I didn't have space for it, it was too scary, too real.  And after the gracious and selfless and phenomenal work of my sister's two birth doulas helping to make A+Z's arrival the once-in-a-lifetime family event that it was for my sister and brother-in-law, after seeing the positive effect that having doula support had on their new family...

I only feel mildly self-conscious in using this term - I felt called to do it.

This past week, I attended my longest birth so far as a doula.  It won't be the longest I ever attend.  It had a lot of factors that made it new and exciting and unique and scary, and because I want my clients to trust my promise of confidentiality I won't go into great details.  I will say that I felt such a deep connection with this couple that it was truly an honor to be there with them.  I loved every minute of it, even the minutes fraught with uncertainty and fear and waiting waiting waiting.  To be a part of their once-in-a-lifetime experience...I can't express my gratitude to have been able to have been a part and to have helped.

Sundays I usually like to have my whole day open so I can do...whatever.  My laundry.  Watch Orange is the New Black until my eyeballs pop out of my head.  Today, I took a class for myself, gave a Thai Yoga Massage, met with a new doula client and her husband, and attended the 3rd birthday party of a wonderful little boy I've known since he was...I don't even know - maybe 3 months old?  My husband finally got to meet the beautiful community of Astoria moms and their kids that I've known through The Giving Tree Yoga Studio and loved for roughly 2.5 years, some of them when their babies were still in the belly.

I mean...damn.

The words "blessed," "grateful," "honored," "humbled" - a lot of them are overused, used for humble-bragging, for compliment-fishing, and because of that they're so often dismissed or used ironically.  Lord knows I love mockery as much as the next guy.  But I find sometimes it makes it difficult to truly express those pure feelings.  Because it's naive?  It makes people uncomfortable?  It makes them roll their eyes and gag a little bit at the saccharine of it all?  It shines a light on an element of their own life that maybe isn't going so great?

For better or for worse - the Internets are here to say.  Good, bad, ugly - it all gets out there these days.  We're the guardians of how much we share and how we share it.  My life isn't perfect and it's not always sunshine and rainbows, but dammit - I just feel really, really, really, really blessed today.  I could not love what I do more.  As one of my heroes, Buddy the Elf would say, "I'm in love, I'm in love, and I don't care who knows it!"

And to make up for all the joy, if it's too much for your modern sensibilities - a great NYTimes article on the use and abuse of #blessed on social media.  Enjoy.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

August is the new January

Oh, hello.  This old thing.

Six weeks!  Has it been six weeks?  That's probably the longest I've gone without updating this guy.  It's of course been near the bottom of my to-do list for probably about the last 3 of these weeks, and with every passing day that I don't write, I get more and more in my head about what I should write and why do I still have this blog when I feel like it had much more purpose and structure and direction when I started it five years ago, and no one really reads it anyway, and the last thing the Internet needs is one more blog about yoga or whatever the hell this blog is about now - blah de blah.

So, with no clear direction or easily boxed-in-able topic, I'm writing again!  The Whole30 was an excellent way to get me back on the blogging horse, but it has long since passed - but not without leaving a seriously lasting impact.  Plenty of programs say that they will change your life, and I often find it not to be the case, but the Whole30 really was life-changing.

That's not to say I didn't fall hardcore off the wagon and back to a lot of old habits (which I did - so many leftover cookies from Atlas & Zoe's birthday party!!!) and not to say that I haven't felt mopey despair after said moments of falling off the wagon into impulsive, binge-y eating, but overall the choices I make when I eat, the habits I've formed, and the way I think about it has changed, and for the better.  I have my eye on doing another Whole30, maybe in the fall, and definitely around the New Year.  My mom and Jim have both embarked on the journey as well, losing weight and gaining health which makes me immeasurably happy and proud.

One of these days, I'm going to drag Marc along with me on the journey...

After getting back from SC, I immediately hit the ground running back to the NYC hustle.  Teaching, managing, and doula-ing (and RUNNING!) have been taking up my time, although the changes of our schedule in the summer have allowed for blessed pockets of free time that are nowhere to be found in the much busier fall, and for that I am so very grateful.

August always feels like - and I'm sure I write this sentence in this blog every single year, and I expect to do so for every year to come - a second chance at a New Year's Resolution-type fresh start.  It's the calm before the back-to-school storm where there's a little chance in these days of gorgeous late summer to reflect and reconnect with what I really want and how I really want to live.

This August in particular I feel drawn to reconnect to that fresh-start feeling that I'm so addicted to via two of my all-time favorite books - My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor and that ubiquitous soul-stirring book of women of my generation and beyond, Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.

And just last night I finished a new addition to those beautiful books by strong women - Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman.  Obviously drawn to it from the phenomenal Netflix series that I have been obsessed with the past few weeks as I finally finished season 3, the book bears striking similarities to Taylor & Gilbert's books - except instead of a stroke or a crippling divorce leading to world travel, the catalyst is prison.  It's an incredible book on a personal level and even more so on a larger, societal level.  It sparks a tremendous amount of outrage at the waste, inefficiency, inhumanity, and lack of common sense in our prison systems.  It's worth the read for that, the humor, the sisterhood, and the personal strength and resilience Kerman exhibits.


I could go on and on, because like I said, this particular entry clearly has no defined structure or message, but I won't.  It's enough just that I wrote, for those three of you kind people who read it.  This old girl is 5 years old and I can't let her go just yet!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Whole30 DONE

It's my I DID IT! post!  And I did it!  Hooray!

I finished the Whole30, and while I'm proud of myself for doing it, I'm more proud (and surprised!) by how easy it was.  I thought it was going to be a form of self-torture, but...it was not that hard.  There were challenging moments, but I was never holding a bag of tortilla chips and weeping because I couldn't eat them.  I just ate something else instead...and then felt good about my choice and moved on to more important things in my day then my food choices.

As they say in the Whole30 rules:

It is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Birthing a baby is hard. Losing a parent is hard. Drinking your coffee black. Is. Not. Hard. You’ve done harder things than this, and you have no excuse not to complete the program as written. It’s only thirty days, and it’s for the most important health cause on earth – the only physical body you will ever have in this lifetime. - See more at: http://whole30.com/step-two/#sthash.cUOb5LDE.dpuf

It required more time in the kitchen - and sadly, more money spent at the grocery store - but I love spending time in the kitchen.  Sure, it was sometimes challenging to find the time, but it's all about priorities.

I probably could have eaten fewer nuts and slightly more green vegetables on certain days, but especially considering my first client's long labor earlier in the month and my lack of a dominant arm last week, I feel like I did really well.

I feel fantastic, most importantly.  I finally stepped on the scale (which is not allowed during the 30 days) and am almost at my wedding weight, which I never thought I'd see again!  I honestly want to continue eating like this 90% of the time.

Now don't get me wrong...I have a gigantic glass of red wine with my name on it tonight and I will be having chocolate.  But it'll be a paleo, just-a-little-honey-for-sweetener dessert that I make myself.

I'm figuring out the best reintroduction schedule for what I really want to pinpoint - my big question mark foods that I know I'm allergic to are corn, milk, and wheat (and also eggs, but I've been surviving fine without them).  I'm fortunate that I'll get a chance to reintroduce everything, with Whole30-style days in between so I can really evaluate how each food/food group is affecting me, before heading down to SC to stay with my sister and soak up my beautiful Atlas and Zoe.

I'm a little nervous about spending a week putting the health and feeding of two other tiny people ahead of my own after being so hyper-vigilant with my diet for the past month and a half.  Whole30 isn't exactly fast/convenient food!  It'll be really disappointing and challenging if I find out that gluten/wheat upsets my stomach or dairy makes my eczema explode.  If I find that out, I'll figure it out and do my best to work around it.  But I will be having birthday cake, dammit.  You only turn 1 once!

Overall, this was a fantastic experience.  I could see myself doing this again in January as a post-holiday/birthday reset!

For tonight though...I am ready for my wine, please.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Whole30, Day 24 Update

Holy moly.  If last week's lesson was to take me out of constantly thinking about me and food and how it's all affecting me, this week's is a big smack in the face (or in my left arm) to remind me that life is random and no matter how good a handle you may think you have on your health - we are ultimately not in control.

(Ironically, not being in control is also a theme expounded upon during Jurassic World.  Which despite being depressingly non-feminist, was super fun)

So this week's adventure: I got bursitis in my elbow and it got infected.  Lord only knows how on earth this happened.  I didn't even know what bursitis was (it's this), and then suddenly my left ( and dominant, of course) arm was in excruciating pain and I could no longer bend it.

But what?  This diet is supposed to REDUCE inflammation in my body!  WTF!  Also, this apparently happens mainly to elderly people...and I'm 30.

My sister's wise answer:  "Bodies do weird things sometimes."

Why did she get a tumor in her jaw a few years ago that ruptured and became infected?  Why did my mom need knee surgery when she never had a noticeable incident or accident to injure it?  Why do otherwise healthy, vibrant, fabulous people get cancer?

It doesn't mean throw in the towel and don't work hard on your health.  It's actually all the more reason to take an active role in your health and well-being.  That way, the things that diet, sleep, exercise, etc can help, prevent, or control are as taken care of as they can be.  As for the rest?  Bodies just do weird things sometimes.  The better your baseline health, the better shot you have at dealing with the weird curveballs.

It's been a frustrating and humbling few days.  I think Monday evening was one of my strongest moments in terms of temptation - lord, how I wanted tortilla chips, wine, and chocolate.  It was all I could do to keep from polishing off an entire bag of dates when I got home after the weirdness and pain and stress and frustration of the day.  I'm thankful Marc was home yesterday during the worst of it to help dress me and feed me and bathe me and try to give me perspective and to do pretty much everything for me.  I'm thankful to live in a country with access to antibiotics - this would totally have killed me on the Oregon Trail, but instead it's just a temporary injury that will hopefully get knocked the hell out as soon as possible.

Tempted though I've been (and man, being home alone from work is prime breeding ground for boredom-eating for me) during this little curveball, I've stuck to Whole30.  Buying a $5.00 grilled salmon at a grocery store Monday after Urgent Care and awkwardly eating it on the subway - holding it arm's length in my immobilized left arm while stabbing at it with the fork in my nondominant right hand - was worth it to stay on plan and probably hilarious to everyone around me.

I always get very angry and very frustrated when I get sick or injured and my best laid plans get knocked around.  It's good for my control-freak to be shaken up like this, as much as I hate it.  Once I get over it, it always helps when I'm humbled with a bit of perspective.  I don't need to eat through a straw for weeks on end like my sister, I don't need knee surgery like my mom, and I don't have frigging cancer.  Time to suck it up and heal and move on!

To that end...time to end this entry and ice my elbow.  I've got a 5 mile race to run on Sunday (and possibly a woman to help through labor between now and then!) in celebration of my hamstring's PT "graduation."  Though it's totally like me to get totally randomly injured before a race and just keep pressing on like an idiot, I'm going to not push it and just cross my fingers that come race day I'll be healthy and 5-mile ready.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Whole30, Day 18 Update

Just barely squeaking this into Week 3.  It's been a crazy one.  One of my two doula clients for this month had her baby on Tuesday, and it was an extremely intense almost-24 hours.  I stayed on track, Whole30 wise, but the circumstances surrounding the birth and everything else has shot Whole30 firmly into the backseat of my priorities!

I've been a little disoriented and my sleep has gotten off track a bit as a result.  I'm supposed to be in the "Tiger Blood" phase of feeling amazing, and I'm sure I will be once I feel like I'm back to normal.

I also just don't feel right writing about my little Whole30 adventure when just 48 hours ago I was in the midst of a much more intense life event for my wonderful client and her amazing family.  It feels quite small by comparison, but out of respect for her privacy I can't go into any details about the birth or how I've been processing it (let alone how she's been).

For now, I'm just happy to have posted something on the blog, as I'm trying to stay faithful to updating once a week.  I'm also quite proud to have stayed on the plan - never have I wanted a glass of wine more than when I was walking home on Tuesday night!  I will hopefully have something more substantive to say next week, and when my next client goes into labor I plan to be just as well prepared to take care of myself while taking care of her!