With the New Year around the corner and New Year’s resolutions coming out of the wood work, I figured that sharing this part of my journey might be well timed.
The first part of my journey was about realizing that I was “sleeping” my way through life. Instead of being a part of the change I wanted to sit back and have positive change happen for me, whether it was for my physical appearance or my self-esteem, but one way or another I had decided that I shouldn’t have to do anything in order to achieve it.
I eventually began realizing that in order to promote change I had to be a part of the change. The only thing was I had no idea how I would get there, what there would look like, or even have any semblance of what being in that ballpark would be like. I knew it had to be something for myself, something that I was leading but that is where my knowledge and understanding of what needed to happen ended.
The summer before my third year of university I decided that I was going to do something, I was going to try something out and I hoped to god it would work. I had always had very bad eczema on my hands arms and scalp (I know probably more information that you wanted or needed) so while doing some internet based research for a cleanse I discovered that I most likely had something called candida yeast that was making my eczema act up. So I looked into a couple different cleanse for this particular aliment and I gave it a go. Coupled with testing out this new cleanse I also decided that I would buy myself some rollerblade and start moving.
With rollerblades strapped to my feet and a new plan for eating I got started. The rollerblading was great, I actually really enjoyed it after several harsh realizations as to what my fitness levels actually were, but the “cleanse” on the other hand was disastrous. It was so restrictive, I had no support system and my knowledge of cooking was limited and this all amounted to a quick death of my attempted cleanse.
After failing to even make it half-way through my cleanse I had given up all hope. I figured eating healthy was a lost cause for me, I mean I couldn’t even last a month without dairy and wheat how could I possibly figure out how to make healthy food choices for the rest of my life. So instead of focusing on food I put everything I had into rollerblading to and from work, it was a bit over a 6 km route there and back and I figured that at least I was moving. The first time out wasn’t the greatest but eventually my stubbornness paid off. The rollerblading started becoming enjoyable; it woke me up in the morning and relaxed me after a day in the office on the way home. There were of course still times where I contemplate taking a Taxi home instead of rollerblading, but for the most part I had become committed. Over time my confidence started increasing, and I started to notice that I felt different about myself. I hadn’t lost much weight and my eating was still pretty awful but I realized I was actually starting to like myself. I began to notice that I was starting to take pride in something and it was all because I had finally put the effort in.
Of course with the end of the summer also came the end of my rollerblading, and the cycle of bad eating not exercising and self loathing started up all over again. During this period of time I started to attempt to cleanse again, this time making it through the month losing 15lbs and feeling great, only to go back to my old lifestyle gain 20lbs and starting to be disappointed in myself all over again. This on again off again cleansing/dieting and exercise cycle continued for years, until I decided that I was done. My eczema was out of control, I was experiencing so many food intolerances it was hard to keep them all straight, and I was back in the same funk I had been in previous years. It was at this point I felt like there was nothing else I could do, I had tried so many thing on my own and my knowledge of what was good vs. bad for me was, well let’s say, skewed at this point. This is when I decide to get some help, in the form of a Naturopathic Doctor.
I know this isn’t the route for everyone, but it is the one that really helped me to open my eyes. I had someone to help me through a natural body detoxification, to test me for different food intolerances and other ailments, and I had someone there coaching me and listening to my griping about not being able to have this and that. It was a three month long process, and it was during this time that I fell in love with Yoga, myself and most surprisingly of all what I used to think of as “hard work”.
We have all experienced life’s ups and downs, but it wasn’t until this point in my life, with the love and support of my boyfriend (now husband), great friends, my family, and some professionals that my eyes started to open up to what else was out there. Realizing that there is so much more than just self-criticism and judgment have helped me move into the next phase of my life and I hope sharing this part of my journey can help anyone out there move into the next happier phase of their own journey.
Stay tuned, in a couple of weeks I will post my final part of this miniseries on my personal journey.
Happy Thursday Everyone! Hope you are all cozy and warm somewhere.