Monday, September 29, 2008

what is freedom? what is security?

here's a quote from my favorite online astrology site, aquarium age. it's my weekly forecast for this past week:
You've got money on your mind and while money is important, it might be wise to think about why it matters so much to you. The more you understand it's role in your life, the better you'll handle it.
certainly that could apply to many of us, but it has got me thinking. when i ponder why money matters so much to me right now, two words pop immediately to the top. freedom and security. money doesn't solve all my problems, of course i know this. but considering that the lion's share of my worry is around my lack of money ~it sure feels as if more would make life easier.

freedom and security. it strikes me that they are in many way opposing ideas. and that both can be found without any change in finances. maybe i need to define those terms for myself specifically:
  • freedom from worry about how i will pay for necessities. freedom to buy a healthy life-style and diet.
  • security for the future, both near and far. security to know if my health fails, and when i grow too old to work, i have the resources to sustain myself.
when i was working for someone else full time, i looked at owning my own business as the ultimate freedom. now i am on the other side and lately have begun to look longingly at the greener grass over over there. make no mistake, their are freedoms to this life of an entrepreneur. i do set my own schedule, i don't have to get permission to take a day off. i can spend alot of time on healing. yet, the reality is, i am still struggling to make ends meet and my debt mounts. i work all the time, often more hours a week than i ever did for someone else. and mentally, i am never "off", it's very difficult to clock out from your own business.

so my freedom often feels like a trap. it's a fake freedom when your business isn't making money. i can't afford to take vacations and i am certainly not free from worry. i also don't feel free to reward myself, to celebrate in any way that costs money, when i reach a big goal or achieve something significant.

and i have zero security. i have no savings, no investments, no disability insurance. i don't have a spouse or children to depend on when i'm elderly. come april, i will have to fall back onto the oregon state health insurance plan. the state of affairs has begun to bother me on a very deep level.

what i am processing now is this: can i find a way to have both freedom and security? i wonder what form of income creation that would take? working for "the man" in the past has felt very oppressive, i've often undersold my talents and intellect. i know i have spent years in jobs that did not exploit my best gifts and my contributions were not valued.

then i come to this past year. what a crazy fucking year. deep sigh. a year not without it's own gifts, i recognize that. but not a year where i felt freedom. cancer has stripped the romantic glow from life, from my view of my life. i see that as progress, as a good thing. i certainly have not stopped dreaming about the future, there is no stopping the flow of ideas from my brain. but coming out of cancer treatment and leaping into the process of writing an articulate, specific business plan - that was very illuminating.

as i've gone through this month of cleansing, i've been shining a bright, penetrating light on my business plan and my life plan. i've allowed myself to really see where it fall short, where it falls into fantasy and doesn't tell the whole truth. i've been looking at myself with as much objective constructive criticism as i can muster. let me tell you, my friends, it's not all pretty and inspiring.

it has occurred to me that strong, successful business leaders are honest about their weaknesses and in touch with where they often falter. their homework is very complete. and they are excellent at surrounding themselves with people that have complementary strengths. that is the kind of business leader (yes, leader!) i want to be.

i'm also trying to sort out what are my greatest strengths. what are the biggest gifts i bring to the table of business, the table of life? can you tell i've been doing a hell of a soul search? there is a rebel yell bubbling up inside me that feels like it might just blow the top of my head off.

breathe, breathe, breathe.

for most of my life, i have not placed much value on money. i place greater value on people, on relationships, on family, on doing what is ethical and right. i cannot abandon those principles, they literally are my moral fiber, an important part of who i am. i'd like to accomplish this: create a life and earn a living in such a way that provides freedom and security, without compromising my values. i want to work with people that share my values and are committed to making this world a better, healthier, sustainable place for all.

and a final note for this post. i miss making art. my jewelry business is only marginally satisfying. i miss creativity that has no involvement with commerce or marketability. art for art's sake. after three years of my jewelry business i don't want to do it anymore. if i was making a comfortable living, i think i would feel better about the whole thing. but to struggle so much, for so long? i am sick of struggling. i am tired. and a job is a job is a job. making jewelry is a job and lately, has not felt like a joy. all jobs get to this place eventually, it seems.

so maybe my big question is, how can i find or create a job that does not feel like a job?

i am doing my best to think outside of the box i usually stay within.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

stones from the river

closing the cleanse and opening the next phase of healing has been interesting this past week. it feels a bit like a part-time job, this taking extra good care of myself, eating just right and putting all my intention to healing.

if only i could get paid for all my hard work.

here's my sticky-wicket. i've spent the last ten years working my ass off on healing myself. working through layers of trauma, old stuck places, ancient wounds, toxic ideas. i have painstakingly shifted, inch by inch, my core beliefs. i have recovered from cancer (twice!). i have faced the darkest places and looked honestly at what is. of course, i am not done. no one is done until they are dead.

after all the hard work, i still struggle to pay my bills every month, i still struggle with the basics of making a living. the kind of hard work i've been doing doesn't pay the rent. that's the sticky bit, for sure.

yet, there is always more, it seems. a cleanse like i've just experienced brings new mirrors to face, more sludge from the bottom of my emotional river. as my bowels, gallbladder and liver released old waste, heavy metals and toxic run-off - my heart let go of a few things as well. it's been a time of questions, a time of opening and a extraordinary time of relaxing my thinking.

i think i have flushed out some old rocks in my brain. thank goodness. i feel so much lighter!

things are still unfolding. each day i feel a little shiver, a new idea, a small glimpse into where i might be going. inside, my river is flowing more freely than ever before. it's clear and sparkling to the bottom. perhaps somehow, my personal work will eventually pay dividends that show up on a balance sheet. i am hopeful that could be true.

what's up you say? where are things flowing? well, a few examples:

a simple altar on my dining table has created a sacred space for eating.
i am surrounding myself with healing objects, transforming my nest.
my new ideas are fluid, not fixed about the future.
i am looking at going back to school for an MBA.
my business model is flexing and growing.
my father and i are talking again, after five years of silence.
closets are getting cleaned, data backed up.

it's a new season. even without being able to take a long walk or dance, i am in motion.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

the close of the cleanse

in truth, it is the beginning of something new. closing the cleanse just means opening up my food choices. yet, i will continue to be on this path of ph balance for life. for now, that means eating way more raw than cooked foods, a 90/10 split. Eventually, i will be able to transition into a sensible and livable 70/30 split. yesterday i followed the cleanse until dinner, then i ate a veggie meal than included chewing my food.

what a simple joy. the ripest heirloom tomatoes, sliced and dressed just with sea salt and good olive oil. ah, they tasted so, so delicious. i ate a big plateful!

my heel was also acting up over the weekend, a very discouraging situation to say the least. goodness, these health issues are a bummer. i am so very sick of them. so ready for healing and change.

i made a bold move on that front. saw a podiatrist ( a move suggested by my acupuncturist a few weeks ago) and choose some standard western medicine treatment. he was great, did x-rays immediately and then used a diagnostic ultrasound to look at the tissue in my heel.

his first words upon seeing what was in my heel? "wow, oh wow". not what you long to hear from your doctor. it was bad. at least i know this last 18 months of pain and struggle with my heel was absolutely not in my head. i was starting to wonder if i was crazy. to treat something for so long, with daily stretching, ice applications, herbs, shoe inserts, rest - and still not get better?

so yes, i have a bone spur on the bottom of my heel and yes, i have plantar fastitis. i also have an extraordinary amount of inflammation in that heel. enough to elicit a "wow" from the doctor. he asked me how the hell i have been living with this? i told him everything i do to take care of it, and that i can not walk much. that i sit. that it limits my life in terrible ways.

i asked for a shot to the heel. one dose of cortisone to hopefully flip the switch on the inflammation. if any of you out there reading have a practice of prayer or meditation, please offer up some for me. i need this to work. it is the last resort.

the shot hurt like nothing i have ever sustained. sharp, deep pain, as they moved the needle into exactly the right place, using the ultrasound to guide. i cried out and used all my deep breathing techniques to get through it. after, it was numb. today it is achy and hard to stand on.

i am turning 42 tomorrow, yet don't i sounds like i am 92 with all my aliments?

there is much more to say, of course. the cleanse brought incredible mental, spiritual and emotional clarity. i will be sharing more on that very soon. some of it is just too big to throw in a post like this one.

thanks for all your support and caring, my dear friends. getting through the cleanse with you all following along has been really good.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

cleanse report, days 12 - 14

the past three days have been tough on the cleanse. my energy has been low, too tired to even work in the studio. and i really, really need to work. today is day fourteen. i've made it to my original goal, the whole two week cleanse finished.

should i continue? do i need to?

today i figured out that my lack of energy was due to a few factors. for one, the deep level of detox this week. between the eatable clay and two colon-hydrotherapy sessions, some major release has happened. my liver and gall bladder have both been seriously detoxing. but i do think it's potentially depleting as well. i've needed more rest and sleep than i've taken. i had a good meeting with my doctor on thursday and that was her only concern about the cleanse. she asked me to pay careful attention to my body and adjust if i was getting depleted.

for two, the fear factor. setting the surgery date and getting my mom's ticket secured has made my deadline real. real scary, to be honest. it is a serious emotional challenge to just breath through that fear of failure and take each hour as it comes.

and for three, i think i have not actually been taking in enough calories. so today i ate more, i consciously worked on that. and i feel better this evening. plus i slept 12 hours last night. at the suggestion of a friend, i signed up at the site allows you to create a simple, private profile and then use the tools there to figure out calorie intake/needs, track fitness and weight goals over a time period. using the food tools, i was able to figure out how many calories i was getting a day on the cleanse.

not quite enough.

i haven't been hungry and all the water really keeps me full, so didn't realize that i wasn't getting enough fuel. that definitely has a dramatic effect on energy!

so i am going to continue, but transition into more food and not all liquefied food. i'm ready, after fourteen days, to chew. i really can hardly believe i made it this far, to be frank.

it's something like a personal miracle. or marathon. it's both.

Friday, September 12, 2008

cleanse report, day 11

detoxing. what a concept. it's like cleaning the hard drive of your body. all my organs are releasing, being renewed, feeling perky and fresh. my skin is starting to be a bit glowy and dewy. that's pretty great as i approach my 42nd birthday next week. i am starting to think doing a cleanse the 2 weeks before my birthday is a good idea every year.

out with the old, in with the new.

i am rolling along on the cleanse. had another session of colon hydrotherapy this morning. my liver and gall bladder are letting go of bile and toxic stuff. most of you probably think this is a really gross subject, but i must say i am fascinated with it all. and i feel wonderful, so that is what matters most.

i have not felt this good in a long, long time.

we are about to have a heat wave here in portland, oregon. which i am thrilled about, as it's way easier to eat 100% raw food when the weather is hot. thanks, mother nature, what a thoughtful birthday gift!

yesterday i cleaned out under my kitchen sink. i didn't just organize- i scrubbed it, put down pretty silver contact paper and now that area (which was a mess) is all lovely and calming. i am quite proud of myself, i have to admit. i am thinking about the parallels between internal body cleansing and home cleansing. cleaning closets is like really getting into the nitty-gritty. who knows what will open up in my life with a detoxed body and home?

i am excited to find out.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

cleanse report, day 10 - deep detox

my day ten was packed full, a little too much on the schedule for comfort,to be honest. it takes focus and time to do something of this magnitude gently and safely. to end each day feeling good, i have to work at how i construct my days.

it is alot of paying attention, this cleanse business. a bit like a part time job.

which makes social outings challenging. not impossible, but advance planning has to be complete. my first attempt at a social evening didn't go so well from the standpoint of taking care of my body. a point to remember: a person will always stay longer than they planned when catching up with an old friend. so be prepared. i should have brought my whole jug of water and a packet of protein powder & small bottle of almond milk. a little something would have really made the whole difference in how i felt later. yesterday i went from colon hydrotherapy to massage therapy to my friend's house. too many hours away from home base (and kitchen) in a row to plan for, i didn't plan well. lesson learned. i'd like to think i can go out and be social and still be on this cleanse.

especially because i have another 10 days to go! this morning, that is feeling like a long, long time. i know i just have to take it as it comes. keep listening to my body and have faith in the process.

surrender to healing.

i am going to skip the eatable clay today. my period started and after yesterday, i am feeling a bit shaky. i think it is important to adjust and flex any healing program to respond to how your body feels. which, of course, does not include listening to the crazy voices in my head that chant "pizza! pizza! pizza!"

i am trying to tune into the small quiet voice that always says water, water, water.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

cleanse report, day 9

day nine was a day of movement. things are shifting into place in wonderful ways. within hours of putting it out to the universe that my mom needed northwest airline points for her ticket to take care of me after surgery, a family member surprised us and came forward with enough to take care of it in one fell swoop.

that is what i was hoping for, that people would have stashes of points they knew they wouldn't use. what a blessing. and for the family member, he is thrilled to be able to do something to help.

several of you reading reached out as well to help. thank-you so much! it is so good to be reminded that the universe is holding me with love and compassion.

the cleanse goes on. now i have a firm deadline on the weight loss. i will have surgery the third week in december. suddenly, it feels like pressure. the kind of pressure i don't do well with. losing weight for a reason, for a deadline...that has been disaster in the past.

of course, this is a bit different than the past. trying to reduce for a wedding or before my 40th birthday wasn't based on the serious issues i am facing now. those deadlines were about looking good. facing surgery is a much, er, weightier proposition.

but i can feel myself panicking a little. i am trying to just breathe through it, just stay the course. walking up to my scale saying another pound lost helps. each pound is a small cheer of "you can do it". my body is releasing what it doesn't need. i am working on making that my focus.

35 pounds to go. exactly 14 weeks to do it.

i wonder if i am crazy, is it possible? i am guessing that in the end, the exercise piece will make or break this path i am on. if my heel can sustain exercise, i think that yes, i can do it. my success is based on not re-inflaming the heel injury.

the most exciting part is that by the time 2009 begins, i will be walking around in a body, my body, that is healthy, whole, healed and despite a few scars - is one that i feel good in. i am very glad to be getting the surgery out of the way before this year ends. to start fresh in 2009.

in the interest of this goal, i believe i am going to stay on the cleanse for the maximum amount of days, which is 21. that is what i will try for, anyway. the ride has really just begun, my friends.

yesterday's ph averages: urine 5.58, saliva 6.92

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

cleanse report, days 7 & 8

i am still going strong, my friends. thank-you so much for your support and encouragement! i really appreciate very comment and email. it's not easy, what i am doing. don't let my light tone fool you. there are still moments everyday when i struggle.

yet, whatever suffering i face with something like this cleanse, it's fleeting. and in the balance against the pain of not being able to live and active life because of my heel spur (or wear any kind of cute shoes, ever) well, it's just not so bad, this cleanse. at this point, i would endure alot to heal my body. cancer treatment, that sucks. not being able to dance at a wedding or take a hike with a friend? that sucks too.

so all this cleansing business is worth it. i am encouraged by results so far and very hopeful of greater healing on the way.

i met with my plastic surgeon a couple of weeks ago, which also helped motivate this cleanse process. he evaluated my breasts for reconstruction and there was some good news. my skin healed from radiation very well. the tissue and skin is in great condition and i am a perfect candidate for augmentation, if i choose to take that route. he can easily do a lift on the other side to achieve symmetry.

the only hold up is me. i am not at a healthy weight for my height and certainly not for preventing cancer in the future or healing the heel spur. (excess body weight being one of the causes of heel spurs) so, to get the surgery now, i would not be happy with the results after the weight loss. so i must lose it before surgery. a few weeks ago, i was facing 50 pounds to lose. now it's just 37! still a formidable number, to be sure. but more manageable.

and i learned something important about the implants they use. it will go under the muscle, so i will still be able to feel my existing breast tissue for new lumps and gt mammograms (oh joy!) and the silicone implants are like a gummi bear, you could cut them in half and they wouldn't leak. it's still scary to me to think of having a forgien object inside me. and complications are possible.

in any ideal world, i'd have months and months to lose the weight and get the surgery when the time was right. sadly, i live in a world where my COBRA insurance policy runs out april 1st and then i am thrown onto the state (which will cost me $450 a month) for insurance not half as good as i have now. i join the millions of americans that are uninsurable because of pre-existing conditions.

so all this surgery business has to happen sooner rather than later. we are trying for mid-december, because if i do it before the end of the year, it won't cost me a dime. my deductible and breakpoint for the year was met with radiation treatment. ah, another december, another holiday season recovering from surgery. at least i get to see my mom.

i have a request, dear readers. i need to have my mom here to care for me after surgery. and to be there as i go in. it's too scary to face alone. and there is no one in portland that makes me feel safe and comforted like my mom.

but the plane tickets are crazy expensive in december. she is retired and on a fixed income. i am hoping some kind soul out there has northwest airline frequent flyer mileage points they could donate to my cause. she needs about 15,000 more points to be able to afford the trip. it costs only $25 per transaction to transfer them to her account, which i can cover. if you have any significant number of northwest points you can spare, i would be so, so grateful. just email me and we'll figure it out.

meanwhile, i have my work cut out to drop this weight before surgery. i started with my eatable clay yesterday and wow, what an effect on my bowels! very interesting. tomorrow i have another colon hydrotherapy session scheduled. it's all about releasing.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

cleanse report, days 5 & 6

as i begin day seven of this cleanse, i am feeling so much better than i could have imagined. there is a lightness and contentment in my emotional self that has surprised me. what a nice surprise! i am also surprised that i have such sustained energy in body, given the drastic reduction in protien this week from my previous diet.

it actually takes less than i think to feel good. that is really interesting. i do believe the water is key. lots and lots of ph balanced water. my skin is clearing up and my eyes look really clear and bright.

i feel bright all over, actually!

i'm still dealing with cravings, yes. mostly for chewy crunchy salty things. pizza and popcorn, you know. nibbling on a little piece of Himalayan salt fends off most of them. it really is mineral rich, tasty salt.

another odd thing is the dreams i've had this week. very vivid, strange dreams. maybe my subconscious is also detoxing? sure seems like it. worry, death and destruction. it's all coming out.

my apartment detox continues. yesterday two pieces of furniture i replaced went bye-bye. such a relief to have that extra desk and coffee table out of my livingroom. today i am going to clear off my dining table and create a space to concentrate on conscious eating. i live alone, why not make my eating area into a sacred space?

eleven pounds lost in this last month. i am frankly amazed and deeply encouraged. i have renewed hope that i might just be able to do this thing. lose 50 pounds and renew my health. heal my heel and be ready for reconstruction surgery. and i've read dozens of studies that found cancer cells cannot thrive in an alkaline environment. this sums up my anti-cancer strategy. to create and maintain a slightly alkaline environment in my body so that cancer (and we all have "cancer" cells floating around in us all the time) cannot gain any ground, ever again.

i am so aware of how it is not just about the water i drink or food i eat. it's about my state of mind and the health of my emotional world. in a couple of weeks i am starting a 6-week workshop, like a group therapy type deal, at project quest. it's just for women with or healing from, breast cancer and is focused on developing your inner healer. lead by a naturpath doctor and a Jungian psychologist.

tomorrow i begin week two of the cleanse...

Friday, September 5, 2008

cleanse report, day 4

i really can hardly believe i have made it this far with the cleanse. yesterday was a bit easier, i made an excellent soup. a yummy "creamy" cauliflower, very satisfying.

my energy held up well through the day and i was quite tired by 9 pm, but that was ok. the hardest part is being chilly because the weather has been chilly and not having a big pile of warm carbs or a chewy piece of meat to warm me up. i've been drinking my water, more pureed soups and some herb tea in the evening.

the good news is, we are getting a summer heat wave starting today. that should make it all easier. and i have acupuncture today, which will be great.

i haven't been working very much during the first four days of the cleanse, but i think i am in the groove enough and stable enough to hit the studio again. i've got a few orders and alot of new inventory to produce. also, my birthday is coming up and i like to make myself a new piece of jewelry every year. i have a beautiful 1.5 inch square agate that i've had for years, intending to set as a necklace. i think it just might be time.

ah, my birthday always brings up stuff. emotional stuff, issues on the back burner. every year it is a time of evaluation and contemplation. this year feels like a particularly big year for looking deeply at my life and self. i've been asking big questions and looking ahead 10, 20 years.

where do i want to be? how do i want to feel about my life? my work? my body?

this cleanse is an opportunity to also let go of toxic ideas about me and all aspects of my life. i'll be writing about that here, as it becomes more clear.

how about you? does your birthday inspire contemplation?

Thursday, September 4, 2008

cleanse report, day 3

emotionally, i've never done well with deprivation diets. i don't believe in them actually. a cleanse isn't the same thing, but it does bring up some of the same issues. by afternoon yesterday, i was feeling a bit shaky and crabby. nothing for it except more water with green powder.

no chocolate. no popcorn. nothing crunchy and salty. yesterday felt a bit more like coming off a drug. i was experiencing withdrawals and i wasn't liking it.

day three was a bit challenging. i am realizing that getting just the right balance of nutrients is so important when you are limited in menu. forget one ingredient in your morning smoothie and it's not going to stick with you for long. it is a very interesting process, at least from the inside. hopefully you all reading aren't bored to tears!

it's all for my foot. i just keep thinking about the possibility that i could dance again in my life and that alone is keeping me going. losing a pound a day isn't hurting the motivation either. some hours of the day are very slow and about four in the afternoon is somehow the worst. i count the hours til bedtime and figure out my plan. what i shoould be doing after dinner is yoga, reading and mediation. what i am doing is watching tv, a complete toxic trip. but somehow it's hard to be 100% good, unless you do this at a retreat center. i am still easing into all parts of this.

by week two, i'll be getting it all right. baby steps.

today i am scheduled to be down in the pearl district, with a booth in the monthly street fair, selling my jewelry. at this moment, it just sounds awful. alot of energy, cold after dark, all that schlepping and for what? the chance that i will make some sales? i sold almost nothing the last time. my inventory is still a bit thin after the big show in august. and i had such a horrible, terrible night the last time i went, in july. the rudest people ever. i'm not sure i have the physical or emotional energy to do this right now.

i'm already feeling a bit pathetic and selling my lovingly crafted wares on the street might be the straw that broke the camel's back. if only i could do it for just 3 hours instead of 5, of which a full 2 are after dark. it's those last two hours that kill me.

i actually had a nightmare about it last night. can i take that as a sign?

so. my morning smoothie, which is so delicious (and sticks with you) is as follows:

Green Breakfast of Champions

in a blender, put the following:
1 avocado, peeled
large handful of fresh spinach
1 T. lemon flavor Carlson Cod Liver Oil ( yay for Omega-3!)
1 T. Spectrum cold press unrefined Coconut Oil
squeeze from 1/2 a fresh lime
1 cup (or so to make a good consistency) almond milk, unsweetened (I am making mine fresh but you can use commercial)
2 T. Supreme Meal, protein powder by Peaceful Planet (it is sprouted amaranth, millet & quinoa -really quite fabulous and yummiest protien powder I've ever tasted and I've had them all!)

blend until all is smooth and drink or eat in a bowl with a spoon like a cool soup. yum!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

cleanse report, day 2

day two was way, way, better than day one. thank heavens for that! i managed my six liters of water easily, although am still peeing more often than i'd like. maybe my bladder will stretch a bit?

there are signs already that the detox is happening. my face broke out, or instance. i knew this might happen, but it's still icky to deal with. i've had a few headaches, but nothing serious or lasting. yesterday i felt upbeat, solid energy and pretty content.

so far, i am feeling like it's a success. far better and easier than any other time i have tried my own version of a cleanse. i've lost 2 pounds and wasn't hungry at all yesterday. it's interesting, the nature of hunger. so much of it is either being dehydrated, of actually emotional hunger.

i know carb cravings are a sign i want to self-medicate. so during this cleanse, i am just observing that craving and seeing it for what it is. a habit, a crutch, something i don't really need.

there is an emotional detox happening as well. the book i am following talks about getting ready emotionally to release toxins from your mind and spirit. because toxic feelings and thoughts are part of what upsets the ph balance in your body. when you are stressed, or holding on to anger, or not dealing with something you know you should - those emotional states actually change the chemistry of your cells.

i'm learning that even if i do everything "right" in terms of foods and nutrition, deep healing can still escape me if my emotional realm is toxic.

of course i knew this. it's just hitting me differently this time.

which is not to say that i can't be angry or stressed, that i must keep some false cheerful going all the time. that would really suck the life out of me! just that holding on to things is where the long term damage is done. solving things quickly and cleanly is the best hope for staying away from the toxic zone in my emotional world.

when life delivers a plate with something like cancer, you have choices. going through the journey, i've been choosing to create better health that i had before cancer. i do think about it coming back. and i figure all i can do is this: live my best, healthiest life. take excellent care of my body and treat it as my temple. make it someplace that cancer can't survive.

that's the plan, folks.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

cleanse report, day 1

well, i knew it wouldn't be easy, this cleanse business. yesterday is exactly why i did not attempt this right after radiation. day one was a little rough, but i managed.

the rough part was really my fault, not having done all my shopping before i started. so i didn't have my ducks in a row as far as food. and i got hungry and headache-y. which i kind of expected, but still it didn't feel good. with most cleanses, if you can get through the first 2-3 days, you're fine. i've never managed to do just liquids longer than 3 days in the past. this time however, i am determined and am following a plan, not just winging it!

i only had a wheat grass powder sample pack that had been hanging around for my morning green drink and it was vile. that followed by a green smoothie that was so bitter i simply choked it down as well. a word on cucumbers. always taste them before you put them in the blender and use as the base for a smoothie. the bitter ones really ruin the rest of your ingredients. and no amount of vanilla flavored stevia will make it right. in fact, that addition just made things worse! also in the smoothie was hemp powder (which i love), almond milk (commercial variety) an avocado...and a few other things i threw in to try to save the thing.

i vowed to do better the next day. and i have. my green smoothie this morning was so delicious i thought, wow, i could drink this everyday! more on that recipe later.

by evening, i had myself set up and was able to make the soup you see above. quite delicious! and as the weather was unseasonable cool, it was great to have warm food in the evening. it's made from all fresh veggies and herbs, then blended so fine they become nearly creamy.

no joke, it is a challenge to get down nearly 6 liters of water each day. you have to work at it, that much doesn't just happen naturally. i did yesterday, however.

by 9:30 pm, i was happy to go to bed and be done with day one.

Monday, September 1, 2008

beginning the cleanse

today is the official beginning of my body cleanse, a deep detox. i am going to be writing about it here with regularity and hope to make it the whole 14 days. i'd love to have you all follow along and cheer me on. maybe you'll get inspired or glean some ideas for your own healing journey!

i am following the ph miracle for weight loss, by robert young and his wife, shelley young. to prepare, in the past 8 weeks, i have read several books on the importance of ph balance in the body and have been learning alot about how having a too acidic body causes (or creates a perfect environment) for a host of problems and diseases. in fact, cancer cannot survive in a ph balanced system.

so my cleanse has a few purposes. to help prevent cancer by kicking off a new way of eating, to flush my system of acid wastes that cause, amounst other things, bone spurs and inflammation, and to drop the pounds i need to before my next surgery. in the last month, as i have prepared to begin the cleanse, i have dropped six pounds, just by making a few changes.

the biggest change is water. yes, simple water. the ph of your average tap water is about 5, which is acid. a balanced water is 7, and a water that will help heal and make the body less acidic and more alkaline - that water has a ph of 9 or more. even most bottled waters are actually creating a more acidic state in the body. so drinking the right water is important. and drinking enough of it! for my body weight, the program calls for drinking 6 liters of alkaline water a far, i've made it up to 4 liters a day. i adjust the ph of all my water now with trace mineral drops, which adds extra oxygen and makes the water into a base instead of an acid.

chemistry anyone?

let me tell you, drinking this (good for you) water, and so much of it - really gives you energy and curbs your craving for sugar and protein. both of which have had too prominent a place in my diet. in fact, during rads, i was told to eat extra protein, up to 80 grams a day! this was to aid my cells with repair. i only began eating meat again about 3 years ago, after being veggie for 20 years. and my weight gain has all happened in that time. which is not to say i am going back to being a vegetarian. just that the ease of meat protein made me a lazy eater (understandable when you are busy working 3 jobs) and my ratio of veggies to protein got out of whack.

if you are really interested in the program i am following (with the help of my doctor) then do a little goggling on ph balance. i am sure i won't cover the concept in depth here enough for anyone to be convinced. but i'd like to chronicle the experience for myself and share it with you all.

a couple of things jumped out at me when i started reading about this ph balance stuff. one, that having a too acidic system and blood will cause inflammation in the intestine that blocks nutrients from being absorbed. my doctor and i have been trying to figure out how i could be taking so many supplements and eating to reduce my chronic inflammation in my heel and arms, yet have so much continuing pain and problems. it just doesn't add up. two, that over and over in different sources, i have read that cancer cells cannot survive in an alkaline environment. and three, that if your body is too acidic, it will hold on to fat to protect itself from that acid.

there may be some of you shaking your heads about now and thinking i am crazy. it's ok. when you read about the ph balance diet, you see that it's a healthy diet no one could argue with. lots of fresh raw veggies, healthy fats like fish oil for omega-3, a 70/30 split between raw and cooked foods. complex carbs, low sugar, no processed foods. eat more fish and less red meat. drink lots of good water.

it's really incredibly sensible. the alkaline water is the most radical thing, really. and so far, it's working.

so the cleanse itself is called a "liquid feast", a fancy term for an all liquids diet for two weeks. don't worry, there is soup as well. i won't be starving at all. I'll be keeping you posted as i go, so do stay tuned. it will be interesting if nothing else.

ok, i've got some serious water to drink!