Day 20: No One Said It Would Be Easy

Day 20: No One Said It Would Be Easy

Seriously? What do I have to do to get shopping out of my brain?

It’s been 20 days. I’ve purchased nothing but food for the family and myself, and one treatment to aid the healing of my eczema.

Yet… I considered going to Costco for a few needed items. But I caught myself thinking gleefully of wandering the aisles just “to see” what they have. So I shut me down. We went to the park instead. I don’t need anything from Costco immediately, and I have enough greens to get me through to the Saturday market where the fresh produce is much, much more quality.

And then…at the park I fell into conversation with other moms, as I am wont to do. Suddenly we were talking about baby shoes “oh, what shoes are those on her feet?” “keens” “Oh, keens are great” blablablablabla. I found myself promoting keens (they are good) and then the conversation moved to great deals and baby gap and old navy yadayadayada.

Needless to say, I had visions of great sales, the newest kids fashions and the excitement of thinking of my cuties walking around looking all fashion forward.

It’s not to say that a girl can’t dream. But for the foreseeable future, such visions that get the old shopper heart rate going, must remain just that. I was disappointed to discover that my brain is still wired towards the pathway of: “it would feel great to shop for a few things”.

Luckily the urge wasn’t strong enough for me to want to really act. But I did think sort of wanly about how it would be, oh ,345 days, until I could perhaps wander into one of those stores.

Now, clothes can be a necessity. And if the kiddo suddenly has another growth spurt, new clothes may become necessary. But as far as I see it, summer is almost upon us and T shirts and shorts can accommodate a little additional length. So can pants, in fact, as they conveniently become 3/4 length. Not until that drawer really starts to empty out will I consider a trip to the store, and when I do, I will bring with me a list of the items I need and the quantity too.

Did I mention that I also felt, as I talked about deals, good buys etc.  like a fraud? Yeah. I knew that I was talking the talk but no longer walking that walk. It’s a good thing…but I also felt that if I mentioned my shopping detox I might become a pariah among these moms who clearly embrace consumerism ( as I had a mere 20 days ago!). Crazy.

Wow. This challenge is incredibly eye opening.

I’ve got a lot to work through and observe in myself, but I am feeling good. I am on the right path.

 

Advertisements

Day 19: How Do I Define “Necessities”?

Day 19: How Do I Define “Necessities”?

Soooo. I am going to just write it as it comes up and not hide the facts, though that is what I want to do. I am going to lay the truth out there because that is what this challenge is all about.

I have just invested money in something that, one could term “not a necessity”. Folks, it’s not a bike or new jeans, its not toys for the kids or an espresso maker…it’s a colonics session.

A WAH?!? you ask.

I know, TMI. But this is where I’m at and I had a moment, before committing to this appointment where I thought, ‘I can’t do this, because it’s not a necessity. If I do this, I am failing the challenge’.

But then I delved deeper, and I realized that if I don’t do this, I am, in actuality, failing myself and ultimately this challenge which is to help me figure out what my real priorities are.

We always say that self care is the most important. We remind new mothers to take care of themselves so that they can take care of their family. But those, until now, have all just been words and essentially theory for me. And I should know better. I grew up with a mom who was a shiatsu therapist, and aunties who are shiatsu therapists, massage therapists and iridologists. Natural/alternative medicine and body work is not strange to me, it is actually quite normal…at least in theory…because I have not actually turned to these modalities much at all since reaching adulthood. I have skimped on myself and have never chosen to ‘fork over the dough’, so to speak. The message here being, ‘I am not worth that kind of money’.

Well, you know what, I am now 35. I am a mother of two beautiful, exhausting daughters. My body has served me very well up until now with not much thanks and praise on my part. I have assumed, up until now, that I will do just fine as I am because…well, because. But I am not fine. I have spreading eczema that is currently overwhelming my neck and chest area. I am irritable from the constant itching and distracted too. I don’t sleep enough. I feel toxic. I feel literally and figuratively stagnant.

I’m choosing now to invest in me. Into trying to restore myself, starting with a cleanse so that I can truly detoxify.

I don’t know if its going to work. But I do know that I need to try.

 

 

Day 18: Food For Thought

Day 18: Food For Thought

I had a talk with my mom and dad today. They have always been able to ground me when I am at sea. Not that I feel at sea, per se, but we had a good conversation that brought out some stuff for me. Mainly, that I have been suffering with skin issues/toxicity and also feeling detached emotionally/spiritually for many years. Both of these things I have been very aware of but have been  unable to act in order to change the situation.

One would think that with the birth of my first child I would have awoken then. In fact, I really hoped that I might; that with the birth of this amazing miracle I would somehow see life and living in the moment with deep clarity. Instead I ended up dealing with a lot of brain fog brought on by sleep deprivation. There were certainly moments of pure joy from the simplest observations of my daughter as she grew and developed; small glimpses, but not enough to shake me from the fog.

I’m still in it, but it seems like there has been an orchestrated shift ( who is orchestrating it, I don’t know) that has finally spurred me on to make changes.

I was trying to pin-point when the moment happened. I think I was just finding ways to zone out in the few “me-time” hours I had using Netflix. But instead of zoning out with brainless content I found a few shows that started to really inspire me. I believe, I watched “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead“. Not a huge eye opener, as I am happy to report that I am not in such dire dietary straights as the guy in this documentary…but it did remind me and inspire me to look again at what I was eating and consider, if not juicing, at least green smoothies. Around that same time I also watched a four-part series on Netflix, produced by Michael Pollen (of ‘ the Omnivore’s Dilemma’ fame) called” Cooked“. A beautiful look at where our food comes from and extremely inspiring in terms of returning to the home cooked meal and real foods.

It also inspired me to compulsively buy a book on Amazon about baking rustic bread at home. It remains to be seen whether that book will be used (especially now that I’m avoiding sugars). I hope so. But the compulsive spending was also coming to a head and lead me to come up with this shopping detox challenge I set for myself.

And then, almost simultaneously, as I was committing to this shopping detox, my body started to let me know, via persistent and spreading eczema, that I also needed a physical detox as well. Having watched the various documentaries about nutrition, I felt like I could be fairly confident about how to start improving what I considered an “already decent diet”. If I’m honest with myself, I’d been letting a lot slide, namely allowing much more sugar into my diet, giving into the cravings I’d developed post baby.

Now I am in the middle of watching a 9 episode docuseries called the ” Truth About Cancer, A Global Quest” ( thank you Auntie G), and it really comes down to what we put in our bodies. Pure, unadulterated food is our medicine. All of these shows have a common theme, which is to return to nature for the source of our health. So, that is what I am going to do. It all ties in perfectly, because as I focus on healing, both mentally, emotionally and physically the need for spending needlessly will fade and the vitality I anticipate will inspire me to do only the things that serve to strengthen my physical and spiritual well being.

I set out to detox my shopping habit, and it has snowballed into much more.

All of this could be seen as rather overwhelming. And it is. But I am also very excited. Finally I feel like this is the time. Somehow, I’ve been waiting to be ready and now I am.

These are still the early days folks, I suspect that my resolve and enthusiasm will fluctuate. I just hope that I’ve set a good enough structure to this challenge and enough checks and balances via my community, to keep me going.

Thank you for your support. Much like Tinker Bell, knowing you believe in me keeps me strong. Feel free to hit the “Follow” button I added to my page to get email notifications of my most recent posts.

Day 17: A Looong Road Ahead

Day 17: A Looong Road Ahead

It’s day 17. That is over two weeks! Not bad…but I have a looong way to go. I keep looking inwards to see if my resolve is wavering. A year is a long time. Temptation to spend is everywhere.

I was just thinking how this eczema break out could easily lead me to over spend on natural “cures”. At my itchiest, I get desperate to try anything. So far, I have spent on a Silver Gel to calm the wounds, I just went out and got some topical iodine to test myself for deficiency, I bought ingestible bentonite clay, I’ve also ramped up my veggie purchasing in order to make green smoothies. Even after all that I caught myself thinking of other things I could try/buy, and made myself look at what I already had in my cupboards. I have a wealth of supplements, I had a detox tea wallowing amidst my other teas, I had a half used bottle of castor oil that has healed my skin in the past, I had an open box of topical green clay.

So, I just need to stay aware, not get caught up hoping the next product will be the magic cure. Most important is that I am working from the inside out- topical is all good, but if I don’t fix my insides, it will just come back over and over. I am finally ready, after years of just suffering through, to deal with this. I am determined to get healthy, mentally and physically, all at once as it turns out!

A pretty funny aside: I just googled “is it normal to experience gas when taking green drinks”. Lol. My body is processing to say the least.

So here’s the list of what I am now avoiding:

Spending on anything but necessities

sugar

dairy

caffeine

 

I made a curry tonight and didn’t eat the naan! That was HARD. But it feels good too. Universe, family and friends, give me strength to see this all through!!!

 

Day 16

Day 16

Playing a little catch up here. It seems that having kids can really get in the way of writing a daily blog. Go figure.

I am detoxing my body gently in  order to deal with the eczema that has recently reared its ugly head. Trying to go off most sugars is challenging to say the least. Not just because there is sugar in pretty much everything, but also because I still have to prepare foods for my kids… which, granted, should not be sugar laden either…but even a piece of toast, or some plain yogurt with granola has sugar content. I’m used to eating what they’re eating, but now I can’t. So…I found myself quite hungry yesterday. It’s already very easy to neglect your own needs when you have little kids, but trying to have a special diet is even more difficult to concentrate on. The upside is that everyone will benefit from my diet because I am not about to make a sugar filled one for everyone else. The challenge now will be to get everyone on board. I made a greens heavy smoothie this morning, light on the fruit and my toddler was not thrilled.  She’s used to the banana and berry heavy smoothies. Not unhealthy, just not what I am focused on right now. Right now I am all about the greens and only some sweet fruit to enhance but not dominate. Also trying to go off dairy which is tough. Toddlers like cheese, it’s just a fact.

This is challenging.

However, if I at any time feel deprived I would do well to revisit the documentary I watched on Netflix last week: Living on One Dollar a good watch if you want to get a real sense of what true deprivation and poverty looks like.

Days 14 & 15: Detoxing on All Levels

Days 14 & 15: Detoxing on All Levels

I’ve been a little distracted. I’ve dealt with some skin issues over the years, flair ups of eczema here and there that I’ve largely ignored. Well, for whatever reason, it’s reared up and will not be ignored. I’ve been so itchy this last week it’s been all I can do to not scream.

I need to get this under control quickly or I’ll go insane. I’ve had enough experience to know that a lot of this is tied to diet. So…on top of detoxing from shopping, I am also going to need to gently detox my body…namely removing sugars from my diet and flushing my system with a lot of liquid. I’m a nursing mom so I can’t just fast and start fresh.

So, I am going to be relying on my farmers’ markets to supply me with nutrient dense greens for smoothies and meals quite a bit I think.

This weekend was a challenge as we went to a parade/fair. SO much stuff to see and buy. I must say that I am rather proud of myself. I managed to pack a lunch for me, my mother-in-law and my kiddos so that we wouldn’t be tempted by all the fair food. There were a surprising number of freebie items that we took advantage of- including free ice cream samples which handily provided the “treat” my toddler was hoping for without having to spend a dime ( I stoically passed on the sugary ice-cream myself).20160423_123851.jpg

I allowed one grown up treat- we went to a coffee shop and I got a cappuccino, a steamed milk for my girl and a latte for my mother-in-law. Money well spent for a reprieve from the noise and bustle of the parade filled streets. However, given that it was my one treat in 14 days…I was rather disappointed to end up with a rather acrid cappuccino. Boo. Being the person I am, I did not go and return it for another…though perhaps I should have. Life is too short to drink bad coffee!!

Surprisingly, it wasn’t so hard to not spend during the event. I did worry that I would be a more boring companion since it was clear that all sales booths were out of bounds for me. But my mother-in-law reassured me that I brought all the entertainment she needed in tow with me in the form of my kids. So, it all worked out well.

Some change was spent on a balloon hat that a man I can only really call a “balloon master” made for my very excited kid. A tip seemed appropriate and well spent.

So, to detoxing on all levels! Here we go!20160423_131342.jpg

 

Day 13

Day 13

It’s Friday and an incredibly rainy day. Still, we got our butts in gear and went to the Children’s Museum.

What a fun place! This is the kind of stuff we need to be doing, and the money invested for a yearly membership there is well spent. We were lucky to receive this years membership as a gift; but when it comes up in July I would consider this one a necessity. To have somewhere so awesome to go on a rainy day (any day actually) is truly a blessing.

There were two moments of temptation there, surprisingly. One for my toddler and one for myself but I am happy to report we passed with flying colours.

My toddler stood behind a girl who was looking at a rack of wearable butterfly wings for sale. She watched as the girl twirled the rack and looked at all the colours, watched as the girl pulled one off and asked her mom if she could buy it…and my kid was happy to just watch. Phew. Perhaps just two weeks of no additional spending has put it out of her mind? Maybe it’s too early to hope. But I really was surprised that she didn’t ask if she could buy some wings too.

For me, it was the coffee guy. There’s a man who recently started setting up a coffee booth outside. I’d often said that the museum would be the perfect place for everyone, not just the kids, if only there was some coffee to be had. Well, voila, there he is. Only, now I am not spending on those extras. I gave his coffee pour overs a good look as I walked passed several times on the way to various displays, but I did not buy.

Good on us.

 

Money not spent: $3…possibly $6 because I usually get pulled into selecting a pastry too.