a lesson in detoxing

as i mentioned in my last post, i just completed a five-day detox. that means that for the last five days, i’ve moved very intentionally when it came to food. i woke up early to prepare my meals, had a list of nourishing options at my disposal, knew what my day would consist of and stayed within those boundaries.

i chose a hybrid of detox options from sources i trust and came up with this:

day 1 & 5: raw food. banana, avocado, juice, etc. no caffeine, sugar, wheat, meat, etc.

day 2-4: Ayurvedic detox soup (mung beans with lots of delicious spices–cumin, turmeric, fresh ginger, etc.) + sautéed greens for each meal. detox tea, also with lots of yummy spices to sip through the day. fresh juice. no caffeine, sugar, wheat, meat, etc.

i felt amazing.
my head felt clear, my yoga practice focused, my body light and manageable. and not once, not one single time did i feel starved. i ate when i felt hungry, and stopped when feel. i felt nourished and generally content.

an equally important part of a detoxing period is rest and reflection. rest, so the body can use that energy to work on detoxing the cells. and reflection to discover ways in which we perpetuate the build-up of toxins in our systems.

it’s true that some toxification we have no direct control over–air quality, car exhaust, secondhand smoke, etc. but a good deal of it comes from our personal choices, what we put into our bodies. namely, food and drinks and smoking. rest and reflection gives us the space to seek those out.

a few things arose during my rest and reflection over the last few days. of course, the temptation to do too much, as i mentioned in my post a couple days back. here are a couple more:

1. i rarely put my needs first.
this can manifest in a variety of ways, from allowing someone to repeatedly take advantage of my time to not using the bathroom until all my work is done. food and nutrition, of course, take a hit as i put work before lunch or helping a friend before planning a meal.

2. i overdose daily on electronics.
from when i wake up to when i go to bed, i have my finger on some piece of technology, scrolling Facebook, checking email (writing blogs! ha). i can’t disconnect, and have to admit my bigger problem is detaching from other’s opinions.

3. i have a distorted view of what it means to care for my body.

this is the big one, and actually didn’t come up until i was done with the detox. in the past, any time i’ve fasted or detoxed (whether for health or spiritual reasons) I’ve sustained myself on the vision of what i would eat/drink/consume once the fast was up. i made promises to myself of large lattes from Starbucks and 3 egg omelets w/ bacon and some more.

so, when my sis invited my to dinner at a fav restaurant on the night of my 5th day, i decided i’d been a good enough girl and would make that meal my re-entry into the world. no huge indulgences, no alcohol or anything like that, but i would order a dinner and enjoy it so much.

or so i thought.

i ordered fish & chips and, compared to the wildly seasoned meals i’d been having, it was quite bland. i felt neither satisfied nor content and didn’t finish the meal. in fact, i felt let down. the meal i’d been looking forward to wasn’t adding up.

a latte will help, i thought, and began to dream of the coffee and honey i’d forgone during my detox.

i woke up late, ran out the door without breakfast, and raced to coffee shop for a honey, soy latte. it felt delicious at first, soul-warming and grounding. but without any food to absorb the espresso, my system quickly went haywire. and now i sit, just after the lunch hour, feeling fidgety, shaky, hungry and irritated. where is the peace i experienced during my fast? where is the contentment?

i sacrificed them at the altar of desire.

and that is my greatest lesson from this detox session. i sacrifice myself often at the alter of desire, avoidance, laziness, etc. i gladly change in my self to feel temporary satisfaction.

they say admitting you have a problem is the first step. here’s to the beginning of a long journey!


happiness is.

…a bright, crisp, sunny morning.

…hearing “hi Miss Christie” on the lips of a 7-year-old as she’s riding her bike.

…Sunday afternoon phone conversations.

…coffee and birthday cookie and laughs.

…sharing Thai food with a dear sister.

…candy bracelets.

…hot tub lounging under the stars.

…Downton Abbey.  again and again.

…in the littlest, and simplest, and most beautiful of moments.

sometimes, happiness just is.

lessons in hope

“The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for. The most you can do is live inside that hope, running down its hallways, touching the walls on both sides.”

my morning began in a cozy chair on the Starbucks patio, with a dear friend from a former life.  the day, in it’s newness, felt full of possibility.  i had no idea what to anticipate by way of conversation with this friend; we haven’t met in nearly 5 months.  it was just what i needed, of course, and revealing of the true nature of good friendship:  you can still speak into each other’s life, no matter what roads you’re currently traveling.

she was sharing with me her journey to becoming a manager within her company.  she recognized her desire to be in management, tho it was never something she would have anticipated pursuing so immediately or within that industry.  still, she knew her first step was to find the person who had the position that most resembled what she wanted and find out, from their perspective, what she would need to do to get there.

that set the ball rolling, and she was able to comment on the extreme importance of mentorship; both being the recipient and provider.  she shared the different people who’ve stepped in, observed her giftings and desires to move up, and really helped to develop the business side of herself.  she also expressed the importance of being a mentor, on your own, sharing your wisdom, experience, insight with someone else who desires to learn.

this set up a sort of conviction in me, directly confronting my intention to use my giftings as a way to gain a “profit.”  i began to rethink how i do freelance, how i approach my clients.  i will definitely be changing my approach, but how that will look is still in process.

it also got me thinking about pursuing a mentor.  i’ve been in a sort of cloud regarding my giftings, allowing anything and everything to pull my passions in all kinds of conflicting decisions.  but the one really beginning to surface is my desire/passion/gift for writing.  i have an idea for a book, but in order to submit that, i must have published something.  anything.  anywhere.  but still, i haven’t done that, so it seems like a good starting place.

knowing that, only a couple possible mentors come to mind.  i tend to move forward in the excitement of something bu this, too, is still in process, so i think i will give it time to settle before moving forward.

it is exciting to dwell in the potential of something.  especially something so close to the core of who i am.  as the quote above states, i am narrowing down what i most hope for and enjoying running along those corridors.