I found myself recently at a crossroads. I have been there before, many times. Once again, I was feeling conflicted. It seems so simple, really. If you aren’t a regular reader, then what I am about to share may seem inconsequential, almost ridiculous. However, to me it weighs heavy. I’m talking about lifestyle. I’m talking about giving up my vegetarian towards vegan lifestyle. Even typing it, it almost sounds silly. It isn’t. I have been on this ‘lifestyle’ roller coaster many times. What am I searching for? Moreover, how am I going to find it?
Sitting at dinner the other night with my roommate, aka, my sister, I finally felt the need to confess to her my feelings of health and wellness. I was a Certified Health Coach, I know what works and what doesn’t. I;ve know the ins and outs of autoimmune disease, not just from clients, my own diagnosis. There I was ready to confess my denial. I was ready to come clean with the fact that I have been in denial of my autoimmune disease for some time now.
My numbers had been low enough, my Western medicine Doctor confirmed it was low enough not to give it another thought. I finally heard what I wanted to, I was normal and my numbers were in normal range. Then why did I feel so horrible? Why was I living with pain on a regular basis? How did I let brain fog become commonplace? Why on Earth was I making this my normal?
I have written several posts on health and autoimmune disease and Hashimoto’s. I talked all about how I was going to live with it and make changes. Don’t misunderstand, I did. I made the necessary dietary changes. Really, I tried. Then I just stopped. It was then I had decided eating meat wasn’t right for me after all. I had to give it up again. I had only gone back to animal products to improve my disease. The problem was, I was eating bad foods, foods covered in cheese and heavy sauce. I was no longer taking care of myself, I was making myself sick, and worse, my autoimmune disease is in the middle of the worst flare I have ever experienced.
I had recently watched the movie, ‘What the Health‘ and decided it was time to go back to veganism. The film makes a very strong case regarding health and veganism. Unfortunately for me, that is not the path I should be on right now. In the meantime, I thought I would start as a vegetarian, let’s face it, I wasn’t ready to give up cheese. I think after a particularly tough moment I realized this was ridiculous, I am making myself sick. The sicker I got the more fed I up I was becoming. I hide it well so that was the easy part. I can move through my day at record speed and do a great job. No one knew what was going on with me. I became so good at it, I barely knew, I was believing the act.
Back at Dinner
As I confessed my denial over dinner, my Sister let me in on a little secret. She too was thinking of going back to a different way of eating. Autoimmune disease can be a fun, family trait. There is so much we know about it, and still so much we don’t. Family connection to autoimmune disease is one of the things we are just really coming to understand. She shares the same thing I have. For the most part, her diet was pretty good, save for dairy, another family trait, a love of cheese. She mentioned the time we did something called The 21 Day Sugar Detox, reminding me when we did it before. We had great results and loved it, we just sort of fell of the wagon. Remember: cheese.
We had a long discussion and decided to we would embark on this detox again. It really is a perfect way to get started back on the path to fighting autoimmune disease. We decided we would begin immediately. The program is offered several times a year but we didn’t want to wait. We would plan our meals and start Sunday. I assured myself if I was going to do this, I was going to do it for keeps.
The Right Choice
So I decided I would blog my journey on the program. The good, the bad and the ugly. Finally, I’d realized in the wee hours of Friday evening there would be no more labels. No longer would I identify as vegan, vegetarian, Paleo, keto or any of the other labels that define a lifestyle. I am simply taking back my health, making conscious choices, that’s all.
I am excited to embark on this journey in a more public way. It will be difficult, eating meat is still a little daunting to me. This is it, I have to jump in and do it. My very well being depends on it. I look forward to having you bear witness to this quest. I am facing full disclosure here and for the first time in years I have finally found what I really want to write about. Stay tuned….tomorrow is meal prep day….UGH….