Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Don't Worry, I'm Just Moving To The Moon!

For two days  I've been feeling pretty sick to my stomach. And to tell you the truth, I don't think it's food poisoning or the stomach flu. I think it's mostly just nerves -- related to my car crash last week and the thinking I've been doing about my life since then. Major changes are afoot. I truly believe the whole car accident and events that occurred since then (I've been blogging about it; read from Friday through Sunday to get up-to-date) are a gift from God to help me to set my priorities in line and to get started on a fresh path.

I spent several hours last night reading up about Raw Food Diets and watching videos recorded by people who had been on these diets and had major successes. I also had a very warm conversation with the director of the Creative Health Institute in Hodunk Michigan where I hope very much to secure a three-month internship to learn all about raw foods, how to prepare them and how to help myself and others benefit from them.

This is what I want to do. And I've spoken with some professionals who work with people who have eating disorders and received their blessing to go ahead and give this a try. The worse thing that could happen is that I could try it for three months and not experience a benefit. However I do not expect that to be the case after looking into it. I expect to be very successful with this venture and to learn some things that will be helpful to others and possibly even earn me some money in the future.

I am excited about the possibilities. I am so happy to be closing the door on things that just have not worked for me. I'm feeling a little bit nervous and worried that I won't get accepted. That is always a possibility. I can't think of a reason why I wouldn't get accepted but it is something to consider and always a worry whenever you apply for an opportunity to do something that you really want to do.

And in addition to all of the uncertainty and excitement I am feeling worried about what my family and friends will think. I have managed to get some people on board with it and that means so much to me. But many of my closest friends are ardent 12-steppers and it is always difficult for 12-steppers to hear about one of their own trying something new as a means of nutrition and health. Part of being in a 12-step program is truly believing that it is the very best method and the only way to freedom. But then I tell myself this is silly. Those ladies can still go out for steak dinners with their husbands. So this is something more extreme than what they do to stay healthy. And none of them would want to do it unless they found what they were doing was just not working for them anymore. For me, the 12-step approach truly is just not working anymore. When I spoke with a prominent staff member at one of the nation's leading treatment centers for eating disorders and he said he didn't feel he could give me medical advice about my situation because he is not knowledgeable about Multiple Sclerosis. It was an interesting conversation. He didn't exactly tell me to go for it with the raw food folks. But he didn't tell me not too, either. He acknowledged that my situation is unique and that an appropriate diet for me may not be the same as an appropriate diet for other compulsive overeaters who find success with a 12-step approach. Later he wished me luck with this path in an e-mail. That e-mail meant a lot to me because I very much respect his opinion and work with people who have eating disorders.

After the conversation I meditated and that is when I got the idea to look online for some videos related to Multiple Sclerosis and Raw Food Diets. I saw quite a few interesting stories on Youtube. Here is one...

So I've given a bunch of thought and prayer to this and it's really what I want to do. It is what I intend to do, God willing. My hope now is that my family and friends will be able to get on board and be supportive because it will be a major life change. I admit I have not been returning phone calls during these past two days when I have not been feeling well. I saw my dad called today and he never calls me so someone must have told him something. I never actually mentioned anything to him about my car accident last week. I didn't want to worry him and I felt like such a fool. Also, to be honest, I was quite afraid he would be upset with me. I also received a phone call from my oldest sister, Mary, last night. That one really gave me a stomach ache. I think she left a message for me to call her back but I haven't listened to my messages yet. Mary loves me very much and does many nice things for me. She dotes on me in the classic way that a sister who is ten years older would dote on a baby sister (still today even though I am now forty-four-years old!). But she is so full of opinions and advice about everything -- especially anything that is related to medical care of any type because she is a nurse and very knowledgable about certain aspects of western medicine.

But the fact is, I have truly, truly, truly, truly been walking this road with my Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis all alone. I love my family but they have not really been able to be available for me. They are extremely busy with their own lives and their own families for one thing. And for another, I don't think they have known what to do about this situation of having a younger sister with a Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis and inadequate access to western medical care.

The truth is, I have asked for some help from time to time trying to figure things out. And as much as they have offered me help in other areas of my life, nobody in my family has ever come up with any idea at all for helping me to live with this diagnosis and keep my energy and health up. It's been sort of like a one-sided conversation. I hate to say that. I know they are not intentionally ignoring me and I don't doubt they love me. But it's seemed as though they've thought that if they ignore it, it will just go away. And since I've always been strong and resourceful and clever, maybe they've thought I could figure it out all by myself. But the thing is -- these people are not the LEAST BIT comfortable with holistic health ideas and alternative medicine. I believe they frown quite a bit on it. We when it comes to nutritional suppliments and the like, I doubt anyone in my family has anything more basic than a bottle of multiple vitamens in the cupboard.

Trust me on this, when my family starts watching me make green vegetable drinks and taking shots of wheatgrass juice, it's going to be really, really wierd for everybody. These are people who would not change a single ingredient in our grandmother's thanksgiving stuffing recipe -- ever. It would rock the boat. It would cause waves! I think somebody made stuffing with sausage in it once and it was the cause of whispers. I'm not exaggerating very much. In my family love and community is expressed through cooking and eating. My family loves eating together the same foods our mother and grandmother prepared. I've been an outsider for years in this respect due to my eating disorder and 12-stepping. But my whole 12-step thing was like moving to Ohio from Michigan. It was questionable to them, for sure. This raw food thing is going to be like moving to the MOON!

So this is what I am doing. I love my family. I love my 12-step friends. I love all of my friends very much. And everybody's love and support in getting on board and expressing positive thoughts and encouragement to me right now would really mean a great deal to me. Please -- no negative thinking!

Thank you.

p.s. I did exchange e-mails with my very good friend Dcn. Nate Harburg yesterday and he is really praying for me. I felt like including this video of Iz singing "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" in thanksgiving to all of my friends who pray for me and especially to Dcn. Nate Harburg who has filled Heaven with prayers for me on multiple occasions. Dcn. Nate is the great grandson of Yip Harburg who wrote the song. This version by Iz is especially touching to me because the performer died of obesity before the age of 40. People often tell me my eating issues are not so bad and I make too much of them. But it is only because I have worked so hard to overcome them. It has been a constant battle for me.  I assure you that if you added up all of the pounds I have gained and lost over the years, I would be at least as large as Iz. Weight is only a side effect of compulsive overeating. Many people suffer from this condition and maintain fairly normal weights for most of their lives. Thank you again for the love and prayers and support.

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