Euphoria: Health, Well Borne

I stirred briefly last night, my consciousness rising from some vague dream, mumbling a single word: euphoria. Speaking aloud woke me up enough to wonder why that particular word was important, and to lock the experience into my memory. Sleep claimed me again.

This morning I recalled the incident with a chuckle. It’s not unusual for me to wake with a word, movie quote or the snippet of a song in my head. What’s important is that I’ve learned to pay attention to these seemingly random thoughts.

Euphoria Health Well Borne

What is this feeling?

A few months after I shifted into a plant based lifestyle in 2016, these incredible feelings of joy would suddenly wash over me, seemingly from no where. In fact, I was usually alone, engaging in an ordinary, routine task like driving or tidying the kitchen.

What is this feeling? I would wonder.

I’m naturally a happy person who can be annoyingly upbeat and positive. However these waves of energy were intense…deeply experienced…and they inspired gratitude. I knew enough to identify the feeling as euphoria. Yet I never questioned the source, beyond believing that my improving health perhaps contributed to the sensation.

I eventually decided that I had lived with pain for so long, that I had forgotten what healthy felt like.

Euphoria Health Well Borne

Defining Euphoria

The euphoric moments have continued, and increased in frequency. Multiple times a week, and sometimes daily, this inexplicable joy surges through me, radiating outward from the center of my being, my heart. Tears fill my eyes even as my mouth curves into a smile.

Early this morning, I reached for my phone. After waking up with the word escaping my lips, it was time to dig deeper. I looked up euphoria.

By definition, euphoria is “a feeling or state of intense excitement and happiness“. From my research I found that alcohol, stimulants, and exercise can induce euphoria, as can success. These episodes are typically brief, and none of these are the sources of my own experiences.

Looking at the origin of the word provided a clue. Euphoria comes from the Greek words eu – well and pherein- to bear. Combined the words morphed into euphoros – well borne, healthy and later the word that we know today.

My instinctive association between euphoria and health proved accurate. The “intense feeling of happiness” is a result of my body bearing well the state of good health.

Euphoria Health Well Borne

Producing Euphoria

For the past month, I’ve considered entering into a raw food cleanse. My healing journey began two plus years ago, with a 28 day cleanse, in which I only ate raw fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds. Although I’ve experienced a week long juice cleanse and I eat raw foods about half of the time, I’ve not participated in a fully raw cleanse since 2016.

Guided by euphoria, I stocked up today on fresh organic fruits and veggies. My freezer is filled with bags of organic fruit as well, for morning or evening smoothies. My sister Linda, who is taking charge of her own health and well being, joined me on a fun shopping trip.

For the next week, and possibly beyond, I’ll nurture my body with nutrient dense foods that will deliver health at a cellular level. My digestive system gets a break while my liver detoxes. The journey will be documented on my other blog site, Journey With Healthy Me. Follow along there.

Photographing some of my life giving produce this evening, that incredible feeling of joy rose and I laughed. My body is already vibrating at a higher energy level, in response to the sight of such gorgeous food. I nibbled on sprouts and sampled cherry tomatoes, sweet strawberries and tart blackberries. It feels like such a loving thing to do for myself.

I’m excited. I’m euphoric. Healthy truly does feel incredible.

Euphoria Health Well Borne

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

This post falls under the category of Health Story, and it will serve double duty, as I will share this post on the Journey With Healthy Me blog as well. Two years ago this month, I embarked on a healing journey that has completely transformed my life. Here is a recap on the healing that occurred during year one, and an update with the continued healing that has taken place in the last 12 months.

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

My healing journey began with a desperate prayer for help. After suffering with chronic sciatica and pain in my legs for 20 years, after a car accident, my left leg deteriorated, requiring me to walk with a cane. The pain and the tightness in leg joints and muscles continued to worsen. I struggled to walk at all, or sleep, or even straighten out my legs. A wheelchair seemed inevitable.

I asked the Divine for help and help arrived the next day, via an article by Anthony William, the Medical Medium. He wrote that a traumatic incident, such as a car accident, could create injuries that do not heal and chronic pain. His words described me and my condition. Thankfully, he offered hope. I ordered Anthony’s books, and immediately began a 28 day healing cleanse, eating raw fruits and vegetables. I saw such remarkable improvements after 28 days that I adopted a plant based lifestyle and never looked back.

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

I avoided meat, eggs, dairy, sugar, gluten, soy, corn (unless non GMO) and canola oil. And I ate fruits, vegetables, brown rice, legumes, nuts and seeds. The problem, I discovered from Anthony, was that the viruses I had in my body…some since childhood…were wreaking havoc. The shingles virus was the culprit that attacked my sciatic nerves. Epstein Barr and strep had infected my liver and thyroid, and other organs and body systems. My action plan was two fold: eliminate the viruses by avoiding the foods that feed them and support my immune system with healthy, wholesome food.

It worked. In the first year I experienced healing of these symptoms/disorders:

sciatica • inflammation in legs & body • pain in legs • high blood pressure • irritable bowel syndrome • sensitive gut • severe acid reflux • indigestion • rashes & hives • tinnitus • gall bladder inflammation • headaches • sinus problems • seasonal allergies • joint pain • nerve pain • insomnia • heart palpitations

I also dropped excess weight.

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

With such amazing changes in my health, I chose to remain plant based. Returning to my old way of eating would mean a return to my old way of feeling unwell. I’m not willing to sacrifice my health, ever again.

My mainstays this past year, as my healing journey continues, are celery juice first thing in the morning, followed by a fruit smoothie. At least 3-5 times a week, that breakfast smoothie is a heavy metals detox blend of wild blueberries, bananas, Hawaiian spirulina, cilantro, Atlantic dulse, chaga mushroom powder, barley grass juice powder, aloe vera gel and hemp seeds. I eat fruits and veggies, and add brown rice, legumes, nuts and seeds to round out my diet. I sip on lemon or lime water, ginger water, juices and herbal teas throughout each day.

My meals are simple, beautiful, and full of health boosting nutrients. I rarely eat out, preferring to prepare meals at home. A desire that I expressed, to cook more, is being fulfilled with this lifestyle.

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle Roasted sweet potatoes and potatoes with garlic Brussel Sprouts.

In the past 12 months, my health has continued to improve. I’ve experienced healing of these symptoms/disorders:

frozen sacroiliac joint • floaters in both eyes • discoloration on fingernails and toenails • ocular migraines • chronic dehydration • menopause symptoms such as flushing, night sweats, hot flashes • fluid on left knee • mouth sores • tingling and numbness in feet and hands • restless legs syndrome • overactive thyroid • toxic liver • neck pain and stiffness greatly reduced (my neck vertebrae are so messed up from the car accident that X-rays freak out doctors…but my neck doesn’t hurt like it once did)

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

My skin is clear and healthy. My hair texture has improved, and although it’s hard to tell in photos, as my silver hair reflects more light, I swear my hair is darkening up. I have more dark strands of hairs growing in, than I did a year ago. My legs feel so incredibly good that they amaze me every day. I continue to see improvements in flexibility and strength in both legs. I am energetic, have mental clarity and operate at a high vibrational frequency.

I’ve come to understand how marvelously and wonderfully made my body truly is. It is a finely tuned sensor, that lets me know if I need the nutrients in a certain food, or if I accidentally ingest something I shouldn’t. I trust my body. I listen to it. I respect it. I nourish it and care for it like I never have before. And I’m mindful of what I put on my skin and in my home. I’ve been eliminating chemicals and toxins by switching to natural cleaning, laundry and bath products.

To celebrate my two year anniversary, I climbed into my favorite tree…the redbud in my front yard, something I couldn’t do two years ago. This tree survived the Joplin tornado in 2011, when thousands of trees perished. My redbud twisted and lost branches and now bears scars…but its deep roots held. The redbud tree is symbolic of my own experience. I’ve survived my own storm, one that lasted many years. I twisted, parts of me broke, and I bear scars as well, however, I am strong and determined, and healing continues.

This exciting journey is ongoing with health and wellbeing my priorities. It’s onward and upward from here.

Celebrating Two Years on a Plant Based Lifestyle

Order Anthony’s books below.

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A Cane Without An Owner

In Dickens’ classic story, A Christmas Carol, Scrooge asks the Ghost of Christmas Present about Tiny Tim’s future. “I see a crutch without an owner”, was the grim reply, indicating young Tim would succumb to his crippling illness if things did not change.

I have a cane parked in a corner of my bedroom. Yesterday, as I tidied up my room, I paused to pick up the cane, feeling its weight and running a hand over the smooth wooden surface.

A Cane Without An Owner

When my left leg began to deteriorate in 2015, after years of chronic sciatica and pain, I had to resort to using a cane. It didn’t just aid my walking. I also used the cane when I sat, to support my extended leg. If my knee was bent for long, the joint locked up, requiring half an hour or longer to straighten it.

When my right leg began deteriorating too, I didn’t know what to do. The medical community had given up on me a long time ago. I asked God for help. The next day I read a post by Anthony William, known as the Medical Medium, about how trauma, such as a car accident, can result in an injury that does not heal. My life shifted that day. I found hope and information for healing.

A Cane Without An Owner

My Halloween costume in October 2015. I was a tourist. The cane was a necessity, not a prop.

One week after adopting a plant based lifestyle and following what is called Medical Medium or MM Protocol, I stopped using the cane. I kept going with this new way of living and never looked back, healing the severe sciatica and ending the pain I had lived with for more than 20 years.

I’ve kept the cane as a reminder of the woman I used to be, the one who struggled with pain and poor health. That woman no longer exists, so in that sense, the cane is truly without an owner. I am grateful for healing and the journey that continues.

I also keep the cane nearby because it was made many years ago by Grandpa Moore. He carved the cane from a piece of a Dogwood Tree. Holding the cane yesterday, I wondered about the significance of that. I discovered that Dogwoods are strong, even though their branches twist. The tree symbolizes stability and determination. And because it blooms in the spring, it represents rebirth and new beginnings. Isn’t that amazing? I wish I could ask Grandpa Moore if he knew any of that when he selected this piece of wood.

A Cane Without An Owner

I no longer need the cane, which was once my crutch. When I look at it now I feel gratitude for the stability it offered when walking was difficult for me and for the determination it infused me with to keep going, to never give up.

I feel deep joy for the new beginning that I have had. My life has changed drastically since the day I cried out for help. And I feel such compassion for those who are where I was a short time ago. To those who are suffering poor health or are in pain, I offer hope. And I offer the energy of the Dogwood Tree.

A Cane Without An Owner

Thank You Anthony William

I could not let this week of kindness pass without sharing about one whose impact on my life the last 20 months has been enormous. Thanks to Anthony William, also known as the Medical Medium, I not only have my health back, I regained my life.

Anthony has a tremendous gift that he shares with the world. At age four, he began to hear a literal voice in his right ear. Spirit told young Anthony that his grandmother had lung cancer, a condition she was as yet unaware of. A visit to the doctor confirmed the info that Anthony received and shared.

He has been sharing medical information since, earning him the name of Medical Medium. Anthony has a website, where he offers a wealth of information for free. There is a wonderful audio series on the site, The Healing Path, that was so encouraging to me as I set off on my own journey of recovery. Anthony also has a strong presence on social media. You can join his Medical Medium Facebook page or follow him on Instagram, and not only receive help for healing, but connect with an ever expanding community of people who have taken back their health.

Anthony has authored three books, so far, and these volumes became my roadmap back to health and vitality. Medical Medium sheds light on the cause of mystery illnesses and autoimmune disorders. His 28 Day Cleanse at the end of the book changed my life, ending 22 years of chronic, debilitating pain. The cleanse also changed my relationship with food. I embraced a plant based lifestyle as a result. Life Changing Foods assists me daily as I continue my journey. This book features more info and 50 powerful foods that support the body as it heals. Each food has an accompanying recipe to try, and they are all delicious! I rely on the index in the back of the book as a source for matching symptoms to foods that aid healing. If I have a sore knee, I can look up which foods will best help in my recovery.

The latest book, Thyroid Healing, is astounding. It details the damage that the Epstein-Barr virus creates in the body. As it progresses through its stages, it eventually settles in the thyroid, causing health problems throughout the body. It is more than a book about thyroid health. It is a tool that aids in getting rid of Epstein-Barr and the viruses that often accompany it, shingles and strep. Thyroid Healing concludes with a 90 day thyroid rehab plan that focuses on eliminating the Epstein-Barr virus. I am about to begin this three month protocol, taking my health to the highest possible level.

I have learned from Anthony that it is possible to heal, even from long term chronic disorders. I now understand my body in ways I have never understood it before. Through my personal experience I discovered that my body wasn’t just falling apart or attacking itself. I was under attack, by viruses that were triggered by a traumatic incident years ago…a car accident. The stress hormones flooding my body fed those viruses. And the poor quality foods that consumed continued to help the viruses thrive and reproduce and release damaging toxins.

I have such respect and appreciation for my body. It fought to heal for so long, in spite of unhealthy, unhelpful foods. I am in awe of the wondrous way the body can heal and support good health, when I nourish it and nurture it. I am grateful for Anthony’s wisdom and guidance. His gift is exactly that, an offering to the world with the sole purpose of helping people take charge of their health and well being. He has dedicated his life to helping others heal, and I am, and will always be, full of deepest gratitude. At my lowest point, health wise, when I could no longer walk without a cane and a wheelchair seemed inevitable, I asked the Divine for help. And the Divine pointed me to Anthony the next day. In my place of pain and deepening despair, Anthony threw me a lifeline, he offered a way through. And he has done so with grace and joy, and without judgment or condemnation.

As the old song says, I am a life that was changed. I am so glad you gave. Anthony, thank you.

If you are looking for healing, for pain, from chronic illness, from a mystery illness or an autoimmune disorder, order Anthony’s books below:

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Thyroid Healing

I was so excited to receive book three this week, in the Medical Medium series. Nothing has impacted my healing journey more than the writings and teachings of Anthony William. His first two books became my roadmap back to health, after suffering from chronic sciatica for 22 years. To my great delight, I have also healed from a variety of other ailments.

I had time this afternoon to read several chapters in Anthony’s third book, Thyroid Healing. As I sipped on a cup of hot chaga tea, I began the next phase of my continuing health journey.

I will be sharing more about this remarkable book as I finish reading it and undertake the 90 Day Thyroid Rehab, included in Part III of the book. Today I learned more about the thyroid, the small gland located in the front of the neck, and about its importance in maintaining a healthy body.

There are so many misunderstandings about the function of the thyroid and the cause of thyroid disorders. A healthy thyroid isn’t something most of us think about, until we feel bad, suffering from a wide array of symptoms, or we get a diagnosis of hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, Hashimoto’s or Grave’s Disease. I have received such diagnoses, being told by my doctor that I had a nodule on my thyroid (it is benign) and hyperthyroidism, which is an overactive condition. No treatment was prescribed. I was told my thyroid would eventually “burn out” and become under active. In the meantime, I was encouraged to learn to deal with heart palpitations, night sweats, jitteriness and excessive energy.

But…what if there is another cause for thyroid disorders, and a host of other symptoms, other than a malfunctioning gland and/or the body turning on itself, creating autoimmune disorders? Anthony explores the effects of the Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) on the thyroid as it invades that gland and reproduces. He then offers, in this wonderful book, ways to heal from the virus and restore the thyroid.

The culprit…the Epstein Barr Virus.

This is what I will be learning about in the upcoming weeks…EBV and how to eliminate it completely from my body. These last 16 months I have focused on ridding my body of the shingles virus, which attacked my sciatic nerves, creating my chronic pain and inflammation. I am so much improved, as a result, so much healthier, that it makes me giddy. I have adopted a plant based lifestyle, thanks to what I have learned from Anthony.

Many of the foods I eat and supplements I take to rid my body of the shingles virus also combats EBV. However, while I will continue with those foods and supplements, my focus now is shifting to the elimination of EBV. Because, I still have some symptoms of a problematic thyroid. It is time to take my healing to the next level.

I noticed this afternoon that as I read in Thyroid Healing my eyes would slowly fill with tears. As a non-crier, teary eyes alert me to the fact that something deeper is taking place, something is stirring at a heart and soul level. I sat quietly, alone with my thoughts, and went inward.

I realized the words in this book, as in the other two books in this series, bring me such profound hope. I have learned what healthy feels like. In me, it translates to a feeling of euphoria and heightened energy. This is a new sensation in me. Two weeks ago, hobbling about after I injured my left knee, I was abruptly reminded of the way I used to feel. The thing I have learned as my knee heals, and it is about 90 percent there, is that I don’t want to return to feeling unhealthy. Okay, I also learned patience and to tune in to my body so that I would know how to heal an injury. But mostly, I have been reminded of where I was, not so long ago. Nothing, no food, drink, or dessert, is worth compromising my health. I’ve come through this time of healing more determined than ever to stay the course, maintain a plant based lifestyle, and stay open to ways of continually improving my health.

Holding Thyroid Healing in my hands today supported those desires that I have and infused me with hope.

Tonight, before I began my blog post, I flipped to the back of Thyroid Healing and looked through the recipes there. There are so many excellent ones to sample. I decided to try the Thyroid Healing Tea. I still have lemon balm and thyme growing in the herb garden and I had fennel seeds on hand.

As the tea steeped, filling my kitchen with its earthy aroma, I opened the book at random. I read the section called Butterfly Sun Soaking. The thyroid gland is shaped like a butterfly. Anthony wrote that the thyroid collects sunlight on those “wings” much like a butterfly does. When you allow the sun to shine on the front of the neck, even for a few minutes, the gland stores up that light energy. This sunlight helps to power the thyroid, balances the production of hormones, keeps EBV from proliferating and stimulates and strengthens the immune system. Anthony provides a soothing and restorative meditation to accompany soaking up the sun.

I was reminded that Greg’s dad, who was in his 90s, would sit daily in the sunlight, his head tipped back, soaking up the beams. It gave him energy, he said. He didn’t know that the thyroid benefits from sunlight. However, he instinctively knew he needed the energy the sun gave him. How amazing.

As I sipped my freshly brewed Thyroid Healing Tea, which is fragrant and delicious, I glanced down at my glass mug. There is a butterfly etched on the mug, which was a gift from my daughter Adriel. How serendipitous. What a wonderful, and insightful, synchronicity. Those telling tears filled my eyes again.

This is going to be an incredible new journey.

Get your copy of Thyroid Healing here!

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27 Day Walking Challenge

It’s time to do an update on the 30 Day Walking Challenge that I initiated on September 29th. Inspired by the amount of walking I did while on recent trips, the intention was to walk daily for a month, in a new location every day.

This was a great activity for me, interesting and fun because of the challenge of picking a different trail or area each day. I saw tremendous benefits, health wise. And then the unexpected happened. A problem with my left knee developed, and on Day 26, the Walking Challenge became a challenge to walk. I toughed it out that day and managed a short walk. However, recognizing I needed to focus on healing my knee, the 30 Day Walking Challenge ended on Day 27, after an extremely short, and painful, stroll.

I have to admit initial disappointment at this surprise ending to the challenge. However, I am not sorry that I created this game for myself. I thoroughly enjoyed the daily walks, and especially delighted in walking in a different place each day.

Most of my walks were outdoors. There is nothing more restorative to my soul and more centering to my body than walking through woods and along rivers. These meanderings through nature were meditative to me.

Destinations included the Joplin area, Springfield, and northwest Arkansas.

I also walked in each of Joplin’s city parks, discovering all have paved paths that loop around the perimeters. Each park offered different views, and most had some form of water on the property.

I met other walkers, joggers and cyclists at these parks, and appreciated the camaraderie that exists between people who desire to be healthier. Most simply smiled or said hello as we passed each other. One enterprising young man at Leonard Park impressed me with his energy, and the game he had created to challenge himself physically. He tossed a frisbee, and then ran to retrieve it. Over and over he threw the disc and then ran to pick it up and toss it again. We chatted about health and the necessity of challenging ourselves in playful ways.

I met my intention of walking with each of my adult children, exploring a neighborhood, a new trail and a family fun farm complete with a corn maze. I traveled to Columbia to walk across Mizzou’s beautiful campus with my grandson Dayan. Together we ventured downtown for a shared meal together.

My sister accompanied me on a walk that was impossible for me until recently. We climbed to the top of a bluff along Shoal Creek and gazed across the valley below. Greg was my walking companion on many of my treks. I appreciated each person who took the time to walk alongside, chatting quietly, and experiencing the beauty around us.

A couple of times, I resorted to cleverness, to fit the walk into a busy day. During an afternoon or running errands, I parked the car as far as possible from each stop, and once inside the store, did a lap around the perimeter. Doing this at five different stores gave me plenty of walking that day.

I only walked at the mall once, on a chilly overcast day. I combined that walk with visits to a couple of new vintage stores that had opened in the mall. Another day, when a sharp cold wind seemed to cut through me, I ended up at the new Joplin Library and walked around the perimeter several times before heading into the stacks. Funny story from there. The next day I ran into a woman who said she saw me, walking around the library, and she asked if that was one of my walking challenges.

Overall, I am very pleased with the results of the challenge. I felt energized by the daily walks. I enjoyed visiting different locations. My body responded by toning up, especially in my calves, thighs, butt and abs. I felt really good during those days of walking, and experienced an increase in stamina and flexibility.

Did the walking contribute to inflammation in the tendon and muscles around my left knee? The honest answer is, I don’t know. Intuitively, I feel this is a form of old energy working its way out. It is something for me to heal, and release. The flare up with my knee was very discouraging at first. I was walking SO well and with such ease. I felt frustrated with my leg, for bringing the walks to a halt, just days before the end of the 30 Day Walking Challenge.

This is part of my journey though. It is, after all, a healing journey, and apparently, I have more healing to do. My intention is to return to the daily walks, as soon as I am able to. After a week of focused care, that has included resting my knee, eating foods that fight inflammation, drinking daily cups of chaga tea and turmeric milk, topical application of Young Living Essential Oils, low impact stretching and brief walks, I am recovering. My knee is healing. I’ve battled impatience. I’ve run the “why’s” through my head and shrugged those off.

What matters is that I allow my knee to heal, by caring for myself in the highest possible ways. And when I can walk without pain, without a limp, with a knee that bends and flexes smoothly, I’ll be back on the trails and looping again around the parks.

30 days on the walking challenge…or 27…it’s all good. I have learned during this month of walking and not walking, and challenge ended up being the key word. I accept the not knowing and not being able to script things out. It is the journey and not the destination. It is during this time of walking in this world that I am growing and discovering new things about myself. Onward and upward.

In Love with Me…But Not Today

We all have a certain friend, or even a family member, that we love dearly, and yet if anyone in our little group is going to act up, we know it will be him or her. We sigh over misbehavior and misdeeds. We wonder if change will ever take place. We roll our eyes. And yet, when things are good they are very good. We forgive all.

I have a body part that is just like that. When she is good, she is very good. And when she acts up, she grieves my entire body.

If you have been following my healing journey for a while, you will recall that my left leg, whom I call Darling in both tenderness and vexation, is my wayward “friend”. The sciatica that I suffered with for 22 years most greatly affected my left leg. When I began walking with a cane, it was because Darling couldn’t bear weight any longer.

In 2014 I made peace with my seemingly contrary leg by shifting the way I perceived her. I exchanged frustration for gratitude. In spite of the pain and stiffness, my leg was doing her best to get me around. The last 15 months it has been beautiful and amazing to experience healing throughout my body, and especially in my left leg.

This morning, having just arisen, with a full day ahead, my second step resulted in a mishap. My left knee shifted with a loud pop, while my leg tried to continue in an altogether different direction. The result was immediate pain…and an inability to walk.

My first response was strong. No! No, no, no…no! I had too much to do today. My upcoming Friday and Saturday were full as well. I didn’t have time for this.

And sadly, my second response was frustration and disappointment. The internal chatter with my left leg went something like this: It’s always you, isn’t it?! Always the trouble maker, aren’t you? We don’t act up anymore! Remember? We don’t do PAIN.

Sigh.

My day changed. All of my attention now was focused on easing my discomfort and being able to walk. Everything else would wait. I opened to Divine guidance with a plea…Now what? It wasn’t a return of the sciatica, thankfully. This was somehow a slip of my knee joint. Ice came to mind. Ice to prevent swelling and numb pain, alternated with heat to keep my muscles, which tend to become too tight around my knee joints, from locking up.

Gradually my frustration dissipated. This was not the day I had planned. However, it was the day I was given. I accepted it. I chose to follow the guidance I was being given and stay open to what I could learn from the experience. I chose to practice deep self love with my Darling left leg.

Along with ice and heat, I used Young Living Essential Oils on my knee, a blend of Panaway and Frankincense. Because the pain was making me feel nauseous, I inhaled Peppermint oil and added a drop directly onto my stomach.

I used my Life Changing Foods book to look up foods that are good for easing knee pain. They are: figs, kiwis, berries, cruciferous veggies (especially red cabbage), leafy greens, onions and turmeric. As it “happened”, I had most of those on hand. In fact, I had sautéed onion and red cabbage in the fridge. I simply needed to prepare a sweet potato for a tasty and beneficial lunch.

My recliner became my office, my creative studio, my contemplation spot and my reading chair. And it became the place where I forgave my wild child left leg and just loved her and loved on her.

Reading in Thomas Moore’s newly released book, Ageless Soul, I was struck by the appropriateness of his words:

“Fighting anything makes it into an enemy and then it looks worse than it is.”

Ah, yes. Tears filled my eyes. Darling and I have certainly had our differences over the years. And she totally hijacked my day. But an enemy? No. She needed extra attention today. She got it, in the only way that would slow me down and give me pause.

And gradually, throughout the day, my left leg has responded to the care and love. I can walk. I have a limp, at the moment. However, I know this is temporary. I even managed a very short walk late this afternoon, so as not to disrupt my 30 Day Walking Challenge.

I’m not sure why my knee shifted so painfully today, however I am staying open to discovering more about the cause. This is not a set back on my healing journey. It is an opportunity to go deeper into health and wellness, acceptance and patience. It is a time to show great love to the most wayward, stubborn and plucky part of my body.

We’ve got this Darling. We are in this journey together. I love you.

National Strawberry Sundae Day? No Problem!

I doubt that I would have remembered this holiday, had a Facebook memory not popped up. Today is National Strawberry Sundae Day. In the past, if I was aware of this day at all, I drove through Andy’s Frozen Custard and picked up a strawberry sundae to celebrate. That’s what my Facebook memory was about. I wrote up a blog post about that sweet treat. 

I haven’t been to Andy’s in a year. Although I thought I would miss frozen custard, after switching to a plant based lifestyle, I have not. I used to routinely reward myself with this sugar laden treat, which was more an indicator of my unhealthy relationship with food than a desire for joyful celebration. 

National Strawberry Sundae Day? No Problem!
Being reminded that this was one of those quirky holidays prompted me to think about how much healthier I am this year, in my body and in my relationship with food. Having frozen bananas on hand, I felt inspired to make an easy, healthy version of a strawberry sundae. I felt I truly do have something to celebrate, and this wholesome treat provided a great contrast to the kinds of foods I used to consume. 

The recipe couldn’t be more simple. Slice up very ripe bananas, and freeze in a single layer in the freezer. Store there in gallon sized bags until ready to use. 

I have made banana “ice dream” using a blender and a food processor. The process is much easier and the nice dream much smoother, using the food processor. Add frozen banana slices, from 2-4 bananas, to the processor, and blend on high. Stop as necessary to stir, pushing unprocessed banana slices away from the sides. 

The change happens suddenly. Those frozen chunks of banana become a smooth, creamy mixture with a texture similar to soft serve frozen custard. You can add 1/2 a teaspoon of vanilla extract, if desired. No sweetener is necessary. Mixture can be stored in the freezer for an hour, for a firmer texture or eaten immediately. 

National Strawberry Sundae Day? No Problem!
In honor of the national holiday, I added fresh sliced strawberries, with nothing else added. This treat is simple, tasty, creamy, healthy and guilt free. This banana nice dream is the basic recipe. Other frozen fruit can be blended with the bananas to create an endless variety of cold, frosty treats perfect for warm summer evenings. Top with fresh fruit, nuts, organic coconut or blend together dates with a little water for a delicious sauce. 

I savored my strawberry sundae this evening, after a veggie and rice dinner. Such a treat allows me to remain focused on celebration, rather than falling prey to the feelings of regret that I used to experience after eating something that I knew was detrimental to my health. 

And what did I celebrate? Banana nice dream and strawberries, healthy choices, and feelings of joy accompanied by deep gratitude for this journey that is never dull or mundane or bland. Happy Strawberry Sundae Day. Happy Day. 

The Difference a Year Makes

One year ago today, I embarked on a journey that has totally changed my life. After suffering in pain for 21 years after a car accident, and finding no relief through conventional medicine, I sought alternative methods. I asked the Divine for help. I was using a cane and a wheelchair seemed to be in my near future. I knew I had a trip to Italy coming up in 11-12 months. Something had to shift.

I asked to be shown how I could take back responsibility for my health and improve. I asked…and an answer was given.

The Difference a Year Makes

I had already connected with Anthony William through his Facebook page. Called the Medical Medium, Anthony discerns medical information and the sources for illness and diseases through Spirit. I had already adopted the practice of drinking celery juice, as he suggested. The day after I asked for Divine guidance, a post appeared in my newsfeed. Anthony’s article discussed the pain that can linger for years after a traumatic event, such as a car accident, and what the underlying causes were. Reading his words, I recognized myself and my chronic condition. Best of all, Anthony offered a way to heal.

The Difference a Year Makes
I ordered Anthony’s first book, Medical Medium, and later his second one, Life Changing Foods. These two books have been my roadmap back to health and wellbeing. I discovered that the severe inflammation in my sciatic nerves was caused by the shingles virus. Other health issues I was having were the result of the strep and Epstein Barr viruses, and my body’s weakened immune system brought about by years of eating a poor diet.

At last, I had hope…and a plan. It was two fold: eliminate the viruses from my body, and support my body’s immune system so the inflammation could be reduced, allowing healing to occur.

On July 1, 2016, I began a 28 day healing cleanse. I eliminated the foods that feed viruses and inflammation: meat, dairy, eggs, gluten, sugar, corn and soy (because of GMO), and canola oil. During that first month I only ate fresh, raw fruits and vegetables. I immediately experienced a lessening of pain and inflammation. A host of other disorders began to clear up as well. I parked my cane in the bedroom corner, where it has remained, unused. At the end of the 28 days, my simple wholesome plant based diet became a simple wholesome plant based lifestyle. I continued eating raw and cooked veggies and fruits, and included brown rice, legumes, nuts and non GMO products such as organic tortilla chips.

The Difference a Year Makes Me in October 2015.  The cane was a necessity, not a costume prop. Looking at the photo, I can tell that I was in pain by the stiffness in my body and the positioning of my legs and feet. This pic makes tears come to my eyes. 

The Difference a Year Makes And this pic makes me smile. It was taken recently, almost a year after I embraced a plant based lifestyle. I can climb trees again! 

These are the amazing changes that have occurred in the past year, as I continue eating a nutrient dense plant based diet, and continue to avoid the foods on my “No” list.

• The inflammation is gone from my sciatic nerves, allowing me to walk and move and sit without pain. Inflammation is gone as well from my joints, spine and neck, easing stiffness and pain in those places as well.

• Headaches, seasonal allergies and skin rashes and hives are gone. My skin is clear and vibrant. I’ve learned that healthy skin, nails and hair begins inside, with a healthy liver.

• My digestive problems have cleared up. I suffered from Irritable Bowel Syndrome, gall bladder problems, stomach pain, an overly sensitive intestinal tract and severe acid reflux. I used  to keep antacids on hand always. I never take one now.

• My energy is high, meaning my vibrational frequency is high as well. The higher my vibrational frequency is, the less likely I am to develop serious diseases, which thrive when my body is weakened and in a low vibrational state.

• My sleep disorders are gone. I sleep without taking aids and wake up refreshed.

• I have clarity of thought and an incredibly positive attitude. I feel euphoric most of the time. I laugh more, and feel expansive at a soul level.

• I have become more lean, strong and fit, losing more than 60 pounds in 12 months. I am continuing to slowly lose weight. I trust my body to find its ideal level of health and wellness, and that includes weight. I want to emphasize that I maintain a plant based lifestyle for my health. The weight loss has been an additional result and not the reason for going plant based.

• I am very attuned to my body and its needs. When I crave a food, such as dark green leafy veggies, I eat them. It is my body’s way of letting me know what I need. Now that I no longer have food addictions, I can trust my cravings. Recently, my body developed an abhorrence toward certain kinds of teas. I no longer drink them. I love having this built in guidance system.

• I am continuing to improve, health wise. I still have some muscle tightness around my knees, after years of inflammation. It used to take me up to an hour to straighten out my legs if they were bent for too long. Now it takes me about 10 seconds. I am using Young Living Essential Oils on the muscles around my knees at night, with great results. I have also just noticed a loosening of my sacroiliac joint in my low back, which has been frozen for 22 years.

The Difference a Year Makes
A year ago, I had no idea that all of these changes would take place. I only knew I had to walk a different path, or I wouldn’t be walking at all. I am deeply grateful to Anthony William for showing me another way to heal. I don’t share my story to convince anyone that this is what she or he must do. I share my story for those who, like me, are asking questions and looking for help. Hope, and help, are available. I am proof of that.

Health and wellness begins within the body, at a cellular level. What I consume, whether it is a good diet or a poor one, is all that my body has to create with it. I am responsible for what I choose to eat and drink. And I am responsible for the consequences. I fully accept that responsibility.

My healing journey continues. A year ago, I read the quote, Do something today that your future self will thank you for. I made a choice that day. I would be living the next days, weeks and months anyway. I chose to live them with a focus on shifting my health through a plant based lifestyle.

I am my future self today, one year later. And I am grateful. Thank you, Cindy-in-my-past, for believing there was something better ahead and making that crucial decision. Thank you for staying with it and making choices every day that have resulted in a healthier existence.

What will my future self thank me for, one year from today? I’m excited to find out…

The Difference a Year Makes

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An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oils

Several things converged today to inspire tonight’s creative activity. I was out of my Do It Yourself skin serum. The connection between great health and clear, vibrant skin popped up from multiple sources. Repetition is always a sign to pay attention. And I was recently introduced to Young Living Essential Oils by my long time friend, Marijo. 

My starter kit arrived shortly before I went to Italy and I did not have the opportunity to do much more than open the box. With an empty serum container to fill, it was time to get to know  the oils. 

An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oil

I’ve been using oils in skin care products for years. However, I realized this afternoon, after spending time learning about the Young Living Essential Oils company and their rigorous Seed to Seal policies, that the products I have been using are most likely not pure oils. 

When D. Gary Young brought back 13 essential oils  from Europe in 1985, there was no written information available about usage and application. The oils sold then were perfume grade. Gary began extensive research in the ancient knowledge of using essential oils for healing. 

He has spent many years conducting clinical research on the ability of essential oils to fight disease and improve health and vitality. He has also developed new methods of application. By definition, an essential oil is the aromatic liquid that is extracted from flowers, shrubs, trees, herbs, roots, plants and seeds, primarily  through steam distillation. 

An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oil
I was excited to try out a couple of the oils. I selected Lavender and Frankincense oils from my kit, replacing the lavender and calendula oils I have used previously from another source, and assembled the rest of the simple ingredients. 

Using a small, clean jar, I started with pure coconut oil. The oil was in a semi liquid state already. It liquifies easily and completely when placed in the jar, capped, and held under hot running water from the faucet. I added vitamin E, piercing the ends of two capsules with a toothpick. 

An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oil
An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oil
Next I added 6-8 drops each of Young Living Lavender and Frankincense essential oils. 

According to my Essential Oils Desk Reference book, lavender promotes tissue regeneration and speeds healing. It is antiseptic, antifungal, anti-inflammatory and combats excess sebum, the oily or waxy matter secreted onto the skin. Lavender has other medicinal properties as well. 

Frankincense, which I have never used before, is an ancient oil that has been in use for thousands of years. It is an immuno-stimulant, anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxing, promoting a beautiful complexion. Frankincense also has other medicinal properties. 

An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oil
An Introduction to Young Living Essential Oil
Finally, I added 1/4 teaspoon of raw organic honey. I included honey for the first time when I made my last batch of skin serum and I have loved the results. 

Honey is moisturizing, anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antibacterial. It soothes red, irritated skin. 

My DIY skin serum is chilling in the fridge, to return it to a semi solid state. I use my fingernail to scrape off small amounts to apply to my skin. It melts onto my skin on contact and is readily absorbed. I’m excited to experience an upgraded version of my healthy, chemical and preservative free serum. 

As I thought about making new skin serum this morning, an article by Anthony William, about caring for skin, hair and nails, appeared on my Facebook newsfeed. He stressed the importance of good health in creating clear, radiant skin. Healthy skin starts from the inside. Eliminating toxins and chemicals and additives from my diet, and drinking plenty of water, not only nourishes my body, it promotes glowing skin as well. 

I have been caring deeply for my body for almost a year, creating greater health, and more radiant skin. It is a natural progression to eliminate chemicals and additives from my skin products, even the ones I make myself. And it feels like a natural progression in my healing journey as well to join the Young Living family. 

I’m excited to continue learning about these essential oils and their many health benefits. I’ll be sharing my discoveries as I journey. Join me and we will learn together! 

An Introduction to Young Living Essential OilI’m looking forward to trying Lavender oil in my diffuser tonight.