Monday, September 27, 2010
I recently came across a box of old memorabilia that my mom kept from my childhood. I have been enjoying sorting through the weathered pages and crayon drawings, reading through my old journals, remembering the things I used to think about, the things that I valued, and recalling how I spent my time. Between the misspellings and grammatical errors, I have found simple insights to life, things that have slipped through the cracks in more recent years.
I have heard it said that there are hidden treasures to be found in our inner child (the little voice inside that tends to get muffled, or forgotten completely over time if we don't tend to it), answers to questions we ponder in the present, guidance from the pure, unadulterated being within. I have also heard it said that we spend the first half of our lives covering up who we are on our journey to fit into the world, and spend the second half trying to uncover ourselves, and reconnect to our true nature.
I happened upon this piece I wrote at age seven, about what makes a good friend. (verbatim)
"One of the traits that make a good freind ar that they ar hellpfull and consiterit. For egxample if i had a larg brik to carry and Nicole came and hellped me with it that would be consiterit. and a nother thing that i like about have ing a freind is if they are trothfull and have ing someone to hangaround with. for a nother egxample if i had know one to hang around with i would be pritty bourd. and if know one tould the truth i would not like that at all. the end."
So there it is folks. Spoken like a true seven year old, and still applicable today. Hellpfullness, consiteration, trothfullness, and companionship that makes life fun and wards off bourdom, are key components of friendship. As simple and elementary as it may seem, it's a good reminder to myself, a standard for the quality of people I'd like to hangaround with in life. Somewhere along the line, it is easy to lose sight of these simplicities in thought, the basic elements that help us maintain a nourishing and rewarding life.
There is a lot to be learned from children, even the ones within us. Remembering the things we valued in our youth, before our conditioning, I think can be key in helping to find our purpose today and guiding us to live a life of fulfillment. After all, we're just big kids.
I remember my Mom used to say to me when I was a young, "I wanna be just like you when I grow up." At the time I thought it silly. Now I can relate.
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Dietary Sugar and Mental Illness: A Surprising Link
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
so I think there is something to this body ecology diet business .. although i am being tortured daily at work by the seductive scent of fresh ground coffee brewing in the morning, and by my roommates nibbling on girl scout cookies and drinking robust goblets of jesus juice when I get home, i have to keep telling myself that it's for the best. i don't want your damn girl scout cookies anyways. (okay, that's a lie). but i'm gonna be fine. i will survive.
for those unfamiliar with the diet, it is designed to balance body alkalinity and requires the elimination of sugar and sugar forming foods from one's diet including: anything containing sugar (which includes 90% of items at the grocery store), candy, soft drinks, flour products, beans, tofu, nuts and nut butters, wine, beer, alcohol, refined vinegar, most fruits.
what's on the menu: most veggies, herbs, quinoa, millet, eggs, poultry, beef, fish, organic (unrefined) oils, sea salt, seeds (except sesame) lemons, limes, unsweetened cranberries and black currants, raw organic apple cider vinegar, raw cultured veggies, kefir, sprouted almonds, butter and ghee.
i can honestly say, i am already starting to notice differences in my physiology:
i feel very clear headed.. probably due to the fact that i don't have rocket fuel (a.k.a. pete's coffee) pumping through my veins all day, coupled with a sugar cocktail of mid day snacks and late night caps.
i am sleeping much more soundly, where as normally i find it difficult to sleep the whole night through.
i am feeling much more in tune with my body. rather than waiting till a certain time to determine when i should eat, i am able to distinguish a healthy hunger from a craving. (more on that in another post.)
overall, i have a deep sense of calmness.
i'm finding more ways to get creative with recipes and noticing the subtle flavors in what i normally would have considered bland or boring foods.
though i'm still in "withdrawal mode," and have less energy than normal, i have been assured by others who have been through it, that this is all a part of the detox process and is just my body adjusting to the shift. i have been enjoying observing the shift and look forward to coming out the other side, refreshed and renewed (just like a brand spanking new little bambino.)
in the meantime, can someone please invent a guiltless triple fudge brownie ice cream sundae?
Monday, March 8, 2010
i believe we have developed an insatiable appetite that is quickly becoming a social epidemic.
not an appetite for food...but for a lifestyle, and a very distorted one at that.
i want to preface this by saying that i run the risk of sounding dogmatic about this particular subject which i feel so intensely about, but i find it is necessary to share my observations, and will do my best to keep it based in fact.
unless you live in a yurt on a hill in the sticks or some remote cabin in the woods (which i have seriously considered), if you are like the majority of the us, you are bombarded daily by messages from the (*) media. *(due to my previous statement, i opted out of interjecting "life sucking" there.) these messages have an objective. that objective is to sell products. period.
people are paid ridiculous amounts of money to figure out clever ways to get into your mind, tap into your desires and associate those desires with whatever it is that they are attempting to get you to buy. voila...a lifestyle is born. when enough people buy into this lifestyle, it becomes the social norm, even if it's totally ass-backwards.
one day, when i have (fill in the blank), then i will be truly satisfied.
just slightly out of reach...just around the corner. we've become so accustomed to a constant state of yearning that it seems we've forgotten how to be happy in our present situation.
i believe it's that sense of yearning that we've become addicted to. when we actually get the things we are conditioned to desire, are we actually satisfied, or are we quickly looking for the next best thing, the next good looking girl or guy? ...and so on...
i believe this problem is two fold. first, i think the line between what we truly desire and what we have been conditioned to desire has become blurred and very difficult to distinguish. secondly, without gratitude, the things that we do have are meaningless. i think our money focused society of mass consumerism has led to the creation and exacerbation of these social diseases.
i think it is critical that we take our power back and really do some soul searching to determine whether or not the things we are chasing after are truly our own desires, or those that have been enforced subconsciously upon us. this can be a challenging process, but one that i believe is absolutely essential if we wish to ever be truly fulfilled.
secondly, i think it's imperative that we start practicing gratitude for the gifts we already have whether it be health, family, friends, what ever it is that makes life worth living. if we can't find fulfillment in the here and now, and acknowledge and practice gratitude for the gifts in front of us, no relationship, house, car, job, or new toy is ever going to change that. there will always be something bigger and better, always someone more beautiful right around the corner.
there is so much in our lives to be grateful for that we are probably not even aware of. let's take the time to discover how rich we already are, today.
only then can we truly make room for more fulfillment in our lives.
peace, love and perseverance.
Saturday, March 6, 2010
living in a society that values convenience over substance, it's no wonder so many of us are feeling more unfulfilled than ever. most of the food we consume (for convenience sake) is over processed, pumped full of unnecessary fillers and sugars, and completely lacking in any real nutritional value. have you read the labels of some of the packaged foods out there? just go to safeway and pick something at random off the shelf. do you really need 30 ingredients (most of which i can't even pronounce) to make that one little cookie?
don't get me wrong, it's not that i don't like to indulge in goodies. i personally LOVE bread. cheese. cinnamon rolls. cookies. ice cream. chocolate. coffee. wine. you name it. i am a comfort-food-aholic.
until recently, i had no idea the drastic effect these foods were having on my system.
i happened across an article on body ecology and body alkalinity. because of the obscene amount of sugar (including alcohol) and over processed foods that most of us put in our bodies, we have essentially created a toxic internal environment that comes with a whole slew of unpleasant side effects such as; chronic fatigue, poor memory and ability to concentrate, foggy headedness, insomnia, irritability, headaches, poor digestion, joint and muscle pain, diabetes, autism, a.d.d., mood swings, anxiety, depression and some bi-polar disorders (just to name a few).
the worst part is, we start to think it's normal to feel this way. to cope with many of these symptoms, we reach for more sugar laden, emotionally gratifying foods which further perpetuates the cycle, aging us rapidly and decreasing our quality of life.
with diet coke championing itself as 'heart healthy', misleading labels on so called 'healthy' store bought food and fast food garbage becoming the norm, it's no wonder we are in such total and utter confusion as to how to manage a healthy diet and inevitably a healthy body.
what it boils down to my friends is that we need to make a conscious effort to control our health.
luckily we bay area dwellers live in an optimal place for health. there are local farmer's markets several times a week and stores like rainbow, whole foods, harvest urban market, real food co. and goodearth to keep us stocked with wholesome goodies.
there are soo many resources for health on the web as well. (i have a list of some of my favorite sites for health and wellness under "juicy links" for you to gander.)
after reading the book 'the body ecology diet' by donna gates, i decided that it was time to make some serious changes in my habits and am currently on the diet. i already feel things shifting positively and will post more on the results as they come.
to sum it up my dears, i encourage you all to shop local, eat raw as much as possible, stay hydrated (water is one of our best friends, don't neglect it), cut out our keep to a minimum processed foods, sugar, alcohol and caffeine. your body and mind will thank you immensely.
don't be overwhelmed. keep it simple. if you need a hand, you're not alone.
health, happiness and unfathomable bliss to you all!
xo miss merriment