Cleanse recap: death, diet and determination

In the midst of my cleanse, we left for spring break to the land of cheese and tacos, returned and my father-in-law passed away. This was not the time for a cleanse. It was the time for chocolate.

However, I made up my mind to be strong and stick to my goals, which was purify my mind, body and to the degree possible, my spirit. For the first time in years, it worked. Not sure when it happened, but the reality that the swirling temptations and drama around me did not require that I stuff food in my mouth hit me. The only thing I could control was what I ate, so I focused on being successful at that.

Week 2– I was down 8 pounds (hurrah) but I was tired all the time. The lack of sugar pretty much drained me of energy, and while withdrawal headaches abated, my body wasn’t balanced enough to create it’s own energy. I also have to admit that I started fantasizing about hot chocolate in all the wrong ways. Clearly, I’d created a demon that was alive and well, and showed no signs of leaving. I needed an exorcism.

Week 3-The energy returned and I was down 13 pounds. I hated making food, because really, I wasn’t “making” anything. I was sautéing or juicing, which is akin to not living. I’d make all kinds of great meals for the family (lasagna, spicy meatballs) and looked longingly as I ate my veggies. Creative vegetarian is not my thing, although I do like lots of items (lentil soup, cold salads etc.) I realized that I like big meals, warm food and a main dish that keeps me full for several hours. The thing about “eating clean,” a la fruits and veggies is I’m hungry about every two hours. That in itself is fatiguing. So by the end of week three, I literally didn’t even want to bother with food. That was a blessing and curse.

Week 4– (day 21-24 ish) In Mexico. I’m ultra worried that my whole cleanse is going to be shot, but then I’m so darn proud of myself for sticking with it, I veer towards the veggies everywhere. I allowed myself proteins (eggs) and wouldn’t you know it? I kept all the weight off and felt great the entire time until….

The cheese got me! oh man, did I pay the price. My stomach cramped and ached within thirty minutes. It was like someone gut punched me. That killed my desire for quesedillas. Not one to be stopped however, I started sampling meats. Again, I got hit in the gut plus I felt sick. My system was used to–and appreciating–foods that were, and are, easy to digest.

I came home, all up in my head about my success and what did I do? I lasted exactly five days then went right back to the sauce. I started downing my own concoction of badness (cream, milk, and semi sweet and milk chocolate ghiradelli) because it’s my comfort food. In 10 days I whacked on ten pounds. It was during this time we had the death in the family and I just held on for dear life.

The following downer cycle of depression followed. For those of us on the weight loss/weight gain cycle, it goes like this. Lose weight, feel great, glory in the success by allowing a treat. Then another. Depression leads to more food. Loose clothes get tight. More depression and eating. Pants don’t go up the thigh. More depression. One day, the madness hits the wall like an egg splat and the cycle stops. Veggies and sullenness follow. Slowly, the pants loosen up. The clouds part. Confidence starts to appear like the sun after the rain. Veggies don’t taste so bad.

Now, today (5/21) I’m back to having lost the 8 pounds and have decided that for the sake of my stomach, my energy quotient and overall health, I should pretty much stick with generally clean foods, which comes as a shock to no one. It’s the willpower and determination that’s required to pull it off.

A broken soul & the 28 day cleanse

It’s not often that one reads about having a cracked or “broken soul,” when reading a book about food and wellness, but I did. Me being me, the first time I read this, I dismissed it as I eagerly absorbed the rest of the book’s content. (It could have been the surroundings: poolside, feet beyond the view of the top of the book, and my focus was on looking good rather than feeling good, but I digress). That was six months and two deaths ago. Yesterday, my focus was feeling good, and thus, the broken soul notion jumped out at me.

The book that ended my migraines

If you are following along, it’s found in book two by William Anthony, the Medical Medium. The short story is that at 4, Anthony had a spirit appear that stood by his grandmother, and who aided him in putting his hands on his grandmother’s chest and repeat the words “lung cancer.” The room went quiet, ad the grandmother was so unnerved that the next week she saw the doctor who told her that yes, she did have lung cancer, despite having no symptoms. Spirit, as Anthony calls his guide, has been with him every day of his life, ever since. He’s diagnosed the medical conditions of thousands over the decades, and more importantly, given specific direction for what to eat to heal the body…and soul.

Whether or not you believe the above, I will tell you this: I’d been suffering from severe, debilitating migraines starting a few years and nothing, save serious drugs, helped me out (and I despise even taking an aspirin). To that point, I’d been spoiled. Never so much as had even a menstrual cramp. Well, life changed and no amount of help, both western and non (think homeopathy, herbs, essential oils…changed a thing). Had I been rich and eccentric, I would have visited a shaman in Africa if I thought it would help.

Knowing my desperation, my next door neighbor (a doctor, ironically) tentatively suggested this book and it’s sequel. I read both in the span of about twenty-four hours. The sections are specific, and designed to aid one in self-healing. I looked up migraines, and got the “recipe” for a smoothie and other herbs to take.

The result: my migraine left within an hour. When the next one started to come on, I repeated the concoction. What’s more, as I read about the triggers of unhealthy food (and consequently my bad food intake) I have had only one migraine, and that was because like a rebellious teenager, I willfully and wantonly abused my body.

Back to the soul

The first read-through was six months ago. Last week, I was feeling emotional down, mentally drained and frankly, scraping the bottom of my personal barrel. When you read my sassier blogs, it’s because I have my moments of happy, and that’s when I tend to write…when I’m up, not down. Well, I go back to the book and essentially learn that my soul is aching and my (bad) food intake is exacerbating the problem. This didn’t take me entirely by surprise, but what did was the connection of the (good) energy of the food and how this can literally fill in the gaps/cracks/holes in the soul.

The notion being that God created life. Every living thing has positive energy, particularly food. The specific energy in any given plant or fruit aids a particular part of the body, and the root energy behind it, or the soul. Anthony contends that over a period of time, negative events crack the soul (divorce, death, etc.) and that if not filled with the positive energy (from the best source), then they remain.

Now, I like to think that I’m a normal, highly-functioning person. Yet, as I reflect on my forty years-plus of life, I have to admit that yeah, I probably have some of this ick still in my body….as in, it’s literally in my body in the form of toxins. So, going back to the soul concept, I may have rid myself of the bad spouse, but the toxins may yet reside in my body. When a trigger hits me, then I go for my comfort food, and instead of getting the badness out of me, I am just adding more toxins.

The outcome

At this point, I’m bought in. I’m nodding my head, and think I’ll do anything to feel better at any level. The next chapter is…a cleanse. I am wondering why it took me another six months of pain and punishment to essentially say: Yes, I am worth it and yes, the best thing I can do for myself is get clean and see what happens. (Just so you know, I’ve never, ever, been able to maintain a diet, cleanse or other notion for more than five days. E.V.E.R.).

Day one: fruits and vegies as prescribed by what’s in the book and what’s in my kitchen.

3 main meals with some grazing in between. Easy to manage. My mood goes mellow around 10 am. By 12 I’m starving but the salad and smoothie works wonders. At night, I have the prescribed salad and more fruit but I am sooo tired. My body is shutting down, or so I envision.

2 am. I feel a headache coming on. I knows it’s withdrawal symptoms from the sugar/whatever badness is in my system. I breakdown and take a pain pill because I can tell I’m going to puke if I don’t. Sleep until 4:30 am, and my eyes pop open, and I am wide awake. As in Wide. Awake. I give it up, take a shower, bond with the dog and drink some water.

Day two: I have my water, then my smoothie, but before I hit yoga at 9:30, I’m jittery. I’m not a coffee drinker and am generally very sensitive to caffeine (it triggers headaches) but seriously, I might as well have taken 3 caffiene tablets.

The hour-long class is wonderful until I realize I’m causing the horrific stinking smell that’s surrounding me (GROSS). Nothing like marinating in your own ammonia smell.

Still, I figure “it’s working!!!” That’s good. I just apologize to my fellow classmates and leave as quickly as I can to spare then, and myself.

11 am: I stop by the store, load up on more fruits and veggies and inhale 2 bananas No headaches, still jittery, but feeling really good.

Day 2-4. no issue and I have dropped 7 pounds. Weight loss wasn’t the primary goal (and still isn’t) but it’s nice nonetheless.

Day 5. In the morning I’m fine, but I sense I’m heading for a fall. We got the news my beloved cat is dying of an incurable disease (next blog probably) and we have made the decision to put him down. While I don’t have cravings, I’m unsure how I’ll handle it. The time comes, the deed is done, and around 9 pm, I lose it. I buckle to my trigger go-to of hot chocolate, which is really half-cream, half-milk, and Ghiradelli chocolate. It’s 10:42 pm now, and I don’t feel any better. In fact, I feel worse. ugh. Now I’ll regroup and get back on it again tomorrow.

That’s it, right up present. If you want to join this journey with me, do so. No time like the present. If not, I’ll periodically give an update and you can laugh and cry with me.