In my experience, people who are open-minded, who are willing to try different pathways, who are hopeful, and who believe they can be well find healing. I am not blaming people who are still suffering, but I do find a lot of people who just want a medication or medical procedure that will fix them. They get angry at the mention of their own need for this condition or the notion that their own subconscious beliefs may impact their wellness. Try and put your doubts away. What do you have to lose?
I hoped to have a new book out this spring, but I realized this was just a date I put on myself. I needed to take a slower pace so I could take care of me, my family, and do my little part to help my corner of the world. I still love sharing the kids' books at schools around the state and have a few more I'm going to this spring. Mostly, I'm spending the rest of winter and spring working in the greenhouse and garden and going to wet soccer tournaments to cheer on my kids.
Thanks as always for reading. It's nice to know my words reach people. Again, I'd love to share your stories too.
Here's to being your own best valentine!
Cheryl is a friend of mine who has found her own, effective way to deal with a long-term heart condition. Something that could have killed another person appears to have become her call to live more closely in-tune with herself, nature, and the people she loves. How many of us can reset a bad mood with a walk outside? How many of us can change our life direction by spending serious time in nature? The physical and mental aspects of nature and health are interconnected in astounding ways. Let's take a walk.
"By relegating sex and vaginas to compartmentalized regions of medicine and culture, we remove them from the whole context of wellness." We leave a strange vacuum in awareness, knowledge, and honest conversation about female health because we are too embarrassed to talk about it.
Women are caregivers. We care for our families, our communities, our jobs, and our organizations, but for some reason we have a hard time caring for ourselves. We don't seem to see the connection between the effort we spend on the caregiver and the level of care we are able to offer. I love it when mamas decide that taking care of themselves might be a wise investment of time and energy. Michelle is a perfect example of a committed professional and mom who has decided it is time to care for the caregiver. This is her story.
Jake Keiser is the last person I would have expected to sell me a goat. She is beautiful, smart, and refined and she is a farm girl. I met her through a friend when she first made her dramatic move from urban Florida to rural Mississippi. Many of us dream of giving it all up and exiting our successful lives for something with more substance, but few people are brave enough to take that leap into the unknown for the slim chance that there might be something more beautiful on the other side. Jake leapt into that dark hole in her life, and came out the other side shining. This is her story.
When I was younger, I looked forward to “retiring” and doing the things I love to do. Now that the time is here, sooner than I thought, I’m afraid I won’t be able to do the things I love. Even though I was born with a congenital heart defect and health care professionals have ALWAYS been a part of my life, I never once considered that I might have to stop working because of my health – not once. Until now.
It has been almost six months since my diagnosis and the beginning of my treatments, and I am happier than I ever was before. I am thankful that through my struggle with mental illness I made the decision to be a real person with real feelings instead of an empty shell with a smile permanently plastered on my face. I would rather learn to love myself for the mess I am than hate myself for not being perfect.
Sarah is on of the thousands of brave women who found her own solutions to overcoming vulvodynia, a female health disorder that affects as many as 1 on 12 women. One of the reasons I wrote Rethinking Women's Health was because of the sheer numbers of women like Samantha who shared their brave stories on Facebook Support Groups. These women go through countless doctors and years of pain before they find answers. The good news is that there are answers if you are persistent in advocating for your health. This is Sarah's story:
Becky is a cheerful Lifestyle Blogger from the UK who contacted me about writing this post on her unexpected bout with anxiety. I think it is important to note that someone as chipper as this go-getter can experience periods in life when mental health is a challenge. Anxiety and depression don't discriminate, and it is up to us to find the tools and get the help needed to come through the other side.
One of my favorite quotes in a particular organization that I belong to is, "We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others." It embodies my life today—a life that at one time was drifting and sinking into a very deep abyss.
Please click the link below to read January's Newsletter.