A Tuesday State of Mind

Yes, Gentle Friends, it’s Tuesday. And I am grateful for it.

Unless something catastrophic happens in the next couple of days, I will be celebrating one birthday more than my mother had when she was on this side. I feel as if I have broken an unintended curse laid on me by well meaning but ignorant relatives who expected me to be her all over again and fill the deep shadow left by her departure. Yes, I look like her. Yes, I inherited her spiritual streak, her love for animals, and when all is said and done, I hope that I will be remembered for being as compassionate and tolerant as she was, even just a fraction of such.

Over and over again, the relatives on her side chanted, “You’re just like your mother.” At the least, irritating and a factor in why I went away to school. At the most, wondering if I had value beyond being a shrine to her while struggling with the great fear in my soul of dying unexpectedly as she had in what are supposed to be the best years of my life. For many years, part of me wondered if I would make it to that magic day that marked a year beyond what she had in this life.

Mom was one of the estimated thirty percent of people with cardiovascular disease who didn’t know they had it until they have a fatal heart attack. The smoking, the stress of dealing with my dad’s four heart attacks in nine months, and the high-estrogen birth control pills to hold menopausal symptoms at bay conspired against her.

I did learn from her, though. I smoked one experimental cigarette, and that was it. I went off The Pill to another form of contraception. I meditate and exercise to control stress, and do acupuncture to control the midlife lady issues. In addition, I’m on track to get back to a healthy weight.

So some hours out from the start of the next trip around the sun, I feel pretty confident that I will be here for many years to come.

Advertisements

Change as the Constant

So I go for my third acupuncture treatment this afternoon. If anyone had ever told me that sitting for up to 45 minutes with needles inserted in my wrists, ankles, knees, ears, and the top of my head was one of the most relaxing things I’d ever do, I would have wondered about them. 

So far, I’m feeling a lot more pulled together. The brain fog has dissipated, finally. The only disappointment was that the needle at the crown of my head didn’t pull in any signals from Mars. 

The other recommendation: relegate grain and dairy to occasional treat status. When the acupuncturist recommended that, I had the urge to roll into a ball. The needles in my feet and ankles precluded that. 

So I quietly dealt with it. 

Me: OMGOMGOMG I have to give up grains and dairy!! 

Inner wisdom: You can still have them as treats.

Me: I can’t have cheese! What about milk in my tea?

Inner wisdom: You can still have nuts, avocado, and olives in your salads. There are a lot of milk alternatives that will be pretty tasty. You can find treats that fit your needs on the web.

Me: BUT–

Inner wisdom: Think about your friends who have a lot of restrictions. They’ve found yummy stuff. So will you.

Me: BUT–

Inner wisdom: WOULD YOU GET OVER YOURSELF, ALREADY?

Sometimes, you just need to grab your own shoulders and get back to reality.

In this case, I found some teas that pair well with almond and coconut milk. I fudged on the grain-free recommendations with some gluten-free crackers. And I found some macaroons without flour in them. Yum. 

I also fudged with a small amount of feta in a salad. Not to be done every day, but there were no adverse consequences. 

In addition to the brain fog finally dissipating, I haven’t had the bloating that was sometimes so bad that I was relegated to my yoga pants for comfort. 

Sometimes, change isn’t such a bad thing after all.

 

The Courage to Change What I Can’t Accept

T-24:30 and counting.

This level of fatigue and brain fog is unacceptable. So are the mood swings, the sleeplessness, the heavy periods. 

T-24:25 and counting.

I’m not thrilled with the weight gain, either. Part of it my own doing, granted, from stress eating when my mother in law went through her last year on this side, trapped in the revolving door of what passes for health care for the elderly in the US. Part of it stems from attempting to comfort myself after Orion crossed the Rainbow Bridge. A lot of it has to do with this last act in the monthly dance of the hormones.

T-24:17 

So tomorrow, I give something different a shot. Inspired by the quick and positive results that Oakley had with his herbs, I made an appointment at the local acupuncture practice. Many of my friends who live in town have had good results. It is worth a shot. 

T-24:15

I want to stay as far from synthetic hormones and more commonplace medicine as I can. At the time of her death, my mom was on high-estrogen birth control pills. She smoked. She had little relief from them. The heart attack that claimed her life happened when she was 51, just a few months older than I am now. 

That is totally unacceptable. 

I have too much to do right now. I have an e-mag; letters and emails to write concerning the environment for the generations to come; crossposting and reposting to do for animal rescues on Facebook; and a dog to care for. I don’t have time for fatigue, for draining periods, or to slip the veil of tears.  

T-24:05

I’ve done my research, so I have a rough idea of how tomorrow’s appointment will go. Curiosity has overridden fear. What changes will be suggested otherwise, I don’t know. I will let curiosity lead the way.

T-24:00