(First, a disclaimer: I’m not including things like having three great kids and other Life Events, because those belong in a different category than where this blog is going.)
Cool thing #1 – Stopped smoking after 20 years of lighting each fresh one with the butt of the old one. Very difficult for me to quit. Very cool to me that I actually did. (Lark 100’s…anyone remember those?)
Cool thing #2 – Created bogus Press Credentials to cover the Sold-Out 1981 Escape Concert (Journey) as a music reviewer (yes, I got backstage)…then actually wrote the review for the San Diego Union!
Cool things #3 – 5 - Traveled throughout Italy & Greece, Egypt and the Yucatan, each in excess of a month, solo! Pretty cool.
Cool thing #6 - Conceived a unique idea for a story and completed the manuscript within a year (or so).
Cool thing #7 – Created Solar Magic Jewelry and sold it on television (QVC).
You get the idea. These are just some of the things that make me smile when I think about them. But I only recently realized that part of the reason these are so woven into my “happiness fiber” is that each of them began as a concept, required a plan, demanded that plan be worked, and culminated in a Dream Realized! WooHoo!
Not one of the above was haphazard. None was accidentally achieved. And while some parts of each may have appeared to have serendipitous occurrences, I believe that they were, in fact, the Universe “falling into place” after a bazillion baby-steps to make it look as if it was just great luck.
Which brings me to this blog. I have a new goal…no…A New Dream. A Dream is much more romantic than a Goal. And a Dream Realized has more lasting emotional intensity for me than a mere goal.
Goal = You complete a project.
Dream Realized = You’ve achieved something noteworthy in which you were personally invested
The only thing that’s a little scary at this very moment is that I’ve never shared anything Pre-Dream with anyone. I have a flood of ‘what-ifs’ that are bombarding me right now that I’m trying very hard to ignore.
Today is April 15, 2010. I am currently weighing in at a whopping 211 pounds, but I carry it well on my 5’9” frame. Okay, even if I was 5’9”, this is too much weight to be carrying…but what if I was only 5’2”? The weird thing is that I don’t feel “Morbidly Obese” although that’s what all the Healthy Living sites tell me: 211 and 5’2” = Morbidly Obese.
I planted seeds in my psyche over a year ago. I will turn this around and give myself the good health that is essential if I am to continue on any path I choose, let alone the ones that I don’t even know about yet. I stopped making excuses for my being so overweight but then I only weighed 180. I started a dozen diets. I stopped eating breads; butter; white flour products; red meat; bad fats; fried foods; starches; sugars; sweets; pasta; dairy; ate more carbs; ate less carbs; veggies only; fruits only but don’t mix your melons; and each time I began a new program, the first thing I felt was DEPRIVED!
I wasn’t excited. I wasn’t optimistic. I had accepted that I was fat and I accepted that I needed to lose weight and I was bummed and mad and hungry and deprived and I ate. Comfort food…and no matter what they say…to a hungry girl, it’s ALL comfort food.
And while I really felt okay, health-wise, it was becoming more difficult to take the stairs, carry groceries or rush to do anything. My breathing was more labored and, once, I heard a strange whistling sound that, when I became very quiet in order to locate it, was coming from me…a slow, constant wheezing from my lungs, forced to carry a load beyond their capacity for far too long.
The greatest insult is facing my mirror. In my heart, I feel like I’m still in my 30’s or 40’s and fun and fit. When I pass my mirror, there’s an old, fat woman looking stunned, confused, staring back at me.
So the seeds are germinating. If I am going to be making an extra effort in some direction, I want it to be for more than to maneuver myself logistically!
Baby-steps began a while ago, but only came into my awareness recently. I actually began enjoying fresh salads. In fact, I surprised myself by getting very creative in my salad designs, adding more fresh vegetables and trying unusual dressings or squeezing a fresh lemon or lime over the top…and really enjoying my new energized creativity.
I found a DVD series (Zumba) that I liked and researched it on EBay and Craigslist but couldn’t find it cheap enough. Zumba is a series of Latin dance moves that don’t feel at all like the “E” word. Here’s where the Universe begins to step in. Last week, Jeni stopped by my house and when I walked her to her car, there was Zumba! She’d picked it up at a garage sale and had been carrying it around in her car. She didn’t realize that it was meant for me the entire time!
So, I’m on my way to renewed health and I’ve decided that I’m ready for a full commitment…yes, it’s back to OHI for me! For those who are unfamiliar with the Optimum Health Institute, it’s a closed-campus oasis where one can go for a three-week sojourn. It’s truly idyllic: each week is filled with classes that remind you how to care for YOU; gentle movement classes and yoga; meditation and sound therapy; nutrition and food preparation. Have I mentioned that it’s all RAW? Organic gardens provide the meals which are prepared by raw food chefs. It used to be just a bunch of sprouts tossed on your plate, but the gang down in Lemon Grove has gotten some class and really go all out to impress! Oh, and the Wheatgrass! All you can consume! Grown right there on campus in humongous greenhouses, cut and juiced fresh all day long, drink as much as you like; pour some in your tub, poultices for anything that ails you, add some to your enema water…oh, I haven’t mentioned the enemas and colonics yet…
Okay, truth? The first week is sheer Hell. You have to keep reminding yourself that this was by choice because once the abundance of wheatgrass and raw food begins to pull the toxins from your organs and the colonics flush it out of your butt and coffee/garlic/sugar/dairy/sweat drips from every pore of your skin while you struggle to keep up in “gentle movement” class, as everything you’ve ingested for years is being purged from your body and the entire process makes you feel like you have the flu, you can’t remember why you didn’t just go on a liposuction payment plan back home.
Second week isn’t as bad. In fact, your taste buds aren’t coated anymore and the raw, organic produce brings flavors to your palate that you’ve never experienced. Fresh. Alive. Vibrant tastes and textures that you savor and appreciate. You have a Swedish massage on Tuesday and Reflexology on Thursday. You’ve already forgotten that you came here with back pain and haven’t looked for your bottle of Aleve in a week. You look forward to your afternoon “flush” so you can discuss with your colonic therapist how intestinally clean you’re becoming. You feel stronger. The air smells sweeter. You sleep harder and wake up a few minutes before the alarm sounds each morning.
Third week is Super Human week. You walk a few inches above the ground. The cornucopia on your plate speaks to you, sings to you, and you thank it for the bounty it offers and you really mean it. Meditation fills your soul. Yoga energizes your spirit and you can’t help but smile all day long…in fact, as you walk though the campus and pass other “third-weekers”, you share a joyful, knowing exchange and either hug or giggle or both. You share the secret that is revitalization of body and soul.
The problem then becomes, do you tell everyone about this great place and watch it become crowded and unavailable, or do you keep it to yourself? More on this later. I really have come to terms with my decision.
The idea behind OHI is that we are all toxic to some degree, just by living in the hustle and bustle of today’s world. By immersing yourself in a serene environment, and detoxifying your mind, body and spirit, you can achieve a renewal like no other! I’ve been there before and believe me, it works! The challenge is carrying it with you after you leave, but more on that later.
Okay, so I put it out into the Universe that I need to go back to OHI for three weeks and without all the juicy details, the money fell from the sky…well, not exactly, but I should be finished with taxes this week and then I’ll have enough to go.
Once, when LW and I were planning a stay at OHI, for days in advance, we gobbled up all the goodies we knew we wouldn’t see for a while. We even had stuffed burritos on the way to the campus. How silly it seems now to jam more crap into this bod before attempting to clean it out!
Yesterday I ordered an Omega VRT Juicer. I should have it in a day or so and will start drinking regular amounts of daily wheatgrass and veggie juices. Dad agreed that he’d like to try some of the juices I’ll be creating. Mom declined.
I’m checking in to OHI on May 16, but I’m starting now. Certainly the first week there won’t be such a shock to my system if I’ve already been juicing and drinking wheatgrass for a month ahead.
I’m not gonna get crazy in the next month, but I’ll eliminate bread and butter and I already feel good about it. I still may enjoy a glass of wine or a small portion of Hudson Valley foie gras, but starting now I can do without pork chops and eggs, (yes, a regular favorite of mine) and pasta alfredo.
This afternoon will be my official weigh-in/measure-in. I don’t want anyone telling me how shocked they are when they read my stats. I’m shocked. That should be good enough for all of us. I’m setting aside my ego because I’m beyond vanity, remember the mirrors?!
So that’s what this is. It’s my first time articulating what goes on in my head once I lock onto it. I’ll be posting here about my progress, my feelings and my experiences. I’m mostly doing it as a new exercise for myself, but if anyone’s reading this, don’t hesitate to jump in with your commentary! I don’t know what degree of success I’ll have, but barring anything too earthshaking (another 5.3 in San Diego today), I’m laying the foundation of my newest Dream to be Realized.
I think about it constantly. I see myself going through every aspect of it. I see myself enjoying it. I’m excited about the momentum I know I’m setting in motion. I’m consciously aware of the process and I have absolute belief that all that is being set into motion will come to fruition.
I would just love this to be my Cool Thing #8!