Many of us have stress in our lives that comes from our jobs, our relationships, or stress from always people pleasing and not being able to find time for ourselves.
A few years ago I was struggling with a case of daily hives that lasted for a year. I suffered extreme bouts of fatigue and struggled with my weight. I had all kinds of symptoms an any given day. My digestion was horribly off, I had a serious case of brain fog all the time, my left eye didn't always see well. The list goes on and on. There was something very wrong. Maybe I had allergies. I went to a doctor who said I had auto-immune Thyroiditis; This is better know as Hashimoto's Disease. He informed me I would need to get a blood test every three months until it progressed and I would have to be on medication for the rest of my life. At first this made sense because my father and his 4 sister’s had all passed away from illness stemming from auto-immune disease. The doctor’s diagnosis set off the light bulb in my head.
It said “hell no!” I just needed to take that step to be able to admit to myself that I was sick and tired because I was unbelievably sad, heartbroken, and angry that my marriage was going to have to end. My husband was a good man, but he was fighting an addiction to alcohol and emotionally, mentally, and most of the time physically leaving me to take care of my 5 children and my household. I was unsupported and alone. At the same time, my sons were battling a life-threatening condition as well. Now, I had boys that needed help, I needed to move them into programs, get counseling, and get them well. I was going to have to take care of them, take care of my other children who were suffering along with me, and figure it out without the help of a partner. As if that wasn’t enough my mom had to move in with me and my family because she was ill and nearing the end of her life. I had promised her she would not die in a nursing home and she would be able to be with us for her through the end of life process. She needed constant attention and care-taking.
I was getting hives and I was exhausted not only because I just couldn’t get to sleep or eat right, but because I was stressed out, I was overwhelmed and devastated. Completely heartbroken and lost. The life that I had planned and counted on up until this point had been altered and I had no idea what to do about it. I had no one to turn to who could possibly understand what I was feeling or going through. I couldn’t tell my mom, I was taking care of her; I couldn’t have her take care of me. I didn’t want to tell the family or my friends because I was sickened and honestly, ashamed.
I just knew that I could not live like this anymore. I needed someone to talk to; I needed to take care of myself so I could take care of my children. I was not going to be sick. I found that person to talk to (me) I started to run; I gave up the jellybeans and the diet coke and became a vegetarian. Once I was able to physically feel good I felt strong enough to go back to school. Something I always wanted, but put off because I felt the time would have been taken away from my family. This led to the biggest change I have made which is the change to my sense of self. By taking control of who I was and who I wanted to be, I was and am, better able to take care of the people who need me the most. Once I had it sorted out everything fell into place. I learned to change the things I could change and accept and leave behind the things I couldn’t.
I also came up with a plan. A LIFESTYLE RECOVERY PLAN. This included nutrition changes, exercise and spirituality. Sounds good? Let's talk.
Wellness happens when the body and mind are in balance allowing our outside worlds to become balanced as well. "The part can never be well unless the whole is well." - Plato