I’m not gonna lie. The title is shamelessly pretentious simply to generate readers. There is no known cure to lupus, and as far as my Chinese Traditional Medicine diagnosis goes, it’s not even considered lupus. Only Western docs would say that.
It’s been 3 years. I’m getting healthier. It started at a turtle pace, but it’s progressed to a snail on Red Bull. Acupuncture was given to me by the Gods, and I’ve been steady for one month at the gym, the haven that used to be my second home. Don’t get me wrong… it’s exhausting. It’s a delicate balance that this (this being me) delicate porcelain doll lives in. I have no life. I have no money. I have no time. This is what it takes to maintain my sanity and health. But it’s what I sacrifice to be active, fit, well fed, and looking like a girl. Somewhat. Some days it comes down to the decision whether to have a friend or do a few leg presses, the cost of a pretty necklace or organic celery, stealing a nap or making a green juice, comfortable old lady shoes or normal vixen heels, a midnight cookie snack or a starving belly, a surrender at Taco Bell or making my own 60 minute fast food versions. But I balance these things to keep me in motion. I used to have 80/20 days. 80% bad, 20% tolerable. I’m probably at 50/50 if not better. Whaaaat?
The secret is blood flow. The lifeforce, the chi, the unblocking and purification from this polluted and suffocating environment that is America and other mass consumer countries.
What I’m saying is, if you have been suffering with lupus or another chronic autoimmune disease, chronic fatigue, find a local barefoot acupuncturist that has feng shui’d her office, has a babbling fountain and plays plinkety-plankety music, and start paying her regular visits and buying her silly knick-knacks of grateful praise every few months. Please. One year later, and bam…you’ll be a human again. Granted, it takes some endurance and faith, but it’s either that or staying in pain and misery without progress.
So, here are the few things I need for the daily ying and yang. Some are bargains, some are expensive, but they will smother us with benefits not afforded without search, trial, and error. I cannot express how much I value these things, not only because they sustain me, but because there are so few opportunities in this greed-saturated consumerist world, that quality has been stripped of the things we eat, live, and breathe. I’ve always been seeking nature and truth, but had I not become gravely ill due to this man-forsaken environment, would I have studied and practice the depths of what it means to nourish a soul?
Youfit Health Club – the Gym. Oh my gym. For $10 a month, $30 a year, and month-to-month contract, I had no choice but to sign up. Even if I only went for the smell of socks and stale sweat! I thought I would only survive one shameful visit a month, because all the other health programs I’ve tried at home have not challenged me, while at the same time circumventing all the limitations of my disease. I went once last month, and haven’t stopped since. I slowly, oh so carefully, built up strength and endurance. And now I do everything I can not to kiss the dirty mats when I walk in. I want to talk to every older and overweight person and say, “Yes, I know it’s hard, but here we are! We can do this!” I am overcome with my second chance to be athletic once more! Even if I never get back to the marathoner and weight lifter I hoped to be, you will find me at the gym with all the joint-friendly weight and cardio machines, awkwardly trying to adjust the seating to midget size with a deranged smile of ecstasy while I pump some muscle. I recommend this to everyone, and their mom! …. P.S. Same owner as Planet Fitness in other states.
Latex Stretch Bands – After my whole spiel about being fit, I have no choice but to proclaim the paramount emphasis of stretching. I learned the hard way, after years of boasting I was a supernatural freak of nature and required no stretching. Everyone needs to do it. Even Michael Phelps. Especially Michael Phelps. Because if you want to, not only prevent from injury, but increase blood flow to wonderfully sore muscles just waiting to juice up, you need to invite the blood there. And for all the twisting, contorting, and yoga-ish moves I tried to alleviate all the messed up joints and inflamed muscles and misplaced fascia..nothing has taken my healing and re-boning, if you will, like these little bands. I tied them up to something sturdy and just hang there (in a proper position taught my manuals and youtube). Like I said, it’s high maintenance if you have poor health and bloodflow. You need to help it. I spend more time than I’d like doing this, but afterward I feel like Mr. Stretch. Doesn’t hurt in the whoopie department either. Wink, wink.
Charlie’s Laundry Soap and Hardwater Booster – Godsent! Non-toxic, allergen free, and purer and cleaner than anything you can find at a frickin Target or Walmart. These are two products I’m mentioning. I bought both, highly skeptical of anything new and expecting new fun reactions to blindly and newly approved FDA chemicals tested on baby fetuses. One hand ready to call and complain to the company, I can’t believe I haven’t ever heard of this before. My clothes came out cleaner and softer than ever, and I have been able to stop paying exorbitant prices for natural dryer sheets (that were still essentially chemical poo storms)! It makes me want to do the laundry every day. And I don’t say that lightly, but with severe reverence. I didn’t realize that even this chlorinated, sulfuric city water was not only harsh on my skin and senses, but my clothing that just looked dingy. Husband’s work clothes would never feel clean, especially in the summer. And he’s not thaaaat stinky. So, please please please, if you need more pure and less itchy and chemically in your life, in your kid’s life….go buy. www.vitacost.com has great prices. Now! I’ll write you a check. (Link for a coupon on the left panel of blog.)
They make six products…I aim to try the rest at some point.
Dandelion Tea – Any brand, anywhere you wanna get it. Obviously, the more natural, the better. It’s a natural caffeine-free stimulant, specially recommended if you’re having trouble dropping coffee (points to self violently!). It’s flushes excess toxins out, clearing the liver quite a bit. It’s a diuretic tea, great for someone with interstitial cystitis who loves to retain water sloshing around my spongy body. Even though it’s not much of a problem anymore, it’s not yet a perfect science and this is great maintenance. And flat belly mornings…all day long! Till I carbo load.
BCAA and Glutamine – Where has this been all my life? I scold myself for not learning enough about this during my training days. All I knew was protein, protein protein. That was quite a damper when all the processed cancer-hugging whey and soy isolates started accumulating in my liver and hurting my brain! Branch Chain Amino Acids and Glutamine helps muscle recovery and other stuff, and optimize weight loss through muscle preservation. Do your own research. The point is, not only does it help with my slow and sluggish healing abilities, it has helped me reduce pain! All the strange muscle pains I would get, even if I don’t work out. It feels like an energy boost in the mornings. I’ve never known exactly to what it’s due, but my metabolism surely went backwards quite a bit, and just digesting food was an ordeal. Slow digesting food leads to putrification in the gut, toxin release, therefore even more muscle and nerve pain. But if your muscles are functioning well, the stomach can focus on its own job and let the muscles focus on their healing. And did I mention it helps weight loss? Of course, you have to workout to truly see some benefits. Otherwise, you can just lower your standards settle for feeling them. I could go on, but I’m starting to be summoned by the arms of Morpheus, so I must hurry.
Ahava Oil Drying Mist – In searching this link for you, I have just ruffled my own feathers, realizing I paid waaaay too much for mine. Good for you. Anyway, what the heck is it??? It must be from Narnia or some magical land!!!! O.M.G. All I know is, almost everyone has some kind of allergy. If you’re young and don’t have them…wait for it… Once I lost my immune system, even though its decently restored, I have noticed when I wear my favorite perfumes (including the amazing BVLGARI my husband bought me for my anniversary to commemorate the honeymoon), I will end up crying a fit and blaming you or anyone in the surrounding 3 feet for ruining my life. I lose it, I cry, I get headaches, I get disoriented. I might as well get tanked of some Ketel. I’ve been about 2 years not wearing perfume, feeling bad that my husband has to smell my natural muskiness. No sexy woman to pass him by and leave the lingering allure of my Spanish scent (that could go many ways)… just today I found this. I save my pennies I promise you, so that I may make my expensive vegan/gluten-free desserts with ingredients exporting from far lands and soy free chocolate chips! I do hound over my monies. But I need to smell better. Way better. And this, is heavenly, and not only is it heavenly…it doesn’t make me homicidal And not only that, it’s soooo fricking healthy. In the sense that it’s made from sea plants, or algea or something. Sounds gross? Well, I put it on my face and hair…and moved on. Later I absently-minded grazed my cheek and about had an affair with my 19-year old self. I have not had skin like this since over a decade. It glowed like the Sun’s divine rays! I was Narcissus himself. The cats had to step out. Lucky for you I found it for about $15 less. Grumble grumble.
The uplifting scent of Mandarin and Cedarwood rejuvenates the senses as it provides a skin-friendly boost of vitamins and minerals.
If that caption is not a selling point, than I don’t know what is.
My friends, I want to share so much more with you but part of the balancing act is going to sleep at a reasonable hour. I’ll continue to share my fun finds, freak outs, and moments of serenity. And most likely….some endorphin highs.