Thank you all so much for your feedback and responses to my recent blog “I lost 30 pounds…Oh No”! It has been a big leap of faith to live my relationship with my body so transparently and I thank you for all your support. Many of you have asked me, “So…how’d ya do it?”. Here’s the story:
- I went to Costa Rica and became a certified Qoya teacher. I now teach Qoya every Tuesday. Qoya has completely revolutionized my relationship to my body and exercise. Because of that, I now look forward to exercising like I look forward to a massage.
- I read Kris Carr’s Crazy, Sexy, Diet, really jived with her philosophy, and have started eating a ton more whole foods, raw veggies, and drinking green juice.
- I really upped the ante of love and passion in my life, my marriage, my friendships and my career. Like, REALLY upped the ante.
- I’m working with an amazing therapist, which has led to more truth telling, and less smiling while flipping the bird under the table.
Not what you were expecting to hear? Me either. Here’s the story.
My whole life I have experienced moderate to severe depression (I know, who hasn’t?). The last few years it got more severe as it began to be served alongside a hearty serving of nighttime anxiety, which led to intense insomnia. Pretty much everyone knows what it feels like to be depressed, but this was depression resulting in an average of 4-6 hours of sleep every night for a good three years. I would sometimes catch up on weekends, but most of the time I walked around in a state of bitchiness at best, what-the-fuck-is-the-point of-even-living at worst. It was like I had forgotten how to sleep.
I tried everything I could think of. Therapy. A new king size bed. Quitting my corporate job that stressed me out so much. Rescue Remedy. Gemstones under the pillow. All of these things would help temporarily, but each time it was like getting a taste of my tail only to have it slip through my teeth once more, when I’d find myself wide eyed and awake at 2am yet again.
Now, you might be thinking, “girl, go to the doctor!” I wasn’t raised by hippies, but I do seem to have this gene that leads me to believe I should be able to fix everything with my mind and behaviors (or at least by taking some herbs). If I just started eating right, exercising each morning, taking the right supplements, meditating, doing the things I really wanted to be doing with my time, took a watercolors class, did a cleanse at an Arizona spa…I’d be able to work it all out.
Thank God for my husband. Imagine this poor guy having to deal with a cracked-out insomniac, clinging to her gemstones and chamomile tea as he gently nudged me for two solid years in the direction of getting medical help.
Sleep aids? I think not.
Antidepressants? Oh no, I am not letting the pharmaceutical companies catch me like a fly in their spider web.
Seeing a psychiatrist to examine my family’s history of depression and mental illness? And then take some magic pill to make it all go away? No thank you.
Wait a minute. What if there was a magic pill that could make this all go away? Not exactly make it all go away, but at least get me sleeping again. If I could sleep maybe I would have the energy to do something other than barely survive. And what if there is something going on in my body where I was not getting enough serotonin or whatever. I mean, even my therapist told me it is not normal to wake up every morning with a feeling of absolute dread.
So finally, I surrendered to the experiment. I moved the gemstones to a pretty bowl on my nightstand and I went to see a psychiatrist. After a two hour evaluation, his response was basically, “How has it taken you this long to come see a psychiatrist?” He gave me some Prozac and Klonopin and told me to come back in a month. I figured, let’s give this a go for a year or so, and see what happens. It can’t get any worse.
That was about six months ago. I’m happy to say, the experiment is working. I sleep like a dream now. But not a drugged-out, “Can’t sleep without me pills!” sleep. I am back in the pattern of going to bed, reading or watching Downton Abbey repeats, and just nodding off. I wake up refreshed and ready. This morning I have already practiced my Qoya routine for tonight’s class, made lunch for this afternoon, and a green juice for later. I’ve dressed cute for the day, and I gave myself the luxury of 30 minutes of writing instead of 30 minutes of Facebook. Because I am rested I now have the energy now to do all the things I described in the bullet points above which, yes, led to my eventual weight loss.
Now, let me make one thing VERY CLEAR. This is not an ad for prescription drugs. I am not saying that everyone should go get some Prozac and in turn we’d create world peace. It is simply a transparent account of my journey with my health. And how interestingly, the thing we resist the strongest, even if that thing might be the easiest way out, is often the very thing that will create real, lasting change. Again, I’m not saying it takes the pharmaceutical industry to create lasting change. I’m simply saying that this step, which I resisted for so long, is the one thing that has finally worked.
There will come a day when I’m ready to stop taking these drugs, and I will probably resist that for way longer than I need to as well. But this has been a powerful learning experience: the thing you think is the last thing you need is at least worth a try.
I know this is a charged topic. And I want to hear from you. What has been your experience with making big life changes you resisted for a long time, and what finally worked? Leave me a comment below.
There are two more chapters coming on this topic. The next is how you can use the art of seduction to make those big life changes with ease and grace. But that one my doves, you will have to wait for. Unless you want to jump right in with me in September’s Seduction Is A Spiritual Practice.