Things are different for me nowadays. Once upon a time (like everyone I guess) I was pretty care free, a dreamer, a wanna be artist without a care in the world.
Having children changes that for most of us certainly, but for me it was also a major health scare. I suffered a 'widowmaker' (massive) heart attack at the age of 45 not long after making a major career change. I thought that moving from the fast paced media career I'd had to an easy local marketing role was going to be a walk in the park. But that was before I found myself in a 'cultish' & negative environment.
Yep, I went from the fast world of media land with multi national agencies & mainstream media, down to a local business that was quite honestly just like a cult, run by a family who were erratic, (ambitious & driven yes)....but more then a little off center with their paranoia & self importance. It appeared that I started the gig as the golden haired child (against my better judgement), soon to be renamed the 'untouchable' when I refused to drink their Kool aid.
The stress of being 'frozen out' (even though I did attempt to confront the issue directly) combined with what turned out to be a low lying ongoing infection from some nasty root canal was my undoing - & the subsequent heart attack at this young age is what knocked me for a total six.
Now, that could have been enough, but just a short 2 months later I was the passenger in a car accident which broke 9 of my ribs, cracked my sternum & covered me with bruises & aches in places I didn't know existed, & let's face it chest pain wasn't a good thing for me after the heart attack.
Just 2 days later & I had the strangest thing happen. I got swooped by a bird, yep just a little bird, & this had me shaking, with cold sweats, nervous & jumpy for at least a week before I decided I'd better find out what was happening to me.
Of course I thought I was losing my mind, but it turns out I was diagnosed with PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder). What tha! - I though this nasty disorder was for ex military personnel, people who were in war zones, refugees, asylum seekers, those that had gone through some terrible unspoken trauma. I soon learned however any major trauma (such as a health event) followed by another (in my case the accident) close together escalates the possibility of acquiring PTSD.
Not long after pursuing the main stream 'fixes' (aka pharmaceuticals) for these things my beautiful mentor (aka yoga instructor) came into my husbands workshop as a new customer...& a new Jul was soon to emerge. The combination of yoga, meditation, breathing, organic nutrition & wholefoods saved me from a lifetime of prescriptions, toxins & chemicals.
The 25% (apparently permanent damage to my heart) turned into 2% within a short 2 years & I've not looked back since. The weight loss was what everyone noticed, but for me it was a whole lot more...it was a new life, using discipline really changed my head space, organising my nutrients & eventually turning to a ketogenic (for me that's lots of good fats such as coconut oil, moderate protein & no sugars/carbs) lifestyle I found I was sleeping better, thinking more clearly, having a lot more energy & generally being more positive in everything I did.
If I'm honest with myself, some months are harder then others.
As many of you parents will understand it's very easy to prioritise yourself last. I fall into this trap regularly & find I don't 'care' for myself enough at times, not enough sleep, not preparing food daily & going 12+ hours without any sustenance. There is always a member of the family that deserves attention, always someone to cook for, washing to do, chores to complete, bills to pay, bookeeping to do, blogs, emails, social media, websites & of course my glorious clients orders.
But...if I don't remind myself daily to get back in to my routine, take time out for myself, perform at least half an hour of yoga, I start falling into that trap. Over a period of weeks I can literally feel a wave of panic just behind my heels, negative thoughts start to become more frequent, it's sincerely like a huge wave of water that I feel myself just running from, a perfect storm of little neglects that add up in to what eventually turns into a fully fledged panic attack that can be bought on by the smallest of things. I sit here now, writing this blog following my first yoga session in weeks due to having a panic attack of biblical poportion over the last few days.
So, from one parent to another...today I start afresh & dial up the necessary discipline that makes me feel 'oh so good'. Take the time out for yourself, find the perfect match for your body, mind & soul. Today I will ferment some more indigo leaves, will freeze some more flowers & berries, make some seed crackers & fat bombs, & will spend the afternoon ironing up some turmeric, ginger, marigold, chamomile, calendula sheets for a joyful client.
Be good to you, prioritise yourself, thank your body each & every day for doing all the hard work for you. If you suffer from PTSD, panic attacks, negative thoughts, anxiety, drop me a line, anytime, & let's chat :)
Life tends to bring you just what you need...the universe works like that. The providence of what's required kicks in when you least expect it. I always believed I wanted to be a graphic designer...an artist of such. Many years I spent next to my Grandfather who was a inspiring painter, learning his craft & marvelling at the ease & patience he displayed on every piece.