Thursday, March 21, 2013

Update on Former Postings

When I initially started this blog just over a year or so a go, my intention was to hone my writing skills, keep others motivated and/or laughing, and to navigate my way toward turning 50. While there have been several name changes to the blog, and the content of the posts may have shifted toward a more universally mindful approach, my intention has not wavered. Nevertheless, if you have been following me since this blogs inception, you may be wondering how several things have turned out for me in regard to my health, and more. So I wanted to take a moment or two to update everyone on my progress.

Thyroid/SAD/Foot Pain: So far so good! I am still being seen by the amazing and wonderful endocrinologist, Dr. Ken Blanchard in Newton, MA. A man who was changed my life! Literally. Dr. Blanchard has enabled me to feel better in so many ways. The most important of which is the Vitamin D boost which I believe has almost completely eradicated my Seasonal Affective Disorder, much to my delight. Also, I still take just 25 mcgs of Tirosint for my sluggish thyroid. This low dose seems to be all I needed to jump start things for me. Although, I have noticed an increase in my weight since starting the meds a year or so ago. However, that could also be due in part to the ball of the foot pain I experience in my left foot due to the arthritic bending of some toes. This has caused me to slow down my walking regime, which was hard for me to do, but necessary as the foot needed time to heal. Happy to report things are better, although I need to be wary of its return so my walks need to be shorter in duration. Not an easy transition for me, but necessary.

Peri menopause: As many of you know I have been on a mission over the last three years to seek relief from the extreme ups and downs of this pre-menopausal phase of my life.  Those slowly diminishing hormones, that typically kept me on a more even keel, can wreck havoc on the psyche. Mission accomplished. The routine I have established in my life has greatly improved my sleep pattern and positive outlook. Most of the things I have done have already been posted about: supplements, exercise, nutrition, etc. The most bothersome of my transition has been the erratic sleep patterns.  Happy to report: I no longer am spending hours falling back to sleep when hot flashes or trips to the bathroom waken me. Oh sure, I still have some rough nights, but practicing meditation  (especially on those nights) has given me a much more open and welcoming approach to all things menopause!

Owl Butterflies and Buddha in Aruba
Going Gray: Done and Done. Actually it was not as hard as it sounds. In fact I think other women were far more dreading my prospect of stopping the use of all hair dyes from my salon routine. First, may I say paying less then $50 (not including tip) to have my hair cut and styled is amazingly uplifting! The money salons make on hair coloring and more is obscene. To say nothing of the fact that those dyes and tints are laced with so many chemicals. I know current research informs us that the amount we are being exposed to is so minimal, that we needn't be concerned. But my inner voice tells me that this is but a tip of the proverbial iceberg of chemicals we imbibe in and surround ourselves with every day. So the cumulative effect is up for debate. I prefer to err on the side of less is more. Happy to report, all paraben based products have been removed entirely from my life as well. Oh, and I forgot to say, I LOVE my hair. And even more, I LOVE the gray. It has a sparkle and shine that just looks so good on me. There is just a natural beauty and healthiness to my hair that has not been there for a long time. I wish other women would ban the bottle too! No amount of artfully placed and expensive hair dye is going to change the fact that you are the age you are and no, you don't look younger, you just look blonder, redder, browner or blacker.

Suffice it to say I am doing well. The biggest difference for me has been learning to approach life with more curiosity and less of the need to have all the answers. Also, allowing room for a more welcoming approach to whatever comes my way has also helped me to just let things be as they are more and more.

Last, my chosen career path to teach meditation and mindfulness practice to others has only enhanced my own life in so many ways. Meditation has been in my life for close to 21 or so years. While I have not been as faithful to practice at times as I would have liked,  I know only too well how it has helped me to be present and manage transitions. No, I am not going to don a white robe and travel off to far away lands, chanting or meditating in a hut in the hopes of  reaching enlightenment. Those cliche images or ideals are not what meditation is about for me or many others. I prefer to be here, with all the ambient noise of life, in this part of the world, helping myself and others realize the potential to face life's challenges and successes with a clearer focus and increased power of concentration. All this and more......like the T-shirt says "life is good."




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