Deep Cleanse

I had a list of things to accomplish while I recover from my vocal cord surgery on 3/3.  I have been unable to work, preserving my voice for exercises given by my therapist, and brief conversation.  But, aside from the inconvenience of not speaking, I have felt pretty well.

That left me with a little time to get a few things done.

I could not push it physically, but I sorted papers, shredded, sent Emails that were overdue, and generally handled things that had fallen by the wayside during the busy nature of life.

I discovered, much to my disappointment, that my attention span for reading has decreased exponentially since spending so much time at a computer screen these last few years.  I vowed to get to work on that.

I also discovered that I have an account on the family’s “Netflix”  and I learned how to sit still long enough to binge watch some “Law and Order.”

There was time over these three weeks for some honest self-reflection as well.

Sometimes it’s painful to put truth right in front of our own faces, but I had the time to do the work, so I went for it.  I already wrote about isolation,  and I had some time to think more deeply about what role my own actions play in that.  I was able to reconcile that some of it is unavoidable, and some can be mended by me.  Balance.  I’m on it.

I also took a hard look at my own emotions and how they affect my house.

It is so easy to get “stuck” in the role of caregiver.  It is so easy to live a task oriented existence, making sure things get done, and arranging the logistics of life.  We may only have one child, but you add into the equation, two of us with a genetic disorder that involves countless appointments, surgeries, therapy and follow-ups things get dicey quickly. Add in that every appointment in NYC is a MINIMUM of 4 hours, and sometimes 6 or more, and the billing that comes with these appointments is at least a part-time job on its own, well, your head can spin.  Then, you think about the issues that surround friends and family, illness, disease, financial hardship, emotional distress, and your heart can hurt.  When you join that with “regular” stuff, like 2 working parents, a scholar, athlete, theater buff kid, food sensitivities, prescription medication, and anxiety all around – well, it can easily become all-consuming.  And it did.

I sat in my office one day, looked around and realized I was unhappy.  That was a tough realization.

I am not unhappy with my husband, or my daughter, or the countless blessings in our life.  I just became so consumed with getting things done that I forgot myself.  Literally.

Sometimes its good to reflect.  It’s the only way to get things done.

Last week my sister sent me a box of essential oils.  I was skeptical.  I bought a diffuser.  I feel like peppermint in the air while I work is good for my soul.  So is trying something new.

Tuesday I went to Kohl’s. A quiet activity easily done alone.  I felt the tension start to release.  I picked up a few things for me and for the house.  I went out because I WANTED to.

Something amazing happened Tuesday.  My husband and my daughter both remarked that I looked happy.  I had a story to relay at dinner that was about me.  The mood in the house was lighter.

Wednesday I took a nap in the middle of the day.  Because I could.  Again, I found myself with a little less pressure in my shoulders.

That night I promised myself and my family, no matter how busy things got I would find a way to spend 15-30 minutes every day on SOMETHING I could say truly made ME happy.

I’m a work in progress.

I chose to do a deep cleanse on Thursday and Friday.  I was working on my mind, but I had to bring my body along.  It had been too long.  I had gotten a little lazy in my habits and in my routines.  I have this incredible nutritional system at my fingertips and in my home, and sometimes I forget to use it to its full potential.

I woke up this morning having released 5.1 pounds of junk.  I started the day with a protein shake full of strawberries.  I shopped with my girl this morning.  Then, I got to listen to her singing lesson.  Now, they watch a movie while I get to write.  Then, my little family is off to dinner together.

This week the spring plants that sprouted on 3/3 started to really grow.

The caterpillars that came in on 3/2 have all become butterflies today.

Maybe we all used the same period to try to transform a little.  Nothing like a few new butterflies to remind you about new beginnings.

I am focused on this journey now.  I may falter along the way, but I will hold true.  This feels right.  This feels good.  And when I feel right and good, it is much easier to remain


No more “Toxic” environments

Almost a year ago – in June of 2012 – my husband was introduced to Isagenix, a nutritional program designed to help him shed some unwanted pounds and help him feel better.

You see it had only been a few months since his wife and daughter were diagnosed with Cowden’s Syndrome.  Meghan had had knee surgery (her 4th) in February of 2012.  I had my mastectomy, with the subsequent DCIS diagnosis, in March, and a hysterectomy in May.  By June the stress eating was evident as he just didn’t feel well.  We all needed his energy level to stay high.  There was certainly no time for our anchor in the storm to get sick or run down.

So, with the guidance of a friend – an Isagenix consumer and “pro” herself, we got him started on a 30 day program designed to help cleanse his body of unwanted toxins.  The thirty day program was a breeze for him.  He is one of the most determined people I know when he puts his mind to it.  It wasn’t long into those 30 days when he started finishing the extra vegetables at dinner, and choosing water over soda.  He just FELT better.

The information below is from the Isagenix website.

Nutritional Cleansing unlocks the miracle of the human body

Nutritional Cleansing increases the health benefits you’ll receive from the ancient health practice of cleansing. The herbs, vitamins and minerals that aid cleansing do two things:

  • Accelerate the removal of impurities from the body.
  • Nourish the body with vital nutrients to rapidly revive health.

A cleansed and revitalized body is stronger, resists illness better, is more efficient and performs at a higher level than one that is filled with impurities. Many people notice an ability to reach and maintain their ideal weight.

So when the thirty days were up, he chose to continue on a maintenance program.  He uses the Isagenix for one or two meals a day,  and snacks.  It fits in with the “on the go” lifestyle of a NYC employee.

And, as he sees fit – he opts to do a “cleanse day” where he drinks a power packed vitamin supplement and lots of water.  He eats very little food.  And he always feels better when he is done.  He knows now that toxins build up in the body, and he knows when  its time to let them go.

10 months later he is down a solid 35 pounds and countless inches.  No fluctuation greater than about 3 pounds.  It is gone for good.  The future is wide open, because as soon as his schooling is over – the exercising will begin again, and the remaining 15  pounds he looks to lose I am confident will melt away.

Father Daughter Dance November 2011
Father Daughter Dance November 2011
Father Daughter Dance January 2013
Father Daughter Dance January 2013

So how does all this have anything to do with “Beating Cowden’s?”

Here’s how I see it.

I haven’t used the Isagenix program, because I have not had a need to lose weight.  But, I have learned so much from reading and watching.

Essential to the program is the release of toxins.

This, I know a lot about from being Meghan’s mom.  From a young age it was evident toxins were difficult for her body to process.  She seemed to hold onto things, food dyes, additives, “extras” in everything she ate.  Nothing seemed to agree with her.  An almost exclusively organic diet became essential.

We used Epsom Salt baths in the younger years to help clean out what her body couldn’t get rid of.

I learned about biochemisty, and methylation.  I learned about Vitamin B12 and its ability to help her get rid of toxins.

So, over the last few weeks and months, when Meghan’s pain level has gotten progressively higher again, it was time for me to reevaluate.

Looking closely at her diet, there wasn’t much to clean up.

I have Dr. Elice looking closely at her blood. 28 vials this week!

But, it occurred to me that stress – life experiences – could be equally toxic.  So I started to wonder if the stressful situations in our life were causing a decline in Meghan’s overall health.


This week we changed churches and schools.

I haven’t heard her laugh like this in months.

There is a spark to her smile, and a hope in her eyes.

Her hip still hurts.  There is a knot in the side.  There are aches and pains – but somehow… she seems just a little less toxic.

Felix is taking the Isagenix – but we have all benefited.  (Message me if you want to know more!)