There’s been an awful lot going on since the holidays, and almost none of it has been related to Crohn’s, SCD, or anything else that would be of interest here. ALMOST none…
It’s been a long time since I was following SCD, but there was a period where I was eating well… low carbs, no wheat or gluten, plenty of healthy fats, etc. And for a while, it was good. But laziness is insidious and self-perpetuating. The more I’d cheat, the worse I felt. The worse I felt, the less energy I had to devote to cooking. The less energy I had to devote to cooking, the more I’d cheat. And then we moved into a place with a nearly useless kitchen, and all bets were off!
I paid the price. I’ve gained weight (I’m currently the heaviest I’ve ever been in my entire life, and it’s all gushy and soft weight), I’m chronically lethargic (and so my body is suffering from severe disuse), and while my guts aren’t uncomfortable most of the time, it’s pretty clear to me that they aren’t working as well as they could.
So where does that leave me? I’ve posted here sporadically over the last few months with glimmers of where things are going, but here’s where they’re at right now: Diana and I have spent the last couple of weeks on a highly regimented elimination-and-reintroduction protocol designed to reset the inflammation process, involving a whole lot of expensive medical food shake mix. For now, I’m not going to post the actual product name because I don’t want to be seen as endorsing it, and it’s only available through therapeutic providers. But the results are promising so far. Physically, I feel a lot like I did when I started SCD… chronically hungry, sometimes a little shakey or panicky, and somehow… I don’t know…. renewed? Somehow I feel clean inside, sparkly and shiny. Also, while weight loss isn’t the goal of this protocol, I have lost 5 pounds so far, so that’s movement in a positive direction.
While I don’t currently follow SCD per se, I still feel a real affinity for it, and for the community around it. So I’m reconnecting with the local SCD Potluck And Support Group, run by Julia Tinkham-Ray, at Pearl Natural Health. In fact, just this morning, I got up a little early to rub a beautiful pork shoulder roast that I’m taking to tomorrow’s get-together (as well as a smaller one we’re keeping for ourselves!).
Overall, things are in a positive place, but one that’s mostly potential rather than realization. There’s a rather large ball that has not been rolling. Inertia is making it really hard to move, and I’m just beginning to start it rolling. As this week wears on, we’ll be phasing out of the elimination phase, and begin reintroducing real food (which is good… I’m so over these gritty shakes!). Our plan then is to spend 6 weeks or so eating a primarily paleo-style diet…. very low carbs and starches, no grains, plenty of healthy fats. My hope is to get better about eating vegetables (and also that having been through this anti-inflammatory protocol, that vegetables will be easier for me to process). At that time, we’ll assess and determine whether another round of Shake-palooza is in order.
Another high priority is to address is issue of ignoring my fitness. Talk about balls that are hard to get rolling!! But it’s becoming clearer all the time that my lack of exercise is a fundamental contributor to my current state, which is not a particularly healthy one. It’s tough… what’s really needed here is to change my relationship with exercise. I have, at times in my past, been really good about getting regular exercise, but one thing has never changed: No matter how much I do it, no matter how good it makes me feel, I can’t seem to stop hating it. I hate exercising. I hate being tired, I hate being out of breath, I hate the feeling of constriction in my throat when I start working hard, I hate mucous that start clogging me up when my heart rate picks up… the whole thing. I hate it all. And if I’m to have any real success here, *that’s* the part that needs to change. Sadly, that’s the hardest part to change. But at this point, my life is quite literally depending on it.
So movement is happening, and that’s great. I feel like Diana and I have an opening here to make this a particularly transformational year… for me, for her, and for us. And right now, I’m focused on changing my relationship with that opening such that it’s no longer, “I hope this year is…” and instead becomes, “I am making this year into…”. It’s not about hope, or chance, or luck. It’s about doing the work, and about learning to love the work.