For Myself

I am a work in progress as I endeavor to exist as a spiritual being, having a human experience here in this playground we call planet earth.

I was raised by parents who would be 100 yrs+ if they were still alive. My father had angina and my mom had allergies. They were the salt of the earth kind of people serving their community and being on church committees and volunteering for different things. We were a somewhat typical American family of 8 kids. We grew up next to a family owned grocery store right at a time that convenience foods were at their height of emergence, therefore I have spent much of my life with the Standard American Diet.

Photo by Vicki Willoughby

Photo by Vicki Willoughby

We had a substantial vegetable garden and grew some fruits too but because it was well established that you should eat meat and milk and cheese and such, that was very well entrenched in our lives and when I no longer lived with my parents, growing the produce that we did, fresh fruits and vegetables dwindled in my diet.

I lived in VA for years and aspired to having a garden but the soil, weather patterns and offerings were different so that never really happened with any success. Now that I’m living back in NY I have a postage stamp sized back yard in the city and have committed about half of it to vegetable garden. If I had my way it would all be garden but having garage shading and a dog to let out that is not an option. I have reveled in my garden for about 7 yrs now. It has become clear that there is a symbiosis between gardener and garden. The garden responds directly to how its tended.

These little cabbages grew from where I'd taken the larger head Photo by Vicki Willoughby

These little cabbages grew from where I’d taken the larger head Photo by Vicki Willoughby

Of late I’ve been examining my own personal garden. I’ve done some weeding and some new planting. One of my nieces has directed me toward several documentaries and since she has taken to heart and used so much of what I’ve lent her in the form of health information, I decided to take her recommendations to heart as well. I got on Netflix and watched Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead and thought, geez, if this guy from Australia can do this so can I. I put it out to the universe and everyone I talked to, that I was looking for a juicer. I found a friend with a spare and it will be here this week. (recycling at its finest, gathering dust for them, helpful for me)

I have also recently watched Vegucated which gave me a whole different point of view on meat production and its effect on this planet and on all of us. Today I watched Forks over Knives and its Engine2 version. It was very helpful in filling in the science whys and what to do about it. Not that most of this information hasn’t been here before, but it has certainly been groomed to be favorable to those who would profit from our lack of knowledge of basic health.

I don’t know if the reason this information didn’t have the same impact on me before is a product of the “shift”, a product of being over 50 now, a product of my own spiritual path or most probably a product of all three but my basic feeling has changed. I have not made all the changes to my diet yet or to the changes I will make in my son’s diet as well but it has totally changed the lens with which I make my choices.

I watched another documentary about the discrepancies in the information that came out after the school shootings in Connecticut last December. Its not far different from other similar accounts I have seen referring to other disasters. Its been comfortable for many of us to blame, question, criticize.  For many I’ve heard the primary focus seems to be on what others could or should be doing and how we should be protected by those who are in offices that started out as public service positions.

Regardless of what you see when you look toward our past, collectively as a planet and a species we can all agree that we are not living in the world we imagined when we were children and our children have not been allowed to be children because they’re being groomed to be mini adults from birth. Our whole system is built in conflict with what our natural cycles are and what our biology is. We start sticking needles into children practically before they take their first breath as if their bodies has a deficiency in what they are being administered. I know people who have been on upwards to 20 prescriptions at a time with a list of doctors longer than they can remember.

Looking back, is what it is and unless we want the view of the future to look worse than the past there needs to be a change. My weapons of choice in all of this is my fork, my wallet, my mind and my voice. I am going to use them to administer the wisdom of our Mother to myself and my son and do my best to leave a lighter foot print. Its not something that a snap of the fingers will change but a change of attitude, changes the path and changes the destination.

My father’s sixth heart attack killed him at age 71. My mother died from a combination of allergies and medical error at 69. Two of my brothers are long since passed over, one from complications from cancer and  the other from a massive coronary with no warning whatsoever, unless you look at the lifestyles and more to the point, food styles that preceded them. If you are unhappy and feeling unhealthy and your doctor appointments dominate your social calendar then its time to realize there is a problem. I have no prescriptions and no doctor appointments but I have been over weight most of my adult life. That is in the process of change. I’ve always been active but I have a 12 yr old and I want to be around to see his kids grow up.

Rosemary Photo by Vicki Willoughby

Rosemary Photo by Vicki Willoughby














Do things in this world need to change, YES, we can all agree on that right? Who is going to change them? For my life, I am. I have the power to buy and grow my own health and the health of my family. Without that, what is life worth any way? When we point the finger of blame or expectation we have three pointing right back at us. I will point my finger forward toward what I choose and take my attention entirely, from what I do not want to choose, except for where it reminds me of why I’m changing. That’s just for myself. How will you love yourself today?

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