10th Day Retrospective

It’s been fifteen days since I left the hospital. I spent the first four or five of those days just settling in, finding my new routine. But since June 1st, I have really been consistent about a few important things: sleep, exercise, medication, diet, hygiene, and writing. I have adhered to a set of conditions that me, my aunt, my uncle, and my parents developed while I was still in the hospital. These conditions (most of which are laid out on the Quest Details page) were designed to help promote optimal wellness for me. None of us knew exactly what to do, but what we came up with has turned into an amazing experiment for all of us. Several times my uncle and aunt have mentioned to me that my presence in their house and the agreements we have made surrounding my wellness program have motivated them to improve their own exercise or diet choices (they had already both moved to a vegan diet, but they also eliminated gluten when I moved in).

I guess tonight I wanted to take a look at what the past couple weeks have been like…to reflect on the trends and honestly assess my progress and perhaps see if there is anything holding me back or any new ideas I’m having that could help propel me forward.

Retrospective might not be the best title for this post…I think it may end up being more of an analysis. I guess you can be the judge of that.

Today was a very relaxed Sunday. I slept in a bit (which means 9am for me now) and, as usual got up and did my meds, ate breakfast, and did my Tai Chi. It was sunny and warm out, so I swept the deck and did the last half of my Tai Chi outside while listening to the birds and the flowing water of the creek. Sounds pretty peaceful huh?

After that I spent an hour or so helping my aunt set up a blog for herself. She is incredibly knowledgeable about nutrition and the pros and cons of plant-based eating, and she has a passion for helping people learn to make informed choices about what they eat and how they prepare their food. I think her blog will be an inspiration to many, and I look forward to linking you to it once she has it ready for public viewing. (Check back here later for a link to her blog The Joyful Eater)

The rest of the day has just been relaxing with my aunt and uncle around the house and outside in the sun.

As I sit here writing this I am just thinking about how many of the last ten days have ended this way. Peaceful, harmonious, and secure in the knowledge that the day was as it was meant to be.

I am still surprised by the realization that there was nothing that I was supposed to do today that didn’t get done. Of course, if I look at things the way I would like to, there would never be anything that happened that was not meant to happen. But while I would like to have that attitude all the time, I usually tend to judge the world and put every occurrence into categories of “good” or “bad”. Anyway, you get what I’m saying. Today was good.

And it isn’t just today. The last ten days have pretty much all been that way. Of course, I have had several experiences that were unpleasant, frustrating, even one that was heartbreaking. But because of the loving support of my family and the choices I am making, the difficult moments pass, and things become centered…grounded. I feel as if I am growing, like a plant. That I am sinking roots into the earth and absorbing the bounty of nutrients it has been just waiting to provide for me. I feel as if I am stretching myself upwards, toward the sun, turning my face to the light and letting it penetrate me and warm me as it initiates a physical and spiritual reaction within my cells. I feel like I am stretching my arms out wide to embrace the world around me and to stabilize me so that I retain my balance while still allowing me to be supple and flexible so that if a strong wind starts to blow I bend, not break.

Ok, so that was a pretty dramatic metaphor. But it is true. That is the way I am feeling right now. I feel so much more connected with everything around me. But more importantly, I feel more connected with myself.

My illness, my addiction, my frustration with life and with myself: they had made me detach from who I am. I was sunk so deep in my despair and denial that I was unable to allow myself to see reality. I could not be me, I was a shadow, a wraith, a desperate soul immersed in self-destructive behavior because I saw myself as worthless and hopeless. I had no goals, no plans, no reason to exist. I am not writing this to hear people encourage me or give me praise (or any other response). I am writing this for myself, so that I remember where I was less than a month ago, and why I chose to make the drastic changes that led me to the path I’m on now.

This wellness quest is a product of the disaster I wrought on my life and those of my friends and family for the past 5 years. It is, I hope, the beginning of a path that leads to life, health, love, redemption, and atonement. I want to become the person I see inside me. I want to take advantage of the unlimited energy the universe provides and use my life to improve the lives of others.

But most of all, I want to be at peace with the world and with myself.

I think that the steps I have been taking the last 10 days are leading me in the  right direction, despite the fact that I can’t see exactly where they are leading me.

My favorite thing about this blog is that I never know where these posts will go until I get to the end 🙂

This turned out to be much different than I expected. I love that.

Goodnight all.

-Nathan

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One response to “10th Day Retrospective

  1. Nathan. Wow. This post squeezes my heart tight. My greatest desire is for you to not just recover your old self – but to emerge from this black, nightmarish coocoon you’ve been bound by into the truest self you were designed to be. “Letting go of the old” to “let real life come” is such a free place to be and I’m on the journey with you…. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and insights like this so I can hear what it’s like for you. It’s beautiful.
    Mom

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