Tag Archives: alternatives

Expectations of Happiness

How does one define happiness, and why is our own definition so illusive?

It’s a weird rhetorical question.

I have no solid answer myself, as I can find my happiness sitting alone in a room, meditating, during a quiet massage session, or sitting in my hammock.

On the same token there are times that I feel like I should be happy when I’m not.

Today is the 4th of July. Former president Trump and 2020 ruined what shred was left of my patriotism. I should be happy to celebrate this holiday, but I have been grumpy all day long. At the same time I am fighting a desired to run away.

I could apply for a management position at what is now my part-time second job, they are hiring for many positions with an impending new building opening. It would be a massive promotion and I’m certain they want me to do so. It could be equivalent to income I make from the clinic, maybe a hair more, and the work would likely be much easier on me physically. However, the stress levels would be high, I’d probably be on-call a lot, and likely end up working as much, if not more, than I do now. It’s not my own business, and it’s not the intentional community I desired.

The skills might help with my dream community, but at this point I have a strong awareness that I can learn anything I need in a very short span of time, so the learning lesson is much less of a draw these days. Beyond that, 2020 again ruined my desire to work with elderly in any fashion, and I am already considering quitting the part-time work because of it. I would have much less headache and Saturday afternoons off, something that seems really appealing with our new mess related to dialysis.

The clinic still has me occupied 5 to 6 days a week and I feel like I work with platonic family. It is a good feeling and I know my work there is genuinely helping many people. Literally the only real drawback is that it is hard on my body and requires many hours of self care. Also because of that, I know my income will always be limited and I have likely already reached my maximum.

If I stay where I am and doing what I am doing then life will be fairly unchanged for years to come. It’s not really a horrible thing, but I am simply just tired of bearing the weight of a family alone. I have done it for almost 16 years and on very few occasions Nathan or I had to grovel to our parents for assistance. Most of them were right after we moved to Kansas city and turned around to deal with his hospital stay. It was a very rough period and the only period that I had to beg for parental assistance more than once. Out of 16 years I’ve asked my mom for money 4 times, and Nathan’s mom about the same (maybe a couple more times). The rest of the 16 years has fallen squarely on our shoulders, and only the last 10 have been my sole responsibility. When I state it that way, it doesn’t seem like that much, but my experience of it is just wearing me out.

I’ve been contemplating grad school, but know I can’t get a loan. So to that end I’m contemplating taking the MCAT and Mensa tests. It’s my hope to get scholarship if I do well enough, but I’ve set no direct commitment yet, only inquiries on tests and chiropractic college.

I’m also contemplating simply looking into a loan to start a massage school of actual merit. THAT I already have enough knowledge and commitment for. God knows KC needs a decent massage school, or I’d be able to find a quality trade partner easier. It would be a ton of legwork and writing on the front end, skimping by financially until a student body could be acquired and actual classes could begin. There would be accreditation processes and board certification processes, course management and all of the regular business and accounting issues to deal with, all out of whatever loan I managed to procure. It would be fast paced and grueling for several months to get set-up and functional, and everything would ride on loans until students began enrollment. Not impossible- my massage school had just done that when I enrolled 14 years ago and they are still functional.

This week the chiropractor encouraged me to shift my business to a full LLC, and I wondered if that was my cue to lean that direction. I simply don’t know.

Part of me is perfectly fine with settling and riding the calm waters of maintaining what I’ve already created. Especially if I quit the part-time job and get my Saturdays back for relaxation and fun.

Part of me knows this is not really my Atira, and is downtrodden over the prospects that I may never see my actual dream manifest. That’s the part of me that wants to run away.

I simply don’t know, and my tired brain just wants the elusive happiness all the time. It’s there when I have the time and space to find it, but I have a hell of a time keeping it in me.

For now I leave you with my rhetorical question and ramblings.

May you find your happiness, know your expectations, and find a way to maintain it regardless. May you instill in your children the ability to maintain their happiness while also lifting our world up. May we all enjoy our lives mostly and find ease in navigating the paths of life. May you be comfortable with your life regardless of where the roads lead you. May you see that everything happens for a reason, sometimes to just give you clarity on what you don’t want. Above all may you know that the divine loves and supports you in all that you do.

Om Shanti

3 things.

I started 2 new art projects.

One is another small ink drawing for fun, I’ll probably finish on Saturday… Maybe the one after, we’ll see. It is of a Hamsa.

The other is a drawing of a furry friend of a really good and kind person that really needed a major pick-me-up. She just happens to be a friend and coworker and the person treating my husband weekly. Her dog is named Herky, short for Hercules, he was a gentle giant of yellow lab. She deserves a good image so I’m doing my best to be meticulous. I also know for certain that she will appreciate my work and treasure it, where past gifts to family were not (going back years).

Progress pics:

Thirdly, I felt the need to make a short-ish statement. I do not hate individuals working in medicine as a generalization. Most of them are doing their best with the information and tools they were trained on. They are all trained on specific rules and procedures in a specific system. I have several clients that are really good people doing their best in an effed up system, and are willing to admit the failings of their profession (s).

What I do hate is the system. I do hate the ones that half ass their jobs and don’t do things they know should be done. I do hate the ones that assume that everything they were trained on was all they ever needed to know, and write off anything else as being helpful. I hate the ones that learn the basics, but if the basics fail they have no idea what else to do. Those are the ones that do a great disservice to everyone they work with. Those are the people that could have killed me. I know without a shadow of a doubt that if I had done what those “medical professionals” had said was good enough, then I would already be dead.

Up until 7 years ago I danced with death more than I didn’t. Everything they had said had failed many times over and I had regularly contemplated suicide, and tried a half dozen times unsuccessfully. Their antidepressants did nothing to help. Metformin didn’t help. I was in serious pain mentally and physically and 300 pounds.

I needed a solution or I was going to die very young.

I did research on alternatives based on loose suggestions and friend’s, even stranger’s journies. I figured out, and started fixing, my own thyroid disease and then those doctors told me I was being dangerous. That iodine (an essential nutrient) was too risky, that I should just take a generic dose of synthroid and behave. It failed and I almost killed myself again, driving 90mph towards an overpass pylon, with my 3 month old child in the carseat behind me. Angels saved me and Ian that day.

I vowed to fix it, so my child never had to go through that.

And I’m getting there, not only an I healing my thyroid, I’m healing the root cause too. It’s slow, but sure as I’m sitting here writing this post, I am certain I am. Even without the precious IV treatments that would speed it up. I now have evidence to show for it.

I’m much smaller, only slightly lighter though, still holding at a little over 200, but much more muscle and much less fat. My skin stays clear, my mild dietary fails hurt less. My skin is shrinking slowly. And most of all, my dances with death are now very few and very far in between. My temper is still there but much less destructive, and I’m learning to control myself especially including my strength. I can’t even begin to convey how much more stable my brain function is and how much less dark it is than it used to be. I’m a better person in many ways. It is my proof.

Now I’m doing my best to teach my husband and children, to help them through their lives. Nathan already knew a lot of what I was doing and why, but now that he has increased reasons to try, he’s making an even more concerted effort to keep up with my standards for myself.

All of this has made me grateful that me and Ian almost died. I made a solmn vow and I intend to keep it.

I’m grateful that doctors failed me because I’ve proven that you can heal yourself and fix yourself with enough research, effort, and loving support. I’m grateful that I had just enough inspired moments to keep me alive and keep me trying again and again. I’m grateful that the divine has guided me though a very difficult and complex set of bodily functions to unravel my health concerns and point me towards healing. I’m grateful that even though I’m unable to accomplish the IV treatments, that I’m smart enough to figure out the next best things. I’m grateful that I’ve strengthened my willpower to be able to stick to things enough to help heal my body. I’m grateful for all of it, because it shows everyone aware of me, that there is always an alternative and there is always a solution- if you stay open to it.

May you see the scary and upsetting moments in your life in the best light. May you know your worth and that your efforts really have mattered. May you find your healing. May you know that the divine loves and supports you in all that you do.

Om Shanti

Back Home.

I’m home and mostly caught up on sleep.

Heading out I quietly hid tears. The anti-LGBTQ brother was driving me to the airport. I couldn’t let him see my tears because I couldn’t talk about it. They were partly because I didn’t really want to go home yet, I wanted another week to myself. But too I was still sore for the revelation that I’m still not good enough for my family, that me being me is not within the range of acceptable. I really deserve to be accepted for who I am, even when some stupid institution says otherwise. God sees value in every single thing in this world, or it would not exist. God sees value in everything or it would not have been created to begin with. I am of God and I deserve to be acknowledged as such, even with being bisexual. I deserve to be loved as I am wholly and completely, because every cell, every molecule, every atom in my being is there because of God. I didn’t say any of it to my brother, I just thanked him for the visit and the ride to the airport, wished him a wonderful retirement, gave him a last hug and left.

Anyway, the return flight was as beautiful as the first, and I again took way too many pictures, even trying to catch the night ground. It’s moments like that I know I’m not really a photographer. Nathan would have known how to compensate for the speed and darkness to get great night pictures.

Also, there was a moment of note with person that sat next to me for half of the return flight. He was a quiet man, but I could feel him more than most passengers. It wasn’t uncomfortable like when I pick up on clients’ aches, but it was a bit distracting. I noted he was working on a crossword and there were words which caused me to begin to wonder. They were a little too coincidental, but I didn’t want to get caught staring trying to figure out if they were correct answers to the cues. So, I distracted myself with music and mantras. I was somewhat relived that he wasn’t right next to me for the 2nd half as I figured either I’d say something stupid or embarrass myself loosing to the distraction.

Instead, the second half, I sat by the Grandma and toddler of a family traveling together. The little girl reminded me of Katherine and made me glad I was almost home. I shared “The Forest of Piano” with the little girl hoping it might help her fall asleep, like it does my kids. She was less than impressed and stayed fidgety, ultimately cuddling in grandma’s lap to fall asleep.

So I started watching “The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind” I ended up finishing it yesterday afternoon while playing catch-up on rest. It’s a really good film, and even though it has some intense drama, it is ultimately a very inspiring film about a real life situation. It’s not the only movie I’ve seen this year, but it is the only live action, based on real events, type movie, I’ve seen in a long time. I really enjoyed it.

Anyway, now that I’m home, I’m mentally processing things I said while visiting family. I always wish I could say things better or do just the right thing, but I always feel like I fall short. I often second guess everything I say, and simply feel like I’m not good enough. Bonus add that whole ‘believing that sexuality differences are wrong’ and knowing I simply don’t fit, didn’t help.

I’ve done my best to push that one out of my mind and then I circle back to my other brother telling me he has thyroid cancer and they’re going to take his thyroid out.

I’m pissed at the system for failling me and my family, all of us. I’m pissed at the fact that I was the only one trying to help him; doctors/hospitals do bare minimum to treat symptoms, but every step along my journey I would tell him what I was doing. That is until he got mad at me and quit talking to me.  I’ve done my forgiving for the not taking phase, but now I’m frustrated that he’s taken a hit as a result. I have always been the little sis, and so he rarely actually acts on anything I say, but at least I was trying. I genuinely wanted my brother to know there was another option, another way, and help him the way I’ve helped myself. Nathan says it’s all okay, it’s his journey, but it makes me sad. Then I worry that I’m far too close to that diagnosis myself, uncomfortably so. I am beginning to believe that some of my shoulder pain may be my body trying to tell me my thyroid is doing worse. I so very hope not. I have some more things to try before I give up and let a doctor do their idea of diagnosis, I just don’t have any faith that they’ll do anything other than the most common possibilities, and throw in the towel if/when it doesn’t show what was expected. I’ve had far too many of those moments. But even if they really figure out the root cause, then what? Slice and dice with a life sentence of high dose medication, or kiss your butt goodbye. Those aren’t exactly appealing options, especially when I’ve done my damnedest to reach for better, health and healing.

Anyway, what was supposed to be three days of relaxation has turned into a renewed focus to find that, at least now that I’m back home. I deserve to be able to relax and heal. My giant priority list has been put on hold until I can heal enough to feel like I’m safely out of the scare zone. I need me. My family needs me. I need to find and maintain my inner light and help myself enough be able to keep being there for others.

Today I spent a long time reaching for that while I simmered a pot of Saag for 3 hours. I meditated on healing myself feeling the positive flow of electrons in my body. I felt the energy and moved it all around from head to toe. It felt really good and very helpful. I hope it can help me permanently reach for better. I deserve to heal fully. I am determined to heal myself.

May you have mostly good moments. May you trust your role and any words you use to accurately convey your thoughts. May you know you are fully and completely accepted as you are and that your efforts matter. May you feel better about yourself and your health and know that you are healing. May you look back and see how far you’ve come and see the positive results of all your efforts. May you know that God loves and supports you in all that you do.

Om Shanti