So, I had some pretty lofty goals at the start of this week.
Like so many people in the Western yoga world, I feel this draw towards raw food. And maybe not for the most balanced or grounded reasons. I think it stems from some desire to be totally pure and light.
It turns out, eating all raw does not make me feel pure, light and radiant. Not at all.
Yesterday afternoon I started feeling really sick. Every few minutes I was hit by this wave of reflux that sent me running to the bathroom in fear that everything I had eaten that day would come gushing out of my mouth (I know, gross).
All week my tummy has been a little mushy. I’ve had a few headaches, been a bit spacy and unsettled. I’ve been at least 95% raw since Sunday. Honestly, if I remember correctly, last time I was 100% raw I felt like this too. I always had a little belly bloating too despite soaking/sprouting the nuts and seeds that I ate. I never felt satisfied/fulfilled being raw. My skin barely changed and my weight only dropped slightly (and then, I think it was simply because I didn’t drink for that month). Not much has changed this time around either. At least not in the positive sense. Perhaps I’m just “detoxing” but really, I didn’t have much “tox” there to begin with, considering my very clean diet and substance-free lifestyle.
Contrary to what so many raw foodist claim, I do not feel like a radiant rainbow of love right now, to put it nicely.
My nervous system can’t seem to handle it, let alone my digestion.
I can honestly see that I have very little to be stressed about – I’m thrilled to be getting married, no doubts there. I’m very organized and I have a great support team. I’m doing yoga and meditation and japa everyday. I’m getting plenty of sleep and enjoying nice long walks and hot baths and appropriate essential oils. All good stuff. I’m even consciously stopping myself throughout the day to simply breathe and be still.
But something is not right. I’ve had 4 little panic attacks/breakdowns in the past 2 days. They sneak up from out of nowhere and completely thrash me. When I check in with my intuition, the culprit is really my diet/worrying about my diet/body. Still…ugh…
So….it’s time to recalibrate. I’ve been fasting on water and ginger tea since 4pm yesterday and plan to continue until after noon today, since it is Radhastami and fasting is customary. I’m letting my body empty out and then I’m starting over.
This morning I practiced some gentle asana, sun salutations and uddiyana kriya to get a little prana moving. I practiced breath of fire and alternate nostril breathing to balance my energy and stimulate my agni. Then I did a Kundalini kriya for healthy digestion and elimination followed by a long rest in viparita karani.
My tummy is beginning to feel a bit better. I hope fasting for a few more hours will help clear the slate a bit.
Despite some of my rigid desires to “stick to the plan”, today I’m adjusting my goals and adapting to my body’s needs.
I will stick with the herbal supplements and a green smoothie or juice here and there, but I think some nice gluten-free grains and cooked vegetables will make me a much happier and calmer girl, and that’s more important than doing some diet “perfectly”. I might even have some yogurt. Despite the fact that I eat dairy extremely sparingly, when I check in with my intuition, much to my surprise, “yogurt” keeps flashing. Hmmmn…
A healthy yoga practice requires adaptability, just like life, which is all the more reason for me to practice with more dedication and joy. Rigidity causes pain. And I don’t want any more of that right now!
Same thing with my blog – I’ve been putting undue pressure on myself to write more posts, or finish the 8 limbs series, when I really don’t have it in me at this time. I have to remember that my blog is a labor of love and that no one is paying me to do it, nor do I have an editor pressuring me with timelines or assignments. If it starts to feel like a push, I need to remember my purpose for writing in the first place and return to that space of love, service and fun. So perhaps my blog posts will be more confessional and less educational right now, or maybe less frequent, or simply a few photos. And I have to remember that this is OK too.
So happy Saturday! Here’s to letting go of preconceived notions or expectations and instead trying to follow intuition and the things that will bring more peace, balance and fulfillment.
Thanks for reading.