Miss Pelican's Perch

Looking at my World from a Different Place


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My Wellness Wheel

I am engaged in a wellness program of my own design with the goal of pulling together the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual realms to optimize my health and well-being.

To accomplish this, I have assembled individuals and resources in a partnership. My partners in this program include my Western medical doctor, a practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine who is also my herbalist and nutritionist, my yoga instructor, my pastor, my spiritual director who has a background in counseling, a work-related wellness coach who leads a group of us in weekly guided meditation, and several supportive friends and colleagues.

In addition to these individuals, I access the writings and videos of other experts in these areas, and, most importantly, I draw on the wisdom of the ancient Hebrew and Christian scriptures.

These partners in this program never interact with each other. They are separate entities that I dovetail into a working whole.

Picture, if you will, a wagon wheel with me at the center and these individuals and resources as spokes in that wheel. The rim of the wheel is the Divine Spirit which for me through my faith tradition is Jesus. Without this rim, the wheel will not roll. I am convinced that without his presence and guidance this program will not work and this partnership would fall apart.

It has not always been easy, and there have been some setbacks, but I will keep this wheel rolling as long as I possibly can.
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Mandala image created in Photoshop and Illustrator.  I believe the calligraphy means “wellness”.

 

ljgloyd 2017

 Partner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Yoga and Green Tea

I am establishing some new morning habits.

For a couple of years, my old habit was to wake-up to inane talk radio and listen to it for a whole hour while lounging in bed.  I would then drag myself out of bed and get dressed, then watch a half hour of depressing and oh-so-repetitive cable news while I ate breakfast. When I left for work, I was already tired and spent. It was no wonder that my right knee felt like a knife was slicing through it. It was as if all that negative energy was settling into the structure and mechanism of my knee.

At the end of March I got a wake up call that I needed to be doing more cardio exercise to improve my health. But how would I do that with a bum knee? Past experiences with western medical practitioners made me skeptical to ask them for help. I did not want to take painkillers or other drugs and physical therapy never proved helpful in previous situations.

So I got off my butt (literally) and engaged the services of a Traditional Chinese Medical practitioner. I just finished 17 weeks of acupuncture treatment, including herbs and nutritional counseling. The results: Four months ago I could not walk two city blocks or climb a flight of stairs without stabbing pain in my knee. Yesterday, I walked and actually jogged TWO miles with no knee pain whatsoever. (Okay, I just jogged on the flat parts of my very hilly town– but still!)

My new morning habit is to wake up at 4:45, make a cup of green tea, leave it to cool, take my walk, come home and do some yoga and meditation, and then re-hydrate by drinking the tea– all before 6 am. This leaves me time to clean up and dress, pack my lunch, eat my breakfast, maybe read a little, and still get to work 7:30.

Do you see what’s missing? NO media. No news about stupid, inept and embarrassing politicians, acts of violence, the destruction of our environment, social unrest, injustice, et cetera.     None.   Nada.   Zip.

Those issues are important and are not forgotten.  I just deal with them later in the day.   My goal is start my day in peace and harmony.

Now the trick is to keep these habits engaged until they become a fully complete life-style.  There’s no going back at this point.

I’d better get myself some more tea.

 

ljgloyd (c) 2017

Tea


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Back on the Circuit

The volume of pain in my knee, from which I’ve been suffering for quite a long time, has dissipated to barely a whisper, so this morning, I did something that I have not done in nearly two years: I went out for a pre-dawn power walk.

When I was at my best I could do three miles through my neighborhood in about 45 to 50 minutes — pretty good for someone my age.  Then life circumstances and a bum knee made that all but impossible.

Three months of acupuncture and an anti-inflammation diet has turned the pain around.

This morning I woke up at the hideous hour of ONE o’freaking clock in the morning and could not go back to sleep. I read for several hours, tried to go back to sleep and then finally gave up.  I decided it was high time I got back to exercising.  I was out the door at 5:15 in my ratty but still serviceable trainers. I decided to start small: one pass on the one-mile circuit I had mapped out two years ago.

I powered along in great spirits because I was not feeling any pain in my knee. Until — sigh — I was a few yards from my front door when that familiar stab of pain went screaming at full volume through my knee. I slowed my gait to that of a snail with a hangover.

It took 21 minutes to walk one mile.

I am not discouraged though. Right now my knee is not hurting,  and I intend to put some heat on it in few minutes to make sure it stays that way.  And I have an appointment with the acupuncturist tomorrow and he’ll fix things right up.

Small steps, sweetie, small steps.  You’ll get there.

 

ljg

 


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Reality Bites: Longer Strides

shoesIt has been a little less than three weeks since I realized that reality bites and if I did not do something to improve my wellness, I would be heading for a less-than-optimal life — if indeed a life at all.

So a status report:

Juicing continues, though I am not keen on kale and other leafy greens.  (Kale juice smells like lawn clippings….)

I find that I cannot exclusively stick to the vegan thing.  Not enough umami.   However, with the help of an egg or two during the week and a tiny bit of cheese, I have been doing better than expected with a lacto-ovo vegetarian diet.  (Okay, I did have some lox with a bagel a couple of mornings ago).

I think the biggest improvement is getting out every day for the last week to walk (with a bit of jogging).  I started short-range but am reaching further each time I go out.  This morning I did a bit over 2 miles in 35 minutes.  The challenge will be to continue this routine during the work week now that I have returned from Spring break.

Also, I have been struggling with people who have said things intended to deflate or minimize my endeavor.  So unfortunately I have needed to stop sharing with them my progress.  I need to do whatever is necessary to keep focused.

My commitment to a more healthful life-style has also brought about a re-commitment to other things in my life — a return to daily writing practice and a deepening of my personal spirituality — to name a couple.   The brain-fog is lifting and clarity of thinking is starting to return.

So I will continue this stride for a while.  I should probably start taking herbal supplements too but I’m not quite ready for that yet.

My thanks to all who have been providing encouraging words and practical advice.   🙂

Best,

LJG


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Reality Bites: The Naysayers and Crazymakers

baseballProgress always involves risk; you can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first.
       ― F.W. Dupee, American literary critic

The simile that life is like a baseball game has become a bit of a cliche’.  However, this may be because the comparison is an appropriate one.  For example, how many of us have risked stealing a base only to get tagged out by that baseman standing between us an our goal?  We try to make changes to the quality of our lives only to encounter naysayers and crazymakers who trip us up.  Sometimes we are inclined to stay on first base and never take that risk of making a change.

I have encounter this many times in my life.  When I decided to pursue a different spiritual path than my extended family, I met with resistance.  When I decided to go to college right after high school instead of going to work, I was told I was being lazy.  When I decided I wanted to be a writer, I was told that I was being weird.  And now as I am trying to do things to save my life, I have heard the terms “masochistic”, “not healthy” and a few others being pitched at me.   These barbs may seem harmless and all in good fun, and one may be inclined to think, “What’s the big deal?”  Let me tell you: the messages are subtle and all aimed to sabotage.

What possesses the people who know us and presumably care about us to say those things?  It might be that when we attempt to change, we shake up the status quo of THEIR lives and make them feel uncomfortable.  Maybe they just like being mean.  Who knows?

But what I do know is that when you are trying to make progress in your life, you will have to deal with these people.  To achieve your goal, you need to go around them, over them, under them or even through them.  But whatever you do, just don’t listen to them.

That is what I have tried to do with all my endeavors.  Not only did I begin walking a different spiritual path, I have stayed on it for nearly 30 years and am flourishing in it.  Not only did I go to school, I achieved a BA (magna cum laud) and an MA, all the time working full time.  A writer is someone who writes.  I do this nearly every day, and the fact that you are reading this right now is a sign that I have achieved that goal.  And now, I am embarking on the run to the next base — to improve my physical health -and I am not going to let anyone get in my way.

I don’t say all this to be proud and boastful.   I share this for two reasons:  First, as a form of accountability. If I put it out there, I have a better chance of achieving my goal.  I appreciate a fan section that urges me on and I thank you.  If you want to trip me up and tag me out, be prepared for me to slide right into you and knock you out of the way.

Secondly, — and you may have heard this before but it bears repeating –I am telling you this so in case you have a desire or a goal you want to achieve, you may need to stand up to the naysayers and crazymakers in your own lives, confront them with as much love, and kindness, and respect as you can muster and simply say:

“Stop it.” 

ljgloyd (c) 2015