Diving deep – Sacred Self-Care
Phase 1 – HOME PREP
This is the ninth year that I’ve cleansed for the month of January. It all started 2008 when I read Kathy Freston’s Quantum Wellness, I highly recommend reading that book. At the end of the book she suggests doing a 21 day cleanse that eliminates sugar, caffeine, gluten, alcohol, and all animal products.
At the time, I was a serious coffee drinker, drip at home in the morning and at least one, but probably two, nonfat lattes in the afternoon, not to mention an uber SERIOUS sugar addict. And while I considered myself a pretty healthy eater I also regularly ate gluten, a little meat, never really liked it that much, and I definitely drank my share of wine.
I don’t remember what month it was that I did that 21 day cleanse but I felt freaking AMAZING (!!!) afterwards. Not only did I drop a few pounds, I was 40 then so staying slim was easy as pie, but I was look’n good. My skin was flawless and I had something of a glow about me, if I do say so myself. I even felt like it had a spiritual clearing effect.
I shared that book with BFF, she read it and took it to a whole new level. A decade later she’s something of a nutritional/healing expert now studying herbology and launching her own amazing line of herbal products, Willow and Wildflower.
From then on we, along with a group of girlfriends, have been cleansing every January. We’ve done all kinds of cleanses, last year we did an amazing microbiome cleanse. I felt amazing, lost 17 lbs (definitely a lot harder to stay slim at 50),and quit sugar completely for ten months, I’m still an addict and have finally decided I must treat it like a drug addiction, one bite and it’s down the rabbit hole of goodies.
As I said I went ten months with ZERO sugar. Alas on my 50th birthday trip to Mexico I ate cake (include picture), it was delicious, but that was that, I binged all through the holiday season and put on 10 lbs in eight weeks. Just like that.
Thank the Goddess I knew I will be cleansing in January so I would get that under control again, hopefully for good (maybe I should attend AA for sugar addicts...?).
As I mentioned BFF is studying herbs and alternative healing, so this year she suggested we do a panchakarma cleanse. I had heard of it and though it was basically eating a mono diet for 21 days, which it is, and so much more. I decided to join her, even though it sounded kind of hard, because I haven’t felt good for a long time. I’m having horrible insomnia issues, due I think to menopause, plus way too many hot flashes. I’m on hormone therapy but it’s not doing the trick, even after regular testing and tweaking. The lack of sleep has hit a critical stage, my ability to think and speak articulately is definitely impaired as are my motor skills in general. I feel like a clumsy dumb dumb. That fucked up! I’m desperate to get this sorted out so I feel like my normal energetic, happy self again.
And so we began.... Traditionally one would go away to an Ayurveda clinic for the treatment, but let’s face it that’s not easy for busy working moms, so we decided on a home version with treatments. Since I live in LA where you can find an expert for practically anything (check out this article), I was sure there must be a place to go for the treatments. Sure enough my girlfriend, who's a Chinese medicine practitioner, recommended Surya Spa, that does panchakarma treatments near me.
I had my consultation with Marta an Ayurvedic doctor, she sent me home with a long list of self-care things I had to do every morning, tongue scraping, dry brushing, self-massage with oil, supplements, meditation, yoga, and pranayama. At first it sounded daunting but once I got the hang of it it’s pretty awesome, it feels really good to give yourself so much love and attention.
In addition to all that there’s a five day ‘home prep’ that includes daily doses of ghee culminating in a good dose of castor oil to really get the plumbing cleared out, wheee!
On the last day of the home prep I was feeling like crap, bad mood, starving because I don’t really like the food and I hate cooking and especially cleaning up after cooking. I basically had a big rant to my cleanse buddies and a fight with the Mr. because I was in such a foul mood. Poor guy, this hasn’t been easy for him either and he’s just an innocent bystander.
Anyways I did actually sleep pretty good and woke up looking forward to my treatment, which I’m looking forward to sharing with you.