GAPS Diet Days 10-12: Letting Go of Beliefs that No Longer Serve Me

I realized this week that I have been holding on this concept of always wanting more.  I have this internal fire that pushes me to strive for something bigger – a larger community, greater financial stability, more alignment between my passions and my career, higher self awareness.  All of this drive and forward thinking leaves little time for me to just appreciate the here and now. Finding Balance and ZenA big part of my journey of healing with the GAPS Diet is to find balance between honoring where I’ve come from and pushing forward to where I think I’m going.  I want to spend more time in a conscious space of being grateful for and present with today.  This is going to require some work.

A recent online quiz confirmed (to no one's  surprise) that I have always been on the Type A end of the spectrum.  My whole life I have been driven to always give 110%, and I feel accomplished when I see positive results.  I strive to be the best in my field, to constantly learn and grow and challenge myself to do more.  I feel like I should always be doing more, more, more.  I fear being stagnant and not living up to my potential. But all this pushing is exhausting.  I often take on too much and get frustrated with myself when I can’t do it all.  I put pressure on myself to be perfect, and perfection is a dangerous word because it isn’t something I have the power to control.  Time to relax and putting romance first are very rarely part of my MO.

It’s no wonder my gut is a mess.  Whenever I get stressed out, I can feel my abdomen tighten and my insides start to gurgle and churn.  My body and brain are on overdrive.  I work myself so much that I end up exhausted to the point of having a break down.  I have been known to push so hard for months that I end up crashing in a fit of tears and a need to hibernate for a few days.  There is nothing sustainable about this approach.  My digestion and mental health suffer as a result.

My mom has always said, many times to my annoyance, that I need to find balance in my life.  I am a Gemini after all.  I must admit I agree.  Darn that mom for always being right!

The first step in finding this balance for me is taking time to honor where I’ve come from.  Not just forgiving myself for my mistakes (I’ve made plenty!), but moving into a space of loving and giving thanks for every experience that has brought me to this present moment.  All of the lessons I have learned the hard way have taught me how to be a better person.  I believe that everything in my life is part of the universe’s greater plan – necessary stepping-stones to help prepare me to fulfill my destiny.

The next step is to take conscious action in letting go of the things from my past that no longer serve me.  It’s one thing to have an difficult experience, really feel and process it, learn from it, add it to your toolkit, and then move forward with a better understanding of yourself.  It’s quite another to hold on to anger, jealously and regret.  These emotions are just as (if not even more so) toxic as unhealthy foods.

As I’ve been going through the waves of detox symptoms this past week, I’ve been trying to focus inward and visualize the clearing out that is happening in my body.  I keep coming back to this image of the inside walls of my perforated intestines caked with this sticky black tar.  In this tar are all the layers of junk that has been building up inside me for the past many years.  There’s the physical sediment from unhealthy foods I’ve eaten – the potato chips and the lemon drop martinis.  There are the emotional toxins from stressful life events – the relationships gone bad, deaths in the family, and tight work deadlines.  And then there are the spiritual scars that leave divots and cracks – the subconscious pressure to be perfect, the resistance, and the negative thoughts.  All of these have been weighing me down and wreaking havoc on my digestive system.

I fully expect that old emotions from past stresses will surface over the course of this program. It’s time to just let it all go.

There is so much more to this journey than simply minimizing food insensitivities and improving my digestion.  This is a deep cleanse.  It’s an opportunity to welcome more balance in my life.

The bone broth certainly helps.  A healthy foundation of nutrient dense foods gives me the energy and support I need to tackle my demons.  When I take care of myself, I am better able to be my best self and share my gifts with the world.  Even in the midst of waves of detox symptoms, I am becoming more grounded – my tree roots are connecting deeper with my core energy and strength.

Maybe it was the last full moon before the Chinese New Year in all of her purifying glory, but the past couple of days have brought some manic moments of joy.

Read below for a sampling of my wildly blissful thoughts.

So what’s the next step? Starting tomorrow, I am committing myself to beginning every day with a probiotic and an entry in my gratitude journal.  I want to take time to reflect on the present moment and all the abundance in my life.  I am also committing to meditating for 10-15 minutes every night before bed.  I am hopeful that this practice will help support my subconscious in letting go of beliefs that no longer serve me.  I will start by meditating on this concept of always wanting more.

Bring on the next level of this deep cleanse!

Day 10 Foods

Same as yesterday, with addition of beef stew made with grass-fed beef, onions, carrots, green cabbage and bone broth, slow cooked in a crock pot. Added yogurt back in, which made my breasts slightly swollen.

Day 10 Happy Thoughts

I feel strong and vibrant.  My body feels solid.  I am building muscles playing sports, and my core is strong.  I feel rooted like a tree.  Joyful, playful, with a sense of humor. Engaged and driven.  Productive.

Today I feel crazy. Crazy in a good way. Crazy beautiful. Crazy passionate. Crazy healthy. Crazy inspired. I am a crazy driven warrior of change who needs to take care of my brain and gut.

Moving from feeling unnerved to feeling joyous.  Change pushes my boundaries of what I thought was possible and I love it.  So long as I am taking care of myself and my needs.  Then it becomes a grand adventure of searching beyond the horizon instead of overwhelming.  I want to remember this feeling. I am worried that I will start feeling good again and think that I can sleep less, eat worse, etc.  And then I slip down the slope once more.  It’s a fine line.

I love eating yummy food (nut butter pancakes and stew!) and feeling happy. Siiiiiigggggh. I don’t think I realized (well, maybe I did), just how messed up I’ve been. I feel so alive again.

Day 10 Symptoms

  • Slept well last night. Deep and healing sleep.
  • Sweat a lot playing soccer last night (I don’t usually sweat)
  • Feeling motivated this morning when I woke up
  • Hot flashes from 9-11 a.m.
  • Sleepy and itchy scalp beginning at 2:30 p.m.
  • Exhaustion, fatigue and hot flashes beginning at 7 p.m. after being in a strongly chlorinated pool
  • Hot flashes and right collar bone nerve pain beginning at 10 p.m.

Day 11 Foods

Same as previous

Day 11 Happy Thoughts

Today was a breakthrough.  I feel absolutely fabulous!  Sure, there are the hours in between of detox symptoms, but today was a solid reminder that this path is my calling.  Hot damn how easily doors open up when you are in alignment with the universe!  My good friend from college connected me with this awesome network of inspiring women in San Diego.  And I spent the afternoon interviewing a group of community leaders/advocates in Linda Vista about their passion for improving their communities.  Not only did I gain invaluable insight into how to motivate and create sustainable change on a local level, but they shared a deep awareness of the keys to better health.  It comes from the inside.  And from relationships.  Genius!  These kinds of conversations literally make my heart feel like it’s going to burst with joy.  Not to mention that tonight at yoga I did my first sustained handstand, and my balance and flexibility are the best they’ve ever been.

I’m bursting with energy and excitement.  I also have a really strong urge to kiss everyone I meet on the cheek and just smile and tell them how beautiful of a human being they are.  This positive energy is contagious.  I spent the evening sending emails to people who inspire me and dancing around in my condo booty shaking to Beyonce.  Yep, it was just one of those nights.

Next time I think I can cheat on my diet, I need to remember this feeling. Because it’s awesome.  And absolutely NO food is worth giving this up, not even for a day.

Day 11 Symptoms

  • Heightened body temperature during heavy sleep
  • Awoke feeling heavy, lethargic, difficulty getting out of bed
  • Feeling of dirty feet while sleeping
  • Dry skin and throat – dehydrated
  • Mild headache
  • Bright, clear eyes
  • Feeling beautiful from the inside out
  • Hot flashes from 9:30-11:30 a.m.
  • Headache at 11:45 a.m.
  • Soft, silky hair
  • Mouth sores
  • Pain in cheek bones
  • Improved productivity and focus
  • Indigestion after eating sauerkraut @ 12:15 p.m.
  • Lower back pain
  • Oily skin and itchy scalp beginning at 12:30 p.m.
  • Sleepiness at 1 p.m.
  • Feeling energized and positive from 5-11 p.m.

Day 12 Foods

Same as previous, with addition of cold pressed, organic olive oil drizzled on butternut squash soup made with organic, store-bought vegetable broth

Day 12 Happy Thoughts

Surrender.  Life is beautiful, and I have everything I need to be happy and healthy.  Oh, and one-month old babies are awesome!

Day 12 Symptoms

  • Woke up feeling groggy and heavy, but subsided quickly
  • Productive and focused throughout the morning
  • Feelings of excitement
  • Increased sex drive
  • Lack of focus in the mid-afternoon
  • Body odor
  • Sleepiness and fatigue from 3-5 p.m.
  • Relaxed and easy-going throughout the evening
  • Itchy, flaky scalp and stomach bloating beginning at 9:30 p.m.