Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Slowing Down

I have been on the Body Ecology Diet for almost three months now. Many people have asked, "So, is it working?" The answer to this question is tricky. The main goal in following this diet is to get my rheumatoid arthritis under control. It isn't yet under control. This doesn't discourage me though. Just as many medications for rheumatoid arthritis take several months before results happen, choosing an alternative path takes time too. I am learning though that slowing down to appreciate all that blossoms before a goal is achieved is becoming something that amazes me.

Over the years many things have led me in the direction of slowing down which is so different than mainstream society. Our decision to homeschool our children has helped me be patient with the learning styles and time tables that each of my children follow. Sometimes this is hard when other kids the same age are accomplishing certain skills that my children are not yet ready for. But with patience, I see that it wasn't yet their time to accomplish the same skills because they were busy accomplishing their own individual skills. This is the same for my body. Right now it may not be visually showing all the signs of healing, but with time I will look back and see that it couldn't show joint healing yet because it was busy healing non-visible organs.

My life has also slowed down thanks to rheumatoid arthritis. I do not say "thanks" sarcastically either. Due to my body needing more down time I have had to give up many things I enjoy but have also learned to appreciate many new things. I often find myself the observer in my life. I get to quietly sit back and listen to my children laugh together, I get to watch toddlers in our homeschool group in a way I would never have allowed myself before when life was more hurried. I get to observe relationships and I get time to ponder on my own life and feelings. Slowing down has been good. Two summers ago when my sister was visiting I shared with her how embarrassed I was during one of our outings because we had to move at a snail's pace due to swollen joints. She sincerely replied, "That isn't how I viewed the day. I actually thought it was nice because it slowed us all down." She explained how usually life is so hurried and that I had helped everyone to just slow down and enjoy what was going on around them. At the time it was hard to accept this and some days it still is, but I have learned that she is right. Slowing down is good.

Ridding my joints of pain and swelling is my main goal with this diet but I have many other goals. I feel that our organs all work together and if one is not functioning well, it will affect the others. I have been told over and over that my liver is weak, my adrenals need some work and my digestion is out of whack. It makes sense to me that if these are out of whack, then my joints will be too. So, while setting my goals for this diet, I also want to make sure that all of my hidden organs are functioning well not only to help my joints recover but also to prevent additional diseases from entering my body. This work is not as visible or as interesting to discuss, but it is happening. I see a huge difference in my digestion since starting this diet and with the swelling going down by the day in my knee, I have to believe my liver is improving. Of course like anything that happens in life, it is following the time table is that right for me as an individual and I am fine with that.