I’ve spent the past few days sort of passively reflecting on this experience, gathering the insights I’ve gained and preparing to set my intentions as I re-enter the world of variable consumption. I remember coming off of my last cleanse and feeling like I had really been through an Odyssey. Like Homer’s hero, I had battled my modern mind’s equivalent of the Cyclops and the Sirens. I swear to you, my ten days felt just like the ten years Odysseus traveled.
But this time . . . not so much. So now, the question becomes not ‘What will I do with all this newfound knowledge?’, but instead ‘Why didn’t I have an earth-shaking voyage?’ Here are my three theories:
Animal Poison – I wasn’t a veg*n the last time I did this, and I was carrying a load (a lifetime!) of contamination. Really, I could spend the rest of the night writing about the toxins hidden in meat and dairy, both the ‘man-made’ (antibiotics, etc) and the ‘natural’ (cholesterol, etc), and the myriad health risks that come with consuming them. I suppose that now is not the place. Suffice to say: 1) read The China Study, and 2) I suspect I simply had less to let go of.
Chemical Poison – For a long time I ate organic ‘when I could afford it’ . . . which wasn’t very often. After my last cleanse I tried to eat as organic as possible, without worry towards the cost. Over the course of the year I’ve evolved my habits and loosened my [perceived] purse strings (it’s really, really not much more expensive), and incorporated more organic standards. Then during my raw month, and ever since, I’ve eaten almost exclusively organic. And now a year later, I think I just have less chemicals to expel. Organic matters!
Emotional Poison – Cleansing is more than just a physical healing; it’s also a deeply personal experience. Your body is discharging its built-up waste, while simultaneously, your mind is surrendering its pent-up negativity. Cleansing repairs the whole package. And last time I cleansed, I was immersed in one of my toughest times. A quarter-life crisis, if you will. Since then I’ve put in a lot of work, a lot of intentional growth. And though I’m nowhere near the end, my direction is much more clear. Perhaps regaining my strength and stability made for a more mellow journey.
Do I sound like I’m saying this was easy breezy? Because I certainly don’t mean to imply that it was. I’ve had my rough spots for sure, my splitting headaches and fuzzy teeth and tearful outbursts. But compared to the last go-around? Well there’s just no comparison, really. Still, it’s a valuable experience. There’s always something to learn.
Last time my body had been through hell and was screaming out for change. So I set six ambitious intentions for myself: 1) Drastically cut down salt. 2) Eat organic as often as possible. 3) Eat less meat (ha!) 4) Eat less dairy (!) 5) Sugar for special occasions only. 6) Reduce coffee and alcohol intake.
And this time around, instead of screaming, I feel like my body is singing. Singing ‘thank you’ for those life choices I made. The past year has brought so much positive change, and what I have learned from this cleanse is that I’m on the right path.
So my new intention is simply this:
Keep on being good to myself. It’s working.
Lot’s of love to everyone out there, especially my fellow cleansers. We did it!