Hello friends! My semester is finished and Christmas is just over a week away, can you believe it? I’ve never been much into the holiday season, but this year I’m changing gears and trying to focus on the simple good news of the gospel and what that actually means to me in my life. I’m thankful Jesus knows and loves me in the fullness of my humanity even when I’m not the most loveable, and that’s something I can rest in and even smile about during difficult moments! I’ve been struggling lately with keeping hope and focusing on the good when my default setting is to be a self-defeating negative nancy. I find comfort talking to friends knowing I don’t struggle alone, and that sometimes things are messy and that’s exactly where we need to be for us to be reminded that we need even more Jesus.
Update: I have some good news! Since making some lifestyle changes I have noticed a decrease in the number of times per month my migraine has me down and debilitated, but I’m still waking up and going to sleep with a 24/7 baseline level 3-6 pain on my good days and struggling to manage triggers and the random times the pain increases with no known cause on my bad days. Every day is a challenge to be fully present, letting go of what’s out of my control and doing the things I know are good for me within my control.
I haven’t made a whole lot of exciting plant-based meals lately, although this cauliflower quinoa pizza with cashew cheese was delicious. For the most part I’ve been eating fruits and vegetables in simple forms, but I’m trying a new elimination diet to see if I can find another culprit to my migraine mystery.
Speaking of fruits and vegetables, we are super fortunate to have the opportunity to borrow some land to start a small garden! It’ll take some time to get it up and going, but we started composting and I’m pretty excited to learn how to grow our own food.
Eating and exercising are two main variables within our control to influence our health, and these also happen to be two things that I’ve always had a hard time doing well. You might’ve read my food rant in a previous post, but I haven’t shared much about my relationship with exercise. I’ve always had a hard time with exercise because too much intensity makes my migraine spike, and I’ve used that as an excuse to not even try for most of my life until I started embracing the movement I could do. If you’re anything like me and exercise has been more of an enemy than anything else, I hope I can encourage you to explore activities that get you moving until you find what works for you! There are so many options out there that there really isn’t any excuse for staying sedentary. Getting outside is my favorite, especially with a friend.
Another thing I’ve been experimenting with is reducing the artificial chemicals in my life. I use vinegar for most cleaning instead of harsh household cleaners, and I’ve swapped out some beauty products like corn starch for dry shampoo and coconut oil for face/body lotion, mouthwash and shaving cream. I’ve been making my own toothpaste and deoderant from scratch for a few months, and this week I finally experimeted with making my own face and body wash. When I run out of my shampoo and conditioner I’m going to be experimenting with alternative options for those, along with making our own laundry detergent soon. I realize I can’t eliminate all chemicals completely, but every little bit is another step in the right direction in minimizing migraine triggers. Goodbye chemicals, helloo simplicity and dollas I’m saving.
That’s all I have for now folks. Don’t forget to eat your veggies, drink enough water, and remember that you are so deeply loved. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with loved ones!
With love, Katie