Saturday, 12 February 2011

Taking Charge and Feeling Revived

For the last year or so and in particular the past 6 months I have been physically, mentally and emotionally knackered. Exhausted, fatigued, pooped. Many are the reasons, not least that we had one small child 18 months ago and have recently added another. But I've been seriously so knackered I've considered all sorts - drugs, therapies, counselling... you name it. My pride has prevented me from going down any of these routes and in the end it has been the resolve to lose my baby-weight that has done the trick. Within a couple of weeks of eating more raw foods, cutting out bread and most wheat products and drastically reducing dairy and limiting treats significantly as well as drinking copious quantities of green tea and water, I already feel hugely energised and more mentally alert, positive and confident. I wouldn't have believed it possible.

Increasingly over the last few years I have started to believe in taking charge of my own health rather than tripping off to the doctor every time something seems amiss. This has not always been an easy road - far from it - but it seems to work for me on the whole. My biggest hurdle has been depression, not least over the last year or so whilst coping with the many and varied new responsibilities and demands of motherhood, coupled with another pregnancy (nevermind the hardships of living on a half-built canal boat in Winter with a toddler!). Whilst pregnant I was offered referral to NHS help, should I want it. I didn't. I know that I am the only one who can successfully manage my depression - drugs only numb and confuse and therapies make me dwell on the problem(s). My way of dealing with it has to be just to take the good days and the bad together, and get on with things as much as I can.

I do feel that as a society we must take more responsibility for ourselves, particularly in terms of our health. Empowerment is the key. Talk to any woman who has had a beautiful, natural home-birth and she will mention the enormous feeling of achievement and empowerment. The same goes for our general health. If we continue to defer our healthcare to those who hold no personal knowledge of us and whose expertise is heavily sponsored by the most dominant drug companies, how can we have confidence that we are finding the best solutions for ourselves? As a result we end up feeling belittled, insignificant, lost, and our healthcare issues go largely unresolved. We all have choices when it comes to caring for our own health, and I implore you to use them. Nobody can know you and your own unique health issues better than yourself, much like you know what kind of foods you like best, or which types of exercise you're most suited to. So go on, take charge and find the healthiest you you can!

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