Self judgment. Pressure. Illness. Pain. Frustration... how to break the cycle.
When I was 19 my (bad) LDL cholesterol was a 275 (thats high), I had night terrors and woke up screaming 5 out of 7 nights a week, and a single bite of anything fried or sugary would send me to the toilet for hours.
Here's the rub... I looked like the beacon of health! I was 5'5" and 102 lbs, skinny but I could eat anything I want, and I ate a lot of crap. I exercised 3 - 4 times a week at Crunch Fitness, and didn't drink (excessively).
So what was the problem? I'd had rough teen years, and after a violent divorce in early adolescence, my relationship with my father was non-existent. I didn't realize it at the time, but all of my pent up anger, stress and anxiety was a key factor to my bad health diagnosis. That along with a terrible diet and my doc was worried I may need to be put on heavy meds... statins for the blood pressure, Paxil for anxiety, Clonazepam for the night terrors, and a battery of tests for the gastric issues.
Being on all of those drugs (minus the statins - doc changed his mind) and going through lots of tests while working 9 - 5 and going to school at night from 6 - 10PM, nearly crushed me. I felt like a failure and I was lost and exhausted. I wanted to give up! It was just too much. The Paxil and Clonazepam made me feel catatonic when I was on it, then the next day I was so low I could not get out of bed and felt no joy from anything in life.
I was in a terrible downward spiral, and I was only 19.
Almost 2 decades later, with very clear hindsight and a lot more information, I wish I could go back in time and slap myself. I'd say "Lindsay, what the hell are you doing? Get your sh*t together girl. This is not so difficult! You just need to make better choices and put your self first. You are worth it... and you deserve it!".
I probably needed therapy, yoga, clean food, and some supplements appropriate for my age and stage of life...
The 4 small hinges I could have focused on are...
Self-care. I was in a bad mental space, and needed support in that area. Seeing a therapist and getting more sleep could've gone a long way!
Instead of running and doing kick-boxing exclusively, I could have added in some yoga to center me, ground me, and also help my cardio & circulatory health while boosting my energy and vitality.
Stop eating crap. I like veggies, so I could've eaten lean protein, organic carbs, fresh fruits and veggies and cut out the fried, fatty, sugary foods.
I probably needed 3 supplements -
- B12 for energy and mood boosting.
- Probiotics for gut health (90% of our serotonin receptors are in our gut!).
- Calcium, Magnesium & D (Blue Bonnet liquid) - for sleep, strong healthy bones, and to help balance my 19 year old hormones.
Those 4 hinges are not difficult to implement, nor are they cost-prohibitive. I just didn't know what to do... no one told me! So I spent a long time in that downward spiral... too long.
Teenage years are tough. We feel like we know it all, and yet are still very much wet behind the ears. If you know a teenager or young adult that could benefit from some small-hinge/big-change help, please do me a favor and share my story. I know I went through it for a reason, and I think that reason is to help others shorten their painful downward spiral, or avoid it entirely!
Wishing you love & yum,