The Ritual

Welcome to my sacred place.

Every morning, I do the same thing that works for me. I’ve created a daily habit to practice during the weekdays that fuel and energize me to where I can tackle the week. I believe if you find what works for you, you’re more likely to stay on track to a healthy state of being. The key is: What works for You?

My day begins with deep, slow breaths when I open my eyes and consciousness sinks in. (Or maybe it’s the bright morning sunlight penetrating my eyelids because it gets really bright, really early here… like day time at 6:00 am.) After stretching, I make my way downstairs to feed the cats and start the coffee if my husband hasn’t already done so. (Calling you out, hubs! 😀 ) My husband and I start the day together, talking about what’s on our heart and any goals we want to accomplish for the day. We function as a team, and this is a good time to check in with each other with our individual desires and combined goals. I begin the first part of the day writing. This is when that part of my brain is more active. At around 9:00/9:30, I start to get hungry.

What’s not cooking in the kitchen?

I’ve learned what seems to fuel me the best and most efficiently. You have to find what time and what fuel works for you. For me, waiting until my body tells me I’m hungry keeps me in tune to my needs. Rather than me forcing something on myself when I’m up at 6:00 am, I listen to when my body is ready to take in sustenance. I drink a smoothie every morning. For someone who is living with an IBD, it’s been found that fiber intake from fruits and vegetables can help prevent flare-ups… but when the disease is active, fiber almost feels like your enemy. I have read so many articles about avoiding hard-to-digest veggies, FODMAP, and low-residue diets. What seems to work for me is cutting back on vegetables with high amounts of riffinose, cutting back on eating raw vegetables, incorporating smoothies with protein powders while paying attention to high-quality protein and fat, and meditative exercises without the use of weights.

Don’t think about the laundry…

My exercises include walking once or twice a week and work-out routines incorporating calisthenics, pilates, and yoga twice or thrice a week. Adopting activity into daily tasks also helps, such as brisk, purposeful walks to anywhere I’m going and being vigorously active while doing house chores.

Nutritional info…

My morning smoothie is a potent blend of plant protein powders, including a meal replacement and pure pumpkin seed. Before reaching for that carton of milk, consider grabbing those pumpkin seeds! Pumpkin seed powder is being considered as the “new glass of milk.” Why? Because they contain a high amount of tryptophan – a vital amino acid that contributes to healthy brain development and mood function. It’s not simply about the protein one gets – it’s the amino acids. Pumpkin seeds also contain zinc, which assists the brain in converting tryptophan into serotonin.

More nutritional info…

Another special discovery with pumpkin seeds is that they have a high tryptophan to protein ratio, enabling it to compete better with other amino acids allowing for more uptake into the blood brain barrier. We are discovering that there is a direct connection between the stomach and the brain – mood disorders correlate with digestive problems. Scientists are exploring the frontier of the Microbiome and the Gut-Brain Axis.
Read: Antidepressive Activity of Pumpkin Seeds and
Science-based Health Benefits of Pumpkin Seeds and
other top foods containing Tryptophan.

And more more more nutritional info!

I also add a plant-based multi-vitamin powder, a plant-based digestive-aid mix, half a banana for sweetness, half an avocado for fat and super nutrients, 1 Tsp of apple-cider vinegar with “the mother,” and 2 Tsp aloe-vera juice. The great thing about smoothies for sensitive stomach issues is that the tough fiber is broken down but leaves the nutrients intact, making it easier for nutrient absorption while also feeding your microbiome.

Lean, green smoothie drinkin’ machine.

Maybe a smoothie isn’t for you. Not everyone likes that. My husband likes to lovingly tease me, saying he likes to chew his food and that my breakfast is “a drink” and “not food.” There are options-a-plenty for your “chompers” out there. I’ll be writing about some quick and convenient breakfast alternatives for the chewing and smacking in the near future. 😉

This ninja has stealth!

Find what works for you and make it your ritual. The thing about your rituals is that they are sacred to you. Setting aside time to do something for yourself should be sacred. Your body is a temple that houses the love and light that is You. And if you hold reverence and have respect for what is True, then you love and accept Yourself as You Are. And just as the sculpture molds the clay into a beautiful form, we are shaped by life. We don’t always know how the work of art will transform or understand the purpose of the artist. But when we pause to appreciate what is happening, we can see the beauty that is – the beauty that is life.

Enjoy your art and may you live well!

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