It’s the start of a New Year and I’m oh so tempted to start work today, especially as I slacked off in December. But I’ll refrain from too much work until January 3rd, when I’ll start in earnest.
2022 was a difficult year for me, as I struggled to make progress on certain projects. I also struggled with back pain. I still do. I need minutes to realign (or something) my back every time I get out of bed. Who knows what that is. I mean, I do have a herniated disc, but it used to feel better, not worse, after lying in bed. This thing I’m going through now is something new, after the physical therapy (chiropractic and acupuncture—new experiences for me in 2022).
I also did a “reset” food regimen in 2022, with superfoods and tisanes + decoctions meant to jump-start healing in my body—and lumbar region—in new ways and to boost my immune system. I took some kind of clay water in the mornings, then after a while I ate some ground seeds with a bit of yogurt, and then I boiled (minimally) some red rice that I’d kept in water for four days (rotating the jars and refreshing the water every evening). I also drank throughout the day a tisane made with seven plants—and then, after 3 weeks, a decoction (of roots, mainly)—tailored to fix whatever doesn’t work all that great in my body. And in the evening I ate ground seeds again. Everything at the advice of an MD.
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I have to say that this food regimen did show some results. In the past, I used to get hungry and in need of food quite often, every 3 hours (sometimes two and a half). After this detox (which lasted almost 6 weeks: I got really tired of chewing that rice for ages and then waiting two more hours before I could eat anything else), I find that I can eat something at home, go out for 4 or 4 and a half hours, and still be in decent shape, that is not desperate for food.
Apparently I had cell hunger (still do, to an extent) and was heading toward diabetes. Something I kind of knew, even though my blood sugar is only 95. It wasn’t hyperphagia (constant eating without relieving the hunger), because I did feel sated every time I ate a rather average amount a food (and sometimes I ate only very small snacks every two hours), but it did keep me on my toes, signaling that something was wrong. After all, there are people who can go through a whole day at work without food. I’m not endorsing that either (even as I do like the idea of intermittent fasting), but I see it works for some people.
Of course, when I used to walk enough, and also exercise some in other ways, I didn’t have this cell hunger. But now that I’ve become more sedentary, I’m suffering the consequences.
I was chatting on WhatsApp with a very dear friend from Toronto at 2 a.m. this morning and she said that people have become more isolated after the pandemic. Meaning, people haven’t rebound from 2020 and 2021, and instead bought more TVs and entertainment systems for their homes. It may be true for Toronto, but people here in Bucharest have gone wild this year: always going away, always outdoors, and borrowing money to go on trips during the summer and early fall. I could certainly notice a change from 2021, which itself was quite hectic in its second half here in Bucharest.
I, too, managed to leave my laptop more often and go for more works, more events, and more meetings with friends. Still, not enough meeting with friends. So here comes Resolution no. 1: meet with my friends more often and find new buddies.
I was just reading in a book these days an account of how friends and lovers shaped the life of that writer. People are vastly more important in anyone’s self-growth than we often stop to ponder. We grow by “traversing” other people—going through them, through their choices and readings and feelings and emotions.
Resolution no. 2: Spend more time communicating with my close family and various other family members.
I also want to stick to eating less sugar, which I managed to do for most of this fall. Some chocolate now and then should be okay 🙂 but I don’t want to eat many other processed sweets. Some fruit should also be allowed, sugars in foods like soy milk or oatmeal also okay, even some honey now and then, but not much more than that. Unfortunately, this December I fell off the wagon, as I always do during the holiday season, and gained 3 pounds—something my fragile back can’t handle. I also don’t want to undo all that good work I did with the detox.
So Resolution no. 3: Close to no sugar from processed sweets, as much as I do like a good cheesecake. Maybe have that cheesecake once a month, when I’m meeting with my best friend from here (IF we manage to meet every month—we didn’t this year, as much as we tried).
Resolution no. 4: Eat more salads. I’m awful when it comes to salads. I love to bake savory foods with veggies and spices, but I usually don’t take the time to make easy salads. That definitely needs to change! Here’s one salad I really like: Sweet & Tangy Spinach Apple Salad. Of course, the problem remains: I need to make more veggie-based salads.
Resolution no. 5: Give more gifts (all sorts of gifts). I love to give gifts, but I had to refrain because I didn’t have enough money for gifts. On the other hand, I bought loads of books these past three years, far more than I need. So maybe there’s some work to be done there, including gifting some interesting insights—via WhatsApp—from the books I read. I also want to buy this BillionDollarArtGallery (R) for some of my friends (and for myself).
Resolution no. 6: Do more collage and jewelry, among other artistic pursuits. I’m not much of a jewelry maker: I just string some beads. But there’s so much fun even with that limited choice—and, of course, I could learn how to make more complex pieces. Thinking on it now, it can’t be that hard to make a basic layered necklace. Collage, on the other hand, is far harder than it looks. But there are some great artists online to take inspiration from.
Resolution no. 7: Walk more. Travel more, including to meet with family members more. Go to museums and events in the city more often.
Resolution no. 8: Read books up to an hour a day. This year I probably read 45 minutes a day on average. I should cut back on my laptop reading and read more books.
Resolution no. 9: Read bits of fairy tales (some of them are rather long) and folktales every day. I am a big dreamer, in many ways, including in the sense that I dream lots of things every night, and wake up dizzy from everything I remember (for a few minutes). I found that reading fairy tales guides my imagination in productive ways. Also, I love to ponder on scenes from fairy tales, even as many of them do seem so very antiquated. (Folktales are often better in that regard.)
Resolution no. 10: Watch more movies on Netflix while dancing!
That’s it. I also plan to work a lot, of course—though, you guessed it, less than in 2022! 😀
Happy New Year 2023!
To a happier, healthier life,