The words Self Care get tossed around a lot these days. Do you know what Self Care is? Are you practicing it? What’s your favorite way to practice? Have you made it a priority in your life? Earlier this week I had not one but three people ask me to share my self care routine and practices. I try to honor and listen to those signs so I thought I’d share it here as well!

Self care has been a journey for me and it’s something I still really work on. You know how getting sick is your sign to SLOW DOWN and take better care of you? Yeah. Self care started off like that in my life. I learned the hard way at first via overwhelm and burn out. Raise your hand if you’re a recovering people pleaser too!

self care definationIt’s been years of systematic changes in my work and lifestyle to take better care of me. Learning the hard practice of saying NO has been key. Letting go of self judgement and stories around slowing down has been huge too. I used to think busy meant successful and that somehow working all the time made me more worthy of success. Those were some BIG stories that 1) weren’t serving me and 2) just aren’t true. Allowing myself to lay down if I need it or to sit in quiet and meditate have been massive shifts in my life. These days my self care has been taking a turn to mirror my food life… it’s all about healing, what feels good and prevention.

Here’s what I’ve laid out for myself. As you read notice what resonates with you and what makes you feel light. Perhaps those are the practices to try on, modify and put to work in your self care routines.

FUN:

Weekly I schedule 1 date with myself reserved for fun. I take myself to the movies. I swim. I take myself to lunch or for a drive. I do whatever feels really good in my body. During that time I UNPLUG from all technology (A MUST). Some weeks it’s just an hour. Others it’s an entire day. It all depends on what I’m feeling that I need. If I’m super busy and the week is wearing on me then I take m o r e time for myself to go and remember what fun is. I block off the time in my calendar and treat it like a client appointment. That means I always show up! Cliff always says, “no one is shooting at us” and I take it to heart. He’s right. This is not a life or death situation. It’s my life and I get to choose how to LIVE IT each moment of each day and the more fun the better!

WATER + BREAKFAST:

I drink water daily upon waking. And eat within an hour of waking. So key. On days when I allow myself to get sucked into technology too quickly I can easily skip breakfast or wait way too long to eat and I feel it. After all this time I’m still in awe that I’m the boss of my food life and however I feel is a direct reflection of how well I did or did not prioritize taking care of my needs.

EATING CUT OFF:

I’ve recently added no eating after 6 or 7 at night. So far that’s feeling really good. I’m not crazy strict about it… if we go to dinner I enjoy dinner without looking at the clock. I’d say at the moment I’m sticking to it a good 5 or 6 days a week. The circadian rhythm of our bodies dictates that we are to eat when the sun is out and rest when the moon is out. Practicing an eating cut off time is my way of trying to honor that a little more each day. Eating late at night is a sure fire way to pack on lb’s and as a recovering sugar addict/ emotional eater night time eating was a particularly tender time for me. You know you better than anyone… set some safe boundaries for yourself within your routines and honor them.

KEEP IT FRESH + GREEN:

I make sure to eat something green everyday. A green juice, a green smoothie, steamed veggies, salad… doesn’t matter I just make sure to get in green veggies. I tell every single one of my clients about the importance of greens and anyone who knows me knows that veggies are way more than just a food preference… it’s a lifestyle. My lifestyle. If I’m traveling and can’t access greens like usual I use a green powder in the mornings with breakfast. I also try to eat 50% + of my daily food raw to invite the most nutrients possible into my body. That’s part of why I love green juices and green smoothies so much.

GO WITHIN:

Creating my day is always the goal. The way to create your day is through meditation. When I approach meditation from a creation stand point knowing that it has the power to change my day and my life I show up every time without fail. It’s pretty hard to argue with facts like these. When I forget how rich and deep meditation is I remember to keep it on the list because it’s “good for me” and honestly some weeks that is enough. This week has been exceptional, so far I’ve meditated everyday and I’m aiming to do a long one this afternoon. Last week I think I meditated 3x so it definitely ebbs and flows over here. Some days are 10 minutes via a short and sweet Deepak Chopra mediation. Others are long up to an hour or just over via a Joe Dispenza mediation. I almost always use a guided meditation. I’d say about 1 out of every 10 times I will sit and meditate on my breath alone in silence. I don’t have any rules on guided or not… I just go with what feels good and most often I go with how much time I want to spend.

MOVEMENT + REST:

I live in an RV and happily work from home. I sit on my booty in a small space most of the day. No doubt about it that’s a sedentary lifestyle. Lately I’m light on movement and heavy on rest at the urging (and near begging) of my Ayurvedic doc and team of healers. It’s been a tough adjustment for me to SLOW DOWN and follow the advice to not “exert” myself. I run/walk a few times a week. I have also been swimming when the mood strikes (I’ve been twice this week). Lately I’m feeling the calling back to yoga so it’s me and my yoga mat it the RV which is pretty comical actually.

Giving myself permission to nap and rest has been earth shattering. I’m not kidding I used to be an ALL GO, ALL THE TIME kind of gal. The more work I do on healing my body the more I can feel the subtle calls from within. When I start to feel a little frayed, weak or small I go lay down for a bit. Naps are an amazing reset button and immune booster.

HEALING PRACTICES:

Daily I wake and take all my Ayurvedic herbs to support the healing of my body. I’m over half way through 30 days of daily sesame oil enemas (TMI? Sorry.) to help lubricate and restore health to my internal body. The Ayurveda perspective on Tracheal Stenosis is that we have one long tube from mouth to anus and mine is dried out so… I’m taking oil on both ends and also oiling my skin. Oil-a-palooza over here and I have to tell you the oil enemas though not the most comfortable thing I’ve ever experienced feel like they are totally working.

I share all this to tell you that healing is an all in endeavor. If you’re negotiating some kind of sickness or imbalance in your body it can be all consuming. It’s been really soothing to add these practices to my daily rituals. I do each from a place of gratitude that each day I get to take actions with a pure intention of easy breathing and believing in healing possibility. My sister reminds me to ask the Universe to wow me in regards to my health. Isn’t that a beautiful image to think of! How many times have you been in awe of something that unfolded before you without you having to effort in that direction? Just this past weekend I won tickets to a truly transformational Oprah weekend and I didn’t even register to win. My Aunt registered me. I was WOW-ed for sure and so now I ask the Universe to wow me in regards to my healthy and healed body.

SEEK KNOWLEDGE:

Daily I read something that I’m trying to learn. It’s usually really quick around 5 – 10 minutes.

SAY WHAT YOU NEED:

I tell Cliff what’s happening with me daily. Turns out he’s not a mind reader so it’s helpful for him to know what I’m negotiating. I ask for what I need… some days it’s for him to read/ edit something I’ve written, some days it’s help rubbing oil all over me as part of my healing ritual, some days it’s for some space to move through something I’m working on. That practice adds to the ease of our relationship and helps us both feel really supported.

GET BAREFOOT:

The sun + earths energy are crucial for vibrant health. I spend time barefoot in the grass or with my hands in the dirt weekly. Ideally we’d come into contact with the earth daily. I joke (but I’m totally serious) that one day when we have a yard again I want a dirt and sand garden where I can go lay naked with the sun on my face. This is the part where my dad thinks I’ve totally lost my mind (ha!) but it’s so elemental to be in contact with our earth! I think it’s one of the reasons why so many of us love the beach. It’s one of the rare times we are barefoot and covered in sand! When is the last time you physically touched the earth?

I hope you found one or a few things that are resonating in you. Remember that just like food self care is completely individual. While I’m over here taking it easy and embracing naps you may need to run as hard and as fast as you can! There are some things, too, like saying what you need and taking yourself on a weekly date that I think we could all benefit from.

To caring for your beautiful self in the way that only you can!
Lacy

P.s. Be sure to join me for One Pot Wonders! It’s 3 months of soup-a-week recipes for $28! It’s going to be souper. ;) Enroll here.

I’m so tempted to name this a gingerbread smoothie but I’m not a fan of naming #vegan things after their dairy counterparts. Soooo I’ll call it a Pumpkin Ginger Green Smoothie instead. It looks like pea soup all blended up BUT it tastes like spiced fall goodness.

If you love ginger this one is for you! And if your gut needs balancing ginger is your new bestie.

You’ll need:

1 cup almond milk
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 handful greens
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp all spice
1/2 inch piece fresh ginger (peeled) You can use less if you’re still getting used to ginger.
3 medjool dates (pits removed)
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 frozen banana
1 tsp vanilla extract

I used a baby kale/ spinach blend. If you’re new to this whole #greensmoothie thing go for spinach, the flavor is light so you won’t taste the greens in your smoothie.

Enjoy!
Lacy

I received an email from a dear girl who is in the midst of transition and I saw so much of my story in her words. She went to a yoga class, and another and another. She feel madly and deeply in love with the practice and the way her body felt fully engaged in the present moment of each pose. She paid lots of money for proper schooling and credentials. She became a certified yoga teacher. She loved teaching.

And now that her shiny new website is built and ready to roll out into the world it’s become unavoidably clear that it’s time to move on. Disappointment. Guilt. So many feelings are colliding all at once. Then the justification that she spent the money on the site… shouldn’t she see it through?

I’m here to say permission granted to change course in the very moment that you know it’s time. Seriously. We all do that thing over money from time-to-time. You spend “good” money on something really big and then there’s that moment of pause… you use the money as a justification to keep going even though every fiber of your being is saying MOVE ON RIGHT NOW!

Honoring your intuition is sacred ground. Do it. At all cost. Some days it may be something really big like NOT publishing the site. Others is may be seemingly small like not finishing a book. It’s your life and you get to live it however you want. Exercise that beautiful freedom.

Letting it go (whatever it is) can be excruciating and at the same time completely necessary. It is ok that something (or someone) once filled you up body and soul and then it was time to move on. I spent my 20′s trying to make a living out of things I loved. Yoga. Making Scrapbooks. Creating herbal products. etc. etc. etc. I changed paths often and with a great deal of struggle. I wish someone had said that it’s O.K. to keep going and change course when you know it’s time. Mid way through my 30′s I’m seeing how it’s all been a part of the journey that is still very much in motion. I can only image the clarity that the 40′s will bring.

Release the guilt, dear girl. Forgive yourself. Often. You showed up, burned brightly and when the time was right you let it go. That’s practicing yoga off the mat. That’s listening to your sacred voice and it’s always worth it no matter how much it cost to get there.

Clear space so that your what next can peek through and wink at you. Clear space… In your body. In your closet. In your kitchen cabinets. In your email inbox. Let go of the things (or people) that are ready to move on and take your next step in the direction that feels light and joyous.

I love you. You’ve got this.
Lacy

P.s. One Pot Wonders is enrolling now! It’s $28 for THREE MONTHS of soup recipes! More info here.

Click here for the full recipe for Dairy Free Cream of Parsnip Soup. Image by Anne Sage.

There’s something about a pot of soup on the stove. The warmth. The simplicity. It feels like love in the kitchen and in my belly. It’s from that love and ease that I’m bringing you One Pot Wonders, a season of soups! It’s a 3 month email subscription. I have been in the kitchen creating and recipe testing and I am SO excited to share these soups with you!

Once a week for November, December + January you’ll receive an email from me with a delicious and easy to prepare soup recipe! You’ll receive a full shopping list and information on why you need those particular foods in your life!

Think delicious warm easy to make soups with a dose of easy to digest nutrition information and things to consider as you move through your week. Your weekly recipe + shopping list will arrive on Fridays just in time for weekend shopping.

Here are a few of the delicious soups you can look forward to: Carrot Ginger, Curried Lentil, Hearty Bean Chili, Mushroom Quinoa, Potato Leek, Spiced Butternut Squash and many more! There will be 13 weekly emails in total. You’ll receive your first email on November 7th and your last email on January 30th. No more dinner rut! Yay!

A season of ease in your kitchen and warmth in your belly is $28! Yeap. $28.

Enroll here.

Soups on!
Lacy

P.s. It’s going to be the complete opposite of this. ha!

This me at one of our latest stops in Marfa, Texas. That town is AMAZING. It’s the best night sky I’ve seen in as long as I can remember and the vibe there is so laid back. We’ll definitely be back.

In my work I give a lot of permission. It’s one of my favorite things to do. I give myself permission and ask my sister and husband to give me permission when I am needing it too. There’s something about hearing it, feeling it, taking it into your being that allows for change. Here are a few permissions I’ve been giving out lately. I thought you might like them too. I hope one or many are heart zingers for you.

- BE who you are.
- Don’t grow up so much as grow into your best self.
- When you speak about what you believe do so from your own experience. Sharing your experience feels so loving.
- Take photos of things that inspire you. Share them. Don’t worry about taking the perfect photo or looking a certain way. And if you’re on Instagram come say hi, I’m @lacylike. It’s still my very favorite internet community.
- Eat food that makes you feel good in your belly. And proud. (hint: Twinkies are not a pride or health inducing food)
- Stop buying home goods for a minute and start buying clothes that make you feel amazing. Seriously… You’ll spend $3o on a candle at Anthro but not a new shirt that is going to make your eyes pop. Doooooo it already!
- Make a new friend. On the internet or in real life.
- Don’t buy it unless you really love it.
- Call someone you love everyday. Not a text. CALL. They may cry happy tears and let you know. Or you may never know how you added to their day. Either way it’s always worth it.
- Lay in the grass. Walk around barefoot. Let the sun shine on your face.
- Challenge what healthy means to you. Fiercely. Remember we are all so different and your body knows what it needs. Create some space for it to speak to you and then diligently listen. If you don’t know how, ask for help.
- Get rid of something everyday for a month. See what opens up inside of you.
- Go to happy hour and don’t drink booze. The happy hour police are not going to get you. Or better yet skip happy hour and go for a walk with your bestie.
- Trade up one of your beauty products for something made thoughtfully and organically. What you put on your skin soaks into your cells… choose something chemical free. Your cells want to shine, baby!
- Congratulate yourself often. Washed the dishes? Tell yourself that you are the best dishwasher ever! Cleaned the clothes but didn’t quite get to folding them? Tell yourself that’s the most beautiful pile of clean fabrics you’ve ever seen! See how fun + uplifting it can be?

Permission granted,
Lacy

Dear beautiful soul,

I’m writing to you from bed. Ned’s curled up on Cliff’s pillow next to me. Cliff is 7 days into a water fast. I’m deep in an Ayurvedic cleanse that is challenging and changing me and I’m thinking of you. I’ve been wanting to write you this letter for a long, long time.

These last few weeks have been big and heavy and full. One client is mourning the loss of her dear son who left too soon. Another celebrated her birthday and went through the inevitable life inventory that comes with another passing year. Another has moved from one coast to the other and is negotiating a big, new, scary, exciting city where she knows no one. Another has stopped binging and purging for the first time in her adult life. Another has finally, finally thrown away her “fat” clothes. I could go on and on. Like I said, Big. Heavy. Full.

In the midst of all that change, of all those victories and struggles each has a story of food just like you do. They are stories of donuts or cake or coffee drinks with extra whipped cream. Trigger foods. Comfort foods. Shame. Sadness. Struggle. Try and try again. Pants that fit too tight, arms or thighs or you-name-it that’s too fat. That pokes fun at you when you pass the mirror.

Beloved, I’m calling it… enough is enough. It’s time to love ourselves exactly where we are. To honor that we are each living so bravely. That we are unapologetic works in progress. That healing is underway. It’s time to reprogram those old tapes and tales of self-loathing. We are who we are because of our suffering, our experiences, our challenges and perceived failures. We are a tribe, we are one and it’s time to come together.

Ready for the truth? You’ve called this extra weight (physical and emotional) into your life for a reason. It will go when you do the work to release it. I don’t believe in weight loss and I don’t want you to believe in it either. I want you to embrace weight release because when it goes it’s never coming back! You feel me? You lose things you want to find again like your keys! You let go of things you’re complete with, that you never need to see or experience again.

It’s time to start living in alignment with your desires. Over and over again. It’s a million tiny decisions in the direction of your best life. I’m begging you, inviting you and cheering for you! Please embody the beauty that you are. Begin to see yourself with love. With conscious compassion.

It’s time. It’s time to start living from passion and can do instead of discipline and will power. Enthusiasm is your friend. An open heart is your ticket. Willingness will lead the way.

I know that you’re in need of regular and real support. Right? Right! Could you use some practical tools to bring awareness and gain knowledge?

Are you ready to learn what’s possible? To transcend all those stories you’ve been telling yourself? Sure you know the basics. You’re totally in touch with what’s healthy and what you “should” be doing. You know that veggies are good for you and cake isn’t but do you know how to listen to your body? Do you know how to end the struggle? I’d like to show you how.

You’ve mastered what needs to be removed from your diet like soda and chips but do you know what you need to add in? And have you been able to put the chips down? Ready to? Are you wondering what vitamins you really need to be taking? And what’s the deal with super foods? Are you ready to learn how to allow your intuition to lead when it comes to all things food and life?

It’s time to expand your repertoire. It’s time to get comfy in your body and in your kitchen. It’s time to stop hating grocery shopping and your belly. Dear one, it’s definitely time to stop saying nasty things to that person staring back at you in the mirror! This is going to be the education of your life. This is all the stuff we really should have learned as a child and cemented in our formative years.

It’s time.
To believe in you.
To invest in you.
To do the most worthy work of your life.
To practice.
To grow.
It’s time to Love U.

This is THE COURSE that has been waiting to be born and my heart is saying it’s time. If you’re ready to join me in the most worthy education of your life you can sign up for the wait list and more information here.

It’s called Love University.
And this letter is your invitation to enroll in the experience of a lifetime.
You’re going to get a Bachelors degree in Love and it’s going to be beyond amazing.

The Freshman semester begins Winter 2014.

I love you. I believe in you. I can’t wait to share this with you.
Lacy

P.s. Join the wait list here.

We’re over a week into the journey and it feels like time to sit and write. So much has happened in seven days. So many states covered, so many new sights experienced, so many shifts.

road cactusI love watching the landscape change. I took this for my Mema <3 So many sights on the road remind me of my loved ones. I feel like I’m carrying you all with me.

rv travelI’m getting pretty good at making tea while we’re driving. We stopped at a gas station in the middle of nowhere. No published prices because why bother when there’s no competition for 100 miles. It’s the most we’ve paid for gas so far. Note to self:: get gas in big towns.

It’s interesting to set out on an intentional healing journey. To know that come what may we are in this RV and on the road to live our lives, have fun and welcome healing at every turn. There was a comment on one of my instagram photos that said “I wish I could run away like that.” And it struck me as a gift in perspective… we’re not running away from anything. We’re running towards our life, our happiness, our whole health. We’re so sure of this truth and it feels really good.

For months I’ve not been able to see past September, still can’t. All I know for sure is that this is the month that our what next is revealed. We set out on Thursday evening and got a full hour down the road before the back of the RV filled with smoke and we had to pull over and sleep for the night without a/c in a grocery store parking lot. Full system shut down.

A journey is full of unexpected experiences around ever turn. I think that’s actually in the definition somewhere! I figure there’s bound to be a few in the category of our home is also our car and therefore requires a bit of maintenance to keep it all working. Right? Right!

this isn't goodsafer hereWe got something called Feliway to help Ned acclimate to the RV and despite being completely unamused when we are in motion it seems to be helping with his confidence.

After the black plume of smoke filled our bedroom full of white linens we sat with each other. We ran through a few scenarios and faced some serious fears about the journey ahead and our financial means to get there. It was quite possible that in one RV repair event we’d spend everything we had for the entire trip which would land us an hour down the road back home. That simply wasn’t an option for us. We knew we had to see this journey through so we decided it would be and we sent love to our home that is also our car.  We went to bed that night laying as far apart as possible hot, sticky-sweaty and on top of the covers with parking lot lights blazing into our open windows. After several phone calls and help the next day we were back on the road. Want to know the miracle part? They never did find anything wrong with the brakes. All told it was several hundred dollars (and a case of Budweiser to the helper at Dale’s) instead of several thousand. Miracle. Total miracle.

thanks dalejuice to goI made juice for the road and it turned out to be a lifesaver those first few days. Cantaloupe, kiwi, orange, lime. Make it! It’s GOOD!

Junction texasWe had our giant green juice and impromptu photo shoot the second day on a campground picnic table in Junction, Tx. (( For those wondering, I’m holding the phone out and we used the GorillaCam app on timer. We did the blast and took a bunch of picts, this one was the cutest (and I love it). ))

this road.

Somewhere on the road in New Mexico we really hit our groove. It was 65 degrees out and glorious. In the middle of who-knows-where New Mexico we stopped on the side of the road. I ran around taking pictures and standing in the middle of the desolate and empty road yelling, “THIS IS SO PRETTY! THIS IS SO FUN!”

first time we filled the tankThe first time we filled the entire tank! 101 gallons!

so happy in the woodsThe wilderness is one of his happy places! Firewood gathering in Black Canyon Ntl Park, NM

A Facebook post of recommendations (note to self:: ask for recommendations more often, they’re amazing) lead to the two most fun water experiences we’ve had in a long time. We’d just been having a conversation about Cliff’s love of flying. I was wondering… what do I love as much as he loves flying? The answer—– w a t e r. Being in the water. Showers are my happy place. Steam rooms feel like a hug. Soaking is pure bliss. And so we ventured to Ten Thousand Waves and we soaked together with other naked bodies under the Santa Fe sun.

I’m struck by how natural it is to be naked with strangers. I’m not a nudist though I’m super comfy in my skin and certainly don’t shy away from an occasion to be in my birthday suit. I observed myself sitting in the tubs with these other bodies. Bright shiny souls in human form getting all pruny together. I couldn’t help but see us all as little kids running around with naked bums playing in the water just like my sweet two year old niece Chloe and her friends do every weekend at birthday parties.

As Cliff was laying in the sun (one of his very favorite things) I got back in my robe and went down to sit in the meditation room. I resisted at first. Did I really want to meditate when I could take a third shower? I decided —yes— time to meditate. As I sat there listening to soothy music waves of sadness washed over me and puddled at my trachea and around my heart. It was so much it had to be put into smaller (metaphorical) containers and made ready to leave my body. It wasn’t a full on release as I’ve sometimes experienced in meditation. It was an elephant sized mass of sadness overtaking me and the room. It was dark and sticky and was broken apart by my breath and willingness to sit there with it. To feel it. To observe it.

When I opened my eyes and Cliff was sitting nearby in the foot soaking area. I joined him without a word. We sat together and looked at the Koi pond and water fall and smiled.

ojo calente

A full day later we visited Ojo Calente, another of the recommendations. We slathered ourselves in mud and laid in the sun to let it dry all that sadness started to move from me. You know how I know… I was having a blast. I went from all out exuberant joy throwing mud everywhere to laying still waiting for it to dry smiling at everyone walking past. There was what felt like a moment in the shadow of the joy, this stillness came in and with it I felt the sadness start to go.

The largest release came when we went into the iron pool. There are several different pools based on what minerals are present. Iron felt best in my body. The floor was natural pebbles and the water bubbled up from them. I felt still but playful in that pool. And then we went back to the mud one more time… and it was done. I keep hearing that dear woman’s voice in my head, “playfulness will heal the wound” and I’ll be damned if she’s not completely spot on. The more fun we have the more freedom I feel and the easier it is for me to breathe.

mud bathsIt was a no phone zone but I was so thankful to see a rule breaker there who happily took our photo and texted it to me! I love a rule breaker, don’t you! That suit top used to be white.

The next day I felt really quiet. Deeply quiet.

I’ve been observing, experiencing and though I would still really love a solid nights rest, I am happy. There’s been no feeling of “are we healed yet” no force, no struggle, no expectation. Just fun. We wake up each day and decide where we will go next. Literally on the spot. Sometimes we start driving, map out a few routes via the trusty iPhone and then decide. And that feels just right.

Over and out from the road,
Lacy

There’s something about a bare face.

Ease.
Wash and wear.
The natural glow.
The light in your eyes.
The story it tells… the scar on my neck from trachea surgery. The crown on my front tooth from that time I tripped over a rock in a jump rope race in elementary school and the boy I had a crush on picked up me and my tooth and took us to the nurse.

So many times I’ve asked/ told Cliff before we go out… “I’m not going to wear make up, K?” His response is always some version of “You’re so beautiful, you don’t need make up!” And I believe him.

I took this #TBT photo with my sister early one Sunday morning as we were waiting for the Farmers Market to open. This is what we look like when we are together. It’s always slightly frizzy curls, fresh faces and some version of stretchy pants + tank tops. This IS us. We talk about who we are, what we’re creating and share our perspective. Perspective is one of our super powers.

Today I’m wondering… what if we all just were who we are. What if bare faces was code for THIS IS ME and I LOVE ME. Yes! That’s my kind of code. Tag the people in your life that will totally get this. Tag your bare face selfies #campaignforconfidence

I see you.
I celebrate you.
I love you and your bare face!
Lacy

If the RV’s a rockin…
it’s Cliff doing jumping jacks. Seriously. I’ve woken up to him getting his fitness on in the living room twice so far. The first time I swore we were in an earthquake. Um… but there are no earthquakes in Texas. RV life is hilarious.

3 miles for him. 2 for me.

We’ve been running more and more and it feels amazing. This is post run. 3 miles for him. 2 for me. 100 degrees at 10 am. Oy!

Last week we tried out the washer/ dryer with a small load of towels and that day is now remembered as the 2nd time we flooded the basement. Lots of trial and error happening over here. LOTS. Happily, after the first flood I took everything out of the under sections that could be ruined by water and put into plastic bins. And I’ll take my bow now.

The big awning fell down. Errr was ripped off by a strong wind. So… no more awning for now and that’s been a bummer. BUT it’s got me thinking about the outside makeover more and more.

toilet dump

We’ve finally got the whole composting toilet thing down. We empty the liquid tank every 3 days or so and the solids tank every two weeks or more. We’ve been taking turns emptying the liquid tank, basically whoever notices that it’s time does it. And post poo in the face Cliff has been cleaning the solids tank (which I ADORE him for) though it is MUCH easier now that we’ve got the right combo of composting material in there. We’re using 3 gallon zip lock bags full(ish) of coconut coir and 3 cups diatomaceous earth. That seems to be the sweet spot for us. The diatomaceous earth has gotten rid of the gnats that were seriously trying my patience.

Oh the door. So we have one door to get in and out of the RV (which I like). We joke and call it the front door, side door, passenger door, driver door, back door but it’s all just the one door.

I'm awake. barely.

Our favorite things about living small so far ::
- We always know where everything is. It’s pretty awesome that we have everything we need plus some in these 40 feet.
- Simplicity. I used to feel a bit of a panic (sometimes exciting, sometimes overwhelming) when I’d go into stores and want to buy everything. Now I feel at peace and I know if I’m buying something it’s gotta be pretty amazing. Everything we purchase gets held to the useful and or beautiful standard. We don’t buy it if we don’t absolutely need it or love it. I have started the 1 in, 1 out rule for clothes and so far that’s working really well. We still don’t have our winter clothes in the RV yet. There’s all at my moms so I’m not exactly sure how that’s going to work when we really hit the road. We’re likely going to keep a couple of bins in the ‘basement’ of seasonal clothing.
- Mobility. We can literally go where we want to, when we want to and we’re always home. That’s RAD!
- Being close to nature. At night when it’s calm and still around here we open the door and let Ned venture out. He’s been so brave lately exploring the field behind where we are parked. Little fella is getting a bit of an RV belly from stress eating. We’re excited to get on the road and do some wild camping so he can go out more and more. It’s that or he’s going to have to start doing jumping jacks with Cliff in the living room!

Casablanca!

- I don’t miss TV! I thought I would but so far, nothin. We HAVE been watching more movies and this week watched Casablanca. I’d never seen it! I knew the famous lines but had no idea what the movie was all about. LOVED IT!

air plantssucculent garden

- I’m loving adding greenery to our home. Air plants are everywhere! I have hot glued them into the backs of canvases onto pieces of wood and in empty frames. Yesterday I put together this little succulent garden using a piece of Mema’s vintage enamelware. It will sit on the front dash board. Yeap, plants on the dash.

shadow

- On days when it’s just the two of us I have a Ned shadow all day. He moves with me from room to room (even in this tiny space), waits patiently and then we move along. He’s such sweet company.

Small living challenges ::
- Umm it’s small. Cliff has hit his head on nearly every cabinet. And I keep running into the bathroom door when it’s not open all the way. We bounce off each other daily. Some days it’s hilarious and others it’s the last straw.
- Odors. If the laundry pile is full of workout clothes after a week of running in 100 degree weather, or the trash is full of juice pulp, out or the composting toilet fan stops working it’s a full on situation around here. I have the most sensitive sniffer in all the land and there aren’t enough expensive candles in the world to remedy a smelly RV. That said we now have great smelling candles on our short list of things for a well stocked home.
- I’m flexing between totally excited to hit the road and a nervous wreck over the endless to do list. I’m in that phase where I’m making up things (that will likely never happen) to be worried and stressed out about. It’s wildly illuminating to step back and watch myself. So far what’s helping is to be able to talk it through with Cliff. One of the stories that I notice I play out and identify with is that I tend towards withdrawing, ruminating and letting the issue fester. That’s not really me, it doesn’t feel loving to worry and fester so talking it out when I feel my body tense up has been and is good, good medicine and I seem to be moving through it pretty quickly.

in the shop

- When the RV goes into the shop so do you. We spent half a day this week at a local shop getting new shocks put on and testing the alignment. Getting your home worked on is way different than having your car serviced. It was actually pretty delightful except for the fact that Ned was utterly traumatized. He hid in the corner cabinet in the kitchen ALL DAY and didn’t come out until we opened a can of wet food at 5 pm. The shop had a little room for “drivers” where we could sit in the a/c, everyone took off their shoes before coming inside the RV and Cliff had some really neat conversations with some of the guys working on our rig. The RV was doing something called Porpoising which means it was bouncing up and down WAY TOO MUCH on the road and the new shocks seems to have fixed the issue. YAY!

That’s life in RV land lately! We leave for California on September 5th to go and do some serious healing work. I’ll keep you posted from the road! If we’re not friends on Facebook yet and you’d like to follow along on the journey you’re welcome to friend me (just leave me a little note that says you’re following along on the RV adventure so I’ll know you’re indeed a friend).

Hope this finds you well,
Lacy

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That quote hit me right in the gut. It feels more like a command than an invitation in the best kind of way. I’ve been in a really deep feeling place these last weeks. Internal + thoughtful. It’s been three weeks since I had the dilation procedure on my trachea. I’ve had some time to enjoy breathing (understatement of the year, I’ve been positively giddy over it), time to process all that we learned in Boston and time to decide what comes next where my health is concerned.

The top three questions I’m getting asked are: How are you? What did they say? What happens next?

How am I?

I’m mostly r e a l l y good. I’m enjoying breathing A LOT. I find myself saying I LOVE BREATHING all the time. I’m thankful for it all the time. I used to see people running, dancing, laughing on movies or in real life and feel sad. Now I feel excited and I find myself saying, “I can do that!”

dancing!image by Lizzy Flanagan

There was a moment at my dear friends wedding on the Cape just after the dilation that brought me into the present of I CAN DO THAT in such a sweet way… we were all out on the dance floor, it was nearing the end of the night. My post anesthesia body was really tired and I was ready to go until my friend Kate looked over and saw me dancing and with so much love and excitement in her voice said, “T H I S is just what you wanted!” In that moment I could see and feel us all in slow motion. I could feel the thump of the music in my chest and vibrating all around us. She was right! It was (is) what I’d wanted – to be able to dance and sing and play. I immediately forgot that I was tired and I danced like I meant it… I flung my hair and jumped up and down giving my sticky strapless bra a run for it’s money (those are the best things ever, by the way). I memorized the moment and literally breathed it all in. I remember smiling so big. I remember giggling at Cliff’s signature moves and thinking how much I love having him as my partner. It was all red faces and fist pumps in the air, pure joy. I can’t even believe there’s a photo to go with the moment. Can’t. even. believe. it. Pure gratitude.

Healing can be spontaneous or work. I’m currently in the working portion of this program. I feel my body processing out the anesthesia, the post procedure meds and the experience itself. I’m cycling through tired, angry, frustrated and sad. Some days I’m able to articulate what’s happening inside an others it just washes over me. I’m spending time in the archives of my life and going back to places that need healing — namely, my parents divorce.

I’m 35 and I can’t believe I’m still healing over my parents divorce. Some days (most days) I resist it HARD and think good grief, I thought I’d healed a l l that in therapy. Others I soften into it and see that sweet little 4th grade version of myself and feel so much for all she was experiencing during that time (and now). Life keeps giving you opportunities to heal until you do the work. Sometimes it’s a little nudge, sometimes it’s a smack in the face. Lately it’s felt like I’ve walked right through a plate glass window.

I believe in the importance and all out necessity of feeling your feelings, and letting them move through you (instead of getting pent up and stuck inside you). I’m staying present to that as much as possible and letting my body and spirit move through and out of the muck. I’m asking my body if it can allow the energy to move (something my sister reminds me to do). I’m asking it what it needs from me to help? Some days that’s a swim or a jog, others it’s just to sit quietly in meditation and sometimes I haven’t a clue. I’m forgiving myself and my parents in all kinds of scenarios. I know my folks did the best they could do at the time. I see that really clearly. I love and appreciate them deeply for that. I also know that their split changed me and I’m giving myself permission to take down the armor I built up at such a young age. I’m reminding myself that I’m safe and loved. I’m reminding myself that I always have everything I need, that I am whole health and that happiness is my birth right (pssst, it’s yours too!)!

What the doctors said:

The scar tissue is back. We’d hoped it would be scar tissue at the surgery site something easy to scoop right out of there but nope this scar tissue is thick and stubborn and has invaded into my vocal cords. It looks like a Tim Burton set in my trachea with pink and white marbled scar tissue growing like tree roots into the vocal cords. We also learned that the right vocal cord joint is paralyzed likely from scar tissue growing into it and basically concreting it in place. There’s nothing they can do medically to help. It’s one of those “let’s just keep an eye on it” situations. The good news is that the joint is stuck in a good place which means I can still use and regulate my voice and that’s a HUGE win! I can’t possibly imagine not being able to use my voice! I’ve got so much to say! My doctor says it would be great if it’s a year or more before I need another dilation. I’m thinking it would be great if I never had to have another surgery or procedure ever again! Yes, that’s the option I’m choosing.

Now that there’s some space between me and all the information it feels like just that… information. I don’t feel doomed, devastated or afraid. Those are all things I’ve felt in the past but this time is different. I know (KNOW in that way that’s deep to my core) it’s all a process, it’s all happening for my highest good and I’m trusting that this thing will continue to transform in a way that is perfect. I’ve given up predicting how it’s all going to go down because I suck at predicting the future but I can say that I FEEL my body healing.

What happens next?

I’m fully engaged in a healing journey. We’re headed to California next month in the RV! I’ve been having sessions with helpers and healers and professionals all over the US (and the world, thank you Skype). I’ve been spending more and more time in and near water because it just feels so good.

We were planning a water fast but after talking with an Ayurvedic practitioner (and being warned by one of my best friends who woke up having dreamt of me and said “DO NOT DO THAT WATER FAST, I feel so strongly that you don’t need to do it”) I’ve decided NOT to do the water fast. Cliff is still going to do it so I’ll be there checking in on him between my Ayurveda appointments. Oh and are you ready for this one… the Ayurveda gal is in the SAME CITY as the water fast. Well, thank you Universe!

float

Always always remember that there’s no one size fits all diet and there’s no one miracle cure for what ails you. When it comes to your health the only right answers are the ones that feel best in YOUR body.

What I’m learning:

  • I’m learning to honor my needs and most specially not to put them off. Even my most basic needs – like holding it when I need to pee. Seriously, anyone else sit at your desk way too long and then realize you’ve had to go for over an hour?
  • Matter can change. Scar tissue can change. When this first started 10 years ago it was subglottic (below the glottis) and now it’s invading my vocal cords. While that is really “bad” news in the sense that medically there’s nothing to be done it’s “great” news from the view point of the potential for this scar tissue to change. IT CAN go back to the nothingness from whence it came and that’s exactly what I’m creating.
  • The power of a group is mighty. I’m a member of a Facebook group for folks with tracheal stenosis. It’s been a really safe and loving place for me to be vulnerable, receive support from people who totally get it and to celebrate the deep easy breaths that are flowing right now.
  • It’s ok to ask for help. From your partner, your friends, your family, your community (even if it’s an internet community). Thank you all for being here and for holding visions of me breathing with ease for the rest of my life.
  • I’m learning that real healing happens when I slow way down and have FUN. I’ve been much too serious, much too busy, much too much of a bunch of stuff and fun is setting me free.
  • I’m seeing how important it is to own your situation but not attach to it. To be present but not self loathing. I so badly didn’t want this to be my story. I didn’t want to be the girl with scar tissue in her trachea and yet I’m so grateful for all that has unfolded as a result of this weird condition. Weird has always been wonderful.

To giving each other permission to tell our stories by sharing our truths. I love you. I appreciate you.
Lacy