Recovering from trauma is a long, hard, and more often non-linear road to well-being. Family, close community, and God keep me going forward, but some days seem hard and impossible to overcome. Lately, there are a few things that make my days a little bit lighter.
I’m a huge clear skin fanatic. Since I had bad acne in college, I’ve been on the search for ways to get the flawless complexion I’ve always dreamed of.
- EMU OIL – this is non-comedogenic (non-pore clogging) oil does wonders for your skin! It’s light and I use it almost every day. I use it to take off my make-up in the evenings. Just massage the oil onto your skin, wait 20-30 minutes, and wipe if off with a wet towel (lukewarm water) . If my skin is feeling dry (usually a rare thing since I usually battle with more oily skin), I put it on in the mornings, or after a bentonite clay mask.
- Ocean Water- I’ve been using this as a face wash, either as a way to clean off emu oil at night or as a refreshing way to wash my face in the morning. Whenever I use it, I wake up with clearer and brighter skin.
- CLEAR SKIN FOREVER BOOK- I bought this book on a whim, but it’s been such a great resource in helping me find the best diet & skincare routines (pretty much none) to get the skin I’ve always wanted. And I can have dairy again. Hallelujah!! The book also explains very thoroughly what is good or bad for you and the science behind the why. (link: https://www.clearskinforever.net)
- Daily journal of symptoms- I noticed I was getting increasingly worse head pain this summer. I started keeping a journal about my head pain and anything else that I believe can help or hinder me: digestion, foods, emotional stress, supplements I was trying out, and sleep. I’ve also compared my symptoms to where I am in my cycle, and it’s been so enlightening to see how the two correspond.
- My Flo app- I haven’t jumped on the cycle tracking until now. This app costs $2, but it’s been a huge help in sorting out my symptoms and helping me see where I need help to balance out my hormones.
- Running & Sauna- on particular bad head pain days where all I want to do is curl up and cry, I try to take a short 2 mile run with my dog instead & sit in the sauna for about 1 hour. Both get my blood flowing and subside the pain for at least a short time.
- Thursday nights with Natalie- my sister Natalie and I block out Thursday evenings for each other. Whether we go out to East Sacramento to explore, kick around a soccer ball, or cook & watch Thursday night football, this consistent block in our schedules makes it easy to anticipate our weekly sister date, and easier to plan around our other obligations. Plus consistency is key.
- OUR NEW KITTY- I initially named him Leo after Leo Tolstoy, but my family ended up calling him Demka; Demka has become a more fitting name due to his white coloring and black tail. He has the most rambunctious personality, even tries to fight my older cat, Mishka. Natalie got him at one of her cross country meets, and he’s been a joy.
- Write a poem- My best friend Katy gave me the one of my favorite gifts this past birthday, a journal that lets you write a poem based on a word or phrase. For example, I’ve written poems about fall, trees, and my first love. It’s a great way to be creative at the end of my day and reflect on past memories.
- Watching my dad with Demka- My dad treats him like a child. He will watch the kitty play outside and bring him back to the front yard in case he wonders too far. When he’s laying down on the couch watching tv, the kitty will often lay with him and fall asleep in his arms. It’s so nice to see my dad nurturing for my cats, and makes me dream of him one day caring for my kids in this gentle manner.
- Dressing up & going out- because of my trauma I’ve lose much of the life I cherished. I lost my dream job, friends that proved to be fair-weather friends, my independence, financial freedom, and a sense of safety inside myself and in this world. Because of the trauma, I struggle between heavy sadness that plunges me into darkness to heart racing anxiety. Something that I used to do before my trauma was to get dressed up and go out around town- either to a cute cafe or a drink with friends. I put on clothes that make me feel good, red lipstick and go out when I’m feeling stuck in my trauma. I’ve organized monthly wine nights with friends. It slowly brings me to my old self, cultivates my community, and slowly pushes me back to my old self.
- Peak brain exercising app- My brain trauma has impacted my old capabilities and in some ways my overall intelligence. To regain my previous strengths and rewire my mind, I play the brain exercises daily in the morning. I’ve noticed an improvement in many areas in the 1.5 weeks I’ve had the app. (link: https://www.peak.net/)
Thank you for reading this long and extensive list of some of my favorite things. And for being along for the ride to my journey to wellness.