What do I want? To help raise consciousness on the planet. To create art. How do you elevate consciousness in people? By raising it in yourself. How do you raise consciousness in yourself? By being mindful? By eating well and getting clear of chemicals and contaminates? By researching and learning and watching The New Yorker tv show? Can spreading my struggles with elevating myself and my struggles with changing my lifestyle help someone else in their journey? Can sharing your life be art?
I had decided to take a short cut through a dirt road and give Bow a break and get off the highway. Georgia dirt is red and beautiful. Bow was doing his impression of the slowest walk ever. There were swampy forests and overgrown fields, then a sewage treatment center with black water. An abandoned semi-truck in the weeds. Then a run down collapsing house with a collapsed barn off to the side. Creepy vibes. I try to get Bow to pick it up a little and get us out of there. As we near the creepy house a red truck pulls out of the driveway. The truck slowly drives towards us and I kick Bow to trot. He doesn't. The guy driving is giving me "hungry eyes" and he stops the truck and stares. I don't understand why he doesn't keep going. It's a wide road, shit we were just on the highway! There is plenty of room to go. Bow snail walks towards the truck as I am trying to get him to canter or at least trot. It's soooo awkward!! Bow tries to walk up to the drivers window! Usually when we get up to the jeep we let Bow rest so I guess he thinks that since the truck has stopped he might get a treat. I am creeped out by this guy and kicking and kissing and clucking and reaching for my reins to smack Bow on the butt to get him going. The guy is scanning me up and down and I'm suddenly self conscious about my tight riding pants and wondering if my bra is showing. Do men have to deal with this kind awkwardness if they dare to venture out on their own? Of course not. Men don't ever wonder if maybe they shouldn't have worn those pants, maybe it's their fault that someone is making them feel unsafe. Every day almost a man tells me I am too pretty to be out here on my own, I am going to get raped. What is wrong with the world that as a woman I should worry about being alone, outside, in the day time. I think of all the people who begged me to get a gun for this trip. What if I did have a gun? What would that do? I would probably be more nervous. I don't want to use a gun on someone. Would just seeing a gun deter a creep? Or would that just challenge them more? Wouldn't they just take it and use it on me? Do I need to carry a gun to wear riding pants? But I am moving slowly towards him. I smile awkwardly, acknowledging the situation. No change in his face. It's like in Austin Powers when the really slow zamboni or cement roller or whatever is threatening to run Austin over and he's screaming but it's a million miles away and going 1 mile an hour. I started laughing at how absurd that moment was and how funny it is to be in the middle of nowhere creeping by a creeper! Finally I used my spurs and we cantered off past the truck. The dude stayed there and watched as we disappeared down the road.
Guess what! The first infusion of Rituxan wasn't that bad! All the worrying! jeez Sometimes things are worse in your head and when you let them out, it's ok. Am I a RItuxan fan? Dare I say a good thing about western medicine? Well, it's buying me time until I can get this nature stuff under control. I guess we'll see if my lesions go away. My next infusion is on the 21st.
I have decided on a 3 prong approach to health.
One. Allopathic Medicine. Obviously the carpet bombing of my immune system I am currently applauding for the fact that it didn't make me sick. Full-disclosure I'm exhausted. I get heart racing and shortness of breath and my hands are still jacked but I was able to go to an art show and out to see music. I also wake up every day with a sharp headache. Yesterday I was like "Oh my god I am so hung over, what did I do?" I was trying to remember if I did anything embarrassing or got in a fight or made out because I must've been so drunk! Then I remembered I didn't drink anything and I was not partying, but I was on an IV machine and it's probably my little immune cells dying off and cluttering my head.
Two. Nature heals itself. Terry Wahl's protocol. A modified Paleo diet for autoimmune diseases. Also a naturopath I talk to every couple weeks with a full regimen of herbs, teas, rules, etc. Nothing like having someone to check in with and make sure you are following the rules! I didn't follow the protocol on my own like I was planning and that probably contributed to this relapse so I am spending the money (it's less than I thought) on a Dr. to put me on a regimen and make me check in. It's like being an addict in recovery. I just watched the Resurrection of Jake the Snake. My God! That man had to work so hard to get off the drugs and alcohol and get healthy! He's this big mushy tough guy who cries all the time. I love it. Nobody can do it alone. Jake the Snake had Diamond Dallas Page! He's so lucky! Since I don't have DDP to get me off the bread and sugar I got Chantal the Naturopath. Whateves. I fully expect to Skype her with a piece of fried chicken in my mouth and a snickers bar in my hand and cry about just wanting one more glass (bottle) of wine. I, of course, wanted to start immediately and as hard core as possible. However, she says to wait til after the rituxan and not stress my body out so much all at one time. Good call doc. These head aches are killing me.
Three. Psychological. I've said before that I think that a lot of MS has a psychological component. I've said that I have a war going on inside at all times. I'm sure everyone does to some extent. A friend recommended this therapist to me who used to be a cardiologist and a molecular biologist. He started noticing that patients with the same physical ailments would complain of a lot of the same emotional issues. He started seeing a psychological side to illnesses and changed his entire career to switch over and help emotionally. He was just on a podcast with Pema Chodron (name drop!) I love Pema and anyone associated with her gets my vote. So I signed up with him for an 8 session, 4 month, treatment program with a ton of homework. I spoke with him for the first hour. The first thing he said was "you have a war going on inside of you. If you don't take care of it your body will paralyze you." My thoughts exactly. He said that first I learned to hide away, then I learned to rebel, then I learned to go adventure. I'm in that cycle now. Probably leaving the adventure and going into hiding. My instinct now is to isolate and get better. He is also really trying to tell me not to go back on the ride yet. I could push through on pure will power and maybe finish. But I wouldn't enjoy it and I could do permanent damage to my spine or brain. He thinks that if I can hermit and get stronger that I could be more successful and make the ride what it was supposed to be in the first place.
I am mortified at stopping my ride already. I am mortified at the thought of staying gone even longer than just this month. I miss taking care of my horse and sleeping in my camper. If I don't get back out there soon I will get caught in the winter and probably won't finish anyway. Every doctor I have is asking me to please choose something else to do. What do I do? Do I wait til next spring to leave again when I am stronger and healthier? Do I choose another route? Is there another way I can do something special to raise awareness and donations for MS? Is there another way to get my identity back after all this disappointment? Is there any way I won't feel like a quitter if I don't get back out there asap?
I have turned to art. I've made a music video, I've been making songs, writing. I have changed my style to suit my new moods, I dyed my hair. I ordered some black gloves to wear since my hands bug me. I built a bedouin tent out of all of my scarves and fabrics I could find. I lay in my little fort and play music and have friends come see me in there. I want to have a dinner party where everyone cooks something with items from the diet. What I want to do is get my camper from Georgia and find someone who has land in Malibu that will let me just camp alone and make art and do my diet and my psychological homework and do yoga. I don't want to be in the city. I feel like I have no purpose here. I gotta figure out how to not go broke in this process. How to keep expressing myself. How to make myself stronger. How to power through and be the woman I want to be. Will blogging about the healing process be interesting to people if I'm not on a horse? I am open to suggestions.
Here is the music video I made