A Healthy Dose of Gratitude
I was recently asked by Dr. Mario Trucillo of the American Recall Center to participate in their Who Keeps You Healthy? campaign. The American Recall Center is a new website dedicated to providing information on medical device and pharmaceutical recalls and general health information. I really like their values: Educate, Trust, Empower, Advocate, and I appreciate their vision not only to inform, but also to be informed by the community that shares their stories on the site. Thank you, Dr. Trucillo, for considering Grackle & Sun for this campaign. I am happy to support health advocacy in any way I can.
Who keeps me healthy? My first thought was I do! I am my own health hero (hear me roar)! Tru fax to be sure. However, although I am proud of my hard work and effort, it is only a small fraction of the whole in my wholistic health journey. With closer reflection, I realized that I was experiencing a knee-jerk reaction—a defensive response after years of learning the hard way that I had to be a hardass, lookout-for-number-one advocate for my health in a system that frequently leaves patients confused, frustrated, and unhealed when they should be informed, confident, and above all, cared for. It was this last bit that got me thinking.
Care is the heart of it all. Healthcare. In my struggle to find solutions to illness, I often wished that health and healing could be more straightforward, more systematic: do A, B, and C and voila! Healthy! But it doesn’t work like that. We are human, and we are more complicated than any amount of kale can fix. We are human, and we do not need maintenance. We need care. It is not only our own caring that starts the healing process, it is the care that we receive from others that truly heals. It is this caring that supports us, nurtures us, and shows us that our good health matters.
I’ve been very fortunate to have incredibly supportive family and friends—people who have not only cheered me on and even joined me as I changed my diet and started working out, but also many who, through their own actions, research, and advocacy, showed me a better way. I am thankful for all of them. Most of all, I am thankful to the one person who has held my hand through good times and bad, sickness and health—my husband, David. He has been a spring of encouragement, compassion, and support. So, in honour of the Who Keeps You Healthy campaign, I am writing a thank you letter from my heart to my heart. With gratitude and love.
Thank you for encouraging me to always strive to be better and healthier, and thank you for always loving me as I am no matter what.
Thank you for being supportive of my countless hours of research and not ever rolling your eyes when I tried something new in my quest to not be sick.
Thank you for trusting me, even when the doctors didn’t, that Hashimoto’s and hypothyroidism really was jacking me up that bad and that the connection between diet and auto-immune disease is for realz.
Thank you for all the steamrolling (massages) when my migraines made me want to curl up and die. Or hurl. Usually all three.
Thank you for cooking amazing food for our family, and for never, ever complaining about my crazy food intolerances. Not even when I did the raw thing.
Thank you for getting on my ass about exercising and being patient with me even when I whined and complained and maybe even stomped my foot, not that I’d admit it.
Thank you for telling me how proud you are of me doing the whole awesome workout thing. And for not mentioning it when I slack off. And for happily commiserating with the pain of working out again at our age.
Thank you for doing the whole Paleo thing with me. It has helped more than you can know.
Thank you for being compassionate through my struggles with anxiety and depression, which have been many and terrible. And thank you for always being there at the other end of the tunnel, smiling.
Thank you for always reading the labels to make sure our food is safe for me to eat.
Thank you for never thinking I was crazy even when I started to wonder if I was crazy trying to figure out all this crazy migraine/thyroid/allergy/IC business.
Thank you for knowing when I need greens. And when I need chocolate. And when I think I need chocolate but really need greens.
Thank you for being in full command of mad cooking skillz.
Thank you for being awesome.
Thank you for being with me.
Thank you for listening.
Thank you for caring.