Lately No. 04 — September 2019
Every month, we publish a post under the category “lately,” where I will share what I’m currently finding helpful in my own continued journey in healing and well-being. While this usually centers around continued education, practice + ritual, and food, today’s post will be a little different. As some of you may have already seen on Instagram, I experienced surprisingly severe cramping during my last period (see IGTV recap here), which hasn’t happened for well over a year. That, plus a subsequent trip to the ER had me saying “okay okay okay I hear you body.”
Three weeks later, and I thought I’d share what I’m consciously doing in order to take care of myself. Body, mind, and spirit.
The Modality of Slow: The first thing that came to mind as I was sitting on a rollaway bed in the ER was that it was imperative to slow down. Besides curating Our Healing House, I run a small design studio called Rowan Made, and balancing the two spaces has proven to be tricky. I’m the kind of person who can go go go and get shit done, without getting distracted. So much so that hours (and sometimes days and weeks) will go by before I realize that my body is begging for me to slow down.
So. I decided not to share any new interviews on OHH for the entire month of September. Sourcing, proofing, and thoughtfully presenting these stories takes time, and I want to do it well, which I cannot do if I am not taking care of myself. Moving forward, I hope to post every OTHER week, instead of weekly. And if I have to adjust even more, I will.
Seed Cycling: Because my endometriosis flare-up centered around my period, I wanted to give seed cycling a try. Previous OHH interviewee Ally Milligan of Loveleaf Co. has a great post on what this entails, but essentially, it’s a method of using specific seeds to boost estrogen in the first phase (follicular) of your cycle and progesterone in the second (luteal).
I opted to simply sprinkle pumpkin and ground flax seeds on my overnight oats for the first phase. But for the second, I made Ally’s vegan brownie bites (with sesame and sunflower seeds) and have two a day.
* I’m seriously skipping over the nuanced details of how and why this works, so again, please read through Ally’s detailed post to learn more.
Fermented Turmeric: I emailed my MFT practitioner after I got home from the ER to see if she had any suggestions on pain management for me moving forward. She sent me a link to one of their clinic’s blog posts on dealing with cycle pain without medication, and while they have several great tips, fermented turmeric jumped out at me straight away with its natural anti-inflammatory effects.
Further research brought me to this post, written by a well known endometriosis awareness advocate, Jessica Duffin. She tried taking fermented turmeric during one of her cycles, without changing anything else, and noticed a major decrease in period related pain. So here I am, taking the same dose. I realize that everyone is different, so I’ll report back. ;)
Moontime Magic: I’ve tried a few tinctures from Wooden Spoon Herbs and decided to give their Moontime Magic blend a try. The main ingredients (cramp bark, wild yam, and yarrow) are beautifully supportive, and although I’m winging it, my intuition has me taking one dropper full per day post ovulation. I’ll up said dosage during my next period on an as need basis.
I’m hoping that all of the above, coupled with (almost) daily yoga and breathwork, will be just what my body needs. I could have so easily labeled this experience a setback (and okay, I did for a hot second). But it wasn’t. It was a reminder that I’m still healing. And that’s okay. I’m listening I’m listening I’m listening. <3
* Update (10/08/19): I’m so happy to report that when my next period came, I experienced next to no pain. I had a little bit of fatigue and general heaviness on day one, mixed with minimal cramping. But nothing that required a heating pad or anything like that. I could walk and talk and live life as I normally would, for which I am so grateful.