Thursday, October 29, 2009

health. how's that for broad.

this is pretty weighty in comparison to aldis and matthew the checker. but it is on my mind a lot and i'm starting to get pretty peeved. because we are self-employed we have a private insurance policy. we pay out the wazoo for coverage that we never use. i've honestly thought about dropping our policy and if something really huge happens, commit to making payments for the rest of our lives.
(insert the paragraph break that the formatting won't let me......HERE!)
are we healthy by disposition or is it because i make a conscious effort to try to maintain our health? (tim is excluded from any of this. he crumbles quite a few times during the winter because he propels his body with sugar, fast food, and energy drinks. and then crashes and enjoys his magic nyquil. he is a big boy and try as i might, i can't control him. ) yes, the boys get colds and ben has gotten sick a few times, but never anything major. ben has honestly been to the doctor once when he was sick and it was so i could get him tested for whooping cough, which he didn't have. and the doctor's advice-just let it run it's course and give him cough medicine. instead i put a vaporizer in his room and did an herbal chest rub several times a day. would it be easier to drug our kids and be done with it? probably, but i don't think that's right for so many reasons. (max has never actually been to the doctor. we did his well baby checks with our midwife and other than runny noses and a bit of a cough here recently, he's been very healthy.)(and in rereading this, i have to say, ben has only been to an MD once when sick. i have taken him to our awesome chiropractors who do natural stuff several times (which is way more effective-oh the stories i could tell.)

don't get me wrong-i think what most people consider to be conventional medicine has it's place. i'm very thankful that an infection or fever won't likely kill one of my babies. but our society has sooooooooo lost sight of prevention that it sometimes makes me downright angry. and our culture's abuse of medicines is in some cases creating nasty bugs that even our magic medicines can't kill.

now, i don't think i have all the answers, and i'm constantly learning and trying to be better and do better, but i try. i try to keep my little boys away from sweets and teach them the difference between growing foods and treats. we try to keep them well rested and not run then ragged. and when they're under the weather, i really try to watch it-go to bed early, give them supplements, be especially mindful of what they eat. so many people wait till their kids are full blown sick before they even take notice. one of my teachers in massage school often talked about the different states of the body. our culture considers a person to be either sick or healthy. he stressed the idea of wellness vs. illness. just because the fever has broken or antibiotics have been started, the body is still more in the illness realm and needs time and nurturing to return to wellness.

so this isn't a total rant and to keep myself accountable (and in an overall effort to be more organized), this is what i'm going to try this winter.

with breakfast, which is usually home made granola, oats and plain yogurt with cinnamon, or eggs and toast with a glass of raw whole milk, i think i'll try a shot glass of water with a splash of elderberry concentrate and silvershield. (ben loves anything in a special glass. my sister taught me that bit of magic.) they also get their vitamins at breakfast and i'll actually remember to take mine.

lunch i'll be honest is usually peanut butter/honey sandwiches and apples. but at least it's whole wheat bread and natural peanut butter. so really it's not bad.

afternoon snack-this is the one i'm bad about. our mornings have a pretty normal structure, but afternoons since ben cut out his nap have been a bit chaotic. i forget about snack and then it's usually 4 o'clock, ben's hungry, i'm tired, and i just give him chips and milk-he's happy and quiet and i'm off the hook. then he doesn't want to eat dinner and blah, blah--afternoons can be our downfall. sooo-i'm going to offer home made crackers and cheese or nuts. and a glass of milk. if i've made some banana bread or muffins, great, but if not, at least i'll have something on hand.

and for dinner, my goal is to ALWAYS have a veggie, which is something i've gotten really bad about because tim and ben won't eat them. ben won't even put them in his mouth, making the one bite rule difficult. it really frustrates me because as a baby and toddler, he was an awesome eater. but i must, must, MUST keep offering them. and no milk, because ben will totally just fill up on milk if allowed to. which, honestly isn't a bad thing. (jako milk really deserves it's own post.) so maybe the milk as a bribe to eat the dinner.

i'm also thinking about adding tea in there some where because i think it can be both healthful and relaxing, but not sure where.
sorry to anyone who is still reading. i get overwhelmed by meal planning and shopping because i try to offer way too much variety. but my boys don't like variety and it makes me work harder. so now i can visually see that really, i just need to keep those staples on hand, toss in a little variety when the mood strikes me, and we'll all be happy. and life will be simpler. and that is a good thing.

and just to lighten things up/redeem this post/enforce my need for crutch children, this is what my guys were doing while i wrote this.


  1. Oh how I really like this post. I could rant on and on and on about health and wellness and diet, and taking care of your kids, and today's view of "medicine" etc. etc. etc. I'll refrain for now because quite frankly I'm hungry and need to eat lunch, (ironic, I know) but I am soooooo with you. Kudos!

    Talk to ya soon, I'd love to chat about all this in person.

  2. By the way, you use Standard Process, right? That is what we have, and Gemma LOVES her bimibims. She also takes some Fish Oil and we've started giving her kelp which she chews as if it were candy and I think that is just the most totally gross thing in the world, but who am I to say. I think the vitamins have a certainly "coolness" factor because mommy and daddy take them...she wants them out of a bowl, just like where I get mine (it's scary how much she is like me sometimes) and I can often eek several more bites of lunch out of her with the promise of bimibims to come!!

    Aaron has a poster in his office of a little girl pointing to a chalkboard with a chart of stick-people labeled "Sick" "Not Sick" and "Well", and I've always thought that was super-cool, and a very good explanation of "wellness" in terms that even a child can understand.

    Just more thoughts. Now off to be productive (??) whilst the wee one naps.

  3. you're often self-depricating in your posts and i wish you wouldn't be. you're really extremely creative and a pretty awesome mom, children doodling and all. you sell yourself short. i love reading about your insights into life and clearly everyone else does too so just roll with it, no need to explain yourself.

  4. Well said Mary! I could not agree with you more about diet and health, Jason and I have not had insurance for a little over 1 1/2 years and we have not needed it. I can't remember the last time Jude or Annika went to the doctor. I have seen over the years the better I eat the healthier I am and I am always trying to improve more on our diet.

    I like the pictures of the body art, very cute!

  5. good post mary. i can attest that for my own poor health in college a good dose of arnold whole foods and vitamins has brought to feel the best i can remember. this is so crucial for me too, and i often feel like i spend an inordinant amount of time thinking, cooking, buying and searching for good food. but you have reminded me WHY i do this.

  6. ohh!! i am sooo excited that dillon's has their own white whole wheat flour. i mean REALLY excited. thanks for posting that.
    also, we must have had the same thoughts going through our minds lately, because i just posted about milk. too funny.

  7. Well said to you and to Michelle in her comment to you! You are who you are and we love who you are! ;)
    I have always wondered what your thoughts are really about health and eating and well this post was very clarifying and inspiring. I agree with so much of what you said! I guess this is why we are good friends. :) It makes me laugh when people (insurance companies) talk about covering preventative care visits yet they don't pay for visits to the chiropractor or for any of my supplements or homeopathics, etc.
    By the way: I saw Monica tell you about the Green Juice and I really like it. It's taste is good, even yummy sometimes (except in 1st trimester!) And it doesn't have unneccessary 'extras' or fake things. I have been out for days now and can tell!
    yikes this comment is too long! I just really liked what you said!

  8. Ok, I have to say something else. Nicholas went to his first MD appnt when he was 2 and so far James has had no need either. Which is good since the dr's office is basically a flu pool right now.
    Also, have you thought of trying some sort of a special once a week tea/snack time/reading time with the boys? We've done this every now and then and it's always lovely. ;)
    I love you accountability plan, I may 'borrow' it!

  9. oh Mary, have you found a good recipe for home-made crackers?