The title of my blog, "Reaping My Harvest", comes from Galatians 6:9 which basically says "Keep on doing good, for at the proper time you will reap a harvest if you do not give up." I got this from the Salvation Army. I wish I could say I was diligent enough to have originally found it in one of the eight Bibles I own, but I didn't; I was making a donation to the Salvation Army and there it was on their website. Now I use it as my daily reminder to do the best I can, with what I have, right now, because I know my hard work will be rewarded, even if its only in my own satisfaction of a job well done.
To make a short story long, I have a condition called Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), which ironically enough have very little to do with my ovaries, but way more to do my blood sugar, insulin levels, and overall health--especially things I would have never thought to be related. My specific variety of PCOS comes with high insulin resistance (IR), which basically means my body produces more insulin than it uses, and doesn't even use what it produces efficiently enough, so it tricks itself into thinking "hey, I need more!" so it continues to produce more and more insulin which causes, among other things, weight gain, acne, hair loss and potentially infertility which of course then leads to exhaustion, depression, anxiety--all things that make the PCOS worse. The majority of this blog will be PCOS related, not because I'm complaining about it, but because I have a good deal of friends and family who know I have this "P-something" and don't really understand it but want to.
In the beginning, my posts will likely be filled with lots of background, unreferenced information, because this blogging is a type of stress-management for me--another key factor in controlling my PCOS. I've always liked to write, and now thanks to the interwebz, I can write and if anyone wants to read it, they can.
So, back to the whole "harvest" thing. I've been doing a lot of reading and research lately, which is dangerous because reading makes people think...and read even MORE! I recently discovered that all the hormones, pesticides and general "crap" the FDA allows to be put in our foods (not just meat either!) are jacking with my hormones even more than the PCOS. So, I have decided to start buying as much of mine (and David's) food as locally, organically, naturally grown as possible and honestly, just knowing that I am making that one change has helped my emotional status a ton!
Now, I already knew that the standard "exercise, eat right, drink water" blah blah blah was the way to help my PCOS along with the twelve--yes twelve--pills I take (or try to take) everyday, BUT recently my doctor informed me that exercise and lifestyle was something like 70% more effective than the God awful metformin I take (which has lovely side effects like b-12 deficiency, hair loss, headaches, perpetual nausea, 'stomach upsets' and smells like rotten fish). So, I thought I would give it a try.
Now, we all know that for crops to grow you have to plant seeds and wait. Yes, there are other steps and TLC, but basically you plant the seeds ans wait. That is exactly what I have been doing: plating my seeds (being as healthy as I thought I could be, taking my pills, exercising occasionally) and waiting. Things got worse. My IR increased, making me feel worse, really messing with my self esteem and making me stress out--making EVERYTHING worse. So, what was I missing? The hard work.
Planting is hard work. Whether it is a hobby, a career or a way to feed your family: planting is not just "plant and wait." You have to work the soil, watch the seasons, study moon phases (?), remove weeds, thin out seedlings, water often--but not too much, and do it every single day. That is HARD work. I know because I watched my Papa do it every season for as long as I can remember until he passed away, but after ALL that work, everyday, we had bushels of every kind of vegetable you can imagine and boy were they delicious! That was his harvest. His hard work paid off in the meals of his family, neighbors, and even strangers. So now I know this is what I have to do: work hard to reap my harvest.
My harvest is my health and Emerson said "the first wealth is health" and I'm obliged to believe he's right. So, this is my first step in working towards my harvest. Starting right now! Not "planning" to start on xx/xx/20xx, right now. Last week I set some goals for myself like waking up on time, walking everyday, buying organically, and taking my pills everyday. I'm happy to honestly report that I did a pretty good job on those, but I didn't walk everyday--and I don't have a good reason as to why not. BUT, I forgive myself and I'm working towards GOALS, not missions, I didn't fail. I just have to learn how to make time for what is really important for me. So, setting goals, working hard, staying consistent and educated--are all part of my planting so I can reap my harvest.
The most exciting goal I achieved was discovering http://athens.locallygrown.net/welcome. This is where I'm going to buy as much of my foodstuffs as possible and I love it! Totally my kind of thing, even though I'm hesitant because I don't want people to think that I'm jumping on any kind of band wagon: I'm jumping on the TRUTH! This stuff is so much better for you, and tastier, and costs about the same as in a grocery store, but keeps the profits in the Athens area, supports local farmers and benefits not only me, but them as well. I have NEVER met the person who makes the Publix milk, nor do I know the addresses of the farms from which Publix gets their greens, eggs, beef, dog treats, bacon--nothing! Locally Grown has food from growers in cities I've either actually been to or could be in within a half-hour or so from my home. That is freaking awesome!
Now, I know this first post has been long winded, but I wanted to get some of what has been on my mind, off my chest. I hope anyone who reads this enjoys learning more about PCOS and my journey with it. I'm happy to talk more or answer questions if anyone wants to know more. Trust me, with all the doctors I've seen trying to figure this thing out, I'm no longer embarrassed to talk about ANYTHING!
Remember, keep on doing good, for at the proper time you will reap a harvest if you do not give up. This is my way of not giving up!