Why I haven't been to a doctor's office in a few years
Years ago I began a journey of self-healing. Most of y’all know my story about being diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (who doesn’t have anxiety…??) and wanting to get off my meds. I did that.
And I've spent the last 10 years of discovering, researching, connecting to, and reclaiming MY BODY.
I do not ever want a doctor to know more about my body than I do.
I do not ever want to have to ask someone else why I feel the way I feel.
I do not ever want to have to put chemicals in my body to reduce symptoms of a bigger issue.
and I won’t.
To me, it’s not a big deal that I haven’t been to a doctor in many years. It’s not a big deal that I shell out over $100 for my annual exam so that I can see the midwife of my choice. It’s not a big deal that I know every detail about my monthly cycle including the day that I can feel myself ovulating.
It’s not a big deal because it’s taken me YEARS to get here. It didn’t happen overnight. It’s not some magical secret that all of a sudden I can read the signs of my body and take care of myself accordingly.
I get asked questions every single day that I easily answer off the top of my head-
“What herbs are best for me if I have really painful periods?”
“What can I do to balance my hormones so that I stop having month-long periods?”
“How can I figure out what MY body needs to eat, without being influenced by marketing and fad diets?”
These answers are all inside of me- not just in my brain but in my body because I LIVE this. But I didn’t go to school to learn it. My college degree didn’t teach me about the four phases of my menstrual cycle and how my energy levels change and what self-care practices are best for each phase. My high-paying communications job didn’t teach me how to mix different herbs for preventative care.
I learned this stuff on my own. And you can too.
The biggest question that I get after I host a workshop on women’s wellness is, “How did you have time to learn all of this?”
I MADE the time. My priorities were a lot different from other 20-something’s around me. My money didn’t go to shopping or movies or bars- it went to books and workshops and classes and high quality food and herbs.
My time wasn’t spent on Netflix series or vacations.
I didn’t feel like I had a choice. My body was warning me, through my anxiety, to learn how to take care of myself. And so I did.
Many of our bodies don’t give us a warning until it’s often too late. Frequently, it’s not until someone gets cancer or has a heart attack that they drastically shift their life to one of mindfulness and healing.
That’s because of the type of society we live.
The things that we are taught to value are external, fast, productive, and most of all- distracting.
Every where we turn, we are met with something to keep us from looking within. Because we want to deny that pain exists; we want to turn a blind eye to depression and illness- it’s easier that way.
Until we get sick. Then we rush to the doctor or the health food store and we cram as many vitamins and supplements as we can into our bodies and crash until we get better.
And then we forget about healing until it happens again. And we suppress the pain or the sickness with medicine, we make the symptoms go away and it does, until it happens again and… you see where I’m going with this.
I like to think of self-healing as like taking a shower. If you went months or years without showering, you’re going to get pretty stinky and not feel so good. So without even thinking about it, you take part in an almost daily ritual of cleansing your skin. That’s great because our skin is the biggest organ on our body. But when we do we clean the rest of it?
I’m a HUGE non-believer in cleanses and juice fasts and diets. There’s nothing you need to “flush” out of your system if you don’t cram it full of toxins regularly.
And health food stores? They have some of the most unhealthy food products ever- but it’s marketing. I say save your money, eat basic foods that your great grandparents would have eaten and most of all…
use common sense.
That alone will get you a lot farther than ignoring your body, hoping the doctor knows best, and continuing to push through everything.
Like the seasons, our bodies and our energy and our health waxes and wanes. There are times when we need to rest, times to be more active and foods to eat, according to those seasons.
Have you ever craved an ice cold smoothie when it’s snowing outside? Or a hot bowl of cozy soup when it’s 100 degrees out in the summer? Probably not; your biology won't let you.
We are animals- plan and simple. Our human bodies have not evolved in 10,000 years… so it’s up to us to keep returning back to the primal and simple actions that our ancestors relied on:
rest, good calories, active movement, community, and ritual
So, will a doctor ever know more about my body than me?
No. Because even if right now, I stopped learning anything new, I have a wealth of information about how to care for myself.