It’s a bit late in the season for spring cleaning but the old cliché claims better late than never, so it is in that spirit that I’m doing some clearing out this week. Early last weekend I started with the closets. Our house is teeny-tiny and so is our furniture so each of three of us who lives here has to do a seasonal switch of our clothing from the storage bins under our beds into dresser drawers down the hall. The boys here aren’t fans of this necessary custom, but I love it. It’s the perfect time to donate those too-tight jeans that I’ve kept rumpled up in the back of the bottom drawer since October, and to sort through Noah’s ever growing collection of graphic t-shirts and get rid of the ones that are stained or too-form-fitting (his very favorite ones I’m collecting in a box in the basement–pretending that one day I will make a quilt or something out of them). I also cleaned out the messy cave-like cupboards under the sink in the kitchen and in the bathroom, throwing away anything that was leaking, sticky or less than half full. (Why do I hold on to almost-used-up bottles of hand soap? Better yet, why don’t I use them up?)
The most significant cleansing I’m doing, though, is of my own sullied and straggly self. My internal world has become a polluted deluge over these past few months. I’ve been crabby and cranky and mean. As I waded ever-deeper into the job-search pool last winter, I watched my anxiety rise to flood levels and the chattering in my head swell to a howling gale. Now that the weather’s warmed and I’ve tried to squeeze myself into shorts and tank tops I’ve realized that my body has gotten softer and squishier, too. So, I decided it was time for some kind of change. A good old American overhaul. A renewal, if you will.
On Sunday I embarked on a seven day raw-food cleanse (basically a week of vegan eating, only raw vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds), guided by the fine folks at Skybaby Yoga who, for the past three years, have supported my community in a raw-food cleanse–replete with restorative yoga classes, discounts at health food stores, a recipe book and a pop-up shop that serves raw juices, snacks and a positive, healthy vibe. It’s sort of like going on a retreat but without leaving home.
I’m only two days into the thing but there is some news to report. The first day of the cleanse was pretty easy, actually–as new and different things can sometimes be. For breakfast I blended up my almond milk and banana smoothie, I made an avocado and kale salad for lunch and whipped up (raw) cauliflower and curry soup for dinner and felt like a rock star. Sipping ginger tea & lemon water throughout the day was so satisfying that I barely gave a thought to the missed glass of rosé I usually pour around 6pm each evening as I start chopping and preparing stuff for dinner. Monday, however, was a bit more of a challenge. I slept well but woke up with a stuffy nose and sore throat. Some folks say that mild illnesses and symptoms like this are to be expected as one’s body works to rid itself of toxins and other yucky stuff. (There’s also a head cold going around so perhaps the extra mucus is nothing more than that.) Nevertheless the ginger and lemon teas help soothe my throat and I have a perfect excuse to rest and read–two activities that slip off of my to-do list with unfortunate regularity.
Cleanses like this are supposed to clean one’s body, but also clarify one’s mind. They can increase a person’s energy, help to boost your immune system, lower cholesterol and improve metabolism. Cleanses have also been known to clear the way for more acute mental focus, renewed happiness and better clarity of purpose. It’s the these last three components that I’m banking my growling belly on. My job search is stagnate, my poems are still unpublished and something’s gotta give. Here in America we persevere until it does, (right?).
More in a day or two…