wants

THE SECOND STRAP

He always reaches for the second strap.

It doesn’t matter how many hundreds of times I have put this walking boot on, he reaches for that second strap to help out.

Most of you know I have been in a walking boot since early August.  This has been an overuse injury do to my climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro back in March.  Actually it didn’t happen on the mountain, it was when I got home and never took the proper time to rest that the injury happened.  And beyond that I have been dealing with plantar fasciitis off and on for the past 4 years in my left foot.  It was simply the perfect storm of events.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Second Strap - Dr Erica Peabody

The trip to Mt. Kilimanjaro was life changing and amazing however since Kilimanjaro it has been the best seven months of my life and all due to meeting one heck of an incredible man.

He has been such a light in my life and I will be sharing our incredible life adventures as we go but I wanted to introduce you all to Mike.

He is the most kind, gentle, generous, hilarious and loving man I have ever been around and I feel lucky to even be able to hang out with someone like him on a regular basis and even luckier to be loved and supported by him.

The other day as I was leaving to head back into work after my lunch, he was there grabbing the boot and helping me.  Of course I am the only one that knows exactly when I am putting it on and taking it off but as soon as I grab and velcro or un-velcro the first strap, he always grabs the second strap.  I got choked up “Even after all this time, how do you just keep doing that and helping me?”

Last week must have marked 500 (not exaggerating) times or so that I have taken this boot off and put it back on.  If he is with me, he jumps up from any place and is instantly up in my business and helping me get this thing back on and he is always fast enough to grab the second strap.  There are 5 total and by the time he has his hands on the second strap he is fixing the rest of them up for me to go out and take on the world.  Every.  Single.  Time.

We have worked and camped and traveled and danced and played since I have had this boot on.  He is always always always making sure it is handled.

There is an air pump on the boot that pumps air around the liner and softens the hard rough corners of the boot.  He knows it takes 8 pumps to pump it up to a comfortable level and that when I stand up it needs 2 more pumps of air for it to be solid.  He counts out loud as he does it.  It comforts me.

I have never ever known a man so willing to help me in my life.  He is there for the fun times but also there, right by my side for the mundane-ness of life…like taking this boot off and putting it back on.  The extent of his help is endless, I am just using this simple task as illustration.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - The Second Strap - Dr Erica Peabody

I would be a liar if I said this has all been easy for me but honestly, to accept help in my life isn’t easy to begin with and it has taken this long to really be alright with leaning on him.  His continual willingness to grab that second strap has been eye-opening, as well as mind-boggling.  For the 40 years of my life so far, I have never had so much help, love and support.

Does it sound strange to say that I believe the Universe sent me such a crazy injury that needed so much tending to and sent him at the same time just so I could truly have a shift in my being and allow him to infiltrate my life?  Does it sound crazy that this boot has been like a “boot camp” of sorts to break me down, break all the guards down and teach me to allow someone, him, in?

A friend said to me the other day “I sympathize with your foot thing as I dealt with something similar for 6 months.  It took me getting to a place in my mind that if this is how it was going to be for the rest of my life, if this pain is permanent and I have to deal with this limitation for life, I accept that as my reality…and then I started healing.”

That hit me like a ton of bricks mostly because I have learned to accept it into my life with the condition that it is just for the time being assuming it will heal and feel better.  But taking the idea up a level to the concept that if I have to live in this boot for the rest of my life and be alright with that has really allowed a huge emotional release for me and I can feel the healing happen…on many levels.

…because if I get to have his help with this (which I am finally healing so I will be back to normal in the next few weeks so I won’t need help with it for a lifetime BUT there are ALWAYS other obstacles) life for the rest of my life, I open my arms and heart fully and accept it.

After all of these months and never wavering ever even once, I know he will always be by my side ready to grab that second strap and help me move forward.  I am forever grateful for his love.

 

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FOUNDATION

If you are following me on this journey, you know that I am currently building a house. In fact, this week they are finishing with the foundation.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Foundation - Dr Erica Peabody This house project is about 1 year delayed but it is a tricky lot and there has been a lot of time spent on putting in the foundation. The house is set back into a hill and so the foundation has to be done in pieces and locked together.
The house project has been going on for quite a while and the one right next door finished just about a month ago. Of course because that one is ahead of us, it puts a bit of pressure from outsiders that are wondering why they aren’t finished at the same time. What they don’t realize is that the neighbors had their house plans in the works even before I had dreamed of purchasing my lot. Their efforts began much before mine did, but sitting side by side, onlookers forgot about that part.
I am fascinated by demolition as well as construction and I am the homeowner that sits on the sidelines, literally on the sidelines, and watches as much of the process as possible in person. I have a very talented builder working on my house and have been sitting right by his side since the very first line was drawn.
I feel very lucky to be part of the process but also even luckier to be privy to the very beginnings and all pieces along the way.
Currently it is difficult to not spend every extra minute out there watching what they are doing on a day to day basis.Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Foundation - Dr Erica Peabody It started with excavation and then on to footings. Footings started with just boards for forms and then the cement was poured. At this point it felt like something was actually happening.
The next was forms for the foundation. Watching the crew work so hard and putting together this steel puzzle that would eventually be the foundation of my home, absolutely fascinating. I have an incredible team hired to do the foundation and to watch as they all worked together to make this thing happen was really interesting.
Then the pump truck pulls in and they start filling the forms with cement. I sat there and watched from the neighbor’s stairs as this puzzle soon became my basement.
It has been a beautifully sunshiny fall here in Michigan and that day was no exception. It was in the low 60s and the sun was shining on my face as I sat and watched them do this process.
I have been in awe of this entire building process but to actually watch something like this come together, I called my builder and said “It must be so gratifying to watch lines on paper become something!”
Not everyone will get a chance to put a mark on the Earth.
Not everyone who does get a chance to build will be able to watch the process every step of the way.
In that moment, I realized how strongly I was fighting back tears of

Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Foundation - Dr Erica Peabody

gratitude. I had to have the events of my life to line up exactly the way they did in order to be able to have this chance. During this long and drawn out process, I had no idea if it was going to actually happen and, truthfully some of the process has been very very difficult and some of it actually quite painful.
The nay-sayers will always be there. The ones that want to give opinions on what to do and how to do it will always be waiting in the wings to chime in. I have heard “Do this.” “Don’t do that.” “Have you considered this?” “If I were you, I wouldn’t do that.”
Yup, you know what? We got this covered. There is a reason, well many many reason, why I am chosen the particular builder I am working with. In the midst of all of this I am confident he has it handled as he has shown me over and over and over.
In a moment, those tears of gratitude busted through the surface and I was balling.
Of course I am sure this looked so bizarre to the crew of guys that a woman would sit on the sidelines and ball her eyes out. It was a combination of tears along with laughter as it must have been a pretty bizarre energy coming through from me (I caught some of this in my instagram story:  follow me @drericapeabody)
So I am in this. I have been in this but I am truly in this in a way that I can feel it from head to toe. I have created this beautiful home in my mind for years now. It is amazing to see the beginnings of its foundation, a foundation that has so much strength it is palpable.
This also rolls over to the fact that I am currently building a strong foundation for my life in other ways. Using the visual of the powerful foundation that is built for my home as a vision for my future, I have confidence it will be able to withstand the many tests that come with time.

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Type 2

This morning I was reminded about Type 2 fun.

Have you heard of Type 1 and Type 2 kind of fun?

So here is the deal.  Type 1 fun is something you do that is super fun to be doing.  It is fun, brings a lot of joy, usually a lot of laughter and lots of good feelings.  An example would be going to a carnival where there are lots of peopleChiropractor Fenton Michigan - Type 2 - Dr Erica Peabody Headstand having lots of fun, smiles around every corner, giggles and laughter and rides and treats and good feelings.  It is very clear that you are having fun as well as anyone with you is also clearly having fun.

Type 2 kind of fun is something totally and completely different than that, yet still considered fun.  Type 2 fun is work, usually really hard work.  It is grinding away at a goal or mission for the sake of the accomplishment.  During the activity, there is usually a lot less of what people would consider actual fun.  It can be treacherous, hard, miserable, painful, all kinds of unpleasant experiences can happen during Type 2 kind of fun.  Exercise is often Type 2 fun.

The yoga classes that I attend are Type 2 kind of fun. Often it is not fun during the process.  It is treacherous, hard, moments of absolute misery, pain and very very unpleasant.  One of my instructors thinks you should “do something every single day that makes you nauseated because it’s so hard” and that “every yoga class should be a near death experience,” and he doesn’t back down However, big rewards happen because of attending class that drives us to come back for more and more and more.

“That was awful.  I hate this place.  I’ll be back tomorrow.” -a common thought in a yogi’s mind after finishing a class.

If you have been following this blog or my journey in life, I would give you one wild guess as to the most intense Type 2 kind of fun I have had recently, or actually ever.

The trek up Mt. Kilimanjaro was Type 2 kind of fun.  Training was Type 2 fun.  Moments of connecting with the rest of the group and going through our days were quite pleasant but the overall trip was so freakin’ intense!

I remember the first day, we all stopped and were taking a little snack and “bathroom” break about 4 hours in and I was standing with a group of about 5 women.  One asked “how are you?”  The response of the first one she asked was “I’m doing well.  I’m making it.”  It was asked again and a real similar response to the first.

Then that “how are you?” question got directed at me.

Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - Type 2 - Dr Erica PeabodyMy answer, “I am absolutely miserable.  My right shoulder feels like there is a knife stabbing into it and it is progressively getting worse.  My feet are the most painful I can ever remember them being and I am hot and sweaty and sticky.  NONE OF THIS IS OKAY AND I AM NOT GOING TO PRETEND IT IS!”…and then I started crying.

Of course this was only 4 hours into the first day so I wasn’t going to sob in front of these women I just met but I was an absolute wreck inside.

I had no idea that I would come to a moment similar to that on each one of the next 7 days.  This was not fun.  In fact there were moments during the trip that I thought to myself “if I am off of work right now, I would much prefer to be doing a fraction of the amount of work I am currently doing.  I work so hard all year I could use these next few days and just chill out, why am I even here????”

Commitment to this trip for myself and all of you following the journey kept me in high enough spirits to get through these daily meltdowns.

The good thing about Type 2 fun is it has HUGE PAY-OFFS and I mean HUGE!!!  …the real trick is that the fun shows up between 2-4 weeks after the fact BUT then that lasts for a lifetime.  Type 1 fun is fun in the moment, but aside from a few incredible memories made within a lifetime, Type 1 fun, although super duper fun, is short-lived.

WHOA Travel, the adventure company that I traveled with for the Kilimanjaro trip, just sumitted their next group on the Solstice last week.  I watched their progress through facebook and Instagram and had a chance to relive it a little bit.  In fact, I felt nervous for them as though I was trekking that whole path again.

Many have asked me if I have a desire to go back and do it again.  Remember what I just said, Type 2 fun shows up a few weeks later…and lasts a LIFETIME!!!  If the stars align and something like that trek shows up in my life again, I am the type that will figure out a way to say “yes” if I can.  However more than anything else, I am hoping stars are aligning for me in other big ways in my life at this point as I pursue both Type 1 and Type 2 fun.

 

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60 EXTRA HANDS

Most of you know that I grew up with 3 brothers. If I could possibly explain to you my childhood in 3 simple words, I would call it “three against one”. Always…and I was on the losing side of that scenario.

I am not used to being around women for extended periods of time.  Of course I have a lot of incredible women in my life, I have personal time with them in doses.  The thought of spending and entire 8 days together with 30 other Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - 60 Extra Hands - Dr Erica Peabodywomen was an intimidating factor of my trip to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro.  However, in retrospect, those 30 women changed my life forever for the good.

I would say probably around a third of the women on this trip had children at home.  Women, in general, are naturally helpful and the “mom” energy of the crowd ran strong and deep.  If ANYONE, and i mean ANYONE, needed ANYTHING, someone was stepping up to help out, assist others and offer additional supplies.  And when I use the word “someone” I am actually talking about 3-5 “someones” because the generosity of this particular group of women was palpable.

We were in this trek together.  And when I look out at the broader picture of life, we are ALL IN THIS TOGETHER.  

I am not one to ask for assistance, I have been able to accomplish a lot in my life on my own.  When I am exposed to 8 solid days of really intense activity with such an incredible group of women willing to literally give you the shirt off their backs, it changed me.  The consistency of having those 60 extra hands willing to share, give and serve me in the time of need with anything they have to spare…I am forever grateful.  I learned from them it is okay to ask for help as I stand shoulder to shoulder with such willing souls to offer help.  Of course the culmination of this I wrote about already (click here–>>) “Don’t Die With Your Daypack On”.  Such a POWERFUL lesson!!!

I returned to my normal life back in Fenton with a different perspective about asking for assistance.

I know that my willingness to accept help from others has also taken me to a different place as well.  I have some amazing friends, a couple specifically I am referring to, that stand shoulder to shoulder with me as I progress through my days.  When I ask for help or need assistance with something, their consistent support has continued to help me evolve to a new version of myself.

“If you want to go fast, go alone.  If you want to go far, go together.”  -African Proverb

The picture I have added to the post is not a picture I took, however it is a really good representation of how I view this helpful world now.  To have 60 extra hands ready to assist in making this life and world a little bit easier for me, what a gift.  I love you Kili Dadas!!  Thank you for everything!!!

 

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THIS IS WHAT I SEE

So this is what I see…

Many people left the state for spring break.  Many people went down south to the sun, sand and beaches and had a blast.  All the stresses of ordinary life fall away while out of their normal environment.

I have seen many of these people back in my office, Cafe of LIFE Chiropractic, this week.  They say things like: “My low back pain was fine while I was gone but just a couple days before returning home, it started to flare up again.”  “I did a 28 hour drive to Florida and back and I was fine, but now that I am back that sciatic pain is back.”  “We had a great time, we were swimming and walking on the beach and my shoulder really relaxed.  Now that I am home and running around all over for normal life, that shoulder is driving me crazy.”Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - This is what I see - life

One of the reasons we LOVE vacation is because we get a break from the grind of the day to day, we get to let go and maybe smile a little bit more, connect with the people that are important and fill our days with conversation and laughter.  We become light and live that light and actually enjoy the lightness of being.

I want to know who made the rule that regular life cannot be like that.  I have a bone to pick with whomever said we cannot enjoy the lightness of our being while running kids around, taking care of our homes, going to work and whomever is spreading the idea that we shouldn’t smile through the good, bad and the ugly during the mundane-ness of life?

We can…and we should.

If life becomes that enjoyable while we are away from it all, maybe we could be doing a little better job at enjoying it while we are in the thick of it.

I have used this phrase quite a bit over the past week or so…”Life just really isn’t that serious.”

I really mean it when I say that but I don’t mean that it is all rainbows and butterflies either.  It just means that your rate of making it through your days so far is 100% and, until you are at the end, I bet that rate stays right up there at 100%;)  If you ask me, we are all doing a heck of a good job and that is pretty freaking amazing!!

So let’s think about it.  We get up in the morning and of course that part is really important.  But what happens if you burn breakfast, run out of eggs and spill your bowl of fruit right down the front of your favorite white shirt as soon as you leave the house.  I bet you will find something else for breakfast and make a joke of your outfit to those who ask and go on with your day.  I bet you will gracefully figure out all parts of your day and in the end make it out with flying colors!

There can be trauma and drama along the way and I am in no way trying to minimize that, some really bad stuff happens to good people.  However when we take a look at the bigger picture, most of it isn’t that big of a deal and isn’t worth much additional energy.  Chiropractor Fenton Michigan - This is what I see - love life

And during the days that we do not get to spend on the sandy beaches in the sunshine, what about creating that feeling of being on sandy beaches and out in the sunshine?  I do not mean by creating a literal beach in your life, I mean by finding things to regularly do that bring you to the feelings you feel when you are there, things that make you feel more connected to nature and the Universe, things that connect you more to your community and activities and people that bring you joy.

What about finding more laughter, even if it means taking on a joke-telling hobby?  What if you woke up tomorrow and you set an intention of finding out what everyone’s favorite joke is?  What if you started just telling the joke “why did the chicken cross the road?”  Making other people laugh, will make you laugh.  That is just one idea of how to lighten the day.  One lighter day leads to 2 lighter days which leads to weeks and months and years of a lighter life.

When life is light, the contrast of vacation will not be quite as much and the settling in of daily life will take on an easier and more graceful feeling.  A lighter life leads to a healthier mind, less stress, more joy and in the long run, greater health!!!

As a chiropractor, I see all kinds of ailments, aches and pains and usually they are stemmed from something happening somewhere along the lines in life; physical stresses, mental/emotional stresses and chemical stresses.  When we realize that the low back tension, the sciatic pain and the shoulder pain and stiffness are, not always but largely, exacerbated from the heaviness of our thoughts and  stress and the anticipation of our normal life, we can really start to let some of the stuff go.  Monday will be Monday. Tuesday will be Tuesday.  Wednesday will be Wednesday…and so on.  They have no real meaning until we place a meaning on them.  If we wish them all away in hopes the weekend will get here sooner or vacation will get her sooner, or summer break will get here sooner…WE ARE MISSING OUT ON LIFE!!!

Let’s lighten the days.  It starts in our minds and in our hearts.  Let go of the pattern of dreading the mundane, that has become a bad habit.  Let go and laugh more with your children, cut some slack to the car that just cut you off in traffic and be grateful for every single sunrise and every single sunset you get to experience.

Life is really not all that serious…this is what I see.

 

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LACE CURTAINS

I moved into my home over 4 years ago.  If you have even been to my home or driven by, you may have noticed the lace curtains in the window at the front of the house (although more than likely you have not, they are unremarkable).  I am not a fan of lace curtains.

I have a very different style to my home and my practice that doesn’t really fit with lace curtains.

So let me explain…this particular lace-covered window is above my 2-car garage.  There is an unfinished bonus room above my garage currently being used for storage.  It has 2 nice sized windows, one at the front by the driveway and one towards the back that faces house.  The one on the driveway side is the one with the lace curtains, nothing on the other.

For the first few years I lived there, I hadn’t give those lace curtains a lot of attention.  I would see them Chiropractor Fenton Michigan Lace Curtainswhen I pulled in and out of my garage, however aside from that, they are not on my mind at all.  They are just sort-of there.

Over the past couple years, I have noticed them as the last thing I see when I leave and the first thing when I pull back into my driveway.  They are pretty, harmless and unremarkable.

But they are not me.  Not at all.

For the past 2 years, I have tried to figure out what window coverings I should replace those with.  What color should I put there?  Should it have some sort of texture?  Should it give you a hint to textures and colors used in the house?  Should they just be plain white like the siding on that part of the house?  Should they be loud and obnoxious?  Should they be long or short?  I am not a designer, but I have a feel that I always go for with my home and work spaces and these silly curtains had raised a lot of questions.

It is also one of those things that I need to be able to feel out, one of those things that I needed to try out a couple different colors and textures to know for sure.  But who really wants to go to the store and buy a few different options and drive in and out of the driveway until I got it right???  Not me!

In the past 6 weeks I have started to do some research.  There are a lot of homes with that same bonus room/window set-up above the garage (and maybe now that I mention it, you will notice it yourself).  My research consisted of driving around and seeing what other people have done with said window.

My private research has shown that most leave that window uncovered.  It isn’t a room that you would need to block the world out of.  It also is a place that there is not enough light on a regular basis to make out anything but silhouettes of what is being stored, which is no big deal.

So I didn’t want to completely commit to uncovered windows after being covered for so many years, so I went up there and pulled the curtains all the way to the side so that they appeared uncovered from the outside.  And I have now been driving in and out of my garage and have a huge smile on my face because of how many years I have pondered this silly decision.

It is funny to me because this entire time I had always wanted to just replace the covering and change the look of it all and had never once, prior to just 6 weeks ago, ever even considered that idea.

I think it is funny how the mind works like that sometimes…it wants to replace every little thing in life instead of just getting rid of it altogether.  I have noticed this lately in my life as I am getting more minimalist (Mom, I never said I am a true minimalist, just better with less) with the things I have in my home all the way down to my wardrobe and shoes.  I do not have to replace stuff with more stuff, and so many times it just feels better to dump it than to add more.

I am super grateful for this new perspective.  I am also really grateful to have made a final decision and allowing full sunlight in that bonus room.  It is the silliest place to learn a life lesson, I had no idea I could learn so much from those lace curtains.

 

 

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"YOU GET WHAT YOU NEED"

There is a song that runs through my mind lately, mostly because I have heard it so much on my Rusted Root Pandora Station (a highly recommended station, by the way), but also because after I hear it, my mind ponders the message for quite some time. It goes something like this…

“You can’t always get what you want.
You can’t always get what you want.
You can’t always get what you want.
But if you try sometime…you just might find…
YOU GET WHAT YOU NEED!”
 

I have had some very interesting life lessons over the past years, as I am sure we all have. I have a strong conviction that although we are presented with most things tChiropractor Fenton Michigan - Dr Erica Peabody - You get what you need hat are WAY outside our control, by the use of gratitude and a strong focus on what we want, we are powerful creators of our lives and experiences. I also realize that sometimes the things that we think we want in our lives or experiences that we want to have happen, are very limiting in the grand scheme of things. There is a much bigger picture to this life than what we can actually see and grasp with our thoughts.

Have you ever sat down and wrote out goals? made a “to do” list? Have you ever thought about what you would like to have happen in 5 years? 10 years? Have you ever quieted down your life enough and heard things come from inside that sounded like “I want a new job.” “I want to make more money.” “I want to be in a relationship.” “I want to be in a different relationship.” “I want a new house.” “I want a new car.” “I want to win the Mega-Millions.” Does any of that sound familiar?

What LIFE has taught me is that what we call our “wants” are very limiting. If ALL and ONLY our wants came to fruition, we would live a small life. Now, when I say small, I don’t mean that in a negative way, more the idea that it would be limiting, like looking over a lake and seeing that as the only possibility of a large body of water without having any concept of the ocean.

Having a direction and steering life with GRATITUDE can open up limitless possibilities. Our “wants” are one thing…but what happens if you don’t get what you “want”? I have a strong faith in the concept that LIFE sends the perfect people, things and experiences to us in the perfect timing in order for us to maximize our potential for learning, growth and evolution. In the moment, it may be very difficult to see the perfection…but most of you have probably experienced that in retrospect it was exactly what you needed. So in other words it is true that…”YOU CAN”T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU…but you just might find YOU GET WHAT YOU NEED!” Be open to the amazing twists and turns of LIFE, take some risks and get outside of your box of “wants”…we only get one chance.
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