Awakening Internal

Personal growth through the eyes of love


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Transformation Tuesday…Transformation Life

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My before picture was taken in my parents kitchen in October 2002 and it stirs so much emotion in my core. A stay at home mother of 4, a wife of almost 7 years, a sister to 2, an aunt to many and more friends than I could count. I was VERY involved in the school my oldest two children were attending, church and religion; wrapped up in the legalities of religion and working nearly full time, volunteering on just about every committee at church, plus doing a weekly, intense bible study that involved an hour or more of study/homework daily! Oh, and did I mention that I’m very OCD over my house and IT.WAS.IMMACULATE. My youngest two children were dressed in boutique attire, my oldest two were involved in sports every season, music lessons, school…..YOU NAME IT! WHEW! I’m tired just thinking about it!!!

Why does my before picture stir so much emotion? Because when I look at my picture, and I will never forget, how deeply I was hurting, how worthless I thought I was, how desperately I wanted to be loved and how desperately I wanted to love and how much I HATED myself. NOW, on the “love front”, I have to give a very insightful disclaimer: Even if I had someone in my life, at the time, that loved me completely, respected me, cherished me and saw my value, I could not have handled it at all because I thought I was worthless and would have never believed in a million years that I would have deserved such a blessing. So, at that time, I had what I felt I deserved.

You might be looking at my before and after picture wondering, HOW did she make such a physical change? Well, it was a process…first physical, then internal, then BOTH. You see, inside my 258 pound body, was ME! I was hiding, building a physical wall around me. This wall was built to protect me from more pain, it ALWAYS gave me great ways to judge and punish myself and make great excuses for when I was rejected or cheated on ( “I don’t blame him for cheating…LOOK AT ME!!!” “I wouldn’t want to have sex with me either, I’m disgusting!!!” and the horrible dialogue went on and on…). In November 2002, I reached out to a doctor to have weight loss surgery (out of serious desperation!!) and in my mind, this was going to solve all of my problems. I had gastric bypass January 31, 2003 and 10 1/2 months later, I was a very healthy weight and wearing my goal size…..yay!!!!!!!! Transformation complete, right??!! My life was NOW perfect, right???!! This solved all of my problems, right??!! Not hardly, the only two things in my life that changed was 1- I couldn’t really use food as a vice anymore and 2- My dress size. My weight loss provided more energy for me to do even more…which kept me busy enough to not have to think..which was the subconscious goal!! I was still being rejected, I STILL wasn’t “enough” to keep his attention and I still thought I was a worthless piece of trash. In September 2004, my marriage came to a point of crisis and we started marriage counseling and then I started one on one counseling…this started my internal changes. My marriage survived another 8-9 years (by the skin of its teeth!), and over that 9 years I dove head first into personal growth and healing. During this 8-9 years, Bikram Hot Yoga was the biggest part of my life for a year (2008) thanks to vanity and pride….seeking to seal the physical transformation, but received a much greater gift…major internal work, spiritual healing and love from a community of the most loving people…WHO KNEW I would gain so much from a great “workout”??!! Through connections, I was introduced to people that, unknowingly at the time, were guiding me on my path to the health/wellness industry.

NOW my life is perfect, right?? Well, yes and no. Yes, because I’m right where I’m supposed to be for a season but it is a challenging season, so it doesn’t “feel” perfect. As I have learned with all of my personal life experiences though, there are no mistakes and everything happens for a reason. There are clear perfections in my life and some of them are my children and my 7 month old granddaughter, check her out!! (what kind of Yaya would I be if I didn’t show her off?!)

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Another perfection in my life, is my relationship with my boyfriend. I am genuinely respected, genuinely cherished, he knows my value and he can see into the depth of my soul and loves me like no other. One of the beautiful aspects of this for me personally, is that because I learned to love myself, I can NOW handle the love that I was so desperate for, many years ago!

Do you have a transformation story to share? Does this article resonate with you and/or help you? I would love to hear from you in the comments section or if you would like to share privately, feel free to email me at michelledancy.healthcoach@gmail.com

Through The Eyes of Love,

Michelle Dancy, CHHC, AADP

Awakening Holistic Healthcare
http://awakening-internal.com

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Spanish Rice and Stuffed Peppers

Ingredients:

1 cup of prepared organic brown rice

1 Can of Organic Black Beans, drained

1 Can of Organic Diced Tomatoes

1 Can of Organic Tomato Sauce

1 green bell pepper

4 Bell Peppers (Red, Yellow and Orange)

1 small organic yellow onion

1 clove of garlic, minced

Himalayan Salt and Black Pepper to taste

Directions:

Sauté onions and bell peppers with one garlic clove minced
Once veggies are sautéed, add a can of diced tomatoes and a can of black beans
Add salt and pepper to season
Add brown rice (make a cup of rice ahead of time. 1 cup of rice and 2 cups of water, bring to boil, turn heat down to low and cover for approximately 40-45 minutes)
Add just enough tomato sauce so the rice isn’t “dry” but it shouldn’t be soupy.
Cut the tops off of red, yellow and orange bell peppers and boil them for 5 minutes and then stuff them with Spanish rice and pour a little bit of the tomato sauce over the top of stuffed peppers and bake on 350 for about 30 minutes (cover with tin foil if they start looking too done).

This is a delicious AND beautiful recipe …ENJOY!


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Roasted Portobello Mushroom

Look at this fab dinner! Lightly toasted Udi’s gluten free baguettes , roasted Portobello mushroom, topped with sauteed onions, peppers and basil and then i topped THAT with fresh baby arugula. All organic ingredients! YUMMMMM…. What’s your fave meal?

mushroom

Ingredients:

Portobello Mushroom

Olive Oil

Clove of Garlic, minced

1/4 Red Onion, Sliced

1/4 Bell Pepper (Red, Yellow or Orange)

Fresh Basil (chopped)

Handful of Arugula

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400

Wash mushroom, break stem off and brush with olive oil and top with 1/2 of your minced garlic, Himalayan salt and pepper to taste.  Put in preheated oven for 12 minutes.

Meantime, while mushroom is roasting, sauté you onions, peppers, chopped stem of mushroom, basil and garlic.  When tender, remove from heat.

Take mushroom out when time is up and top with sautéed veggies and fresh arugula

Did you enjoy this recipe?  Feel free to share with someone that you know would enjoy and comment in the comments section, I’d LOVE to hear from you!

 

 


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Banana Bread-Gluten and Dairy Free

Banana Bread

I have taken a favorite recipe of mine, from my mother and tweaked it so I can have a gluten and dairy free version of banana bread, being that I’m intolerant to both gluten and dairy.  A lot of the time, when I purchase gluten and dairy free breads, I find that they are dry and a little tough…but you will NOT find that with this recipe!!  This banana bread is moist and I mean MOIST and very soft…probably because we really didn’t even give them time to cool down before we started shoving them in our pie hole!!

INGREDIENTS:

Not quite ¾ cup of Grade B maple syrup (organic)

½ cup earth balance shortening

3 ripe bananas (organic)

2 eggs well beaten (local, organic)

1 1/3 Bob’s Red Mill Flour

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup chopped pecans (organic)

Directions:

Cream syrup and shortening together then add bananas and eggs. Put flour, salt and baking soda together separately and mix.  Blend wet and dry ingredients and pecans but don’t over mix.  Bake in a loaf pan for 50 minutes at 350 degrees or in a muffin pan for approximately 12-15 minutes.

When you try this recipe, please comment on this post and let me know just how DELISH you think it is too!!!


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Pumpkin Soup

 

Tis Punkin’ Season!!!

It’s amazing how my body craves foods that are in season. This is something that started about 3-4 years ago for me. Craving foods that are in season; this is how our bodies are designed to operate and if our digestion is working correctly and addictions aren’t driving our cravings, then our bodies will crave what our bodies need AND seasonal. Today I threw together a new creation that I wanted to share with you.

Pumpkin Soup
(It’s important to use organic ingredients every opportunity you can)

Put a spoonful of ghee, butter, earth balance (whatever you use for butter) in your pan to melt.
Puree a few carrots, quarter of a sweet onion, half of a clove of garlic and coconut milk. Add pureed mixture to melted butter and stir in one can of pumpkin. Add a pack of stevia, honey or maple syrup (whatever you prefer),a little vanilla, cinnamon, salt and pepper to taste. Add additional coconut milk if needed to reach desired consistency. Bring to a slow boil, slowly stirring the whole time and cut heat down to low for five minutes.

It’s ready to eat! I did grind a little salt and pepper on top once in my bowl and its delicious!

Let me know if you try it and I’d love to hear what you think about it!  Start to finish took me about 10-15 minutes total, super quick and super easy!

 

Pumpkin Soup


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Roasted Summer Squash

Roasted Summer Squash

Preheat oven to 400°

Ingredients:

1-yellow squash, sliced

1-zucchini, sliced

1-small red onion, sliced

1-handful of mushrooms, sliced

1 cup of pecan pieces

1-clove of garlic, minced

salt and pepper

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and toss with olive oil, sea salt or Himalayan salt and cracked black pepper until all vegetables are coated with the olive oil. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes.  How easy is THAT??!!!

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Some of my fall faves!


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A Growing Year

This, without a doubt, has been a “growing” (aka challenging) year for my children and me.
Here’s to name a few of our growth opportunities:
* The very unexpected death of my 41 year old sister on Christmas Eve
* Divorce
* Being cast into the role of not only being a single mother, but single-handedly raising a teenage girl and a teenage boy. Solo. Alone. Solo. Solo. Oh, and did I mention SOLO??
* My beautiful souls that I have been blessed to care for until they leave the nest, being reduced from having two active parents to one active parent.
* Financial “tightness” due to divorce
* My brave 15 year old daughter had to make the toughest decision this summer. She had to have the love of her life, Phoenix (her beautiful Paint Horse), put down due to eye cancer and another major health issue, both were causing her to suffer immense pain.
* At the beginning of this year, my young teenage son (13), went through a tough time with the transition of his relationship with his father. He was engulfed in anger, acted out and I was worried I would lose him!

Now to switch gears, let’s do a 180! For all of you that have been reading my blog and following me on social media, you know I always like to come back to the positive side of a situation. I thrive on being real, raw and showing how tough, hopeless and ugly “growing opportunities” are, but I love to come back and show you what I have learned, how I have grown and how I/we have arrived on the other side of a situation in tact; with the hopes of encouraging just one person!

Here’s a list of POSITIVE lessons learned:
* With the loss of my sister, I have learned to make peace with one of the most heartbreaking losses of my life. My Spirit has been expanded. I grieved without “stuffing it” and honored where I was at the moment. I grieved without apology.
* Divorce was a healthy move for my kids and me. We were caught up in the cycle of abuse and our home is now a safe haven, there is peace (most of the time 🙂 ) and there is laughter….LOTS of laughter and being silly!

Christian as “Cleevus”

* Parenting can be tough, as most of us know, in the best of circumstances. Solo parenting….SIGH! It is ideal for children to have both parents involved and engaged with them. It is ideal for children to know that they can depend on both parents and to have the security knowing that they can lean on both parents for support and comfort. Here’s the positive: The three of us have become even closer. We are a better family unit because of our dependence on each other. It has made us stronger individually and collectively. Life isn’t perfect and we certainly have our days (yesterday was one of “those days”), but we get through them and we love each other from the core of our beings. After all, LOVE is the answer, right??
* The financial tightness is what it is. Finances are a trigger for me to really stress, in fact I’m carrying around my 8 lb stress belly right now, as we speak! (okay 10 lbs!! I’m a woman, hard not to fudge! wink wink) It comes and goes and it’s okay. We are learning to not be quite so spoiled. I am learning to do things for myself that I didn’t know how to do before. Thanks to my amazing, perfect boyfriend, who taught me how….I actually put my lawn mower on a battery charger and jumped it ALL BY MYSELF!! I was so proud of myself…. I felt so empowered and I AM SO EMPOWERED! He even taught me about the choke thingy on the weed eater and blower…it blocks the air off from the carburetor (did I even spell that right??) so it will spark when you pull the string and start….I think that’s right?? I’m so right brain, so when he’s explaining things like this to me.. I just smile and think “wow! he’s so smart! and sexy….smart is so sexy…I love his eyes.. his voice.. that smile gets me every time.. he totally knows, this is going completely over my head”. ( I’m really not A.D.D.!!). Point being, I’m not just learning Soul expanding “lessons”, I’m learning day to day practical lessons too, that empower me!
* My daughter having to make the toughest decision of her life blew me away! When she came to me with her decision, that she wasn’t even asked to make, I was in awe. How can a 15 year old girl, look at her horse that she loves more than anything in this world and put her heartache to the side to determine that she loves her Phoenix too much to let her continue living a less than quality life. That her bad days were outweighing her good days. That her pain was too great. That Phoenix would be better off being put down, she was suffering. It moves me to tears. I learned strength, courage, selflessness, wisdom, discernment and bravery on a whole new level. I will forever pull from the courage I saw in my daughter, when faced with a fearful situation… I will never forget.

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* When my son was going through such a tough time, I was scared too death! I was afraid that he would lose himself in the anger that had engulfed him. I was diligent in not making him feel shameful for his anger and making sure that he FELT and EXPERIENCED the love I have for him, even when he was a “cactus” and not a “magnet”. Making sure that he felt understood, validated AND loved, loved, loved…no matter what! Well, you know what “they” say…it gets worse before it gets better and it did, but one day he woke up and it was behind him, just like that! He was on the other side of it, he had worked through it! He was himself again. RELIEF!!! I learned that everyone has their own, personal process and AGE doesn’t matter. My son needed the space, support and love to get him on the other side of this and what was going on in him really didn’t have anything to do with me or his sister. I learned resilience, perseverance, that it’s never too late, our actions do not define WHO we are. I already knew this truth, that our actions do not define who we are, but I actually got to see it on steroids. When he was on the other side of this hiccup in his life, he didn’t look back, he didn’t “beat himself up”, he’s moved on…life goes on! I saw him honor where he was, I saw a truly healthy soul navigating a very tough loss, I saw strength. In retrospect, it was beautiful!

I have so many wonderful blessings in my life; family, a nice home, good friends, dream career, I’m kinda crazy about these kids I have and I’m kinda liking the boyfriend too! I see on a daily basis how past experiences HAD to happen, in order for me to receive what and who I have now.

Now, on this beautiful, sunny afternoon, I’m going to close up shop, cut my grass AND put new string on the weed eater and weed eat like a BOSS!!

Do you have a story of a “growth opportunity”? Does this blog post resonate with you? I would love to hear from you in the comments section and feel free to share with anyone that needs the encouragement to just hang in there!

Through The Eyes of Love ♥

Michelle Dancy, CHHC, AADP
Awakening Holistic Healthcare
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