Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wintry Mix

I suppose I could write a post about the State of the Union address. I think I won't, though.

Also I could write about Oswiecim, the Polish word for what the Germans called Auschwitz. I'm adopting the Polish version, because WWII is over. The holocaust is over. I could write this morning about my reasons for even considering a visit to the camp while I'm in Poland. (It isn't to immerse myself in the suffering and misery of all the people who died there, but to GET OUT of that energy. I feel like some part of my soul has been swirling inside the holocaust all my life. I would like to retrieve that part of my soul, let go, move on.)

There's a lot more to say about that. But ... the topic is still simmering in the back of my mind/heart, not quite yet speech-ripe.

Instead, I'll post Five Do's and Five Don'ts for Good Health, according to the cosmology of Reya - because a couple of people have asked me to. Why not?

First a serious disclaimer: I believe good health is mostly about luck and genetics. You can contribute to ill health, or increase your chances for being healthy, but the truth is that there are folks out there who are healthy as a horse even though they do everything you aren't supposed to, and others suffering from ailments even though they do everything "right." Good health is basically a mystery. It's so unfair.


1. Get enough sleep. Just do it. Seriously.

2. Take it down a notch. No matter how you live, my guess is that you're trying to do too much. You don't have to force yourself to become laid back - god forbid! Being laid back is something we on the northern end of the eastern seaboard really can't comprehend. No matter what it is you think you MUST accomplish, just take it down ONE NOTCH.

3. Take care of your teeth. You wouldn't believe how many diseases are linked to bad teeth and bad gums.

4. Move around. You don't have to go to the gym or raise your heart rate to a certain level, just don't sit around on the couch all day. We were built for movement.

5. Spend time outside every day, yes, even if it's "too cold" or "too hot" or whatever. Connect with the sky, weather, landscape. Every day!


1. Don't worry about your weight. It is currently popular to blame all ills on weight, smoking and global warming. My guess is that the world is far more complicated than that. There are plenty of people who weigh "too much" who are perfectly healthy.

2. That said, don't eat fast food. That stuff is toxic. I like Michael Pollan's rules for eating. Keep it simple, eat actual food. The more it's processed, the worse it is for you. Even frozen vegan veggie burgers are, to my mind, just as gross as fast food. They aren't real, they have no vibration. How can they possibly be nourishing?

2. Don't believe there is any tried and true path to good health, you know, if ONLY you'll drink pomegranate juice, or follow so-and-so's seven steps to great health in seven weeks, or whatever. It's a lovely dream that there's The One True Way to Good Health, but it is a dream.

3. Avoid pundits. In fact, avoid TV. Listen to music instead, or watch movies. Skip "the news." Read a book, or The New Yorker. Or blogs (but skip the political blogs).

4. Don't take things personally or literally. Learn what you can from your experiences, then let go and move on. (Thanks to Rob Breszny for this one.)

5. Stop focusing so much on how your life SHOULD be or COULD be, or how you hoped it WOULD be. Count your blessings.


Of course I could go on and on, but I'll stop now! Have a good Wednesday, y'all. Shalom.

I thought I was taking a pic of this guy on the Metro train. How funny that it was also a self-portrait. Looks like I am haunting him. Fortunately for him, he was so absorbed in reading and listening to music, he didn't even notice.


jeanette from everton terrace said...

I agree with it all! I am 100% with the don'ts and almost there on the do's. I do not get enough sleep, ugh a struggle for me but I went to the dentist AND a long walk outside just yesterday so I'm feeling pretty good. Summer though, it's so brutal here I hardly leave the house at all.

The Bug said...

This is a GREAT list! The good thing about the new Weight Watchers program is that it's really steering us to eat the types of foods that you mention. Since I started it I've been eating more fruit than I used to. Yes, there are those of us who need to have some structure regarding that :)

And since this is the second post in a row that talks about teeth I'll be calling my dentist shortly to set up my biannual appointment.

The Pollinatrix said...

Rob Breszny - Yay!!!

Re: Do's #4. I have been considering starting a Facebook page called Break: Dance, which would periodically post a song everyone should get up from their computers and dance to.

Reya Mellicker said...

Polly that is BRILLIANT. I didn't know you were on Facebook. Will you friend me?

I'm not against structure, Ms. Bug, and also Jeanette I'm not saying you have to stay outside all day long when it's awful - but get out for a few minutes anyway. Twenty minutes?

glnroz said...

man'o live.. this is some good advice. I might print this off and put it on my always take the most amazing shots,, you metioned that this one "just Happened",,, you do that a lot with the cam,, lol

ellen abbott said...

excellent lists, both. And really, so obvious!

Jo said...

Love the photos, love the post!

Absolutely agree with them all, especially the food part. Eat REAL food, clean food, and your body will thank you for it!

I would only add to your list of do's, maybe as part of #2, as you take it down a notch, to sit in stillness for a few minutes each day. Not naming it meditation or prayer, necessarily, but just allowing yourself to experience the quiet. I've found that to be very healing.

Thanks for an important post, Reya. Glad you didn't go for the SOTU rehash. :-)

Dibs said...

My grandma lived on Velveeta and casseroles made from hamburger and Cream of Mushroom soup and lived in very good health to age 101. Go figure.

Thanks for the positive words.

Elizabeth said...

Did you notice how the guy's jacket echoed the color of the sky in the picture below?

You are spot on about health!
Jack Lalanne lived to be 96 --- but what a lot of WORK that entailed!
My MIL is 89 and never exercised in her life...

What gene soup we are!
I just think processed/ packaged/frozen/fast food is vile because it stopped being food so very long before......and fresh fruit is so pretty.

To slim down and freeze your ass off, get a dog
(as you know only too well!)

Blah, blah, blah.
Poor R. has a severe case of shingles.....not the least idea what he did to deserve it
love you
come to NY

Reya Mellicker said...

Shingles really hurt! Poor R. Hope he's soon on the mend.

Also Elizabeth, I love the word "vile." YES, yes and yes again.

Dibs, yep - I know people like that too. They eat terribly, never work with their emotional lives, never exercise - and they are absolutely hale and hearty. Like I said, it's so unfair!

Reya Mellicker said...

Jo, stillness is a very frightening concept to Washingtonians, but of course you are right!

Jinksy said...

Learn what you can from your experiences, then let go and move on.

This comes out top in my book...

Reya Mellicker said...

Jinxy you're on to something!

Vicki said...

In my life I NEED my sleep, at least 8 hours or I am a bear but I am going to try and take it down a notch this spring although it's probably not possible with baseball starting up in March. Great post...LOVE...

Pauline said...

You are such a part of your own life, it doesn't surprise me that you show up unexpectedly in your photos. I like the list of do's and don't's for better health - it's a mindset first and a just-do-it second... great post.

Barbara Martin said...

Excellent do's and don'ts, Reya. Kind thoughts and patience could fit in among them.