How many times have you answered this question, “How are you?” with a simple, “I’m good, thanks” when in reality you haven’t been so good? Go ahead and raise your hand. I have no doubt that everyone has done it at least once.
Now, how freeing would be if the next time someone asks us that question we answer with the truth—be it good or bad?
Not interested in hearing the truth from someone on how they’re actually doing? Then ask them a different question! Our standard expectation of small-talk puts us at risk for dismissing our own feelings or getting our feelings dismissed by others, which in turn becomes a cycle of denying how we’re actually feeling. I truly feel like this whole process plays a huge part in our own mental health and how we show up for others. I feel (fear?) that this is also a big reason we often find comfort in isolation; not wanting to be surrounded by those we can’t truly communicate with.
So I’ll go first. “Hey Jess, how are you doing?”
Me: Hey, I’m doing ok. The kids are keeping me busy on Summer break, and we have some really fun plans with birthdays and vacations coming up, but I’m also trying to rest and listen to my body as much as I can. I haven’t been feeling that great.”
And that is the honest to God truth.
I haven’t been feeling that great, and I’ve had to dedicate my time to the areas of my life that are THE MOST IMPORTANT because of it. While I’m not ready to share some of the harder things that I’m working through, I can and will share how I’m addressing part of it with 2 drastic changes in my daily life: hormones + weight-loss.
WHAT I’M DOING
I’m not a doctor, but I feel fairly confident that I can address some of my symptoms with getting my weight under control and addressing some very prominent hormonal changes I’ve been experiencing these past 2 years.
So here’s what I’m doing:
(1) After years of being on the pill, I opted for an IUD about 6 months ago. Truthfully, I’m a fan of (the idea of) it, except I’ve had an increase in symptoms since getting it. Before I can say that something more serious might be wrong, I want to remove all the hormones from my body and eliminate that as a possibility. I am officially saying goodbye to my IUD in t-minus 24 hours.
(2) Linked somewhat to #1, I have struggled with weight-loss the last couple years too. Its likely that this is tied partially to being on a hormonal birth control, so eliminating that is a good starting place; but either way I need to focus on a lifestyle shift that I can more permanently sustain. In order to do that, I am investing in a program that teaches how to balance macros (proteins + carbs + fats) specifically for my weight while also implementing intermittent fasting—which aids in boosting and repairing your metabolism, something that can drastically decline after pregnancy (helloooooo 3 babies in 3 years!!).
WHY I’M SHARING
Mental and physical health is very serious for us all, but can be very challenging to a) talk about and/or b) commit to and execute. I know the struggles I’ve had personally, primarily with commitment, and I hope that by sharing I can hold myself more accountable, but also encourage you to: a) listen to yourself, and your gut when you feel something isn’t right b) identify pain points in your life and seek help with defining a plan to improve those points and c) trust the people in your life enough to share your challenges so you don’t suffer in silence—even if it’s just one person.
I will be documenting this process in full here on the blog, but also sharing a daily log of things over on Instagram @thatmomjess—so don’t forget to follow along over there! If you feel like you might be experiencing symptoms tied to hormones/weight-loss, I’m happy to chat directly and share more of my own experiences and what caused me to choose this path specifically.