When to Slow Down (thanks toxic mold)

Good morning,

Today was a day that I had all kinds of marvelous things planned out for moi. Turns out, my body and need for continued healing had other plans . Sigh...
I didn't choose the mold recovery life, it chose me...
 My body is saying to me today:
Self-care can be a struggle, particularly if you have the kind of personality where you have always been used to doing, pushing, accomplishing, getting stuff done.

I was an athlete for many years as a youngin'; then I grew and as an adult I loved to workout hard, keep in top shape, eat right, and just live a healthy lifestyle. I also pushed a lot with work, as a Chef, your body suffers for your culinary art. It's part of the job but I truly believe that there were some important lessons that were overlooked in culinary school, in any school I attended, heck, even in the school of life.
We need to start teaching and valuing the need for rest, recovery, and respecting the cries from our bodies; internal and external.

One thing toxic black mold exposure has taught me is that I need to appreciate and adhere to the limitations that may be placed on me at any moment.

Some days are great one's, and some are just not. There's so much that this experience with mycotoxin toxicity has effected. It has impacted my health, life, relationships, and spirituality.
That's because mold is insidious, usually invisible, mimics other illnesses, and has layers of symptoms we are all still learning about.

I often forget, believe it or not, that I was exposed to toxic black mold for years, and that being out of it is still only 5 months old, or should I say young?  So, I often get the feeling of being like the pic down below but because I look fine on the outside, and people who see me have zero clue, I push, to my detriment. Invisible illness is a struggle you cannot comprehend until you live it, and I would not wish it on anyone.

One of the things I struggle with is not being able to get out to church. I am so grateful to have access to apps and a myriad of resources on-line, that have made connecting to God possible. Through the worst of my illness, I could not leave the house for extended periods of time or on bad days, not at all. I would lie to my friend's and loved one's, claiming I had "things" to do around the house but the truth was, I was so sick, so weakened, itching and rashed out all over, in so much pain, swelling, sore to my muscles and bones, coping with the depressive effects, as well as tremendous nausea that made eating and drinking a chore I had learned to despise.
A Chef who despises eating?!?
Yes, it was that bad.
There were days I just didn't want to keep on living. As my health deteriorated, I lost my joy, my desire, and zest for life. I knew a sense of shame that I  had never experienced before, I felt a burden to everyone, and worst of all, I believed I had become worthless to life.
For, if I could not contribute, if I could not self-actualize, if I could not work, pay my way, give back to those whom I loved, give back to the community, do what God had placed me here, then I was failing and I had no right to keep living.

It turns out that mycotoxin poisoning has seriously dangerous impact on cognitive function, particularly mood, learning, retention, clarity, and comprehension. I kid you not, when directly in the environment, I felt a dark cloud of terror, sadness, anger, frustration, and oppression.
I had horrid brain fog and tremendous difficulty expressing the most simple things.

This literally lifted within the first month of our move to the new home; for the first time in years, I started to feel like my old, happy-go-lucky, silly, smiling, geeky, quirky, light-hearted, positive, normal self.
No, it wasn't an overnight improvement but it was a marked one. My friend's and family have remarked on it repeatedly, and confessed that they were seriously concerned for my well-being, before we finally figured it all out.

Thanks be to God and Jesus for answeing prayers!
So, although today was scheduled as  a re-visit to a new church I discovered, it turns out that I can spend time with Jesus in my jammies, and that's okay.
No, it is seriously okay Kiki!
That means letting go of guilt, telling the push-push attitude to hush, and listening to God moving in my life.
Also, respecting doctor's orders.

I  am trying to find a new place to worship but for now, I am listening to the most wonderful series from Chip Ingram's, Living on the Edge ministry app. Here's a screenshot:

I cannot recommend it enough, particularly if you are struggling with change, new situations or people, seeking solace amidst the turmoil, or seeking new pathways for your life. It is inspiring and truly peaceful in the life affirming messages that Chip Ingrim delivers.
If you don't have the app, look for it on apple or Google play. It is free and super easy to use.
Also, it is portable, which means you can listen to this bible teaching ministry on the go;  wherever you may be, whenever you have need. Something that I appreciate about this ministry, is the approach to God, Jesus, and teaching the word.
It is calm, positive, provides a way to connect in a deeply profound manner that resonates, minus the mumbo jumbo. I love how close I feel to Jesus, how uplifting, and empowering these messages are. If you are interested in the actual site you can click here:
I am not pushing this or paid in any way to sponser this organization. I am spreading the good news through what has had such an important, positive, and sustaining impact on my life, during some very difficult times.

I am going to rest, probably do some crochet, or read a good book, then listen to another sermon from the above mentioned series. I pray you are blessed with love, kindness, and the enduring peace of our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ.

Take care, be well, love freely...

Chef Kiki
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