Life Is So Good!

August 2017 Newsletter

My hope is that this missive finds you well and enjoying the last weeks of summer. 

Early morning fog burning off the Kennebecasis River

It finally warmed up and stopped raining here in Maritime Canada and we made it into the brackish waters of the Kennebecasis River for many swims. Building our Tiny House and clearing our land of many fallen trees and brush has been a big job. You should see us working together with the chainsaw and axe to get our Fall/Spring supply of wood to cut and dried before the season. We’re both much fitter and leaner from all the physical work!

Casa Pequeña both inside and out

We’re expecting six loads of clean fill in the next few weeks in order to start working on leveling the hill that we’re on for our food forest. We’ve already got some raspberry bushes, lavender, mint and wild roses planted. I’m (Ally) in seventh heaven with being able to craft my own land into a rejuvenating ecosystem. The plan is to have enough flowering plants and fruit trees in order to sustain a number of hives of bees. It’s a work in progress and we’re learning much about permaculture principles.

This week, the solar array is being installed. We’ve been doing most of the work ourselves with the help of our friends, however, we’ve found an electrician who works with her carpenter husband to get the solar panels mounted on the roof and the battery, charger and inverter installed.

The view looking up from the Kennebecasis towards our densely treed property

We’ll be putting in the 120 amp wiring ourselves as our friend, Marla, worked for Bell Canada in Toronto and wired houses and offices with fibre-op for decades. Thankfully Diane is keeping the front lines at Arcanum in toe as we’ve literally been jumping in our clinic seats after a quick hosing off in the shower!

We’re pretty excited as later this month, our children are coming for a visit with their partners. It’s been 3 years since were all together and we can not wait to spend the week together. There will be a good ol’ lobster boil, bonfires and sausage roasts for sure!

We’re heading up to the Tiny House for the evening. Jeff has promised to play his classical guitar for me as the sun goes down. Life is so good!

Too Many Cooks In The Kitchen; How to Stop Spoiling the Broth

June 2017 Newsletter

We’re all trying to balance so much! Often times, it’s not just the business, home life and kids to keep organized, and on a schedule, often times we’re having to be responsible for the collective consciousness for the entire household. Consider how often you’re asked, “Ok, so what’s next?”. Or “You should have just asked me to do that and I would have gladly helped you out.”

So many women I serve, and some men too, will cite extreme exhaustion. Not only for the actual tasks they perform at the office or at home, but  because they also feel like the CEO of operations. This unexpected job description often surprises us out of nowhere. Who put me in charge anyway? Where was that written? How do I exit this role without the whole damn ship sinking?

How did the job of  knowing what’s next fall on me? I’d never asked my husband, “What’s next?” in over a dozen years of marriage. How is it that as a reasonably intelligent woman I always felt my corpus callosum log-jammed every time? Perhaps my lesson was to learn how to engage with my own instincts and activities, leaving intellectual management to other individuals. That, actually would make sense.

In those moments, I definitely know I could use help. The first thing would be to take the task-manager role off my shoulders. When was this bestowed on me? Please supply a two page answer single spaced while I dress this roast of bison and finish prepping the potatoes. Perhaps you’ve lived this too.

While the offer to help is, in itself, an act of generosity, it can annoy the living daylights out of a Mom in a Sepia state. How many CEO’s of multinational companies can think on the spot of the detailed activities to be executed by a worker who barges into his office while he’s on the phone and also in the midst of forecasting the budget for the next annum? You see it, right? It doesn’t happen. At the very least, you make an appointment or see a more junior manager. Perhaps your spouse might ask one of the kids. Ah, not a bad idea, a kid will always tell you precisely what to do to serve them.

I recall feeling totally burnt out in the early stages of my marriage. In fact, I had the feeling that if one more person asked me what they could do, I might run my laser eyes clear through their guts while launching enough swear words at them to burn off their eyebrows. They’d grow back, right?!

I once recall trying to prepare supper while nursing an infant on the breast, with a toddler pulling all the pots and pans out on the floor, stirring a pot of rice pasta with the phone in one ear speaking to the guy rescheduling to come service the dishwasher who I had stayed home all day waiting for. It was a Friday.

At that moment, my husband walks into the kitchen having just arrived home from the office, and wants to know what he can do. The first answer that popped up to the fore is, “no clue” and then, “isn’t it obvious?” or to silently turn back and offer a tear of frustration into the pasta. This gesture alone can create a ton of animosity and then spouses wonder why dinner conversation is a little stunted and the weekly sex is dwindling.

I spent years stuffing my feelings down and taking Sepia regularly until my breast finally swelled with a 1.5 inch tumour. Among this, and other dynamics, I’d say this phenomenon cost us the marriage. It wasn’t until these very same issues started to crop up in my second marriage that I began to “get it”. The whole family plumbed solutions to help relieve me of the burden of doer and decision-maker. At the time, I was running a household, half a business, part of the farm, a kids’ camp (in the summer), writing a book and doing postgraduate research. Brutal, I know!

The summation of this post is that we finally did solve it with some creative problem solving. It took a team effort, but you can read that article here.

Spontaneity, Minimalism and Fulfillment

 

 

Excerpted from March 2017 Newsletter

This month we’re talking about what is rejuvenating to us as far as lifestyle goes. When I was still suffering lots of my own illnesses, I had the belief that I had to have a house, a mortgage, leave my kids in daycare, drive to work in traffic, work several hours a day (including over-time), drive home, pick up the kids, make dinner and go to bed.

It is true that back then, I hated my life. I hated the tax on my capacity to be creative and spontaneous. I had limiting belief that I was stuck, with no options, or risk starvation and the bank calling me if I forfeit on mortgage payments. It was soul destroying.

Lots of folks I know can pull it off, but as I got healthier, I realized that I was not one of them. I had to find a better way. I began to look for work where I could craft my own hours and work from home. I refashioned my resumé to become a financial consultant and for a time, I felt better.  However, over a couple more years, that old feeling that it was not enough welled up again.

When I hit my third round of Genetic Miasms  left the government, a stale marriage, and took on the Registrar position in the newly formed Hahnemann College for Heilkunst and Homeopathy. I started my four year training as a Heilkunst Practitioner and began writing my first book. This model felt more congruent as I figured out a much more sustainable ethical center for myself.

As time marched on, I became a Practitioner, the kids started going to Waldorf and I fell in love with my soul’s mate, Jeff Korentayer. I loved treating patients, writing books and living on our farm. It was all really hard work, however, I fell into bed at night knowing that I was truly contributing to other’s lives in a meaningful way.

Now, with my kids in pursuit of fulfilling their own desires, and our international practice while also living as digital nomads, I’m truly loving my minimal and rejuvenating lifestyle. I’m learning what it feels like to play again, study the stuff I’m really interested in —  like Heilkunst Medicine, Art and Photography, natural building and permaculture.

I find that the more healthy I am, the more rejuvenating my life becomes. Gone are many of the limiting beliefs of 25 years ago. This way of being isn’t just sustaining me, it gives back in patient success stories, photojournalism articles I’m paid for, and the books I write and sell on Amazon. This model of natural living enables me to not just meet my goals but actually thrive. My hope for you is that you give yourself permission to fully self-actualize in your consciously crafted life too.