Metaphysical Freedom

Psychotherapy, Spirituality, Mindfulness, Intuition, Wellbeing


Thinking About Going Vegan? Here is My Experience.

“Eat your vegetables!”

Did you ever hear that when you were younger, or do you have to say this now as a parent or guardian?

Well, you would have LOVED me as a child. Eating vegetables was a non-issue. Do not tell anyone, but one of my nicknames was String Bean. It had a double meaning. Some people called me a “Little Rabbit”.

As a kid, I did not like the smell of chicken, but would eat it (most of the time). At one point, I remember I had grown tired of the weird-smelling bird. One time, my mother mixed pieces of the chicken in my rice. I recall pointing at it and saying, “That’s not rice!”

For a long time, I had a love-hate relationship with sausage and eggs. ‘Why?’ You might ask.

I clearly remember biting into a sausage link and crunching into a piece of BONE. Although I was a kid, I knew something was wrong with that. So, for a little while, I only ate grits, eggs, and biscuits together. (I’m from the Southern United States).

What made me stop eating eggs for a while? One morning I saw my mom crack open a bloody egg. It grossed me out enough that I stopped for a good while. Unfortunately, with no eggs, I went back to eating sausage. I needed some type of breakfast protein, right? The dilemma!

I was a sensitive child and remember being sick from allergies and sinus infections often. I was mildly “lactose intolerant” but drank milk anyway to “build strong bones.” More on that later.

When I was about 15 years old, one of my brothers pointed out to me that my skin was breaking out. He was not talking about pimples, but a breakout like a reaction. This was DEFINITELY NOT something I wanted to hear as a teen. My brother then asked me a question that became a game changer for me. He asked, “How much soda are you drinking?” At that time, I was a soda connoisseur. Immediately, I stopped drinking sodas. If there were situations where soda was the only option, I’d pour small amounts of soda in the cup, put more than half a cup of ice, and let it melt until the soda was more like flavored water. Guess what happened when I stopped? My skin cleared up. Fast forward to now. I still do not drink sodas.

This experience sparked my awareness about the foods I was putting in my body. I asked my mom if I could start baking most of my foods instead of frying them. It felt good to make this minor change at the age of 15.

I went off to college and continued to be conscious about the foods I was eating. I chose lean meats and continued baking most of my foods. I stopped drinking whole milk and switched to 2% to reduce “side effects.”

Horror Story Number One: Beef, it’s not for breakfast.

When I graduated from college, I went to visit family members in California. For the trip back, I decided to purchase a breakfast sausage biscuit from McDonald’s at the airport. BAD IDEA. Less than 30 minutes later, I was feeling dizzy and shaky. I sat on the floor at the gate to my flight awaiting to board back home. I vomited once but managed to make it on the flight. I do not remember everything that happened on the flight, but needless to say, I spent the whole flight in the bathroom sick. When I got back to my place, I had to be taken to the hospital for dehydration and given an IV.

I stopped eating beef after that (and stopped eating McDonald’s too).

In all honesty, I was still eating pork. Bizarre, right? I gave it up one night after I cooked pork chops with gravy over rice. I just did not like the smell anymore.

Horror Story Number Two: Goodbye Chicken.

One day, on the way to work a morning shift, I went to Chic-Fil-A to have a chicken biscuit for breakfast. No big deal, right? WRONG. Within an hour, I began to have an upset stomach and was forced to leave work early. Unfortunately, I was not able to make it all the way home before I pulled over into a grocery store parking lot and vomited for what felt like 5 minutes. (Sorry for the visual.)

I had no intention to stop eating chicken or poultry, but I developed an aversion. I did not know until I had some food with chicken broth in it and it tasted disgusting. I thought I could eat turkey instead. Nope. I let poultry go completely. What meat was left at this point? Fish. I never had an issue with fish, but I did not eat it that often. Somehow, I was still eating eggs too.

I’ll share with you about eggs after these two points:

Milk

I stopped drinking cow’s milk by “accident.” In 2014 I lived with two other young women in a three-bedroom house. We had one refrigerator. At least one of my housemates did not drink cow’s milk, so to save space, we shared certain food items. We drank Almond Milk, Rice Milk, and Soy Milk. I lived there for about a year and was only drinking those types of milk. When I moved out, I had my first bowl of cereal with cow’s milk. I spit it out immediately, thinking the milk was spoiled. I had someone else taste the milk, and they said it was just fine. I tried again, but the milk tasted terribly sour. I could not make myself drink it if I tried. It was only later that I learned about the things in cow’s milk (pus and other gross stuff). So, I stopped drinking cow’s milk in 2014.

Organic Apples

Many years ago, I was curious about organic foods, so I did an experiment. I went three months eating organic apples only. Everything else I ate was either organic or not, but I made sure all the apples I ate were organic. After three months passed, I bought a mixture of organic and non-organic apples. I cut up a non-organic apple and bit into the slice. It tasted like wax.  I could not believe it. Over time, I tried to eat non-organic apples, but kept getting the same result…they tasted fake. I began researching more about organic and GMO foods and was surprised at what can pass as food in the US.

Now back to eggs:

In 2015, I was on the fence about whether I should stop eating eggs. I meditated on it, asked for clarity, and asked for signs. I was pescatarian, only eating fish for meat, but I still had eggs for breakfast every day. Then it happened. The horrible memory from childhood came back to me. I was about to make a breakfast omelet and cracked open a VERY bloody egg into the mix. There was my “sign.” I stopped eating eggs from that day forward.

What was left?  Fish and CHEESE.

Becoming Vegan

By this time, I was ready to give Vegan eating a chance. Vegan means no dairy products and no animal products. It is eating plant-based foods. I had close friends who were Vegan and their food tasted good. I had gone to Ghana and the family that hosted me ate Vegan as well. It didn’t seem too bad.

I sought out a friend who was Vegan and knew about nutrition. He was excited to learn about my decision and directed me to start by documenting everything I ate for a few weeks. Then, we reviewed my eating patterns. Overall, they were pretty good, but he pointed out something to me that was surprisingly true. He said, “You’re addicted to cheese.” Writing down my daily meals and snacks revealed that I had been eating cheese with EVERY meal and sometimes with snacks. He then said to me, “You need to detox from these foods and products. For your detox, you cannot have processed foods, nothing that comes in a box, no soy foods, and you will fast until 12pm or later each day, only consuming a shake if you get hungry.” He gave me a recipe for the shake and I was directed to drink plenty of water, of course.

He directed me to follow this prescription for three weeks. Being the overachiever I can be at times, I did it for 6 weeks or so. I really wanted to detox from all the crap that was in my system. During the detox, I started eating 100% Vegan foods. If I started to feel hungry, I was surprised at how filling the shakes were.

I told myself I’d give this new way of eating for 1 year, check in with my doctor, and then go from there. I had to learn a new way to prepare meals, cook, and season foods. I saw this as a positive challenge and it caused my creativity in the kitchen to increase. I started playing with oils, seasonings, and vegetables I never tried before. In hindsight, I see that I ate mostly raw meals for a while and created some staple items.

Changes I experienced while becoming Vegan:

Eating vegan, I felt more energetic, alert, and didn’t get tired after I ate. I was quicker on my feet and overall I felt happier. There were a few challenges. Going to restaurants required me to read more, ask more questions, and educate people about vegan food. I realize it made me more conscious of what I was eating and that I didn’t trust everything at restaurants. Dating became a challenge as well. Many people who expressed romantic interest in me cited my eating habits as a barrier. Oh well. I knew this issue would resolve itself. 🙂

Vegan benefits

The final test:

As I mentioned, I decided to try vegan eating for 1 full year, then do a follow up with my primary care doctor. I had bloodwork drawn, did the full physical, etc. The results came in. Everything was perfectly normal.

It was late 2016 and I had a decision to make. Do I keep eating vegan, or go back to what I used to do?

The benefits I experienced far outweighed the disadvantages. Besides being more alert and feeling energetic, my meditation practice became stronger and deeper. Working as a metaphysical teacher and coach, this new resonance amplified my skills.

So, here I am, still Vegan.

You may be wondering if I have thought about “going back”.

Yes. I thought about it just out of curiosity. I only thought about going back to fish. Oddly enough, even though I never had an issue with fish, since I have been Vegan, it does not smell good to me anymore.

I wrote this post to share my experience and satisfy curiosity you may have about the journey. I’m not trying to sway you either way.  AFTER I made the decision to be Vegan, I watched many documentaries like Forks Over Knives, Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, and Supersize Me to name a few. These only supported my decision to eat plant-based foods and continue on this journey.

If you are thinking about “going Vegan”, do your research. Pay attention to your medical needs and nutritional needs and ease into the process. Seek support where needed.

Vegan

 

I became vegan not because of the popularity or what others said, but because I listened to my body. I’m grateful that I listened.

Be well and live well!

With love,

Dana (Intuitive Dana)

www. MetaphysicalFreedom.com

 

 


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People are Hurting

 

People are hurting

People are hurting…

What are we doing about this?

It may be surprising for you to read the statements in the picture above, and then refer to the purpose of this blog which addresses: mindfulness, spirituality, consciousness, and intuitive awareness. However, the challenges mentioned above are pains that people are experiencing every day. Therefore, these issues are a part of our consciousness as humans. In other words, these events are reflections of things within our mindset and collective thinking as a race of human beings.

Ultimately, these are things that can be changed.

How do we change them? It starts with first acknowledging that these things are happening.

We have created these issues in our world, and it is time to transform our collective thinking and our approach to them.

Part of my daily service as a Professional Counselor involves working with marginalized and stigmatized groups of individuals such as people with mental health diagnoses and people with addiction challenges. Almost all of my clients have experienced some type of trauma in their lives as well (abuse, military-related, assault, gun shot wounds, etc). As a Trauma Therapist (and from life experiences), I have learned that abused people, abuse people…if the cycle is not broken. People who experience abuse and hurts from another often turn around and inflict pain onto others. It is fascinating to sit back and observe what we learn from the people around us and closest to us.

Here are some examples of what I hear from the people that I serve:

“I was raped when I was 5, by my uncle. Then my cousin raped me again when I was 10. I don’t trust men, and I don’t like being around them.” – 47 year old woman addicted to crack cocaine and diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder

“I cut myself because it eases the pain. I was abused all my life, and I still get angry. I know that if I allow myself to get that mad, then I will black out and hurt someone, so I hurt myself instead.” – 28 year old male diagnosed with Depression

“I was told that I was worthless all of my life by my dad. My mom and dad got into fights all the time, and my mom left. Then, I was molested by a man. I don’t trust nobody. I don’t like to sit with anyone behind my back. I got attacked a few years ago, and I got shot. You can’t trust people.” -40 year old male addicted to cocaine, alcohol, and pain medications and diagnosed with Schizophrenia

“The world is so different now. I was in prison for 15 years for marijuana charges even though I didn’t have a weapon, there was no violence, and nobody was hurt. I don’t know where to begin now! My family is distant, and I am having a hard time finding a job. They don’t want someone who has a record.” -50 year old African American male

Sometimes we end our group counseling sessions with this:

“Let’s have a moment of silence for the addict that just picked up, the addict that just died, and the child who has no say in the matter.”

Examine all of the statements above.  Pay attention, and you will notice that at a deeper level, the root of all problems is spiritually based. Even if someone does not follow a “religion”, we all have some form of Spirit/Energy/Life Essence within us. We heal ourselves and others by addressing Spirit.

What does it mean to “address spirit”? It is when we take the time to break free from the mental, emotional, and spiritual trap of the “rat race”. The rat race is when we go to jobs, work several hours to make money to pay bills, stress ourselves over the bills or the amount of time we work at the jobs, and literally work ourselves to death because we associate jobs with freedom, stability, and purpose. This cycle of self-destruction can lead to lack of empathy or disconnection from self and others.

Don’t get me wrong. It is clear that the current economic system within which we have chosen to participate in relies heavily on monetary exchange for goods and services. I am not discrediting it totally, but I challenge you to think about the ways this has affected your relationships, sense of freedom, and self-image.

If an abuser was once someone that was abused, and a convicted felon was once a father trying to make ends meet because his family was in poverty…what would you say is your experience?

Many people forget to take the time and appreciate Life, in the present moment. It is priceless to take a moment, breathe, and really BE PRESENT with yourself. Take the time to notice what you are feeling, be aware of what you are thinking, and engage with your environment. Every living being needs to feel a sense of belonging and connection.

We walk around and ask each other, “How are you?”, but are we willing to listen to the real answer?

We are powerful change agents. The world we live in can be a place suitable for all living beings, but it takes for all of us to contribute to this world collectively in positive ways. We are the peacemakers, healers, and resourceful beings inhabiting this planet. We must understand how important we are to each other.

The next time you see someone, instead of hiding in technology, rushing off quickly, or ignoring the person, simply make eye contact and say hello. Your moment of connection  just might be the small gesture that keeps the person from believing that there is no hope in this world.

People are hurting.

We are the healers.

 

With compassion,

Dana D. Robinson (Intuitive Dana)

http://www.MetaphysicalFreedom.com


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Double Rainbows Do Exist

Recently I stepped away from all of the activities that I do in the big city in order to spend some quality time with my family members at the beach. I went on this trip with the intention of healing and to build stronger bonds with my family.

This mini vacation was manifested from a combination of desires that my sister and I both had. She wanted to take her two sons on one more special trip to the beach before they went back to school, and I wanted to spend more personal time with her. The Law of Attraction delivered her a prize from a drawing which included a trip for 4, lots of free and kid-friendly events, and a few days at a nice hotel directly across from the dusty white sands of the beach.

It was pretty awesome.

During this time away, I had a much-needed opportunity to take a step back and observe the path I have been walking so far. There is something about being near the water, especially the ocean, which cleanses me and puts me in tune with Source unlike any other part of nature.
I reflected on how I started the beginning of the year, and I slowly took note of the things that have manifested since the first day of January. I asked for clarity and assurance of my next steps as I dive deeper into my calling and take greater leaps during these last four months of the year.

One thing about being in nature is that an answer is always waiting to reveal itself. I was riding on a boat, breathing in the refreshing air, and staring meditatively at the ocean waves when a group of dolphins appeared. It was five of them, and each one came up of out of the water to say hello before diving back into the deep. I was asking Spirit a question, and they were my answer.

A few of the dolphins that appeared.

A few of the dolphins that appeared.

One evening, my sister, my nephews, and I left the beach and headed back to our rooms to get ready for dinner. She turned on the television and it was on the Weather Channel. They were doing a segment on double rainbows and explaining the scientific conditions that make them occur. She and I briefly watched the segment, commented on how neat that was, then continued getting ready. I had a quiet thought in my mind, “I wonder if I will ever see a double rainbow.”

The next day was our departure date. We loaded up the car and headed back towards our hometown. The weather was unusual, with patches of scattered showers and sunshine throughout the drive. I continued asking Spirit for answers to questions, and excitedly noted the signs in nature. I saw beautiful deer, turtles, and other animals along the ride.

We came to a four-way stop in a small town when I noticed a rainbow in the sky. “Look, a rainbow,” I said to my sister. She smiled and expressed gratitude that it was there. In that moment, I thought to myself again, “I wonder if I will ever see a double rainbow.”

Rainbow that was present for almost an hour

Rainbow that was present for almost an hour

We kept driving, and the one rainbow stayed in our sight for nearly an hour. It felt magical. Then my sister pointed and squealed with delight, “Double rainbow! Double rainbow!” I looked up and saw a double rainbow in the sky. I said to her, “You know, I was just thinking to myself if I would ever see a double rainbow.” She looked at me with wide eyes and said, “I was thinking the same thing too!”

Look closely, and you will see the double rainbow.

Look closely, and you will see the double rainbow.

And there it was. We laughed and chatted like we used to as little girls. She pulled the car over, and I took several pictures and even made a video. It definitely was magical, healing, and inspiring indeed.

You may wonder why I am telling you about this experience. Because I want you to know that:

Double rainbows do exist.

For me, a “double rainbow” was something that seemed like it was impossible for me to experience or witness.

What is your “double rainbow”– that thing that you think is impossible?

Is it World peace, healing from an illness, unconditional love?

This simple message is to let you know that it is NOT impossible.

Believe in it.

In joy and bliss,
Dana (Intuitive Dana)
http://www.metaphysicalfreedom.com