Today is the one year anniversary of Diary of a Dietitian! One year ago, I entered the worlds of Blogging, FaceBook, and Twitter in an effort to not only share nutrition information but to also feed a part of me that was slowly dying. In honor of this special day, I am going to write about how I let that happen and I continue to escape it. Sounds a bit morbid to write about a dying dream on your one year birthday Diary, but it needs to be shared. I think a lot of people let their dreams and aspirations slowly die. Not intentionally, of course, but more in an unnoticed, slowly seeping kind of way.
In 2003, I made a BIG move from Michigan to California. It was very cliche as I was moving mainly to be with a guy. That guy is now my husband, but it’s still unbelievable to think that I have lived in California for over 12 years. Before I moved, I had already secured a job with the growing dialysis company, DaVita. Coming from being a hospital Dietitian, I was excited to enter the complex world of dialysis. For 11 years, I thoroughly enjoyed my work along with getting married, having a couple of kids, and attempting to navigate finding balance within all of that.
Then something happened. I woke up one day in early 2015 and thought to myself, “This is not what I want to do any longer with my career.” Mmphf. If I no longer want to be a Renal RD, then what the heck do I want to be? Over the next 6 months, I thought about that quite a bit in the moments I would steal away for myself. When you have 2 small children, quiet moments of reflection and deep thought can be few and far between. I do my best thinking in the shower. It’s quiet (unless a child is pounding on the door), it’s excusable (everyone needs a shower), and it’s private (unless you live in a one bathroom place where everyone has to use the toilet as soon as your baby toe hits the shower mat). The point is, for many of us, there are not an abundance of moments to focus on dreams and aspirations. When there are, you’e tired as hell and all your brain can focus on is your pillow.
In February of 2015, I knew I wanted to change things up and I needed an outlet to figure out over time what that would morph into. Ta-da, Diary of a Dietitian was born with the help of my friend Sheryl. No big job change but a blog seemed like a great way to express my thoughts while I continued on the journey to my next career. This was a BIG step for me. I finally had something of my own that I created and was JUST FOR ME!
I knew that I wanted Diary of a Dietitian to have one main goal…to share my journey as a Registered Dietitian down the bumpy, imperfect road of health, wellness, and nutrition. I am passionate about being a champion of wellness for women, starting from teenagers right up to menopause. Women are the backbone of most families and in an effort to care for everyone else, they often forget to take care of themselves. Just because I am a Dietitian does not make me exempt from the pitfalls of womanhood. I am CONSTANTLY giving myself a proverbial slap in the face, followed by a self pep talk and then getting back on track.
I also want other people to understand that they are not alone in the struggle. Mental and physical wellness are not an easy feat for the majority of us and one has huge effects on the other. Once hormones, lack of support, stigmas, illness, lack of sleep, stress, caring for others (the list could literally go on and on) are added into the equation, these seem to be an impossible goals.
The key for each of us is to find what sustains us and RUN with it. There is no singular grand plan that will work for everyone. When I counsel people on weight loss and diet changes, I focus a lot on they feel. I am unconcerned about your current weight or how many pounds your doctor told you to lose or threats other health care professionals have made. I care about how you feel. Can you play with your kids or grand kids like you want to? Do you feel guilty when you eat and then eat more? Are you able to go to the beach with the rest of your family and dip your toes in the water? These are the goals that I am interested in helping my clients achieve.
After I moved with my husband and 2 kids an hour South of where we previously lived, I left the world of dialysis. That world gave me so much and I know I will always have it to go back to. I am now looking forward to what the next year brings in my career and it’s very exciting!
So, I leave you with this, Diary, on our one year anniversary (which was several days ago but I am just now able to finish this post). My goals for the next year to come are simple; support at least 10 people in achieving improved mental and physical wellness, educate myself on how hormones affect weight in women through their life stages, and sample 5 different diet/lifestyle programs. My goal is my dream with a 1 year deadline!