Settle in for the goods today: sometimes you just need the damn medication.
Yesterday’s post was so light and fun; today, not so much.
But this is a topic that is super important for me to share because I believe it’s incredibly critical for you to hear.
This is my contribution for Mental Health Awareness Month, which is in May each year.
My Former Life
If you know my story, you know that I didn’t care much about the natural industry until I was forced to.
In college I was living off of diet coke (not Pepsi, sorry, Dad!), cigs, Mac ‘n Cheese (Kraft Velveeta® Shells and Cheese), and a jog here and there to make myself feel healthier.
I mean, sure, I was also eating some “healthy” foods like Weight Watchers 1-point cakes, apples, egg whites, and endless cans of no-sodium-added peas. (insert sarcasm)
But then I got sick, and things began to drastically change. I dabbled into every last piece of information, knowledge, and healing diet I could find. And I didn’t just read about it all, I put it into motion for my own life.
It took 10 years, but I healed. Obviously, you know that.
What you don’t know is that a huge part of healing had to do with medication.
Living and Breathing the Natural Industry
There are probably hundreds of reasons why it took me 10 years to heal. But I know, without-a-doubt, that one of the biggest reasons is that I fought medication.
When you sink deep into all things healthy and natural living, oftentimes you begin to think, “I don’t need medication. I’ve got this. No one needs medication.”
Not only that, but I feel like it’s some sort of dirty secret in this “healthy space.”
Wait….YOU take medication? So does that mean the things you teach, preach, and practice don’t actually work?
There is a suggestion by many that medication is never necessary. And, you’re doing something wrong if you take it.
So I sat with that all – for years.
I was stronger than nails.
But the only person I hurt was me.
Sometimes You Just Need the Damn Medication
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The last time I ever went through a stringent 28-day healing protocol for SIBO was in June of 2018. You can read my journal for those days HERE.
Everything was seemingly all better and wonderful. And don’t get me wrong, most everything truly was wonderful.
Except for that one thing I still could not get a grip on, no matter what natural remedies I tried.
My rock bottom came that October of 2018. Enough was enough and I finally went to see a doctor. I had a fairly clear-cut case; I knew I did and they would see it immediately. So, we discussed things like:
- family history (yes, there is family history for me)
- my own, personal history
- treatment options
Note: I’m going to interject here to say this quickly. I realize I’m being rather vague about the diagnosis. While I think it’s important for me to share my thoughts on getting any and all appropriate help for you, I’m not ready to share the diagnosis. It is very personal, not common, and someday when I have added Gutsy+ to the resume, I’ll share 🙂
My options were: medication and/or therapy.
Because I still do (and always will) lean natural, I chose the medication and therapy.
If you only want to take the damn pill and nothing else, then that’s up to you. Honestly, no one gets to judge that; your prerogative. For me personally, I know that just taking a pill wouldn’t truly help in the long run.
So I immediately started the medication and an incredible therapist was recommended to me. I still see her to this day, and likely will for a long time to come.
It’s sad. The mental health stigma that clouds society. And if I’m being honest, I think it’s even harder when you are in this healthy-natural-living space.
But we need to start having these conversations openly and honestly. The truth is that, for many people, their conditions require more than diet and lifestyle. Making those people feel inferior or as if they “haven’t tried enough” is definitely a huge part of this problem.
In fact, if you remember, when I first started A Gutsy Girl in 2012, this was my tagline,
Food and lifestyle vs drugs and medications.
I no longer say that because I don’t believe it; proved it to be false. It’s not a vs. it’s an “oftentimes in conjunction with…..”
You don’t have to choose one or the other.
The gut-brain connection is very real.
Yes, the gut-brain connection is very real. There is zero chance you can deny that.
But we cannot allow the realness of the gut-brain connection to be our one and only chance at heroism for conquering the brain solely with natural gut-healing protocols.
Can it work that way? Yes. But does it always? No way.
BELIEVE ME – I spent years (and yes, even these past couple years) doing all the gut healing and health things:
- got rid of the bacterial overgrowth
- focused hard on my microbiome (you’ll see in an upcoming post just how strong mine is!)
- 90% of serotonin is in the brain so I eat all these foods (and then some)
- worked it out via therapy
- processed, practiced deep breathing, and did more things “in the moment”
And I still need(ed) the damn medication.
To round out Mental Health Awareness Month, I want you to know and hear (truly hear) this….
Sometimes you just need the damn medication.
For the record, I believe that my current “cocktail” of diet, lifestyle, medications, and supplements is the reason why I’ve been feeling 100% almost 2 years now.
I know because I track it. And you can, too!
If you liked this post, you might also like:
- Emotional and Mental Deep Dive for Gut Healing
- The Gut-Brain Connection
- Chat (health coaching) with A Gutsy Girl
You will heal. I will help.