My sister, who is taking a course on herbal remedies and women’s health, told me about “adrenal fatigue” and how, for many people in our culture, the stress of life, the way we eat and our lack of sleep have essentially put our bodies into a constant state of “fight or flight”. The hormones secreted by the adrenal glands (ahem, adrenaline) are constantly pumping, furthering the problem. And while in this state, our body exerts energy to accomplish primary tasks and puts things like digestion on the back burner. What happens is that we become malnourished. We eat – even good things – but our body isn’t absorbing it into the system because the hormones rushing through it just purge it back out. Before we can really be fed, we have to stop and rest. We have to change overall patterns before we can achieve optimal health with a good nutritious diet.
- The kinds of conversations that evoked these thoughts. It means not just talking about our past week and listing the events, but rather looking into the future, perhaps how those events will shape it, but more seeking a revelation of a greater vision and our place within it.
- A place of focused giving outside of my homestead. My kids and home are wonderful and get the firstfruits of my time and attention. But I have a different, separate energy that needs directed somewhere. For the moment, it seems to be aimed at the unknowing women in a budding ministry at our church. It doesn’t matter what the target is, but I need to regularly serve something other than myself and my home with gifts that come natural.
- Regular time to myself to read, learn, contemplate and write. I’m accepting my introverted nature and trying to nurture it. I have energy for people because I spend time without them.
- A support system that empowers me and encourages me to seek these things out. My husband knows these places of life bring me energy so he will do nothing short of kicking me out of the house so that I will engage them. He knows it makes me a more whole person, that I bring more love into our home, more patience in dealing with our children, more energy into our relationship. Because of this, he handles bedtimes solo, he takes the kids out and about while I attend meetings and events. He’ll single parent for the weekend while I go to a conference.