The End of the World as we know it…

Bunker
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About a month ago I was at the Dentist for a checkup and annual clean of my teeth. Since it had been some time since an x-ray was done, I followed the dentist’s advice and allowed her to do one. Unfortunately my financial situation is such that I have to make choices as to what to spend my money on and when, so when she suggested to treat a cavity that showed up on the x-ray sooner rather than later, I decided to do it later. The reason was that I had just started my new business of conducting Wim Hof Method workshops as a newly qualified Instructor and expected to make a little extra money on top of my meagre part time casual Nursery job very soon. I felt on top of the world, for finally, after 5 years of living on the edge of poverty without my husbands income and getting by with insufficient funds from the Government, I saw a ray of Sunshine brightening up our future.

I organised one workshop in February and planned on doing at least 3 through March, making it a regular highlight in the local Sports and Recreation Centre as more people started to find out about it. The signs were hopeful as I saw my second workshop selling a lot faster and to more people than my first, that just broke even or maybe lost a little, with only two people present. I was still happy despite that, for one participant left a lovely review, which showed my capacity and care helping convince future potential participants to give it a go too. I am still waiting to see what the return will be as I am currently still awaiting my reimbursement from the ‘Hoffice’, as we call the Wim Hof Method headquarters in the Netherlands.

Needless to explain, as of last week I had to cancel all future plans for live workshops indefinitely and a feeling of powerlessness started to overshadow my life. The cavity was still on my mind though and as the Government put restrictions in place I decided to take the chance and pay for fixing it from a loan, trusting that eventually things will go back to normal and I will resume my workshops to catch up and pay it back. It took me a few days to make up my mind and weigh up the risks versus the benefits with an uncertain future ahead of us, but the thought of the cavity escalating into a more serious dilemma, made me go ahead and ring the dentist on Wednesday for an appointment. The assistant agreed that I could come in Thursday afternoon after work.

At the end of my working day, to be on the cautious side, I washed my hands and sprayed myself all over with disinfectant before jumping in the car. I did not know whether I had been in contact with the virus, for the long incubation times reported and lack of present symptoms in many that had already transmitted it as this pandemic started to take hold on the world. I certainly did not want to be part of spreading it further to anyone I had to deal with, as well as thinking about my poor husband at home, who already has problems with his lungs and overall health as it is.

The traffic was a lot quieter than usual and the drive home was a smooth one, so l rushed into the nearby shop to grab a few items that I was needing, before going to the dentist. With all the new rules of distancing this is a bit of mission now, waiting for people to move away from the shelf you have your eyes on, before you are able to grab what you are after and it did take longer than usual to get out of the store. I quickly put my shopping in the car and ran to the dentist about 50 meters further down the street.

Thankfully I was not too late and still had to wait for my consultation. I sat down with my hands on my lap, careful not to move or touch anything, especially my face. After a few minutes the assistant came to me with a device to check my temperature, by holding it near my forehead. It felt this warranted during the developments of the last few days, that they check incoming visitors for mild symptoms as a safeguard for their and other patients health. As I felt great and had not socialised with anyone, besides my husband and a small number of colleagues for the past week and a half, this did not worry me, until she said that my temperature was elevated and had to come down, before they would consider treating me! I did point out the fact that menopause was upon me and that I did suffer hot flushes as a side effect on a daily basis, but rules are rules and they were told by the dentist association not to treat anyone with an elevated temperature. Thankfully they were kind enough for me to sit there for some time and check again to see that it was dropping. The dentist agreed to see me, phew!

What was it that I wanted her to do? I refreshed her memory to our agreement about a month ago, to treat that deeper cavity that had shown on the x-rays and she pulled out the files to see. Next she returns to me apologising that she was now unable to help me under the level 2 restrictions, for it required drilling and that this was now prohibited, unless there was severe discomfort for the patient, for the reason that this activity releases small particles into the air and could contribute in spreading the virus! I calmly accepted her explanation and she offered to put me on a waiting list to contact as soon as these restrictions are lifted.

I walked out of there with a heavy heart and serious concern for our future lives and freedom. This is when it sank in, that no matter how well we get through all this, the world has changed overnight and will never be what it was… https://youtu.be/wa43FNUdpU8

How far is this going to affect the way we are able to access health services, future gatherings, international flights and so much more! This is only the start! I am sure that we will have to adapt to many more restrictions and so called necessary compulsory regulations in the near and far future ahead of us, where discrimination will morph from external differences to more subtle internal ones, opening up the possibilities of a worldwide regime, controlling our every move for the sake of humanities safety!…. A new world where we are forced to have preventative treatments from organisations that hugely benefit from the returns without much true consideration for our opinions and long term health. If we refuse, based on our own opinions and convictions, we will be considered guilty of wrongdoing and putting the rest of the population at risk, with the result being huge discord and separation in society between groups with different viewpoints. Basically forcing everyone to be on the same page in their thinking and opinions! We will highly likely be restricted and refused basic services such as air travel, joining group activities and a choice in healthcare, unless we conform to the ideas of a fear filled manipulated society!

Sorry, this sounds extremely depressing and at this stage I have no idea how far this will be allowed to go and how far our freedom will be restricted from this moment in time, once the immediate danger subsides. All I know and see is that the World will never go back to what it looked like only several weeks ago.

On the flip side, this has also allowed me to contemplate a brighter future for social relationships and bonding through adversity. It pleases me to see total strangers taking action and helping the ones in society that need it most. People finding the courage to open up and share their deepest feelings with others, something they would have not felt at ease with several months ago. We come together through technology and socialise in a new way, apart, yet together to rise above this and produce a positive spark, a little optimism and humour to lift others spirits. Today, more than ever we realise that we are all connected and cannot get through this on our own. I must admit I have shed a few positive emotional tears of hope over the selflessness and actions of many individuals in the past week and can see that there is still hope for humanity to turn this experience into something we rise up from with true selflessness and a better future in mind.

Even in these dark times I can still find gratitude, actually more so than before, as the realisation sinks in that we cannot take anything for granted. We are so blessed with our access to the internet to stay connected and informed. How good does it feel now, to find a few last packets of toilet paper on a supermarket shelf? Or score that last can of baked beans, a thing we could not have imagined only 1 month ago!

Serendipity is still active too as I think how several things in my life have worked out for the better, like for example me not pre-booking that airline ticket as mums health is declining and could take a turn for the worse any day. I decided to leave it till the last minute, so I would not have to pay extra to change the dates, should I be required to go suddenly. Even though my heart hurts badly for the restrictions prohibiting me from my duties to take care of her and return the love she has given to me all my life, I trust she is in the best place with the best care possible right now, and that it will all work out somehow in due time.

For now hold tight, focus on, Be Glad about whatever positive things you can find around you and keep dreaming and focusing on a better future with more personal freedom and a return to harmony with our Mother Earth.

We have so much more power if we keep our focus away from the doom and gloom and use it to construct the World we would love to build for our children. I do feel it is important to be informed of all that is going on and not stick our heads in the sand, but now is the time and the last turnaround point where we have to be strong enough to balance that knowledge with constructive focus, if we want that future for our children to be one where we are in harmony with Mother Earth, the flora, fauna and fellow humans…. or…  create a society where creativity and individuality are forced out of us by social, political and technological control.

Choose wisely!

With Thanks and Gratitude,

PollyEsther

Lucky Feather

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“Enjoy your walk” said my neighbor from her front yard. I had stopped for a quick chat with her on my usual before dinner dog walk. “Thank you, I always do” I replied.

She did not have time for a long one today as she was standing outside freshly showered after work, ready to leave for her weekly meditation class.

In my head the thoughts did not stop as I walked on towards the corner of our small Court. Walking is a form of meditation for me, breathing fresh air, sometimes with a hint of salt and seaweed blowing in with the cool sea breeze coming off Westernport Bay. Focusing on how it makes my body feel, the sensation of my skin curling itself into goosebumps on my bare arms, now followed by a deep relaxing breath to not resist what is. I love looking around, observing the little marvels of nature scattered through our neighborhood and allowing my body to work on making some essential vitamin D…

Lately something interesting has been occuring every single walk. To most people it may seem extremely trivial, but to me it is like a sign of approval from nature that I am on the right track, reconnecting, and if a dear friend of mine is correct, it may even bring me luck.

As those thoughts were whirling around I stopped myself for a moment and re focused back to the moment and my surrounds. I first looked around and next down… and there it was again, to the left of my foot on the pavement, a perfectly shaped fresh feather. The timing and place could not have been more serendipitous and I could not help wonder if there was something else involved and what it may symbolize. After all I feel like living at a turnaround point of change in my life again, with my first Wim Hof Method workshop last Sunday resulting in a great review on my instructor profile. I took a deep breath, straightened my posture and smiled as I crossed the street and walked on.

A feather on the footpath

Ofcourse I picked it up to take home to my now pretty fast growing collection of feathers.

My feather collection

It brings me joy and gratitude looking at all my ‘exotic’ feathers from local Lorikeets, Galahs, Cockatoos, Magpies, Owls and Kookaburras and who knows what other species I did not reconize. Who would have thought this possible when I was a little girl growing up in the Netherlands all those years ago?

I am so glad I live in a country with such wonderful and colourful birds. Do you bring home treasures you find on your walks too?

Lucky feather

With Gratitude,

PollyEsther

Questions answered

Seeds
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My jaw dropped this morning when I looked at the first Face Book post of a lady who befriended me only a few days back. I don’t know her at all and thankfully I do not get a lot of strangers befriending me on Face Book. It would be naïve not to be slightly wary.

In this case I reluctantly decided to acknowledge her request after seeing a lot of natural health and nutrition posts on her timeline, which is something I am always interested in. I send her a friendly ‘thank you’ PM to satisfy my curiosity as to why she befriended me, asking how she had found me and what her reasons were, seeing we had never met, had no common friends and lived worlds apart. No reply so far…

Walking the dog last week my attention was drawn to some unusual yet ancient looking fruit on the footpath in front of an elderly man’s home nearby. Some of the fruit had been squashed by passers-by or kids and looking up I saw a bush that was as laden with fruit as an over decorated Christmas tree! I had no idea what kind of fruit it was and if it was edible or not, but felt a strong urge to do some research and find out, so picked a couple off the ground underneath. I thought maybe I should try cut it in half and see if our ‘resident’ Possum chose to eat it to get a better clue whether it might be safe for human consumption or not, but haven’t as yet.

It felt a bit like deja-vu from around 8 years ago, when I first found Feijoa fruit on the footpath out the front of another house just around the corner. When I asked the owners about it, they told me I could take as much as I wanted, because they did not like eating them nor cleaning the footpath! I loved eating them so much, that I grew my own bush with lots of patience from seed and had my first fruit at the end of last Summer. (More about it: http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/feijoa.html)

First harvest from my Feijoa bush, grown from seed 8 years ago

First harvest, April 2015, from my Feijoa bush, grown from seed 8 years ago

When the dog and me walked a visiting friend back to the local bus stop, I showed the mysterious bush to my friend in the hope he might know or had seen it before, but he knew as much as me. At home things got busy with all my other internet projects and listening to time limited seminars about health and wellness and the sample fruit I brought home was just sitting on the shelf in my kitchen reminding me of my intent to do more research…

Coming back to my jaw dropping moment this morning, my new ‘friend’ posted this: http://drhealthytips.com/index.php/2016/05/07/are-you-worried-about-clogged-arteries-start-drinking-this-immediately/…

I now had a bit more than just a piece of fruit to do research and found a few more helpful links on-line: https://authoritynutrition.com/12-proven-benefits-of-pomegranate/ and: https://www.drfuhrman.com/library/article19.aspx for anyone wanting a few different perspectives. I excitedly emailed the link to my friend and as I was writing explaining what happened it dawned on me…

All my questions had been answered! What kind of fruit I had found, what the benefits are and possibly why some stranger befriended me on FaceBook out of the blue. All this without any effort on my behalf! Well, I did ask an internal question…

Pomegranate

Pomegranate

I am so Glad and exited about this, I could not resist sharing it in a blog post, not just to show how questions get answered in mysterious, ‘serendipitious’ ways, but also to share the amazing benefits of the Pomegranate!

I ate both and went back today, got a few more to eat, collect seed and the image above.

Please share your comments, experiences, more info or recipes below.

Enjoying the journey

Sunrise in the mountains
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I am looking at the glistening gums outside my window. After a warm, humid sunny day yesterday, I woke early to see a beautiful sunrise surrounded by some patches of blue sky and puffs of streaky clouds. Not long after, the thick and heavy looking cloud band came over the hill and it started pouring. This is not surprising, after all it is Spring in Australia at the moment. It is the long weekend of the Melbourne Cup, when most Australians either fully focus on horse racing, or their weekend away with an eye on the score in country pubs near their camp sites in the bush on a river somewhere.

I decided to drive up to the house in the mountains, where I also spend 3 Months in Winter. Every year we hold our annual Cup Weekend trout fishing competition there among friends. Apart from being an informal fishing competition, it is also an annual social get together and a lot of fun catching up with people you don’t see every day, but have known for years.

Even though it is a fair drive of at least five and a half hours, excluding the necessary fuel and toilet stops, I have come to enjoy it. The first few times I drove it on my own, it felt like a tedious waste of time and I could not wait to arrive and get it over with. Slowly over time my attitude towards this regular journey changed. At first I started to love the last two hour leg of the trip on the narrow winding road, that followed an old river through the mountains for a long way. Occasionally you had to slow down for a small settlement, but it was generally extremely quiet and in the middle of nowhere surrounded by seemingly untouched nature. On some of my late night trips up, I saw more wombats (they look like oversized nocturnal guinea pigs on steroids) than cars on the road. It made me feel like I had already arrived at my destination and was just taking in the views and nature surrounding me.

One day, a while back now, I was stuck behind an over size truck with an unusual load that had me curious in an earlier part of the journey. I think it was some kind of large water tank, but looked a bit like a rocket ship, that was in front for a long way and slowed the trip right down. There was no way around it, so to my relief it finally turned off the main road I was following and allowed everyone to get on with their journeys. That day was a busy day and it took a bit of time to get through the next town, due to congestion. By the time the following town came in sight, you guessed it, the truck was in front of me again! The slow moving truck must have somehow bypassed the busy town where ever it had gone! This made me look up the maps of the area and find my next favorite leg of the journey, so much quieter and more scenic as well! Driving on these secondary roads made me realize I liked driving through nature and on quiet roads and as a result I slowly started finding more and more country roads that did not hold up at all, to break up the boring bits, naturally, without consciously looking for them.

Yesterday was another one of those days! Police had shut off the main road (a half hour long mostly straight and boring drive) between two towns and was directing traffic onto a country side road. I was a little unsure at the start as it veered off a long way in a different direction to where I thought it should go, to get to the next town, and felt slightly nervous this could possibly add a lot of time to the already long trip. There was no need, as it took about the same time and was amazingly scenic and quiet. I loved looking over the rolling hills and long distance views with the sun starting to get low in the sky. There were a few farms and sheep dotted around and the landscape varied so much more than the usual drive! I’ll be back there again!

This event reinforced to me again that if we relax, enjoy the moment, focus more on what we enjoy and trust things to fall into place to our liking, this is exactly what eventually happens. Not just on actual road trips, but also in every other part of our lives. Every road block is at first met with resistance, only to turn into an opportunity to find a better way in the end! I am so glad the road block forced me to find this gem of a D-tour yesterday, for it made my journey so much more enjoyable! Please share your experiences in the comments below.