I’m down here for a 4, 4-and-a-half day experience, which is meant to transition me into a 42-day HCG journey. (Which in itself is intended as the first stage in a lifetime path of detoxing and caring for myself differently.)
I share these calendar details in the spirit of observing that it’s only the end of Day 1, and there is already so much to look at and write about that I could take weeks to do it. I’m assuming that in a week or two, once I’ve settled into the protocol, there will be some time to reflect back on parts of this trip. Given that expectation — and, quite honestly, given the reality that I can only write so much before my weary bones call me to bed — I’m not even remotely going to try and pretend I’m going to capture everything worth saying here in the midst of experiencing everything. Instead, I’m just going to look at whatever is most present to me.
So, one big thing that happened today is I had my doctor’s consult and did my first HCG shot. Which means I’m in the midst of one of the more counterintuitive moments of the protocol: loading days.
Here’s my kindergarten-level explanation of how the HCG protocol works. By combining the hormone shots with a no-sugar, no-starch diet, you’re able to inspire your body to shift into ketosis, where you’re deriving your daily energy from fat molecules rather than sugar molecules. Since the diet restrictions also eliminate fats (new fat intake being what the body would first choose as an ketosis energy source), the body is further inspired to extract energy from the body’s existing deposits of adipose tissue — then allowing the rest of the toxins and gunk from within those cells to be cleared.
However, it takes a few days to shift into that second part of the process, so part of the protocol is to spend the first two injection days eating a whole lot of high-protein, high-fat food — so your system has a short term energy source before the deep detoxing begins.
And I mean a LOT of food.
Now I know that it is impossible to look at someone’s waistline and magically be able to intuit how “healthy” or “unhealthy” their eating habits are.* But I also know that, speaking only for myself, I have indeed been living from a place of emotional eating and a lot of unhealthy eating habits. So, as I talked through my Day 1 “loading menu” with my detox coach last night, I kinda thought I would find this piece easy. After all, everything on the menu — lattes, breakfast sandwiches, bacon cheeseburgers, calzones — are things that I eat pretty regularly.
But even I don’t eat them all together in the same day. And it was surprisingly like a marathon/endurance journey to get through and take in all the calories prescribed to me for this Day 1 experience.** And there’s still tomorrow…
There’s the whole other level of “taking it in” — taking in care and support — that I’m also practicing into. Folks filling my water bottle for me and rinsing my dishes after I have one of these surprisingly difficult-to-eat meals. It is harder for me to allow that, even a little bit harder than I expected it to be. And yet, I am profoundly grateful for the care being shown me.
And that, however halfway-told the story is, and however gossamer-thin its conclusion, is all she wrote tonight. Bed is calling.
* And, just for the record, even if someone has the “unhealthiest” diet in the ever-loving WORLD, that person is still of worth and value and deserves to be met with compassion and acceptance and respect.
** There’s also a whole other exploration worth articulating — some other day — about the surreal nature of taking eating choices and patterns I customarily express in a deeply unconscious place and to be replicating them in a sober, conscious, spiritually awake place. Wild.