This post has been a long time coming. Some stories need to be told, even if we feel incredibly vulnerable. Most of my family and friends don’t even know this story. It wasn’t until I was being interviewed on my “about” page I realized, I couldn’t keep up the lie.
Even though my great gran, Willie, and her generation serves as inspiration for my journey, they were not the cause. I felt like a deer in the headlights when asked to elaborate on Willie. Sadly, I didn’t know her that well. Only from the stories my grandmother and mom passed down.
So what’s the scoop?
Around six years ago, In college I started feeling unbearable pain in my left breast. It felt like someone was stabbing me. I couldn’t wear a bra, it hurt to have fabric rub up against me, and it could be difficult to raise my arms. This was beyond normal pain. I went to see the lady doctor and she immediately sent me to the breast cancer ward. They performed an ultrasound where they found some abnormal growth. It was assumed to be cancer. I had six tumors, and they would need to perform a fine-needle aspiration to be sure. Thankfully their assumption was wrong, the cells were not malignant.
They didn’t want to operate; because, there was a very good chance they would just grow back. Instead, I was to be monitored every several months over the course of three years for any changes.
Even though nothing has changed, it didn't stop the pain.
This whole experience really, really got me thinking about what I put in and on my body. Previously I had thought the “all-natural” movement was crazy. I mean – The government couldn’t possibly allow products that could harm us to be on the shelves? ……right!?
Oh, so wrong.
I started over hauling everything. First I started cooking from scratch. Then I started making my own cleaning products. Then I started making my own beauty products. Then this amazing thing happened when I switched to an all natural deodorant – my pain went away. Gone. Vanished.
I have been pain free for a year and a half. Of course I don’t have any scientific evidence to back this up, but I truly believe this is due to the aluminum in the anti-perspirant I was wearing. Since dropping it, I haven’t had any pain.
After I graduated college I took an acting gig in PA. The contract ran almost half a year. As you well know, I had a massive closet. I also had a TON of stuff.
I had a fully furnished apartment in AR, and I had to whittle all of that down into what could easily fit into the trunk of my car.
I took only my favorite clothes, favorite pieces of jewelry, and a few personal items. I left everything else at my family's house in AR.
During my time in PA, I got a really devastating phone call. All of the furniture, clothes, dishes, almost everything I owned – burned.
I lost it all in a fire.
I mean, it’s actually kinda hilarious – the house was struck by lightning, caught on fire, the roof caved in, and then it flooded. Fortunately and unfortunately, it was only my side of the house. Everything else and everyone was fine.
But, there was a plan. Isn't there always a plan?
In PA I had, very unexpectedly, met someone pretty amazing. Two weeks before news of the fire dropped, He asked me to runaway with him to California.
After we finished our contracts, we packed up our little cars with what fit in our trunks and we drove out to the bay to start a new chapter.
And ya know, my quality of living hasn't suffered one bit. I haven't missed any of that stuff.
Because, it was just stuff, just things - it didn't matter. My memories do not belong to inanimate objects. My memories are alive in me.
After moving out to CA, I started focusing on waste reduction efforts. There's so much plastic and waste going out to sea. It broke my heart. And, everything that has happened has really led me to this point. I have no doubt in my mind. I'm doing exactly what I'm supposed to be doing.
So, that's how and why I really started going zero waste. Thank you so much for joining me on this journey and your continual support. I truly believe we can make a difference in this world.
I'll update my about page to reflect this new information. Thank you for understanding why it took time to publish this information.