The darkness of fall 2019

Updated: Jan 30

I've been in a deep and joyful reflective place the past 2 days. It feels amazing after a few months that have been as hard to understand as this sweater, lol. I was supposed to head out for New Years' games with friends and I backed out. It doesn't feel like the right time to disconnect yet and I'm blessed to have the freedom to decide what I do when. Isn't adulthood great! So NYE 19 I'll be padding around the house in my comfy jeans, braless, wearing my stretched out Costco fuzzy sweater that picks up every damn piece of lint, stick or feather it comes within 2 feet of. Seriously. I love it and hate it, lol

Later my 2 14yo puppies will snuggle beside me and I'll massage their hips and other sore parts, while watching a movie and sipping Amarula on ice and eating the Artichoke & Feta stuffed puff pastry I made for games night, before jumping into GFRR in the morning!

So 2019! What did I learn? I hit a life speedbump in August. I wasn't wearing my seatbelt, I was standing up in the car waving my arm in the air, metaphorically. It damaged my psyche and had me question myself on a different level. I can't remember being in a personal place that dark as an adult, not even after my divorce, since my divorce wasn't about 'me', if that makes sense. As the sunsets & grey of fall crept in I pulled myself through each day giving what I had until I could crash. Feeling further behind, more chaotic and a bit more grey with each speedbump or overcast day. Listening to health and business podcasts or watching TV with a plot to follow often wasn't doable, so it was the fall of Friends, lol. I ate worse than I have in years and didn't care, I aimed for one good meal some days. I barely drank water. When I'm in a mentally great place I LOVE being home and cram all errands into one day, avoiding the city... I drove to Tim's a lot. That caffeine & sugar hit of an Iced Capp gave me a body/brain jolt. I went daily for a few weeks & it's a 12 min drive. On the toughest days, I bought 2 of them at once, on long days in the city I went more than once. Getting an Iced Capp was what I looked forward to when I had a cooking class, lol, it helped get me moving out the door. Getting out to my Cooking Classes was a major relief (once I got there, and got into the flow). Fun and laughter for hours is like a magic serum. On days with sunshine I'd feel lit up & would go outside soaking it in few minutes or would hop in my car and go for a drive. I had a lightbulb moment! I didn't realize I was depressed until that point, as silly as that seems. I grabbed the Happy Light from the closet. Within a week or so of sitting with it on for 6-8 hours a day I had the desire to turn on music again, a little bit here and there. I ate more vegetables & brought more flavor & nutrition into my life focussing on foods for gut health. I listened to Malcolm Gladwell. His way of telling a story pulls you in even when you feel fogged. Mind you I zoned out repeatedly although he had me so caught up in his stories I had to know what happened, and rewind was my friend! Over time l rewound less, lol. Small victories are where it's at! By mid-Nov my life had some color again. Music, nutrition and days focusing on my passions brought me back step by step. I started the process of examining my life from all angles. What was missing, what my solutions were, what I loved, didn't love and needed to leave behind.


Dec 4th late evening I realized I needed to chop off my hair, it was such an emotional release that I'm crying typing this. I texted my fantastic stylist asap the next morning asking her to fit me into her next cancellation, sharing that I needed to make a life change and it couldn't wait until my Jan appt. By noon I was in her chair, thank-you Universe & Tammy!


I've spent the past month diving deeper than I ever have, some of those lessons are too personal to share, although I'll share the lessons that may apply to you too. I learned:

  • that music helps me learn and work super efficiently

  • I love setting my to DND & hyper-focusing, it's energizing!

  • upbeat playlists & my favorite songs feed my soul.. Hailee Steinfeld was relatively new to me and her music makes my body move! I love the spotify playlist linked, especially her songs with Logic, Machine Gun Kelly & MNEK

  • learning through stories is THE best way for me to learn! Go download Talking to Strangers Audio book or Revisionist History Podcast as a start

  • EVEN less is more

  • Often you need to release a lot of heavy dull things for any new & shiny to appear

  • That I, you, we, have a hell of a lot to offer

  • You need to give up some people / relationships / beliefs and bid them well to keep your soul thriving.

  • Connecting deeper isn't as scary as I thought (I'm working my way to deeply, lol)

  • Focusing on 3 wins a day changes your life - on a dark day 'brushed my teeth' is an f'ing fantastic win - celebrate that

  • Naturally colorful food helps with my internal color

  • When I don't eat dairy my iron is much better! Better iron = better energy

  • đź’ś That a friend randomly reaching out is an extra day of sunshine when you may need it the most. Thanks Paula for the most amazing butter tarts ever. Thanks Denise for your call today! Thanks so much, Diane for the cast iron frying pan in the mail!

  • That even with all 3 kids graduated and only Lex at home (although rarely here) I still think about them more than I expected, but don't 'miss them' & that's a great thing

  • That I absolutely adore my own company! Plus when the house is empty it's a bra off party!

My Word for 2020 is GROW! I want to continue this deeper growth path I've started down, I want to grow stronger physically, I want to grow my business massively, I want to grow my garden feeding people struggling as well as my family, I want to grow my passions and I want to grow my cravings for vegetables, ha ha.


I hope your 2020 is everything that you are hoping for and if you’ve picked a word for the year, I would love to hear it!


Happy New Year!


XO Dana K

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DANA KAYAL    |    SPICELADY@DANAKAYAL.COM    |    250-681-3262   |    KELOWNA, BC     |    NORTH AMERICA