Hey! I’m Ginny Massey, a full-time working mom of 2 (and wife) living in Atlanta. After experiencing severe brain fog, anxiety (with shortness of breath) and migraines back in 2017, I began digging into clean living. After a few years of research & lots of little lifestyle changes, my mission is to share easy holistic shifts so that women are empowered to live a non-toxic lifestyle and get the most out of day-to-day life and increase longevity.
How My Wellness Journey Began
To really dig into my journey, let’s go back a few years.
In spring 2016, my husband and I got married, went on an amazing honeymoon (bliss) and returned ready to start a family. I visited my GP and OBGYN to make sure everything looked good, and were cleared to begin trying for a baby. I felt like I should change my deodorant because I had heard that was one thing that can be bad for you, so I switched my deodorant and that was about it. I had no idea about any other lifestyle switches I probably should have made at the time so I continued along with my usual 409 cleaner, candle burning, good smellin’ shampoo & perfumes, and even a self tanner, but did limit it some to be on the “safe side”, and those are just a few of my many products that I didn’t know were actually kind of bad for me, and my unborn child. Things were going well for me & my pregnancy though and I felt fine, so I had no reason to question anything I was doing.
Luckily we were able to conceive rather quickly and had a baby the following May (2017). Let’s just say the delivering was quite traumatizing. I developed a fever right before push time and then began hemorrhaging after our daughter was born, and a back-up team was called in to help. I was stuck with shots in the leg and fortunately they got things under control. My daughter and I both had to be put on antibiotics throughout our stay because they were worried that the fever meant a possible infection. Ultimately, there was no infection based on our labs and we had just subjected our poor guts to 2 full days of antibiotics. The doctors said that the antibiotics wouldn’t harm us, but as I’ll explain more another day, I do believe there was much more to the story there and how it affected my daughter’s first year of life. I also wondered if some of the products I used at the time affected how my body dealt with the delivery process. I’ll never know, but the more I learn, the more I tend to think there was a connection there.
Fast forward a few months after her birth, she was sleeping much more soundly, and we were getting more sleep. And it was time to go back to work for me. The problem was that I was getting awful migraines, had anxiety, could not think straight (brain fog), and was getting sick all the time. I couldn’t understand why because I felt like I was getting pretty good sleep, eating a balanced diet (getting enough fruits & veggies), drinking plenty of water and was exercising a few days a week along with all the stroller walks. But I felt awful and it was hard to get out of bed and get motivated to do anything more than I had to. I felt unwell. This is when I began to research what I could possibly change because I had to find a way to feel productive again and not “sick”.
It actually started with researching baby products because I remember thinking, why do babies get special detergent, soap, lotion, etc.? I knew they should be gentler on babies, but as I started looking at ingredients, they really didn’t seem much different than “adult” products. I was using conventional products like Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo, Dreft laundry detergent, etc. And I couldn’t understand why it was okay for adults to use certain ingredients that might be harmful for babies. That’s what really got me. As I began to look into it, I found out that the FDA doesn’t really regulate the ingredients found in our products. I felt so deceived because all of these years, I had trusted that the products I was buying from the store were safe for me & my family, and had been vetted. That was a tough pill to swallow, and felt overwhelming because I didn’t know any other way…yet. Luckly, as I dove into researching this more, I found this whole new world of non-toxic products.
So now that I had discovered this non-toxic home & beauty world, I was starting to learn about the importance of eating real, organic food and a even approaching life in a more holistic manner. Where’s the mind-blow emoji when you need it?! As I mentioned before, I felt like I had a balanced diet, but I soon learned, I had a lot of work to do. I wasn’t eating hardly any organic, my breakfasts had little protein and I was eating WAY too many sweets. Because I was breastfeeding, I could hardly keep up with the calories and was allowing myself to indulge in tons of treats outside of the “balanced” diet to fill in the calories. My sugar intake was out of control.
Okay okay, so I’ll speed this up. Basically I realized what I was putting on my body and in my body was wrecking me. I had no idea any of it was toxic until this point, but almost everything I was using on me, around me or putting in my mouth had a little bit of toxicity in it, all piling up in me and causing a toxic overload, which was resulting in the migraine headaches, anxiety, brain fog, sluggishness, etc.
I once heard an analogy that described someone putting tons and tons of small cups of toxic liquid in a bath tub until at some point, the bath tub can’t hold it any longer and the liquid begins to spill out. At that point, problems are going to happen like damage to the floor, and then it will drip down to the next floor and so on. If you don’t stop pouring in the bad stuff, the problems are going to get worse and worse, which leads me back to the idea that I knew I couldn’t just change one thing, I was going to have to make a lot of small shifts in my life to clean myself up and stop the overload in order to stop the symptoms. If I didn’t begin making changes, I knew I was going to have to get on migraine medicine, anxiety medicine, possibly sleeping pills and even more.