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These are my thoughts, yo.

Introducing Project Totus

jasmine banks

Something snapped the other day. I have spent years struggling with weight, emotional eating/eating disorder, depression, anxiety...and that is just the start of the list. Something snapped in me and I decided that I was exhausted with the hamster wheel that I was running on. I contacted the editor of the local magazine I write for (Peekaboo) and pitched an idea... I wanted to write a human interest story about my journey to wellness. She agreed that it was a good idea and thus "Project Totus" was born. Just a couple of weeks earlier I wrote in my journal this: "Jasmine. It is time to change, to learn to be present in your own body, take care of yourself and make yourself a priority." I wasn't very good about taking care of myself before I was a mother and once I became a mother I found the perfect excuses for why I couldn't take care of me- my kids. I have to learn how to care for myself in the best possible ways. I decided I wanted to confront my issues head on and I wanted to do it in a way that, maybe, would help another person like me. I know I am not the only person who has lived like this. You make everyone else a priority because facing yourself is too frightening.

I am going to face myself finally. I determined that my journey to wellness, wholeness, had to being by assembling a team of educated people who could help me alone this journey.

I have partnered with Lean Green Cuisine, 3DPT , and I.M. Spa to create Project Totus. "Totus" is Latin for "whole" and I thought it was the perfect sentiment for what I want to become.

I will work with Judy from Lean Green Cuisine to learn a new way to eat. A Vegan/Vegetarian meal plan will help me eliminate my food addictions that I have used to cope in years passed as well as replenish vital nutrients I have lost with years of abuse. I have an arsenal of cookbooks and references at my disposal to learn how to TRULY nourish my body with what I eat.

Noel, from 3DPT, has joined me as my personal trainer. He plans to teach me about body mechanics and show me effective ways to provide my body with quality aerobic exercise. The goal will be for Noel to equip me with the best workouts that I can do at home or alone in the gym and create a habit that will last a lifetime.

Wendy from I.M. Spa will be cheering me on at my proverbial "finish line". At the end of six weeks I plan to evaluate how far I have come. At I.M. Spa, Wendy emphasizes the importance of whole beauty. At the end of my six weeks I get to treat myself to a makeover compliments of I.M. Spa, just another thing to motivate me along the way.

I will also be seeing a psychologist about some of my destructive emotional eating habits. I am doing all these things before your eyes. Why? I don't know... maybe for accountability. My biggest hope is that I can do this and show other people that I, an average mom of three, can do it- and so others can do it too. We can learn to be whole. It takes works and intentional living but it is a real achievable goal.

This project isn't about weight loss, food morals, or any other number of things. I chose these people to join me on this journey because their beliefs about their disciplines and practices resonated with me.What this project IS about is learning to not compartmentalize our lives and to live fully integrated. Whole.

I hope you'll follow me in the weeks to come.