The Wellness Spotlight series highlights military spouses and their real world health and wellness journeys in a Facebook Live series. Below is an excerpt of Patrice’s feature:
TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR JOURNEY AS A MILITARY SPOUSE.
My journey as a military spouse began in 2009 when I married the love of my life, Dalton.
Are you a health or wellness expert?
Not yet! One of my numerous goals is to obtain a health-coaching certification. I am a major health enthusiast.
What is a low moment when your health suffered the most and how did you overcome it?
My low point as a spouse came from walking with my husband Dalton through the VA system for help to increase his benefits as a disabled veteran. We experienced a lack of concern, assistance, and negative outcome. In addition, having to relive his combat moments in the process of working to get benefits he was owed and deserved was beyond stressful.
We overcame it working together as a team and talking with other veterans who had similar experiences.
Share with us a high moment during your wellness journey!
I went vegan in November 2016 and then in 2017 my husband decided to join me. This has made a tremendous difference in my health and overall well-being. In addition, it is such a blessing to have my life partner on the same journey and know that he is also focusing on being healthy and living a quality life.
My greatest success has been learning how to plan meals and cook yummy and nutritious vegan foods from scratch. We made a huge spread for both Thanksgiving and Christmas and it turned out so well! We made desserts, mac and cheese, a nut loaf, butternut squash lasagna, kale salad, and more. It was all plant-based, delicious, and beautiful.
I can truly say that I am feeling my healthiest now. This is a result of my intention to focus on what I believe are the four pillars of health: spiritual, physical, mental/emotional, and relational (to self and others). My goals are to spend time with the Lord in prayer and stillness daily, to move my body daily and to feed it healing foods, to say no when I need to and when it’s the best decision for me, to be kind to myself, and to be in healthy and inspiring relationships with myself and others. This includes intentionally spending quality time with my loves, my family, and my friends/community.
What is your favorite form of self-care?
My favorite form of self-care is — can I please choose two? Finally learning how to set boundaries for myself and not feel guilty, bad, or afraid of how the other person will receive it, and working out. Working out for me is going to the YMCA, my 2015 gift to myself. The YMCA is my happy place. I have found joy, renewal, and my wellness community there. My other forms of self-care are running virtual races with my friends who are out of state, Zumba (I totally go left when everyone else is going right), and just trying fun workouts that make me laugh, help me to decompress, and be inspired by the strength of my body.
What is one personal habit that contributes to your success?
One personal habit that contributes to my success is prayer and meditation. I have noticed that when I wake up early and spend my morning praying, reading, or just being still I feel centered, at peace, and able to face my day. This time allows me to empty my mind and gives me the space to hear God, make wise decisions, and to press the reset button.
WHAT IS A HEALTH AND WELLNESS RESOURCE YOU WOULD SHARE WITH THE COMMUNITY?
I would totally share the YMCA because of their mission to support and be a resource to youth and to families, and their desire to create and nurture healthy communities. They are really affordable and as a member you can use any of the YMCAs throughout the city, region, and state. Here is a list of what the YMCA can do for military families.
IF YOU COULD RECOMMEND ONE BOOK TO MILITARY SPOUSES, WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
I would recommend Spiritual Runner by Jollee Paden because it is a very inspiring and equipping devotional dedicated to runners. The author reminds us that we can apply our running and working out mindsets to living passionate and fruitful lives dedicated to God in the pursuit of loving others.
(Purchases using the links above will help InDependent cover administrative costs for our programs at no extra cost to you!)
ABOUT Dr. Patrice Carter
Dr. Patrice is married to the love of her life, Dalton and they are a blended family and parents to son, Miles, and daughters, Destiny and Desire. They are also now glamparents (as Patice is not ready to be called “grandma”) to Baby Miles. Dr. Patrice is the CEO of Carter Multimedia Consulting, Inc, a motivational speaker, and the founder of Breakpoint Coaching Collective, where she coaches private executive clients and trains Christian Life Coaches. She is also the author of “SUPERb Woman: From Bad Girl to God’s Girl”.