Hello, my name is Anny. A few days ago I was watching a 9/11 special on TV and I couldn't help but visualise my life 13 years back. I was at the top of my career, working at one of the most prestigious financial institutions in the country (Perú); discussing the impact that this Twin Tower attack would have in the financial world and even our workplace. At midday, I was probably heading for lunch to a fashionable restaurant, and later on in the day, at about 5pm the coffee lady would do her rounds with the dessert cart, which would give me enough courage (sugar high) to make it through traffic and finally get back to my place. I felt at the peak of my productive and successful life, and made everybody proud.
Today, I no longer work at a financial institution, even though I am an Economist by profession. I run a Juice & Snack Bar in my home town (Arequipa). Today, my focus is not on reaching a financial goal every month. Today, my thoughts and actions focus on feeling good. I may have disappointed a few along the way but I have surpassed my own expectations for myself.
What brought me back to my home town? This may sound cheesy to those how know me personally, but it was love. It was the love for my husband that brought me back, it was the love for my two children and my family that gave me the courage to change my eating habits and prioritise the time spent with them over any job description and status. It was the love for others that convinced me to open "Pura Fruta" and offer a wide variety of healthier options. And when I hear people say that selling Green Juices is not the right move because there is no demand, I feel that it is worth the effort for those who DO care for their health and wellbeing.
As an Economist I've always learnt that everything is based on statistics and results, but life presents with situations for which no formula is valid or relevant. Growing up with my family, we've always appreciated home made food and never had dealt with toxic additions (alcohol, drugs). However, in my family you hear conversations related to kidney failure, fatty liver, gastrointestinal problems, ulcers and a few others. We consider these diseases to have scientific evidence, however the origin of these illnesses don't sound too scientific to me. How do you get rid of stress? How do you avoid ending up with the wrong diagnosis? How do you go back in time and get a different treatment? This is where I shifted and started getting informed, focusing more on prevention and most of all, making decisions TODAY.
I have two school age sons, and have been exposed to the many labels our society imposes on our young generation, I choose to call them labels because not very many of them have actual scientific proof and can't be measured or diagnosed for certain. Things like Hyperactivity, Aggression, ADD, ADHD are at the top of the list and it's scary how many of these children are under prescribed medication. These drugs can be very damaging in the long term to both their brains and organs. I'm here to say that there are other options, a big one is TIME. Time put aside to be spent with your children (to educate them, feed them well, etc), this simple option will never fail to yield results, and has no counter-indications, no side effects and no psychological damage.
Today, we are not on a "diet" at home, but our eating habits have changed dramatically, we eat mindfully without depriving ourselves of the things we enjoy. My husband is a cyclist and he feels much better physically, my children are happy and so are their teachers. And me… I live a peaceful life knowing in my heart that I made the right choice.
Photos: Anny Muñoz, Pura Fruta