In December 2013, I woke up on Christmas Day and could not walk. My ankles were swollen and my joints were incredibly painful. My entire body ached.
I tried some herbs for the flu.
I used topical ointments for the joints.
After several days of this, nothing made a difference.
I saw my primary care physician. She told me to contact her in a few weeks if I was still in pain.
Meanwhile, my amazing acupuncturist thought I might be sensitive to gluten. I cut out gluten cold turkey.
After a few weeks, I spoke to my MD again. I was still in a lot of pain. I wasn't sleeping. We did some tests, but they were all negative.
I felt really hopeless.
She thought it was fibromyalgia and prescribed me medication.
I didn't fill the prescription.
I decided to see a rheumatologist.
When I saw the rheumatologist, she thought I had rheumatoid arthritis.
We did some more testing, and it was all negative.
I have Lupus and arthritis in my family, so she prescribed me prednisone and methotrexate.
I didn't fill the prescription. None of their diagnoses felt right.
Meanwhile, I went to community acupuncture everyday. I took epsom salt baths. I meditated.
I needed time to find the answers. I needed a stress-free space to heal.
I went on disability from work.
I called my friend who has rheumatoid arthritis and asked her how she went from being in a wheelchair to performing operas again. She is an amazing woman, and I respect her with my whole heart.
She told me about her holistic healing plan and her experience with the GAPS diet.
The same day, my (very intuitive) acupuncturist suggested I cut all grain out from my diet.
I did a ton of research, and stumbled upon the Autoimmune Protocol Paleo Diet.
I started right away. Within 2 days, I could walk without pain.
After a battery of tests, they diagnosed me with a parasite and high levels of lead and mercury. I'm also gluten intolerant, and at the time I could not eat dairy, nightshades, chocolate, coffee, and a whole host of other foods.
I started healing my gut. I took anti-parasitic herbs. I drank bone broth. I discovered organ meats.
I embraced life without grain.
My naturopath introduced me to an incredible herbalist. We found the right herbs to strengthen my system.
As my body began to heal, my spirit started to shift. I made a ton of art. I wrote music. These herbs work, I thought.
I fell deep in love with the world of herbalism and natural healing.
My acupuncturist referred me to an allergy clinic, and they successfully treated me for my food sensitivities: the entire nightshade family, dairy, chocolate, coffee, and a whole host of other things. My weight stabilized. I started feeling really good.
One day, a few weeks later, I was late for the bus.
I ran across the street.
I got on the bus, and I realized, I just ran across the street!
I could have bursted with joy. Three months before, I couldn't walk. Now, I could run.
I am here to share this joy with you.
Since that day, I am still gentle with my body:
I eat (mainly) paleo.
I listen when my body says slow down.
I get regular chiropractic and acupuncture treatment.
Throughout the entire process, I never let my experiences weigh me down.
I never said I have rheumatoid arthritis, I have celiac, I have a parasite.
Instead, I said I am experiencing sickness in my body.
And, My body has the wisdom to bring itself into balance.
This mindset allowed me to continue seeking the truth.
“The tendency of nature is to restore the injured body to health, but in order for health to be maintained there must be a change in behavior or understanding. The burnt hand does not return to the fire. Healing includes not only stimulating the regrowth of damaged skin but the learning of a lesson which had previously been unknown.”
— MATTHEW WOOD, VITALISM PG. XI
Nature has given us the tools we need to manage illness and dis-ease. If we let our bodies speak, if we let our hearts listen, and if we bring their wisdom to the doctors around us, we can find the right cure.
I did not go through this process alone. I have many people to thank - my partner, my family, my teachers, my doctors, my co-workers, my guides and my angels.
If there is any way I can help you along your journey, please contact me. Energy work was a huge component of my healing process, helping to clear away the energetic layers preventing quick recovery.
Whatever you are experiencing, you don't have to experience it alone.