I grew up with severe asthma, died a couple times, spent alot of my life in hospitals and emergency rooms up until I was 40. I also had several injuries, including falling through a hole in a floor in a store (sounds like a sitcom doesn’t it?) in 1971. For some years I cursed these inflictions but as the years went on, I learned to see them as gifts.
Doctors told my parents I wouldn’t leave to be 30 years old. My brother had already died at age 21 when he went into a hospital with asthma and the doctor gave him too much medication, thus killing him. So at age 22 I started studying TM meditation, the next year studied Silva Mind control and the next year started studying homeopathy, herbs, and other alternative health topics. In 1978 I was led to a reflexologist who finally took the pain away from my fall in 71, and it also helped my lungs, so I decided to learn it. Thus began my 34+ year career in holistic therapies.
Throughout my life as I searched for ways to heal myself or at least help relieve some of my symptoms, mental, emotional and physical, when I’d find therapies that were useful, I would learn them and add them to my tool box in my career. So I feel that my health challenges have led me to my career and also my destiny.
Most people with lungs like mine are in bed, or they stay home and do very little. I go for 5 mile hikes, sometimes every day. I know that all these techniques I have learned and my spiritual focus have been responsible for this. These health challenges have taught me patience, empathy, compassion, understanding, peace in the midst of struggle, and strength I never knew I had.
It is easy when storms arrive in our lives, whatever their form, to attempt to flee, struggle, or feel defeated. But I have found in my own life and the lives of many of my clients that these storms are often the impetus for change, opportunities for growth, wake up calls or the signpost to another path.
I have learned to love these parts of me, not to stay attached to the ailments but to be able to love the parts of me that chose this path of learning, seeing how it has served me, so when the time comes for my body to release them completely, the process will be a gentle exhale instead of a wrestling match.
Photo by Katelon Jeffereys. Storm from Lincoln Park, Seattle, WA