My Journey to Wellness:
How I Healed My Body by Healing My Life
This isn't a story I share often. In fact, many people in my life never knew I was diagnosed with anything. It's a topic I don't bring up, or even think of now, because illness is no longer a part of my life. I debated whether to include this story on the website, and finally decided that it belonged with the other spiritual and wellness content because it conveys the power of aligning the whole of your life—spiritual, physical, creative, emotional—with actions and intentions toward wellness, balance, and love. It shows that nothing, not even a syndrome or illness without a cure, is more resilient or powerful than the human spirit.
Seven years ago I received a devastating diagnosis that shattered my sense of wellbeing and plans for the future. Repeated blood work and tests showed that I had a life-altering syndrome that didn't have a cure. Every doctor and specialist I visited said that I would have the syndrome for the rest of life—once diagnosed, there was no going back.
My only option was to try to find treatments to help my body cope with the symptoms. I was devastated, especially by the thought of not being able to experience the things in life I'd always anticipated being able to do and have because my body was suddenly "broken."
After a year of making trips to see specialists and trying heavy medications that were dangerous for my body and causing terrible side affects—while no improvements were being made—I hit a breaking point. I had to face the fact that I was completely miserable and not living my life. And worst of all, my body wasn't getting any better. Something needed to change. On a cold winter afternoon I decided throw everything I was doing out the window, and start over.
It was the best decision I've ever made.
I plunged headfirst into the holistic health arena and immersed myself in therapies, treatments, and lifestyle changes. I began to realize the powerful connection between my mind, body, and spirit, and sought to heal the whole of who I was—not just my illness. This led to cultivating a new relationship with my body—one founded on trust and respect, instead of pain and resentment.
This new way of treating my body initiated a spiritual journey as well, which catalyzed tremendous transformational shifts in my life. Instead of hating my body, I began to love it. Instead of holding onto pain and grievances from my past, I began to let them go. I realized that my broken body was only an outer manifestation of a broken life. I needed a deep healing from the inside out, and was determined to make it happen.
I began to meditate and juice daily. I made a conscious effort to shift my thoughts from anxiety to forgiveness and gratitude. I worked with acupuncturists, spiritual healers, naturopaths, reflexologists, and other holistic practitioners, and I became a student of naturopathic medicine, essential oils, and other therapies as well.
I invested in my writing, danced barefoot in drum circles, laughed uncontrollably, created uninhibitedly, made smoothies and love in my kitchen, and finally began to live life majestically. This full embrace of the wholeness of who I was— honoring my physical, emotional, creative, and spiritual needs—healed my life. My body healed as well.
After three years of deep inner work and holistic lifestyle changes, all of my symptoms disappeared. When I finally went back to my doctor, my new blood work and tests proved what I already knew: the syndrome was gone. My doctor was completely baffled and called my case a fluke and rare.
BUT IT SHOULDN'T BE.
We all have the power to heal our lives, whether ailed with a case of spiritual bankruptcy, a broken relationship, blocked creativity, or a suffering body. We can accept our grievances, hold them in compassion, and take deliberate, often times uncomfortable, action toward their healing.
We can befriend uncertainty and learn to stand beside fear. We can allow them to deepen us, along with our faith in ourselves and our lives.
Illness and disruption often surface when we've outgrown our surrounding circumstances and something new and greater needs to be born. The old city must fall in order for the new empire to rise; so goes the movement of our lives. Illness and tragedy bring new, unforeseen gifts and opportunities that have the power to expand and embolden—if we allow them to do so. They're divine alchemical agents of the highest order.
This has always been the case in my life. My greatest tragedies have transformed into my greatest gifts—they've pushed me to grow, step further into my power, and rise to the occasion.
What if we took a new approach to illness and pain? Instead of treating the symptoms of disease with medications, what if we treated the source of disease itself? Instead of treating the symptom of fear with distractions, what if we opened our door, welcomed it in, and got to know it? How would our lives change if we went straight to the root of our suffering, treated it with compassion, and didn't demand a "fast and easy fix"? Yes, no one likes to feel pain, but you'll never move beyond your suffering if you refuse to face it and work with it.
This is why Reflect the Light came into being. The tools, modalities, and guides on physical wellness, spirituality, and creativity you'll find here are the very same tools I've used continuously to bring my life, heart, and body back into alignment when things have gotten sticky—and they always do from time-to-time. We're only human after all.
But we always have the power to show up for ourselves, surrender our fears, and take bold action in the direction of our wellbeing and joy.
You're more powerful than any obstacle or fear that will ever cross your path. Your power transcends physical form and temporal circumstance. You're spirit, after all. From spirit comes intuitive wisdom, divine intervention, and the stuff of miracles.
Spirit is ultimately indestructible. Spirit is ultimately love. So are you.
Live. Give. Make a Difference. Reflect Your Light. XO