Saturday, October 31, 2020

Embracing Abandonment & Betrayal

When I was at my lowest point with my back a year ago, my current chiropractor, Scott Kolofer, looked me in the eye and said, "I will not abandon you." We both knew that he didn't have all the answers to help me, but the reassurance of his constancy was huge. As I shared this memory with him recently, I was surprised by the depth of emotion it triggered in me. 

In the 13+ years I've been actively dealing with back problems, I've seen six other chiropractors. As I contemplated my chiropractic history, I noticed feelings of abandonment and betrayal that I'd never really acknowledged. I am not saying there were any bad intentions on their parts at all, but, from my perspective, their actions or choices eroded any remaining faith I had in being able to rely on a healthcare practitioner...a faith that had already been seriously trashed by the medical profession. 

Four of my previous chiropractors either stopped practicing or left the area with little to no notice...the longest advance notice being 30 days and the least 0 days. I understand each of their reasons for their choice, but that doesn't change that fact that I was left to fend for myself, feeling abandoned.

Two of my previous chiropractors gave me bad adjustments that I had to find another chiropractor to fix. In these situations, it was my choice to switch, but that was based on broken trust. Submitting to chiropractic treatment requires relaxed muscles, which stems from a sense of trust in your practitioner. I trusted them to help me get better and I left feeling worse. I know they had good intentions, but it doesn't change the fact that my trust in them had been broken, and left me feeling betrayed.

While working through each of these situations, I brushed my painful feelings aside and went into problem solving mode. If emotions of abandonment or betrayal started to kick in, I would focus on the things I needed to do to move forward, try to look on the positive side of the circumstances, or distract myself with other activities. 

As I was remembering where I was physically last year, and what Scott had told me, the emotions that came up made it clear that I had never acknowledged my feelings of abandonment and betrayal that were caused by my other chiropractic experiences. 

At the same time, I came across this video of Kyle Cease that addressed my issue specifically. Serendipity can be so cool. The emotions I was avoiding are not pleasant ones to feel. Kyle points out that we tend to have a storehouse of ways to avoid feeling unpleasant emotions, including justifying them, denying them, and distracting ourselves. All of these techniques keep the emotions lurking in the background, unresolved. The emotions will keep trying to get our attention... and we will keep looking for ways to not feel them.

So that's what I've been doing all these years. Abandonment was met with a resolve to not be dependent. Betrayal was met with a resolve to be more cautious with my trust. If I could achieve those two things, I wouldn't have to feel those painful emotions. But this was just symptom relief for my emotions, and symptom relief doesn't heal. 

My emotions just wanted to be seen and me. Even if it wasn't the other person's intention, I am allowed to feel abandoned and I am allowed to feel betrayed. Once these emotions are fully embraced, they can be released. By denying them, I've been keeping them trapped.

So I finally embraced these emotions and felt them deeply. Was it painful? Yes, you bet it was. A few tears were shed. After a few hours, though, the pain started to lessen. After a day or two, the emotions released. I'm now actually feeling quite peaceful about my chiropractic past.

I'm now aware of this pattern in me and I've started seeing it in other areas. If an uncomfortable emotion is triggered, my automatic response is to look for something to take my mind off it... checking the news, turning on a movie, listening to music or a podcast. 

To break this pattern, I stop my search for a distraction and tell myself to just feel the emotion that was triggered. Some emotions release fairly promptly, while others take a bit longer. Some are just uncomfortable, while others are more painful. As I do this more and more, I'm seeing a decrease in the frequency and intensity of my emotional triggers. The more quickly I feel and release an emotion, the less emotional baggage I have to carry with me into the future.

I am deeply grateful to Scott for sticking by me this past year. He continues to provide my body with gentle, skilled care, and shows me how to care for my body better, so it can heal. 

My other chiropractors tended to encourage regular "maintenance" visits and more frequent visits when pain was present, creating dependence...and then I was abandoned. Scott is focused on healing, strengthening, less frequent visits, and ultimately independence...and he stuck by me. I find this truly fascinating.

As I look for my path going forward, I was struck by what Kyle Cease said in his video. Don't look for your path. You are the path! Wow. How cool is that? I am the path. I may not see my whole path all at once, but I can at least see the next step. And that's enough for now.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Is Ignorance Bliss?

In the movie The Matrix, Neo is given the choice between a red pill and a blue pill. The red pill gives him the unpleasant truth. The blue pill leaves him in blissful ignorance. The question being, would he rather know or not know what's really going on? This question has been on my mind lately. 

For decades I searched for answers to health related problems, for myself and my family. I went from one resource to the next, one expert to the next, one protocol to the next, looking for answers. If a recommendation sounded reasonable, I would give it a try, using myself as a guinea pig. Sometimes I would experience symptom relief for a bit, but the condition would invariably come back. Every resource I found was just offering guesses or theories about the cause, typically blaming the person (you're not thinking right) or the person's body (you have a faulty body). No one had real answers.

I watched my family members suffer through these conditions, while standing by feeling helpless. I did the best I could with the information I had. Even my own symptoms continued to get worse, in spite of my diligent efforts to try to heal. The more I researched, the more I learned how little knowledge and information was out there. "Cause unknown," "condition can't be cured," and "can last for years or be lifelong" were phrases I ran into over and over again. Symptom relief was the focus of all healing modalities, rather than cure, and even the symptom relief was typically short lived.

Then in July of 2016, after reading Anthony William's first book, Medical Medium, I exclaimed, "Answers! I've finally found them!" His detailed explanations about the causes of each condition made complete sense. He laid out recommendations for healing. Real healing. Actually reversing conditions and then curing them, using food, herbs, and a few supplements. This path is simple, meaning you can do it on your own if you choose, but it's not necessarily easy. Is it worth it? Yes. Absolutely. 100%.

The proof of the effectiveness of his information is in the healing stories, including my own. Not just a few of them, but thousands of them...hundreds of thousands of them, all over the world. People are healing conditions that were considered incurable. Many had been debilitated for years, decades, and sometimes their entire lives. Going from doctor to doctor. Trying one treatment protocol after the next. Spending the bulk of their resources in the search, only to end up bedridden, misunderstood, and in despair. 

A young woman who went through this, and would have dropped out of college if she hadn't discovered Anthony's information, summed it up well. "In a toxic world full of noise and disinformation, there is truth, there is real healing, and there is a light at the end of the tunnel."

And yet, for a variety of reasons, many people aren't ready to give this information its due credence. I respect that. Each person has their own path, their own perspective, and their own free will. Many people have trouble accepting the source of his information. Much of his information contradicts what is generally accepted as true. I'm also aware, first hand, that this path isn't easy. Simple maybe, using real foods and a few supplements to heal, but definitely not easy. For those who want science to back up their choices, there just aren't any studies on the healing benefits of celery juice, bananas, or potatoes. And it's really unlikely there ever will be, because there's no profit in it.

So let's get back to the red pill / blue pill question. In the past, I felt helpless because I didn't know the cause of a condition or what to do about it. Now I feel helpless because I have answers, but people often don't want to hear or implement them. This is the question that I've been pondering lately. Is it better to feel helpless with answers or without them? 

When I didn't have answers, I was constantly searching for them. If someone presented me with a health concern, I gave them the best information I'd come across so far. After learning more, I would sometimes come to a different conclusion than the information I'd previously shared. It was a frustrating process, but I felt good that I was at least giving people a few alternatives to mainstream approaches, even if I sometimes wanted to revise my previous response. 

Now that I finally have answers, I've found that many people either aren't open to them or aren't ready for them. I watch them suffer, while sitting on the knowledge of what they could do to start feeling better. It's really difficult to withhold information that could be seriously helpful. Painful even, in my heart. I take solace in being able to periodically plant a seed about other options, but I've learned from experience to not share the information in depth unless asked. 

So which one is better? Being allowed to share information that won't be significantly not be allowed to share information that could make a huge difference in someone's life? The first one is frustrating. The second one is seriously painful. 

I'll take the pain. I'm a red pill person. Give me the truth. With all of its scary implications and disruption. Let's get it all out on the table, out in the light of day, so we can start dealing with it. It hasn't done us any good to keep it hidden...quite the contrary, actually. 

Now that I have answers, I no longer have to search for them. If someone asks for my take on a health issue they're dealing with, I'll give them the best information I have to offer, as I've always done. If they're not open to what I have to share or aren't ready for it, I might be able to plant a seed of possibility. At some point, the person may be back for more in depth info, after trying other methods and seeing little improvement, or they may not. At least I was able to let them know that more information and options are available, if they ever want to go there.

At the end of the documentary about Linda Ronstadt, Linda explained that she had to stop singing because of Parkinson's disease. I now know that Parkinson's is caused by heavy metals in the brain, primarily mercury. These metal deposits disrupt the electrical impulses and neurotransmitter activity in the brain, resulting in the tremors. The condition is aggravated when these metals begin to run and oxidize, which is largely due to a high fat diet. 

Getting the metals out and lowering fat intake are essential with Parkinson's. If she were to consume the Medical Medium Heavy Metal Detox Smoothie on a daily basis and adjust her diet to significantly lower her fat intake, maybe she would soon be able to start singing again...even if just for her own pleasure. But I've learned, by trial and error, to not offer these suggestions unless asked. I won't be calling or writing to Linda to let her know. How sad, though, to see her spirit diminished by her inability to continue singing, at a time when information is finally out there that could make a difference for her.

If I didn't have the answers, I would just express sympathy for the person's situation, offer help where I could, and accept the situation as unavoidable. Actually, even with answers, I've learned it's better to continue to embrace the first sympathy and offer help. The third one, though, I can no longer do...accepting the situation as unavoidable. 

While I've had to learn to not offer help unless asked, it's not easy. And yet, I know that everyone has free will and their own belief system, and that has to be respected. In the meantime, I'll continue to acquire more answers and a deeper understanding of the information I already have. I'll continue to heal and strengthen my own body, share what I know when requested, and wait. Because some day, possibly decades from now, people will be ready to hear it. When that time comes, I plan to be ready.

As far as the blue pill goes, I've tossed it in the trash. Give me the truth...every time.