Long before I really understood the full impact of having an autoimmune disorder and way long before I even thought of being a wellness coach, I was in graduate school studying to be a vocational rehabilitation counselor. And I had endometriosis.
First it was Endometriosis
In the midst of a recent shuffle of personal belongings, a box of letters, school papers and the like landed in front of me demanding attention. In the box was a book, Alternatives for Women with Endometriosis: A Guide by Women for Women, edited by Ruth Carol. The book is a compilation of several women’s stories and how they found health again through alternative approaches. As I thumbed through, I remembered writing an essay for this book published in 1994. I wrote about holistic alternatives to health 25 years ago.
I read my essay entitled, “My Personal Health Transformation” and I stepped back in time almost vividly to that period in my life when my sacral and solar plexus chakras were just wrecked. I wasn’t familiar with the chakra system then but I sure knew about healing my inner child and healing from childhood sexual abuse. And I knew it took a combination of approaches to bring the mind, body and spirit into alignment.
Then I got Sarcoidosis
If you know my story, either because you know me or because you have read my posts, then you know I have sarcoidosis, an autoimmune disorder primarily effecting my lungs. I acquired sarcoidosis 5 years after my endometriosis had resolved. I was exposed to black mold. That is how the disease literally manifested in my body. From a holistic perspective, lungs represent the heart chakra and the breath of life. And the heart chakra is that place where we learn to give and receive love in a balanced way and to also forgive. That is my new holistic focus for myself- to delve deeply into my heart chakra and heal what is still broken. And we all have our broken places.
On being a Lymphie
I also have primary lymphedema. I am a lymphie. I was born with it, along with crossed eyes and a duodenal double hernia. Both were resolved – my eyes remitted over time and my hernia was repaired at the tender age of 14 months with surgery. The lymphedema remains, mostly in my left leg. Can we say, “A little birth trauma, maybe?”
The lymphedema causes my lymph system to function improperly and I compare lymph fluid to the chi that flows through the body energetically. When lymph is not flowing properly, neither is chi. And funny, I chose FLOW as my word for 2019. I want to be in flow.
This trip down my literary memory lane reminded me of the healing that I sought and the balance I brought to my sacral and solar plexus chakras. I am seeing this trend continue as I now work on my heart chakra and balancing the lifeforce energy that flows through me.
This is an ongoing journey with ups and downs, revelations, epiphanies and the stops and starts that go with a journey that is walked with intention. It doesn’t mean I won’t have physical, spiritual or emotional struggles but I know that living intentionally brings meaning to the journey.
I was brave at just 31 to put it all out there. I am proud of me for that. I have now listed this little essay on my vitae. Is it a coincidence that my first published piece was about living a wellness lifestyle? And now I am an Intuitive Wellness Coach. Full circle.
Merz, D.P. (1994). My personal health transformation. In R. Carol (Ed.) Alternatives for women with endometriosis: A guide for women by women (pp. 141-149). Third Side Press: Chicago, IL.