Around 5 years ago whilst on an intensive Ashram retreat, deeply immersed in Yoga Therapy training and battling bacterial poisoning, the man in charge of the training said to me,
‘Janet, you cant see to your student unless you are completely well’
I think, if I remember well, I laughed inside but I never replied
Keep that thought in mind, I’ll get back to it in a minute or so.
Right now I want to jump straight in and give you a quick rendition of the past year, the little snippets of ill health that continually appeared and persisted and the link between life and death on a mind, soul, body level.
The biggest and loudest screaming message was was tooth/bone loss and gum damage.
Then there was:
Muscle loss & extreme weakness
Fainting and nausea after exercise
Emotional melt down at the thought of exercise
Swelling in my belly
A mysterious amount of cellulite on my belly and thighs
A body that despite its healthy intake of food looked like it was on a fish and chips marathon
Inability to decide or engage
Lack of focus
Low grade fever
A cold that wouldnt heal
And odd meltdowns at Starbucks, the supermarket, the thought of travelling,
This series of events was ongoing or overlapping, persistent and rather exhausting.
REWINDING A FEW WEEKS BACK
I experienced what I believe was the aha moment in my Meditation practice.
In one of my daily rituals, I felt this utter joy and high vibe in spirit yet the body was dying. If a ‘Spiritual’ autopsy had to be performed I’d have the brightest looking Chakras and energy levels but on a physical aspect, I’d be getting wrapped up to go under.
And this got me introspecting and investigating.
After the horrific bout of bacterial poisoning in India years ago, I remember my Functional doctor telling me, ‘Janet, if it weren’t for your Yoga keeping your meridian channels wide open and clean, you’d be toast my dear.’
I never really fully understood her until that Meditation session.
I could Meditate for 2 hours, complete a deep ritual of Yoga, Breathe, Visualise and energetically cleanse my spirit but I couldnt for the love of God, go for a walk without wanting to lay on the floor and sleep.
I’ll take you through the journey in the shortest possible form so I can get to the potent point I am making in this story
LESSONS FROM MY TEETH
I landed in India boxing day of 2017 after a year of loss and started experiencing these mysterious episodes of sickness. I’d be sitting down happily eating dinner in a gorgeous back drop by the Ganges and all of a sudden I’d feel faint, sick to vomit point and in urgent need to be home in bed and away from people.
It kept happening and I just couldn’t put a finger on it.
I felt helpless as it didn’t feel like me and I started to become a burden to whoever was close to me.
Then food became the enemy once again and any sight of Chapati, rice and Dhal would make me heave. I got a 24 hour bout of vomit and pooh type release and my belly never got better.
Then after losing my dad, my brother (nearly) and a property I called home for 7 years, my teeth started moving and in a matter of a month I lost 1 and had 3 others on death row.
Continued life yet my health was going down
Had my gum flapped open, lasered and stitched back together with phenomenal healing with one small complication - my wisdom tooth
I joined the doctors in their diagnosis of future complications and infections that this corner tooth would create and agreed to have it removed just a little while before Xmas.
Then deep into NYE, my jaw and nerves around the area of extraction experienced what I will always refer to as ‘childbirth contractions in my mouth’ I didn’t know what hit me and I had no understanding of this sort of pain.
I was away from home and my dentist so I waited until all my travels were over before I could get to be checked. In the meantime I was being monitored over the phone.
Got home and after a lengthy evaluation of dentists I was checked. This blessed pain was chronically attached to my mouth for a whole month.
AN UNUSUAL MELTDOWN
In the meantime, during the snippets of pain free light that I experienced, I tried to take a walk and continue with my gym ritual but this is what changed my game plan.
I walked into the gym that day, brushed past all the machinery and the ego pacing men pumping iron and I sat down in the changing room with tears welling in my eyes. I got my bag, walked out and so far have not set foot in there again.
That was it.
Every inch of me said no to noise, people, iron, music, ego and force.
Despite always taking myself into the quietness of the studio part of the gym and executing a very sophisticated form of practice, I just couldn’t step in the environment again.
But there was more to it and I needed to know.
I have been in the body business since conception.
There is nothing that makes me feel exhilarated than keeping the body sculpted and sacred like a temple so having a melt down at the thought of the mildest form of exercise called for a mindful pause.
I had a little chat with my cousin who at this time was guiding me towards regaining my body. He has sculpted me to absolute beauty and perfection in the past but this time something was up and it required too much effort and will power for me to stick to the program than ever before. I voiced the opinion and the experience I had had that day and he asked me to stop until he investigates further
In the meantime, my heart rate per minute was down to 49 and one flight of stairs would require me to sit out for 5 minutes with my hand on my chest.
I was getting seriously concerned.
The body felt very ill yet I was high on life. - It didn’t make sense at all.
The Yoga deepened and the Meditation lengthened yet when the eyes opened the body said NO.
Then the truth started to emerge gently and the puzzle started to get back its shape.
This was not one problem from the past year.
It wasn’t even a series of health issues over the last few years.
This was a lifetime of little signs that I may have ignored because they weren’t loud enough like they were now.
So I had to head back to the whole recipe of disasters as the instigators of illness.
I truly know in my bones now, that taking a step back is always the quickest way forward.
I went back 2 decades and started collecting data so I could understand what the body was asking of me now. This was not about reliving any past events but going back to unravel what I may have missed out on in the healing section of life and what could assist my journey forward from here.
As always I ask for a higher wisdom to assist me and life sends it straight away.
In this quest, I happened to be on the phone with a friend that week and she mentioned something I had gone through which I had absolutely no recollection of.
Nada, zilg, niente.
If I didn’t know this girl well enough I’d have said she was making it up.
This was memory loss on another level!
So a gentle investigation began and I turned myself into a science project.
My teeth were the instigators.
The extreme pain was the messenger.
I am yet to experience another form of pain like this and the fact that it took so long to clear meant that I was on my care case daily. I wasnt allowed to slip back into blindness and not noticing. The body couldnt deal with any more stress because it had stopped absorbing nutrients and was out of sync.
I had to look right in and bring all the pieces together.
I lookined into the brain, body performance, why I stopped performing Dance, my cortisol levels, weakness in decision making; my glands in reacting to mundane life and my nervous system in its quest to deliver the right fluid from the spine to the brain. The heart was being tended to in love, gratitude and compassion but there was not enough oxygen.
My point in short - I was tending to my soul more than I was to my body.
I performed a Muscle vs Food test and found that certain ‘healthy’ foods were not right for me and on a very gentle level filling me with toxins and inflammation. The elimination started, I was in full contact with my dear cousin, sought the support of my functional doctor, regained full use of supplements, started juicing religiously, personalised what I ate and within a week I witnessed subtle but very steady changes.
The pain in my jaw instigated all of this and having it chronically there for a whole month meant that I could not veer away from this intense self-care duty. I’m not keen on the pain I went through but I’m grateful for what its done to my system.
tending to all aspects of our being.
Muscles, cells, organs, hormonal secretions, heart to brain, gut bacteria, gut to brain, valves, oxygen levels, brain chemicals, brain waves, spinal fluid, protein levels, blood, veins, arteries, bio chemistry, physiology psychology – this needs tending to.
Spiritual practice, Chakra cleaning, energy release, Mindset, Meditation, Breathwork, Yoga (not as exercise) – this needs tending to.
Our attitude towards life, who we are, our reactions, our feelings, triggers, emotions, ethics, behaviours, composure, response – this needs tending to.
Our environment, how we live, who we are surrounded by, our relationships, our choices, our support system, our home, cleanliness, nature, noise, vibe – this needs tending to.
CHICKENS IN A TRUCK
All of the above needs to be in a blissful alignment and when its not we are thrown billboards and neon signs so we can amend and bring it all in unison.
I’ll give you an example of ethical, mental and physical misalignment.
Last year, beginning of 2017, after going through a chunk of events that depleted my energy, I went back to eating chicken after years of no meat.
When I moved to India, I noticed a change in my behavior. Despite a potent practice of meditation and yoga, I was angry as hell. As I rode in the back of every tuk tuk, I kept encountering these massive trucks full of chickens trapped in cages. One on top of the other with hardly any space to move. On a couple of occasions I cried and it felt like life was stuffing my eyes in this vision on a daily basis. I was still eating chicken thinking that it would raise my protein levels but I was very wrong.
Then I rode in a taxi and witnessed a woman kill a chicken live in the street. The driver saw my reaction and asked if I was a vegetarian.
‘I’m a hypocrite’!
I wasn’t happy with my choices.
That day I also found out that I had been eating halal chicken meat and I stopped right there, cold turkey. My moods changed and even though I know that as a solo no meat eater, I am only making a small difference to this kind of suffering, I know that I am within my ethics as a human and a spiritual.
I never saw another truck of chickens after that.
My love for animals has ingrained my ethics and understanding of their sufferings and this goes way beyond what their meat can do to my muscles. Knowing that no animal is harmed for my well being will benefit me more than their blood and suffering on my plate. Eating them goes against this soulful grain and effects more than I know.
That’s my little example of being in tune and fully aligned with our own beliefs and ethics.
It could be that you are taking care of your food, your brain, your mind and your job but you are in a rotten relationship. That’s another form of misalignment and the signs will be different for you so watch out for them.
ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF LIFE
Now back to starting point
Back to what the ‘guru’ guy tried to state based on his beliefs - That I needed to be 100% fine so I could see to my student.
Clearly these are the beliefs of the average mind, which I joyfully reject.
Being on my path despite any physical decline is the one thing that has kept me alive over theses years. The absolute passion, love, dedication and soulful calling I have for my mission goes beyond any textbook rule.
A mission that is using all these life experiences, all these snippets of storms and gearing me towards guiding other women into greatness.
This soul mission resuscitated me from Suicidal Depression, it put me on a plane ride to India and it has moved obstacles out of my way so I can continue healing my tribe.
When a woman sits or stands in front of me with all her ailments and misalignments, my human side hardly comes in. I enter her journey and nothing else matters until she is cleared and on her path.
Over the years I have had to finely select that woman in front of me though as I realized I am not on a mission to help everybody. Offering my services to the general public was also a form of misalignment, which over the last years I had to course correct and re align.
THE NEXT MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT
Being on our mission is highly responsible for a joyful, successful form of life but it’s not the only thing.
What is equally paramount, is knowing exactly who we are meant to be on this plane.
This journey of self-love and care deepened beautifully for me as I wrote chapters of my book – I am Woman. The rituals that emerged as I wrote were clearly rooted in the breakdowns and breakthroughs I had experienced and through them I got to the depths of who I truly am on a core level.
These mini episodes of ill health although not collectively massive enough to kill me, I know, have been put in place so I align further with myself as the woman I was becoming and fully awaken another giant within me. They also instigated me to dispose of the parts of me that had expired and were only there out of habit, weighing me down and taking away precious energy.
It is self-exploration on steroids.
Knowing myself, how I want to do things, which doctor I will trust, which diagnosis I will accept or reject, which person I will choose to support me and the how, when and where of things will assist me in healing this chapter of life.
Then it gets passed on so it’s not wasted.
The depth of introspection, research and support I looked into will only add to my holistic curriculum for other women.
The books I have read and the changes I have experienced through living some form of mental and physical pain is another bit of tough love I will add to my Transformational programs.
It’s all there for a reason and luckily I have been granted a very loud internal voice that keeps me from going astray.
The latest journey will be passed on to the next woman going through similar experiences, aches and pains so she can see to her path a little quicker than I did.
With that said and done, it’s over to you so you can check in and investigate for yourself
Are you nourishing your body or feeding your visual ego?
Are you ignoring any signs of ill health?
Are you content with where you are?
Do you know where you're going?
Are you sleepwalking through life?
What’s keeping you from achieving more?
Are you doing what you truly love?
Are you living life on your own terms?
Do you have the right support system around you?
Are you with the right person?
Are you in the right job?
Are you eating well?
Are you sleeping?
Is your mind at peace?
What is the body telling you?
What is your heart urging you to do; and Is your gut in it too?
Are you hand cuffed to your past or learning from it?
I could go on but you get the gist…
If you want a little starter assessment, go here
Absolute gratitude goes to Mikel St.Joh who has been a rock soild structure in this part of my journey. Dr.Lydia for her expertise and ongoing support and Angele Spiteri Paris for always being there and reminding me that she remembers more about my life than I do .