My Story

ON A PERSONAL NOTE

Following my holistic health studies in New York, I started my health coaching practice and launched a raw, organic, blended green drink delivery company called Pure-E, that began to change people's lives. I hadn't made the full transition from hairdresser into my love and passion of health coaching and green drinks, so I continued to do hair, to support myself and my son while I transitioned mid life, to a new career.

LOST MY PROFESSION IN AN INSTANT

In an instant, my almost 30 year career as a hairdresser was over, right along with my independence, my income and my freedom. In a shocking moment, in the middle of a haircut, it seemed as though my left arm was lit on fire. Severe cervical spinal stenosis choked off the nerves in my neck and had left me in unbearable, excruciating pain.


A couple of days later, I had a failed spinal injection and a cervical spine surgery a few days after that. I was immobile, catheterized on a 24-hour ice machine and totally dependent on others.

That was a seminar in itself, simply to learn deep surrender and to

become graceful at receiving help. It activated fibromyalgia which made all the nerve pain seem like it was magnified on steroids. 

FOUR MONTHS LATER

Four months later, the burning running down my arm, returned. Three of the discs in my neck had ruptured, so I returned to surgery and had a spinal fusion held together with a titanium plate and eight screws. After another long and painful healing, I tore the cartilage in my right shoulder. Another surgery ensued... a couple of anchors were put in my shoulder to reattach the cartilage and back to physical therapy, I went. Equipped with a neoprene

wrapped, metal waist band that held my arm at 45-degrees from the ground and 20-degrees

away from my body, twenty four hours a day, for eight weeks. I learned how much leverage

meant to me one day as I sat on the floor, trying to open a jar of peanut butter with one arm in

a brace and the other nerve damaged. I cried for lunch. I thought about all the people that didn't have arms, and that this was temporary and would return eventually.

 

USING PAIN TO ALCHEMIZE WISDOM

As I was rehabilitating from that third surgery, I was struck by shingles. It is as painful as the rumors suggest and I felt knocked out in the boxing ring of life. After gettting on and off of opiates three times post surgery, I didn't take any during the shingles and suffered needlessly. I thought about not getting up again. I felt deflated, depressed and wanted to stay down, so I wouldn't risk getting knocked out again. I made my way through the long dark nights of my soul, and learned my version of being burned to the ground only to become the phoenix rising. I used the pain and my long recovery time to reinvent myself and to alchemize my experiences into wisdom, compassion, support and encouragement for others. 

 

SUFFERING BROUGHT ME TO STUDY HEALING

It was my own personal suffering that brought me to health studies in the first place. I had ulcerative colitis at a young age. I struggled with it on and off for 20-years with excruciating pain, intestinal bleeding, embarrasment, and the inability to digest my food. I weighed 25 pounds more than I weigh now (I'm 5'2" and 114 pounds.) My complexion was an alien shade of olive green due to lack of nutrient absorption. I had endometriosis, severe chemical and environmental allergies, a cyst on my brain, fibromyalgia and after a couple of car accidents and working on my feet as a hairdresser for most of my life, my body finally crashed and the surgeries ensued.

 

DIAGNOSED A HYPOCHONDRIAC

Many of the Western Doctors I saw as a child had labeled me a hypochondriac. Other's followed suit and called me a drama queen or Sarah Heartburn. When my intestines started bleeding and I gained weight and my skin turned green, they said ulcertaive colitis was an incurable disease and I would need to be on medication the rest of my life. That didn't seem like a satisfying solution or one that dealt with the origin of my illnesses. I started looking for other solutions. I experimented with food as medicine and used my own body and its responses as my laboratory. Experimenting with the current nutrition and dietary trends of the time, I tried being a vegetarian, vegan, food combining, fermented foods, paleo, pescatarian, therapy, meditation and more. Most importantly, I learned to stop calling myself names and perpetuating invalidation and to stop being angry at my symptoms. Instead I started to relate to them as alarm clocks that communicated the imbalances that needed tending. 

 

DISCOVERING THE WHOLE BODY CONNECTION

My friend Neal Stuart Miller, (now,  Lic. Acupuncturist and owner of Studio City Oriental Medical Center,) introduced me to Oriental Medicine. I was struck with joy when this ancient wisdom explained how the whole body and all it's systems are all connected. It clarified a picture of seemingly random symptoms that created a pattern of dis-ease. Elated at this discovery, I registered in a master's progam to study at Emperor's College of Traditional Oriental Medicine. I thought I had found the answers to my pain as well as my personal calling. I was ecstatic to think I knew what I wanted to do when I grew up and how I would live a life of contribution, at such a young age. After a few great years of study and continued personal treatments, I found myself disappointingly, not well myself. I had discovered through therapies and other mental and spiritual work that no amount of herbs or needles were as positively powerful as the negative poisons of my inner attack, self loathing and sense of unworthiness.  

 

STUDYING DEEPER MEDICINE

I went on to study transformational, metaphysical, spiritual and psychological theories and learned to truly 'love myself to health', using all them any methods at my disposal. There have been many big "aha" moments in my life that have left me feeling like I could have some power over my own healing, and now I love to lead people to them. I am no stranger to this process, the long and winding road of recovery requires diligence, patience and a focus on progress, NOT perfection. I've learned to become senstive enough to hear the changing seasons within and I have practice at providing myself with the proper environment for healing. Symptoms of disease, are just that, a symptom telling us that there may be dis-ease in the life, that manifests itself in the body. If we didn't catch it in its earlier communication stages, it continues to grow louder. The symptoms were never the problems, and symptoms management, is not the solution. The symptom is the clue. Health is not just the absence of disease, it is also a healthy response to imbalance which we are swinging in, most of our lives. I can help you hear yourself and love yourself enough to respond.

 

LOVE OURSELVES TO HEALTH

I often find that many of us are overwhelmed with the sense that we need to eat healthier foods, have a healthier lifestyle and a better attitude. If knowing were enough, we would all do it. I believe that sometimes we need a guide and perhaps a cheerleader to help us set our goals; someone to be accountable to and someone to provide support. It is not easy to hone in on what the definition of healthy is for each and everyone of us and to know how to provide ourselves with what we need. The 'health language' is not fluent to everyone, we all need support so that we can see the forest through the trees.

 

The real question is not, can I do what I need to do, the real question is, CAN I LOVE MYSELF ENOUGH to walk in the direction of my healing, to seek help, and to be satisfied with leveling-up my life in a new direction and to celebrate my progress. Many people wish for a magic wand to fix our problems once and for all, but most of our problems took time to develop and they take time to dismantle. 

 

If you have health issues, this may be your road to awakening and self-love. If you are wanting optimal health and want to harness the powerful tools of thought, alignment with nature, super foods and thoughts, then this is a worthy road to take. Through compassion, intention and a loving supportive space, I help you remember your true, brilliant nature and to re-claim it as your own. Not everyone has been given the road of physical ails as their road to enlightenment. If this is yours, then I can walk by your side and help you see all the blessings in this road. After all, it is here, and acceptance is the first key to our peace.

 

MAKING A DIAMOND

It takes tremendous heat and pressure to turn a lump of carbon into a diamond. Sometimes, it takes the heat and pressure of life to forge our human experiences into gems of wisdom. It is this wisdom that we use to get through hard times and to be an inspiration and contribution to others. It is also the gift given to us as compensation for the hard human race that we qualified for by being conceived and born. 

 

LET ME SUPPORT YOU

How can I support you? CONTACT me for a complimentary 30- minute health consultation or with questions you may have, to see if we are the right fit for your return to W-holistic health and healing. Also, please  OPT-In to my newsletter to stay in touch.

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www.LoveYourWayToHealth.com

Jo@LoveYourWayToHealth.com