“The Value of Creating Sanctuary For True Healing”

Having fortunately overcome an advanced and serious case of chronic Lyme disease.  By no stretch of the imagination or words, I can say that I was so wretchedly ill, that death was close at hand, others using the term “critical,” as I lay bedridden, too weak to dress or shower on my own.  Dementia symptoms had set in, palsy tremors and nightmarish anxiety and obsessive thought patterns ran rampant, making me feel honestly, insane.  My mind and body were horrifically ravaged.  Lyme disease can be so frightening.

We finally got my diagnosis in year five.  I was determined to be well and reclaim my life completely.  Being half-way well was not going to be satisfactory for me.  I lost so much- my career, and income, my social life, my athleticism, my vibrant health, my home and hearth.  Being bedridden for over two years, I came to identify that “using” my body – to swim, to dance, to ski, to even just walk was what I missed the most.  Having always been physical, outdoorsy, affectionate and actually loving exercise, I detested being “cooped up,” inside my own skin and bones, by this microscopic organism infestation.  We knew it would be a long road – three to five years of treatment – to wellness.  Patience, fortitude and determination were givens.  Fortitude and determination I knew how to embody, patience had never been my forte before.  In fact, industrious and impulsive were energies I was familiar with.  Now I was being presented with the challenge of being patient with convalescence, yet also not slumping or settling for getting just part-way better.

To outsiders this may sound like nonsense, but to a Lymie, well you know just what I am talking about.  It is a delicate balancing act to accept a moderate, slow paced path to recovery and also to not just flag into couch potato, sluggish stasis.  It’s that final push, the steepest part of the ascent to the summit, that is often the most grueling phase in a high mountain trek.  It is no different with overcoming chronic Lyme disease.  After a long, arduous, often muddy course, switchbacks included, holding on and forging to the uninhabited, rock bare summit is a victory!

Most likely this appears as a feat of endurance and stamina.  It is at a certain level.  Much of the Lyme conquest involves a positive mental mindset and use of willpower.  Developing inner strength and patience clearly are helpmates.  But, the piece actually of greatest assistance to me during the “final summit” of “Mount Lyme,” involved creating an inner sanctuary within my being. Stilling my overactive mind, letting go of the negative mental Lyme vortex and truly cherishing my own sensitivity was a critical turning point.  Like a rope belay over a rocky face, this inner sanctuary is an oasis in the storm of illness, and an essential supportive measure if one wishes to reach the pinnacle of full recovery.

The organism of Lyme disease, the borrelia in particular, is a negative, self destructive, despairing energy.  I have lived it fully! I know the mental/emotional state of this illness intimately.  There is a very dark, heavy, sorrowful, self-pitying, negative element to the vibration of the bacteria.  It erodes the positive neurotransmitters and amino acids of the brain.  The nervous system becomes entirely taxed, depleted and sometimes damaged.  When our “feel good” hormones and brain chemicals become messed around with, well then we readily slip into fragile, self torturing, obsessive thoughts and feelings.  Lyme does this.  We can however, deal with the downward spiral.

It is hard at first to lasso the run-away thoughts associated with emotions, such as, the anxiety, sadness, anger, and betrayal we experience, when so wretchedly ill, weak and in pain.  Many of us have lost important pieces of our lives and self-confidence from Lyme’s encampment.  It is honestly infuriating, traumatic and over whelming to endure the torturous experience of suffering.  Yet, as human beings, we are very resilient and possess a powerful conduit of healing energy, all linked to our internal self.

Purposefully setting positive mental images in our mind’s eye is the first step in creating an inner sanctuary.  Just as my father guided me in “Out of the Woods; Healing Lyme Disease, Body, Mind & Spirit” into “seeing” myself on a favorite sunny beach, soaking in the sun and sensory associations, I urge you to see yourself in your own happy, comfortable, healthy setting.  Really sit with this image; your eyes closed, seeing the colors, sensing the smells and textures.  Be there! Allow your physical and emotional self to relish in this positive setting and feelings.  In doing so, you are initiating the mind-body healing pathway, and beginning to produce a trickle of hormones and neurochemicals that are the beneficial variety and will in turn stimulate the immune system.

I suggest visiting this lovely place within your mind’s eye, many times in your day, reinforcing a positive trend.  By cultivating this inner sanctuary of comfort and beauty, you are accessing your own healing energy and intention to embrace wellness.  All forms of illness can benefit from working with our own inner healing powers.  The new frontier evaluating the biology of these mind-body skills is called Epigenetic Medicine.  Though time honored healing work, scoffed off by medicine for a half century, once again we can skillfully reclaim our own inner powers and integrate the mind-body pathway as a valuable piece for a full life return to well-being.

I have many more healing tools and understandings to share.  They were all critical vehicles in helping me to fully recover from advanced Lyme disease.  I will continue to bring some of them forth here in my “Journeys in Healing” blog, but the entire spectrum will be available in my next book, “The Lyme Disease Healing Workbook.”

May you be graced with peace and beauty, as you began to create your own inner sanctuary.

 

With Blessings,

Katina

12 thoughts on ““The Value of Creating Sanctuary For True Healing”

  1. very nice piece. You deswcribe the chronic lyme so well. ive read your
    book and have received great inspiration and hope from your story.
    what you are doing is so wonderful so helpful.so magnimonius we are
    all blessed to have you as a friend and a mentor in this journey

    1. thank you Joe for your kind words and support of my healing work. I know the suffering of this illness and am compelled to bring love into the lives of those in need.
      Bless you.

  2. I loved your first book and strongly believe in the mind-body connection and how the body can heal itself. I cannot wait for this book to come out. Is there a date yet?

  3. Hi Muriel…no date yet. Writing now and hoping to go into seclusion this winter to finish it. My editor is hoping I can get it done by spring &in print thereafter.
    Send me visions of a sacred writing space and ample time to complete this work without distractions.

    The deepest, most powerful portions of it require me to be removed from the fray and in alignment with Spirit. May I be guided.

    Thank you for supporting my message and work.
    Namaste.

  4. Wow that was amazing!! Are you a part of
    Our group??? You could help alot of people
    Like me, that are feeling exactly what you just said..
    Thank you,
    Elaina

    1. thank you and tell me the name of your group.
      I have much to share as a healer of 30 years.
      you may enjoy my lyme disease recovery book.
      with blessings
      Katina

  5. This is a beautiful read that perfectly exemplifies a look into my young 22 brain as I am towards the end of a year-long treatment after 2-3 years of lyme. My sister sent me this link and I look forward to reading more positive tips that will help me get through the negative physical, and especially, mental cycle of lyme.

    1. Dear Claire,
      How tragic this lyme can be when it moves in and sets up camp in the nervous system. I am proud of you for digging in to do the healing work at ALL levels. I want to encourage you that you can recover. They will kill off the organisms, and you can rebuild the depletions of the bodily systems with a good nutritionist or naturopath who understand Lyme. It takes time to restore, but you are young and can do it!

      yes, i will keep sending supportive emotional and spiritual healing tips along through the blog. Keep following. My emphasis is to help us each work with the natural inner skills we have, like positive imagery, prayer, creativity, music and expression.

      I send you strength and grace. And, as special hello to your sister for sending you this link!!!
      with blessings.
      Katina

  6. Thank you Katina. I am so glad to receive your posts. I read Out of the Woods a couple of months ago and I could identify with the depth of the desparity of having lyme disease. My adult daughter and I both have lyme disease and both of us went many, many years undiagnosed. Her story is much the same as yours. She has lost so much; her marriage, her home, her halted veterinary education and some friends. Yet, at the same time, wonderful miracles have happened in this last very dark year post husband and IV therapy. New friends and old friends from long ago have come into her life very unexpectedly. In the midst of worrying how to pay for meds and doctors life has just taken care of itself. She has come to a wonderful place of being “happy” and beginning to understand the “blessing” of being forced to “be still” and listen to her soul’s calling. Your wise and intuitive look at dealing with illness is so appreciated. As my daughter’s caretaker and fellow lyme patient, I am blessed. I look forward to your next book.

    1. Dear Fran,
      How special to read your understanding words. I send true empathy to you and your treasured daughter, as you both move your way through lyme recovery. It touches my heart to know OUT OF THE WOODS was a support to you. How awful when we are forced to let go of what we love, so unexpectedly, through a misunderstood illness like lyme….marriage, career, friends included.
      However, it sounds like you daughter is growing and evolving through the metamorphosis this illness can provoke. Please send her my greetings and applause for her courage and openness to deep healing.
      And you my dear, are a gifted mother and spirt of light.
      Book 2 in process now!!!! yippee. Let’s hope I have a first draft done by spring.
      Kind regards.
      Katina

  7. Hello, and more importantly, Thank you. Two years ago I finally received my positive diagnosis, after over five years of misdiagnosis. I am half way through your book now, and its as though you are writing my story. What I cant seem to explain to my friends and family, you articulated beautifully.
    I have had my worse spells, and my better spells. The most recent dive for me has taken alot of my fight out of me, broken some of my spirit. Reading your words is lighting a small flame in my belly, which I know I will fan until I get my fight back, my hope, my belief that I will be well someday. I actually learned some things from your book that I didnt already know! I now understand better why I cant handle the news, or action films, or get sicker after or before any stress. I will begin to pay better attention to healing myself, and my rest cure! I was trying so hard to not let go of the activities that defined me- taking care of others, intense physical excersize- and now I realize that they are keeping me from healing my central nervous system.
    Again, thank you for writing my feelings and thoughts- it was powerful to read for me, and I will pass it on to family members that just cant seem to understand.
    I look forward to reading the rest of the story.. in the meantime, I send you deep and profound thanks my New Hampshire neighbor!

    1. Dearest Colleen,
      I wrote OUT OF THE WOOD for all of us. To put voice to what so many of us too tragically know. I couldn’t let the suffering go on any longer without notice or true understanding. Plus, once I came through the other side of this life altering illness, I felt like I wanted to offer hope and healing to all the others walking the path behind me, that YES there is light at the end of the tunnel…..to follow in my footsteps, I found a safe path out and you can get there too!!

      I am honored to hear my words are helping you. YES please REST, and let the nervous system rebuild. Others have told me OUT OF THE WOODS has really helped their spouse or caregiver to better understand us.

      Sending you blessings.
      Katina
      ps. I speak in Keene NH on 9/15 if you are near.

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