Ladies, you must understand, I have always walked a fine line between Western and Eastern medicine. As a teenager in 1994, I was diagnosed with a rare disease and written about as a case study in medical texts because it was unheard of for someone my age to have this illness. Despite numerous specialists telling my parents and I that medications and a limited lifestyle would be my best prescriptions for the remainder of my life, I intuitively knew my body was trying to tell me something. I was determined to get to the bottom of things and truly heal myself and help others based on what I learned. After several courses of prescription medications that didn't work, my father and I researched intense nutritional and vitamin therapies which I attempted for several months. Minor changes but nothing that stopped daily symptoms from bringing my life to a screeching hault. I stopped playing sports which were a part of my daily life since sixth grade and I was late to school, leaving early or missing days at a time. This dis-ease initiated me on the path of spirituality and consciousness. In college I studied psychology, nutrition and women studies. I finished a year early and completed an independent thesis at an eating disorder clinic. My professional career began as a counselor at that same eating disorder treatment center, working in academic research at The University of Pennsylvania and seeking wholistic and alternative therapies in my personal life. It was during that time that I realized my deeper mission was to bridge the gap between Western and Eastern medicine in service to helping others heal. I surged ahead into a career of academic and then pharmaceutical research and climbed the corporate ladder.
In 2001 after years of little to no menstrual cycles, I was diagnosed with PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) and told that I would never conceive my own children. The doctor put me on prescription medication and sent me on my way. I was devastated and heartbroken, but I had hope and knew I would find another way. I read books, changed my diet, I cut out grains and sugars, I even stopped drinking alcohol to balance my insulin levels and hormones. A few menstrual cycles came and went but there was no major improvement.
It was when I moved to California in 2004, that a friend recommend I see an integrative physician, Dr. Shera Raisen, and my life dramatically changed. As I sat in her office expecting to hear about a new supplement or alternative treatment, she pulled Women's Bodies Women's Wisdom by Christine Northrop from the bookshelf. She read the excerpt on PCOS. I couldn't believe how much it resonated. It actually left me speechless. In the silence, Dr. Raisen watched me cry. She didn't offer tissues. There was strength in that silence. Then she gave her uncanny prescription to "do one creative activity at least once a week, if not more."
I'd always been a good student so that night I signed up for a series of B-boy dance classes for the first time since I was a teenager. I bought blank canvases, acrylics and brushes and started painting. I attended a weekly writing class with Elana Golden at The Writing Studio, and a novel poured out of me.
Slowly and steadily, all of these expressions allowed me to find a deeper, softer yet stronger voice inside. I started celebrating more of my daily life versus being overwhelmed by it. I noticed an ability to let go of control without forcing or trying. I discovered old beliefs about myself as a creative person that no longer served me. I let go of what kept me stuck and said yes to what set me free and flow. As a result, my body flowed. Profound healing evolved emotionally, spiritually, and miraculously - physically. The more I softened and stepped into my authentic, creative self, the more my feminine emerged, and my menstrual cycles became more regular.
Through this life experience, I have found that creativity gives us gifts of power and of healing. When I actualize and idea into a reality, it is powerful and it is healing. Creativity unleashes intuition and imagination and allows us to look at things through a new creative perspective and activates new solutions.
So now it's your turn.
What inspires you? Is it a certain author, celebrity, mentor, mission or quote? Is it a certain clothing style, color scheme, architecture, textiles or flower? Painter, sculptor, photography or nature? Make sure you set aside uninterrupted time to be with what inspires you, especially for those of you that are already stretched thin. It is even more important for you to reconnect, rediscover, and inspire.
Write. Photograph. Sing. Dance. What you create doesn't have to produce income or become a profession. Do something that allows you to recreate that spark, freedom, and flow that is the truth of who you are. Be amazed at what will heal.