A heavily laden fog dripped down my mare's legs as she pranced excitedly beneath me one unusually damp Friday morning in late September. Holding the slick reins in check, I hesitated at the crest of the trail. As the steep wet asphalt lay disturbingly before us disturbing, a premonition caught my breath. I saw my mare fall trapping me underneath her. Well aware that thought creates reality, I tried to clear my mind and rode on.
Not fifty yards later, my mare spooked and in an effort to stop her from bolting, I turned her up the sharp grade. She slipped and, as if rehearsed, I vaulted off her back. Thankfully not pinned under a thousand pounds of terrified horse, I managed to save my skull from what would have been a concussive blow, landing instead...on my mouth. Scrambling to my feet, I ran after her, touching my bloodied lip to extract my front teeth.
Thanks to a kind gardener/caballero, I caught my runaway horse and made it home first tending to her wounds, my teeth in my pocket. Typical of most healers, I am reluctant to ask for help, but my husband perceived my unspoken distress and jumped out of bed having worked the graveyard shift to drive me to the emergency dentist.
The dentist shook his head when I handed him the cup of milk in which my broken teeth floated. "I cannot replace these..."
Patting his arm, I encouraged him, "I know you can do it. Please, you must believe in your ability."
While I prayed, focusing on the living essence of my teeth with healing intentions, he performed the procedure, then made me promise to go to the emergency room for x-rays.Although I did everything the dentist recommended as well as all the holistic remedies I would have prescribed for someone with similar injuries, I bemoaned my ill fortune.
My face was a mess—my nose, lips and chin skinned, swollen and bruised—like I had been beaten. I called my sister, who cried, "Oh, Deb, your beautiful teeth!" No braces, no cavities, straight and strong, my vanity lied in the perfection of my teeth. How could this have happened? I taught my patients that everything happens for a reason, but I couldn't see why. I even called my spiritual mentor, who provided only practical advice. I was on my own.
I believe each of the seven chakras of the body deliver purposeful messages, so what was this fifth chakra, which represents speaking one's truth, saying? I fell asleep wondering and awoke Saturday at dawn to meditate in nature.
Surrounded by my animals, even my very sore but sorry mare, I sat at the edge of a huge ugly gaping hole. We had just moved into the country and having lived through one unbearably hot summer began construction on a swimming pool. Our land was scarred and so was I. My mare nuzzled my back, while the dogs whined piteously with me.
Suddenly, I heard a voice. Not that small quiet voice that compassionately guides but one so obnoxious that the animals gave me a wide berth.
Stop feeling sorry for yourself. You've been given a gift...practice what you preach and heal yourself.
I actually smiled, cracking my scabbed lips, but I didn't care. This accident was a gift! Hugging my horse, I thanked her. Have you ever seen a horse smile? Remember Mr. Ed showing his big teeth, well, that's what she did, smiled at my recognition of her part on my soul's path.
Then I hurried in the house and took a good look in the mirror. Instead of seeing a broken reflection, I saw the healing. I became my own best cheerleader. I told my body what a great job it was doing every time I washed my wounds. I blessed every herbal supplement for helping my system recover. Every ounce I drank in gratitude (dentist's orders—no solid foods) praying that each nutrient find its way to repair the damage.
And by Monday, I was whole and healed, not a single scar. A couple of days later, I went back to the emergency room to pick up some x-rays and the nurses didn't recognize me. Oh, yes, and to the dentist's great surprise, my teeth took root.
Healing is an innate power within each and every one of us. It is encoded, I believe, in the unexpressed DNA, ready to be turned on by the power of our intentions. The National Cancer Institute has reported success in treating melanoma patients by genetically altering their white blood cells to enhance the ability of the immune system to kill cancer.In early cancer research, success means any cure since researchers tend to get medical failures to experiment on, so perhaps the 13 out of 15 subjects who were not cured had their immune systems destroyed by radiation and chemotherapy. The power to heal via a strong and vibrant immune system is innate. I believe that clear intention and pure desire can turn that unexpressed DNA on, so perhaps the two melanoma patients who were cured believed so valiantly in the therapy that their hopes and prayers enabled their disabled genetics to remember how to fight off cancer.
As a healer, I have learned that I do not heal anyone, but educate them to heal themselves. I provide biochemical and psycho-spiritual counsel. I hold the intention, the energy of health and well-being mirrored in my body, in my DNA. Once a young woman I had been seeing since her teens insisted on an office exam just six months after her annual pap smear. There was no medical reason for her to come, so I questioned her. She very eloquently answered, "I just need to sit in your presence, feel your vibration, and I am set for about half year."
I have a dear older patient, who makes me promise after every visit, every phone call to stay well. "We need your vibrancy to remember how to be whole."
After working all my life to be an example of health through exercise, nutrition, and lifestyle choices, I know that my true talent is in perceiving every event in my life as a lesson. Plus a positive attitude can be seriously protective. Once in Seattle, I attended a detoxification seminar. After the morning presentations about all the toxins in our everyday environment, we were released for lunch. This group of holistic nurses, physicians, naturopaths and chiropractors hesitated to choose anything from the menu of what seemed to be a reasonably healthy restaurant. With my usual gusto, I ordered tuna on fire and the rest of them looked at me like I was nuts. One woman asked if I had paid attention to the statistics on heavy metal contamination of fatty fish.
"Why, yes. I took scrupulous notes, but I do not believe in my vulnerability to toxicity. At this very moment your fear is sucking the mercury right out of my tuna." True, although I have eaten contaminated seafood all my life, I have not tested positive for heavy metal toxicity. Was it favorable genetics, perhaps...or my attitude?
Whenever I see a seriously contagious patient, I say to myself, "This is not your bug!" and rarely catch their illness. When I do become ill, it is usually a psycho-spiritual dilemma in which I have been paying little attention and finally my body is reminding me to take care of it.
My accident was truly a gift. I had never been seriously injured before in spite of vigorous and dangerous activities—mountain biking, skiing, scuba diving, road bike racing—never given a personal chance to learn how healing works.
What I learned was this: that gratitude is the key to the power of intention. With all the positive encouragement, my body rapidly responded. It makes me wonder how much faster I might have healed if I didn't spend the first day fussing over my predicament. Fear definitely hampers healing. Surely I have seen this to be true.
Years ago, I had diagnosed a 32 year old patient with metastatic breast cancer. Granted, I was well trained in western medicine and was dabbling in natural therapies, but cancer? She was not just a patient, but a co-worker, a friend, my age and very much concerned about her husband's fifteen year old niece, who was fretting over her young healthy breasts, fearful of developing her aunt's cancer. I taught the girl how to examine herself, explained that she shared none of her aunt's risk factors, they weren't even related, but shortly after we buried her aunt, the girl developed a tumor. In the exact same spot.
Mind over matter? I was taught then and there the power of thought when fueled by fear. And I have seen over and over again, patients worrying themselves into disease...yet I have also seen the power of hope, love and gratitude to cure what was deemed incurable.
Bernie Segal, the author of Love, Laughter, and Medicine, was one of the first allopathic doctors to explore the curative power of love. He stated case after case of illnesses derived by suggestion—like the man who was just about to be discharged from the hospital but told instead by an intern that he had only days to live and died—as well as the cures—like the man whose family decided not to tell him that his cancer was fatal and lived well beyond his physician's dire prognosis.
In my experience, most of my breast cancer patients tend to take care of everyone but themselves. Unless they receive that lesson, they do not survive the disease. I have some amazing women in my practice who have healed themselves by understanding that their cancer was their souls' cry for help, not attending to the souls' needs for so long that their body had to get their attention. Some use traditional allopathic treatments, others use only natural therapies, most who seek my care combine the two. I do not dictate to them what they must do to heal, what therapeutics to choose, but counsel them to make peace with their bodies, find the gift in their disease and begin healing with the faith that they have the innate ability to cure themselves.
Many of my patients come to me "hormonally-challenged". I coined this term years ago to describe not just the aging process or stress-related deficiencies, but also the resistance to our own bio-chemical messengers. Every health related magazine has had articles familiarizing us with the concept of insulin resistance leading to obesity and diabetes, but cellular receptor site resistance to endogenous (your own) hormones exist from the gonads of the first chakra to the thyroid in the fifth.
If I diagnose an insulin resistant patient early and put him on a low glycemic diet and supplements to enhance cellular receptivity, but do not help him explore the fact that he may unconsciously feel unworthy of the sweetness in life, he will require more and more therapeutic assistance and the most strictly abstinent diet just to keep his blood sugars under control. If he receives the gift of his insulin resistance and begins healing his sense of unworthiness, his cells open to receive the glucose necessary to run his metabolism. He becomes metabolically more active, loses that midline fat as well as the risk factors that would have lead to diabetes and eventually heart disease, but more so, he takes delight in life.
The spring following my accident, I attended a Science and Consciousness conference in Albuquerque and realized how I had healed myself. Gregg Braden spoke onhis newest book, The Isaiah Effect, which explained that prayer and healing worked through clear intention fueled by loving gratitude. So with my experience and armed with the equation for manifestation, I began teaching my patients. Sometimes the Isaiah effect worked, but not always, especially in dealing with relationship issues.
The next year while writing my first novel, LoveDance, I had an epiphany. The equation was not algebraic, but trigonometric! I have always loved the elegance of mathematics and struggle with duality in any way. This reality is not black and white but a rainbow of possibilities. I am not the only soul in the universe, but am part of a great whole, so when my intentions would not become manifest as rapidly as I desired, my husband would remind me that it's not in Deborah-timing, but Divine-timing.
In researching my novel, I discovered Neil Douglas Klotz. His work explained that the terms translated as good and evil from the Aramaic, tava and bisha, actually meant—ripe and unripe. So Divine-timing meant Ripe timing. The equation was missing an element: It was not X + Y = manifestation, but X + Y + Z = manifestation, where X=clear intention, Y=pure desire, and Z=ripe timing.
So now I counsel my patients to continue to hold clear intentions of healing their bodies, their minds, their relationships; fuel their intentions not with fear but with loving gratitude; and in ripe-timing, they will manifest. And the rewards will be sweet indeed.
Every day, I thank my body for her strength, her health, her vitality. Like taking my nutraceutical supplement—Genesis GoldÒ—and staying active, I see gratitude as a proactive means to support my wellbeing. I am trying very hard to practice what I preach, so neither my body nor my inner voice must scream to get my attentions. And thankfully now that guiding voice has become a gentle whisper.