Integrative medicine, holistic health, aromatherapy, accupuncture, energy healing, Reiki, meditation, mindfulness, biofeedback – these are some alternative modalities effectively used in both physical and mental health. When asked on both Thursday and Friday, by my therapist and psychiatrist what medication had been most helpful to me over the past 40 years, I had to say none of them. The absolutely most helpful thing I ever did was when I had Healing Touch treatments from Jill Zimmerman at Alpha Healing Arts. The funny thing is, when I met her I outright told her that if it wasn’t scientifically or logically provable, then I felt she was wasting both her time and mine (or something to that effect). Besides, I was in such bad shape, and absolutely nothing had worked, why would something a skeptic atheist couldn’t even fathom be helpful?
Jill took me up on the challenge, and I was absolutely blown away. During the time I was receiving these treatments, I learned so much that when I was no longer able to continue I knew enough to help myself. But aye, there’s the rub…I don’t know about you, but when I’m severely depressed self-care is at the bottom of my to-do list. I kept it up for a while, and over the few years (has it been that long?) since I stopped going, she has kindly helped me from a distance (yes, that works too). Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough. I’m the kind of person that needs someone to poke me on a regular basis and say “Hey, did you do this today/this week/this month?” Or I need someone to whom I can take my lazy ass, who will sit with me and remind me what I need to do. And I need this now, badly.
Fortunately, I have a wonderful psychiatrist who actually listens to me. He recognizes that I’m one of “those” people for whom medication may not be the complete answer. It’s possible that something on a very low dose or on an as-needed basis will be utilized, but I need to get through December (almost done!) as well as this detox before we make any decisions. My psychiatrist agrees that now, more than ever, I need to get back into regular exercise of my mind as well as my body.
In a previous post, I mentioned I was looking for the secret to bliss. One of my followers, Mike Evans (who has opened my eyes to other ways of looking at my illness), brought to mind what I was telling my mental health team. I know I already said this, but it’s worth repeating – I was at my best when I was holistically taking care of myself. In a week I’m going to a yoga workshop with Explorer Yoga, but meanwhile I need to focus on self-care (and get to the pharmacy today to pick up my estrogen…that’s all I need, to run out of estrogen!).
I know how to do these things, I know who to ask for help, I can do this.