How to Rise and Shine from Rock Bottom

Do you feel like you are at or near rock bottom?  Are you currently dealing with one or more of the following life struggles:  divorce, loss of a loved one, an unhappy relationship, loss of a job, loss of finances, stressful work life, chronic mystery illness with or without a label, a dis-ease with a label, chronic pain, healing from one or more surgeries, working long hours while raising a family, struggling to simply survive and keep up with life’s challenges?

If you said yes to any of the above, do not give up.  There is hope to overcome any challenge.  I share my story of rock bottom with you, to encourage you to keep the faith.  My rock bottom came from personal injury and severe trauma. I hope that my story, no matter how different it may compare to yours, will inspire you to rise up with fervor and grace, conquer the challenge at hand, and re-gain your vitality once again.   It is your birthright to heal and be whole on every level.

My Rock bottom Story

Today is February 11th, 2017. It is 4 years to date from the dreadful day that changed my life forever. In one split second, the reset button on my life was pressed – and not by me! Suddenly and unassumingly, on my way into my school building, my legs whipped out from under me and I was on the ground. I felt my body completely airborne and horizontal before I came crashing onto my left shoulder, with my head whipping to the left and hitting the ground. Believe it or not, my school bags were still in my arms, and my coffee never spilled!

I had slipped and fallen on black ice and could not get up. My foot was dislocated, sort of hanging off my leg, and my leg was broken. At that moment in time, I had no idea how many weeks, months, and years it would take to get my life back on track to the fullest extent. I’m alive and well to tell you, that no matter how difficult rock bottom is, you too can conquer, overcome, rise up, and shine in your light once again. Do not ever give up hope. Believe and you shall receive what is your God given birthright – and that is happiness, health, and freedom from everything negative that tries to tear us down, including human beings.

The time period of recovery

The weeks of recovery that followed were beyond description. I live alone, in a 3-story townhouse, I was in a wheelchair, and I needed a tremendous amount of help for a very long time. I had a home health aide visit me for 2 hours each day for 3 months. The years of pain that I have endured are indescribable. I write to you today with pain that continues 24/7 in my mid to upper back and shoulders. Believe me, this is actually great news to share, because up until about 6 weeks ago, I was managing chronic 24/7 headaches and pain in my back that was so severe at times it woke me up in the middle of the night.

During the first 3 years of recovery, the pain was so intense in my neck and head that frequently, at the end of the day, I would just break down in tears because the pain was unbearable. Without getting into the deep dark details of post traumatic stress and how 3 surgeries in a 13 month time frame impacted my everyday, or how I managed to simply, shower, get dressed, eat, drive to doctor’s appointments, and overcome fear of snow, ice, & rain – I can assure you, it was my willpower and desire to get better that kept me fighting to re-gain the life that I worked so hard to create. I was born to make a difference in people’s lives. I was not going down without a fight.

A Fight It Was

I’m not crazy about the word “fight”. I’m not a “fighter” when it comes to people. I’m typically quite mellow, actually. It takes a lot to get me feeling energy in my body that makes me want to yell, scream, kick, or cry. But when you are dealing with insurance doctors and insurance companies, there is no better word to describe that sort of unexpected path. Even in a state of despair, you must find the strength within to stand up for your human right to be “fixed” so you can properly heal and find wholeness within once again.

The physical body is remarkable, but we must use the appropriate tools and techniques to support the body on its path of healing to the fullest extent. This unfortunately, most likely will not be achieved through ordinary medical doctors, and most especially NOT through insurance doctors or practitioners.   If you have been lucky to have found success with ordinary practitioners after a severe trauma, congratulations! – you are blessed.

I’m Hurt, I’m in 24/7 Pain, So Now What?

After doing everything in A+ fashion that my doctors and physical therapists told me to do, for a year and a half, I was still in so much pain that I could not sleep through the night. I could not drive or stand for long periods of time. Going to the grocery store was challenging just to make the drive, to walk through the store, to stand on line, and to lift the groceries. All of those mundane tasks that we take for granted, were suddenly contributing to further pain and created what was later diagnosed by a holistic practitioner, as muscle imbalances.  Yep, something that seems so “fixable” can take what feels like a lifetime to correct.

I had no choice but to seek alternative solutions, just like I did when I overcame the label of Lyme Disease, which standard medical doctors also failed to successfully resolve. To overcome Lyme, I used a variety of alternative therapies, all of which supported my body in ways that enabled it to heal, contrary to the pharmaceutical treatments that destroy the body’s natural ability to heal, which literally almost killed me. After 12 years of suffering from the wrath of chronic Lyme, I reached my goal. I wiped that Lyme label out of existence, I crushed it, and I survived the challenge. Life is one big test, and I passed with flying colors feeling stronger and healthier than I ever had in my life.

With prior experience and knowledge, I realized that it was time to return to alternative solutions in order to survive the pain, continue working, and hold onto my house, my car, my private clients, – and my amazing life and talents. No matter what the out of pocket expense was, it did not matter. Nothing is more important than re-gaining your health and health freedom. Money is a tool that gets you what you “NEED”, so use it freely to feel better, take care of yourself, and nourish your body with quality choices of food, practitioners, environments, and personal care products.

My Game Plan

I knew that I needed to detox and then re-build – by nourishing my mind, body, spirit, & soul.  The journey of healing takes time, so I had to be patient with the process and patient with myself.  I’m not a fan of pharmaceuticals, except of course in emergency situations such as emergency surgery and surgeries that save people’s lives.  Pharmaceuticals simply put, are not natural.  My body seems to reject these sort of synthetic chemical compounds, so after 3 surgeries, I needed to cleanse the poison out of my body.  The first step I focused on was detox.  I will outline for you the specific path that I chose.  I will include the tools, techniques, and products that I used, and continue to use.  I will also list the type of practitioners who have helped me to manage and slowly but surely overcome the chronic pain.  The emotional healing was a significant part of my game plan too.

I continue to make remarkable progress and have periodically experienced days that were completely pain free. The list of my support system to heal is not necessarily in priority order. All of the alternative practitioners and techniques that I have worked with and continue to use, have supported me and helped me to manage chronic pain. I will also share, the very special products that supported me both physically through the pain, as well as emotionally.  You may discover from my list of healing necessities, some modalities that you might not have thought of for healing, but they are absolute musts to achieve health freedom and happiness once again.

The Detox Method I Chose

  • Blessed Herb Colon Cleanse Kit – I did this two times in a row and brought the natural pink back into my lips.
  • Blessed Herb Internal Cleansing Kit (with Colon Cleanse Kit) – I did the internal cleanse after I did the Colon Cleanse.  These kits are best purchased together, but if you choose to do the Colon Cleanse twice, simply purchase an additional Colon Cleanse Kit separately.  The Colon Cleanse should be done twice a year for better health in general.  I did not work with a doctor through my Blessed Herb detox, but all health situations are different.  I recommend working with your practitioner, whether it is a nutritionist or a functional medicine doctor.
  • Organic Non-GMO Real Food only:  I did my best to eat as many LIVING foods as possible.  Dairy creates inflammation, so I limited my intake significantly.  I was already eating in a very healthy manner, but I stepped up my game to the max and avoided all ingredients and restaurants of question.  With help from a boyfriend who moved in with me, we were able to make most of our meals from scratch.  Controlling your food intake from home is a luxury and a necessity when you are on a quest to heal.

Holistic Practitioners & Methods of healing

  • Functional Medicine Doctor:  My doctor guided me through a series of tests that uncovered food sensitivities, which revealed themselves after the surgeries.  I had also picked up a parasite, potentially from the hospital. Frequently after I ate, my stomach would blow up and I would experience tremendous stomach pain.  I healed this too by going on one round of antibiotics, re-building gut flora with probiotics, avoiding the food allergens, and using a Vitamix to make healthy vegetable & fruit juices every morning for breakfast.  On an emotional level, this food change brought me happiness.  I was ingesting food that was alive.  That real, organic, whole food made me feel more energetic, radiant, and full of vitality.
  • Acupuncture:  While acupuncture itself did very little to eliminate the pain caused by structural & muscle imbalances, it did help to re-balance my energy in the initial phases of healing.  I worked with one Acupuncture doctor who also did Dry Needling and found it to be the only technique that could release the muscle spasms., After 2 years on this path however, I saw had minimal results with the neck pain, headaches, and chronic pain.
  • Dry Needling with a Physical Therapist:  Dry Needling under the care of a licensed PT, is the method that has given me the most relief.  It is a painful method, but it is worth the temporary pain to experience the lasting relief it brings.  I have made significant progress over the past several months with my excellent physical therapist who is a champ when it comes to finding the trigger points.
  • Energy Healing:  When I re-connected with my Energy Healer, the work we did together in each session created a noticeable shift in pain.  I have steadily improved over the past 6 weeks.  Apparently, the energy of the trauma was trapped in my body, disabling my body to “let go” and fully heal.  I am very excited to continue on this path. It was my energy healer who initially fostered my success in overcoming Lyme Disease.
  • Craniosacral Therapy:  Anyone who experiences headaches should seek an experienced Craniosacral specialist. After just a few sessions, my headaches were gone and have not returned.  This of course, went hand in hand with Dry Needling and the myofascial release techniques that my physical therapist used.
  • Myofascial Release:  My myofascial release practitioner is trained in the John F. Barnes technique.  Myofascial release works to open up the fascia, which is layered over the muscles and can restrict muscles until it’s released.  Emotions are held in the fascia too.  This technique helps to release negative emotions related to emotional or physical trauma.
  • Neuro Muscular Therapy:  My Craniosacral practitioner is also trained in Neuro Muscular Therapy.  She uses a combination of therapies to address the root causes of the pain.  I have experienced noticeable improvement in just a few sessions.
  • Breathing, Tai Chi, Yoga, Meditation:  During the time of healing, my boyfriend taught me how to properly breathe and do Tai Chi for pain relief.  I used Yoga poses and stretches to get additional relief and I tried various forms of meditation. Creativity, writing, and visualization are still my favorite forms of meditation.
  • Egoscue Method:  If you can find an Egoscue practitioner near your home, go in person and learn how to practice Egoscue.  Invest in The Tower and additional tools.  This amazing method was developed by Pete Egoscue.  Purchase the book, Pain Free and learn about how easily you can overcome pain with this practice. Purchase the DVD set for exercise routines. With consistency, you will notice improvement and eventually be pain free.  Give it time.

Products, Tools, & Techniques to manage and crush pain

  • Beastie Ball:  This by far, is my number one “go-to” tool for pain management.  I even bring my Beastie Ball to work with me!  Typically, I lie on the floor and allow the weight of my body to press the knobs of the ball into my back.  This increases circulation to the area and does offer a bit of relief.  It’s what I use if I’m woken up by pain in the middle of the night.
  • Rumble Roller:  I love using my Rumble Roller as well.  It the best way to get more coverage over the upper back.  The ability to “roll” with it allows you to more freely access the areas of restriction, without having to constantly re-position yourself.
  • Foam Roller:  I love my foam roller!  I have been able to “adjust” my neck and ribs by simple releasing restricted areas in my back.  It’s incredible to feel when your bones simply go back into place when tight restrictions are released.  The foam roller is a great way to stretch out the pec muscles, especially if you spend a lot of time hunched over your phone, iPad, or computer.  I have a lot of fun on the floor using my foam roller.
  • Ashley Black Fascia Blaster™ & Mini 2™:  If you are not yet aware of what fascia is, buy Ashley’s book, The Cellulite Myth.  I purchased these tools to correct the fascial restrictions in my body that resulted from my accident.  Although Ashley Black sells a special oil for ease of use, I prefer to use a completely non-toxic fractionated coconut oil that is free from chemicals.  doTERRA is my source.  I am anxiously awaiting the Face Blaster to use around my tibia & fibula ankle bones, so that I may free up remaining scar tissue from the ankle surgeries.
  • Deep Blue® Essential Oil Blend & Deep Blue® Rub:  The only way that I was able to get the pain to settle down so that I could sleep, was by using the Deep Blue® products from doTERRA.  To date, I still apply these doTERRA essentials on an as needed basis.  It’s amazing how much relief they provide.  I don’t leave home without my Deep Blue® products and I leave a set at work as well.
  • Deep Blue® Polyphenol Complex & Mito2Max®:  For internal support that takes the edge off of the pain, I rely on Deep Blue Polyphenol Complex.  I have a bottle at home and a bottle at work.  For energy boosts, I rely on Mito2Max® which is formulated to support the mitochondria function responsible for energy production.
  • Magnesium Spray Oil:  Immediately following Dry Needing, my PT sprays magnesium oil onto the areas that were needled.  I have found that when I forget to do this, the pain & inflammation is way more intense and lasts for days.  It is not worth the risk to show up without my magnesium oil.
  • Magnesium Flakes:  I often will take a magnesium bath following a PT treatment of Dry Needling.  If you decide to do the same, take your bath right before you plan to go to sleep.  The magnesium will relax you so much that you will need to lie down and sleep.  I add a few drops of Lavender essential oil into the flakes before pouring them into the bath.  I buy the 2-pack to save money, plus I also use up each container rather quick.
  • Magnesium Supplement:  After a Dry Needling session, I also ingest the recommended amount of ReMag Magnesium.  Magnesium helps to establish proper muscle function, hence helping the muscles to release after they have contracted.  It supports the healing of the areas that have been aggravated.  This is just another angle I’ve used to ensure that I’m doing everything possible to support my body on it’s road to being pain free.  I am a huge fan of Dr. Carolyn Dean.
  • Essential Oils:  I diffuse essential oils every night.  I also apply them and drink them in my water every day. Citrus oils are known to lift the spirits, especially Wild Orange.  Essential oils are another healing modality that I never leave home without.  The emotional aromatherapy kit serves a wide range of emotions, and supports emotions related to everything under the sun.  My favorite essential oils blends that have supported me through recovery are Serenity and Balance.

love, friendship, Thoughts & Visualization are essential

I have relied on all of the above products, tools, and techniques to support my recovery.  But there is so much more to healing than what I’ve mentioned.  One of the most important elements of healing is social interaction.  My parents visited me every single day while I was in the hospital & sub-acute care facility for 2 weeks.  I was blessed to have a different friend visit me every single day at my home for 3 months.  I was blessed that my friends brought me nourishing food.  I did not realize that karma is actually real, until I was in a position to receive, and saw the fruits of my generosity come back to me.  After years of being an over-giver, I was forced to receive, and had no choice but to embrace it.  Receiving was very uncomfortable for me at first, but when you can’t even bathe or dress yourself without help, you learn quickly how to let go and accept the life lesson.

I was already participating in the daily practice of gratitude and had created “The Gratitude Bucket” at my school, for kids to anonymously write their gratitudes.  As difficult as it was to let go of the anger that I felt towards the horrible & dishonest insurance company entities, I had to make a conscious decision to forgive and let go. Anger and frustration will block healing, so whatever it is that you are going through, know that you need to clear all negative emotions and forgive all people who weigh heavy on your heart.  Energy healers can help you with forgiveness.

Lastly, I visualized myself living life in joy, just like I had before I got hurt, but it was even more important to shift my mindset.  I began to dream again about all of the things that I want to do in this lifetime while I still have the abilities to enjoy the most basic essentials of life such as: breathing, walking, eating, talking, living, loving and appreciating my friends, my neighbors, my family, my work, and my home,  I found joy in visualizing my desires.  I began to re-design my life.  Now it all made sense, the reset button was pushed for me to learn, grow, and evolve.  My life needed a re-design.

The Gift

The greatest gift that came from my rock bottom challenge was the realization that in order to conquer, overcome, and heal, I simply needed to shift my mindset.  I had written to my colleagues from my hospital bed, “every challenge holds a gift in its hands”.  Four years ago, I had no idea at the time what the gift would be.  Today I can tell you that the gift was an overall shift in my mindset.  Yep, shift happens!  While I was born pre-wired to be positive and happy, I had lost myself.  I had lost my happiness.  The challenge was to find myself once again, and I did it through a shift in my mindset.  So whatever challenge it is that you are struggling to overcome, keep this in mind: YOU are the designer of your life.  YOU hold the power of choice & desire.  YOU get to choose joy.  YOU get to choose perfect health.  YOU get to choose happiness.  It is your birthright to be happy, healthy, and free.  Don’t ever let any thought, person, entity, or experience take that away from you.  YOU are special in all of your GOD given ways.  Do not ever give up hope that your life can be all that you desire it to be.  If I can do this, you can too.

I wish you the shifts that you seek in your MINDSET.  I wish you PERFECT HEALTH & HAPPINESS.  I wish you the GRACE and FORTITUDE to keep moving forward with a positive attitude that never quits.

Sending you love, light, healing, strength & perfect health, Margarete



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