After eight years of practicing qigong I see the profound effect of recovery. In 2014 I was certified by Lee Holden in Santa Cruz, California. He stated in his blog, "The documented history of what we know as qigong goes back approximately 2,500 years, but Chinese archaeologists and historians have found references to qigong-like techniques from at least 5,000 years ago." (https://www.holdenqigong.com/history-of-qigong/). The National Institute of Health and the US National Library of Medicine consider qigong, tai chi, and yoga in the same category of "complementary and alternative medicine practices(CAM)" and a "mind-body exercise". This previous blog describes qigong universally but I suggest looking into all three ways and find the one that best fits you.
In honor of my goal to raise awareness about Multiple Sclerosis until May 30th I am going back in history. At the beginning of my journey with Multiple Sclerosis in mid 2010 I used my top defense, denial. Once I became hospitalized in early 2011 I began to face the reality head on and needed help. The medication and intravenous steroids helped bring inflammation down, which reduced my symptoms and stabilize the incurable disease. At that point I was losing my eye sight, and experienced vertigo which caused uncontrollable vomiting. I experienced "weird" feedback in my physical body like numbing, tingling, heat, and prickling sensations all over my body and spine. I had profound fatigue, pain, and weakness. Also, I was so angry. I just completed my service in Iraq as a soldier of the Ohio Army National Guard. I went through a formal complaint process confronting unfair treatment while on duty from a superior officer. Although justice was served it left me one serious, hostile, and defensive young woman! I was experiencing anxiety with acute stress disorder, which turned into post traumatic stress disorder after the MS diagnosis. Therapy paid off but hearing I am diagnosed with depression on top of everything else left me feeling hopeless, helpless, and the limitations made me feel like life was turning into a small box. I thought to myself, "I think this is rock bottom." A deep, aggressive feeling of urgency came over me to repair the despair, to relieve the pain, and to overcome the suffering which led me to one of the biggest turning points of my life.
As I laid in my hospital bed alone, calm, and quiet I asked with full focus and intention to heal, "What is the best, most positive way to heal myself?" I was taught by my grandpa who was a medium, Sammy Muscatello, to wait patiently for the answer when you ask the Universe a question. When I woke up the next morning a little sad nothing had come to me in my dreams, I turned on the TV and saw a man "hand waving". I almost skipped to the next channel until he said, "You can do this sitting or laying down." Seeing as I was only laying down at the moment I followed along and instantly felt this wave a peaceful, relaxing energy down my back and spine. I withheld any further judgement and continued with the teachers instruction. Once the segment was over I took notes; Lee Holden with Qigong on PBS. I ordered one of his DVDs before I was even discharged! One after another I practiced and felt relief from every one. In one of the orders there was a paper for a teachers training. Traveling was very hard from me during this time but I already made up my mind. The six month course took two years because of the financial investment and disability but totally worth it.
To summarize; PBS answered me with Lee Holden who ended up being my teacher. The knowledge gained in the teacher training helped my recovery in all aspects of my life. Furthermore, the severe damage in my optical nerve from 2011 hospitalization reported mild damage in 2017 and even less in 2018. My doctors call this a "recovery". Qigong was and is an essential part of my recovery and gave me purpose. From 2011 to now I have met many doctors who view qigong positively. This positive outlook on qigong helped me gain the confidence to open my own practice in 2015, The Crystal Universe LLC. Four years later I am being considered for a job at a local hospital to teach qigong classes, I am a public speaker on wellness, and teaching classes at my office in Downtown Berea, Ohio. My intention behind sharing this part of my history is to inspire you to explore new possibilities, listen to yourself, and trust yourself to deliver the answers to your deepest questions for happiness, and recovery.
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