Friday, 7 May 2010

What you don't say can hurt you!

The vital importance of speaking up and saying how you feel to your health and wellbeing is demonstrated in a post by this young woman, Fiona Hollis.

You can visit Fiona’s website and read more about her journey here:

The post was part of an email newsletter I found in my in-box this morning from The Raw Divas, one of my favourite health and wellness sites.

The Raw Divas are entertaining and informative and I always enjoy their take on life and food. Their articles are often enlightening and I have fun with their recipes. Their approach suits my interests and understanding because my move to a vegetarian way of life, as a result of being employed as a nurse in an abattoir in the early 70's, has lead to an increasing interest in the power of food, especially raw food, to function as medicine for all sorts of ailments.

Fiona writes:

"My name is Fiona, and I wanted to share with you how raw greens have helped transform my health. January was my one year anniversary of healthy thyroid function. Woohooo!

In December 2008, I was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism. To my horror, I was told by my GP that surgery would probably be needed to remove 3/4 of my thyroid gland, leaving me dependent on medication for the rest of my life. This didn’t feel like a road I wanted to go down at all".
Having a baby had been life transforming for Fiona. Her birthing experience caused her to think differently about life and health. Fiona now believes that:

"... all illness or dis-ease is caused by energy blockages within our bodies where emotions get trapped and repressed. I have not always thought this way - but since having my son my eyes have opened to the magical possibilities that are open to us if we dare to believe and see for ourselves"
She explained her belief that our bodies are able to heal themselves when they are working properly and how she:
"... knew deep down the goiter in my neck was blocked expression - clearly affecting my throat chakra. There was a key issue that had been bubbling to the surface of my mind for the last few months and the fear of expressing it to those around me was too great. I denied the need to confront it. The ‘thing’ I least wanted to say - had now backed me into a corner and was testing how much I was willing to stay in denial.

I now had no choice - and I could feel it in every painful cell. The emotions surrounding this admission were HUGE. The waves of shame, self-hatred, and despair I experienced as I spoke my truth was clearly what I had been avoiding. The day after I spoke my truth my goiter went down & I started my healing - and believe me it was the biggest thing that’s ever happened to me".
According to Fiona, her remarkable healing and overnight reduction in her goitre occurred when she 'spoke her truth' and dealt with difficulties that she had been suppressing.

Fiona's experience resonates with what happens for childbearing women having one to one midwifery care. Anyone who observes the results of one to one midwifery care for childbearing women will find that among that cohort of women, more births are normal, more women and babies are well and breastfeeding successfully, there are less occasions of preterm labour and birth, pre-eclampsia and gestational diabetes compared to what happens for women who access the standard, run of the mill maternity 'care'.   

Midwives who work in a genuine continuity, one to one, relationship based model of care provide a safe place and develop a relationship of trust with the woman within which the pregnant woman can feel heard and respected and able to discuss concerns, fears and troubles. Putting words to troublesome feelings enables emotional release. The role of unrelieved and unexpressed stress on inflammatory processes and the involvement of inflammatory processes in the aetiology of disease is becoming more widely recognised.

As stress is expressed and released, health and wellbeing go up.

Awareness is so crucial to living a full, healthy and happy life. The importance of paying attention and acknowledging how you feel cannot be overemphasised. Midwives have a real role in supporting women to become aware of and express their feelings. Asking 'how are you today' in a meaningful way and waiting for a genuine answer, being present and acknowledging any discomfort for the woman, enables her to feel heard and cared about - the ultimate stress reduction exercise.

Not saying how you feel, as Fiona's experience demonstrates, can be toxic to the bodymind.

Another important point to note in Fiona's remarkable story is that she also embraced a nutritional approach to improving her health and used raw food to suppress thyroxine release.

No comments: