When it comes to the practical riddles of our lives, we have all the answers we need right here in our “head” (different to the intuition that I so often talk about). Which it is only frustrating to know as I seek (without success) an old friend that I lost-contact with over 15 years ago and yet struggle to remember her surname. I know its in there…and am trying to jog it out of my memory bank by various means including trial-and-error blind shots taken out in the world of social media, using what little I know about her and, well, wracking my brain. We were friends for four years, how can I not know her name?
A timely topic as I really sat down this morning to write a post about something that has been occurring to me lately in light of this new calling I have to do detective work, to “solve the riddle of my health”, once again, after a long time of using the more intuitive approach (see my recent posts). I spent yesterday filling in the long questionnaire for the functional practitioner I am booked to see; how I hate having to go back through the health history of my life…but then its been a useful exercise. Just keeping to the dates and strict “facts”, I find that a timeline has appeared to help gain the overview and some brand new clarity has started to surface over various themes. This happened to coincide with me trawling through my collection of very old external hard drives, which I hadn’t accessed for years, looking for some particular old photos for another project I have in mind. This activity took me on a fascinating and nostalgic journey through many versions of “me” and the various states of health I was in a few years ago; which, again, was strangely insightful. The twin metaphor of wracking my brain for hard data and trawling an old hard-drive for visual/emotional memories didn’t escape me; they felt like two sides of the same coin.
Putting the two activities together (I love how the universe conspired for me to be doing these two time-line activities on the very same day), I find I have an over-view of my life that had been previously eluding me, caught as we tend to be in the day-to-day reality that gives us only the ground view. Like a life review, I can now tie the physical events to the emotional events in my mind’s eye; can see how I was, once, healthy and pretty glowing, actually, and then…just a couple of years later, a much grayer and more shadowy version of myself like all my lights had switched off. This dramatic undulation has happened more than once in my lifetime, I know (yes, we all have these peaks and troughs) but never more so than 12 years ago when my health, as it were, fell off a cliff. So what happened whenever I took these nose-dives in my health; what are the themes, the synchronicities, the connections?
Pairing the timeline of events I was writing out on my questionnaire with what I know (and could now see the photographic evidence for) were my flower and demise times, I find many other pairings want to surface. There is a distinct correlation between an external circumstance or provocation and an internal or emotional “wobble” each time my health nose-dived. When my road traffic accident happened 30 years ago, for instance, I see how it corresponded with intense emotional stress and how the two together very quickly led to glandular fever. When I was sexually abused and kept that trauma and shame to myself for years, I can see how that…very quickly…turned into a series of mystery ailments that antibiotics were repeatedly prescribed for by doctors who had no idea what else to do. Going back further I see how when I was exposed to certain toxins, they (perhaps) could have branded themselves as a particular trigger “for me” (since not all people develop these strong aversions to the same environmental stimuli) because I was exposed to them at the same time as being bullied at school. Even further back still, there is a good chance I was exposed to particular toxins and medications at conception and in the womb, at the same time as my parents were under considerable emotional and circumstantial stress since I was the unplanned fourth child during my father’s illness. Do you see what I am saying? Why do particular people develop a heightened response to certain triggers, so much so that a single vaccination or a bout of every-day illness (and its pharmaceutical remedy…) can trigger a cascading health situation? Maybe this is why.
Could it really be that exposure to the leaded petrol fumes in my parents’ garage, where they frequently left me to sleep or cry it out in my pram, could have made me more susceptible to the traffic fumes and the toxic undercurrent of living next to a petrol station on this busy road which, come to think of it, I moved to just months before my health took a dive? Could the coincidence that my older sibling gave me his collection of mercury gathered from broken thermometers to handle and play with (yes, but I guess he didn’t fully understand…), and electrocuted me over and over with the various home-lab gizmos he liked to construct as a boy, occuring at the same time as the intense bullying that was happening to me at school, have driven the physical cues of these “triggers” deeper into my psyche so that I became the dental amalgam poisoning case and electro-sensitive that I am today? In fact, looking back, I had easy access to many toxins that would be considered unacceptable for a small child today, such as my father encouraging me to use solvent based glues for my craftwork from when I was just five or six (in fact, I fell in love with the smell) and kept all sorts of substances in easy reach of my curious hands. He believed in every kind of insect exterminator he could get his hands on when it came to all the home-grown veg we lived off and, often, ate straight from the plant. We can be scared or reluctant to pick back through this stuff but what if this is where all our answers lie (literally, stored in our cells)? No blame or grudge, no hard feelings – people did what they did not knowing any better at the time – but just impassively observing these trends can (I believe) help us to unpick them!
Perhaps if I had been a happy-go-lucky child skipping in the perpetual golden light of a sheltered existence it would have been different but I was bullied and fearful (my father’s health was a constant worry) for many years. Emotion plus circumstance make for a formidable team. It’s as though the emotional trauma (however small, the first time it occurs), gets “stitched into the fabric of our cellular memory by the hard circumstance that, as it were, injects it far deeper into us than was intended since experiences are “meant” to be more transitory and fluid. Imagine, if you like, many pieces of paper raining down from the sky on which are written dozens of messages, some of them hurtful (an “emotional potential”) and then a dart (“circumstance”) comes flying through the ether and pins one of these messages to you…so it sticks to you and it embeds itself; in fact you can’t seem to shake it off, try as you might. When an emotional trauma happens, we have every chance of it being fleeting, thus of recovering from it, if we are not also in a circumstance that, in some way, matches its frequency. But when there is a similarity or a “match” between these two things, the two-sided affront seems to bring the trauma into collaboration with the circumstance and capture us in between, like two halves of a hard shell closing in on us. The psycho-physical “illness” that can sometimes result goes so deep (especially if a version of this circumstance has played out in our life before) that we don’t know where to start with repairing ourselves. I give you the deep causation of many, if not all, of our chronic and supposedly unsolvable health issues; the ones we are so baffled by because we just can’t seem to get to their root.
It’s a case of yin meeting yang, yet again (as I often talk about); the yin of emotional response and the yang of “hard” circumstance” snapping together to imprison us, in a sense. Yet we have to appreciate that the reason they do this is that their natural inclination is to be in accord with one another; they want to find things in common, to resonate, to agree and work towards the same goal. In other words, the universal impulse is always towards wholeness. Its not malevolent. Nothing set out to harm us or make our life difficult. Nothing, in fact, is broken….its just joined together over the least desireable traits that could be found in common; which were, perhaps, the only ones available at the time. We stand a chance of going back and changing that once we become aware of it, knowing what we now do about higher potential.
So how can this marriage of feminine and masculine result in such disharmony and fragmentation of our health? Because they join together whether or not they are in their ideal state. In other words, distorted emotions and dysfunctional circumstances have just as much inclination to work together as the very highest examples they can offer. All they care about, as though a magnetic force is pulling them irresistibly into union, is that they sing to the same key. So “bullying” holds the same vibrational energy as, say, a heavy metal whose driving impulse is to “invade” and take over a biological organism. Stress, fear and a sense of being under terrible pressure or loss of liberty (my life at the time my health collapsed) hold the same note as a vaccination based on fear and the need to “protect from” something such as flu (containing, in my case, mercury which is sometimes used to “preserve” the compound). Antibiotics strip us bare of our body’s innate protection, often at the very times we are already at our most emotionally vulnerable; and if they are repeated and repeated, the consequences can be catastrophic and very long-lasting. I believe we can use this process of recognising the couplings that have taken place in our lived, which is not unlike unpicking the stitches of a tapestry that feel “off” to us, to identify the beginning point of food allergies, environmental triggers and the very beginnings of our most serious health crises if we are prepared to feel into our own timeline, looking at it from both sides – together. Instead of having to “live with” intolerances and trigger events for the rest of our lives, we can do the emotional repairs around the old circumstances and move on. I’m not saying its quick or easy but I am already unpicking my timeline, in meditation and through writing it down, and it feels potent. Its like following a trail of lights that we left for ourselves to work our way back along the path of ourselves, to nudge ourselves into more wholeness than ever before.
What has this oversight taught me? That the masculine and feminine aspects are naturally inclined to join forces and, in their highest expressions, can work for us; enclosing us “as” the wholeness that we think of as good health. When our emotional state is guided by a tendency to focus only on the positive, the life-enhancing, the beautiful and the loving, life’s circumstances can do their worst but seldom knock us over. Likewise, when we are aware of what circumstances rock our boat and work on creating a life that at least minimises exposure to them (including toxins of all kinds i.e. this could be substances, circumstances or people), our emotions can be the free flying up-and-down extremes that they love to be. Then we can dare to experience all that we are here to experience fully without risk of a fleeting state becoming enmeshed, like a bird in a net, with a physical trigger that sets off that same emotional response each and every time it is encountered. Our creative, intuitive, playful feminine aspect can put down its Achilles heel (which is a tendency to live in the past or project towards the future) and be the free-flow aspect that it is truly meant to be here and now. Meanwhile our masculine traits can live out as the constructive and striving instrument of positivity and expansion that they really are. Instead of growing “symptoms” and hanging old emotional baggage around them, our two aspects do what they do best – creating a physical structure that is ever-more expansive and upward striving, coloured as it is by the experience of life’s most joyful exploration, led and encourage by our innate curiosity and playfulness. This is how these two aspects work together in our highest interests and lead us ever closer towards the wholeness that is wonderful health.