Monday, June 8, 2015

Trauma, Abuse and Pain: The Immune System Connection Part I

 Many of you know I'm an artist and last month not only was I honored to be in such an amazing exhibition, but I had the opportunity to promote some of my favorite allergy-friendly products since I knew many of the attendees would be children. Here is the full story for those of you who want to see which amazing company made an appearance! (Hint: They seriously have the best cookies ever!)

I recently talked about myself being an empath since birth. I no longer see medical treatment as the one and only answer to health issues. I now realize that working on the mind and emotions has everything to do with how healthy we are. So now that I'm back to working on myself, a cleansing process is going on. And through this cleansing many epiphanies keep coming up. The one in particular I'm going to talk about today is self-love and acceptance. Why? From an energetic body standpoint, lack of those things within oneself directly affects the heart chakra and solar plexus.

woman meditating by ocean
Being by the water grounds me and calms everything...even my skin. 

The heart chakra is the energetic center connected to the immune system and the solar plexus (also known as the celiac plexus) is the energetic center connected to our sense of self-acceptance, self-esteem and personal power or lack thereof. When it is blocked, we feel powerless and victimized. Or those emotions may have been shut out and pain becomes normal, even if it's self-inflicted. Just the act of scratching the skin is our body creating pain in order to distract our brain from the itch!

Although you might not think so, all of this has everything to do with food allergies, celiac disease and food intolerances. In the over three decades of living with life-threatening anaphylaxis and skin disease, I had never faced the emotional issues at the very core of my physical body. This year, I did...and it literally has changed everything.

What Are Chakras?

According to Hindu or Buddhist tradition, our seven chakras or energy centers are within your 'aura' going down the center, or hara line of your body. Now, I am not Hindu nor Buddhist, just like I also believe in the meridians of the body yet I'm not Chinese or Japanese. Different cultures and traditions have something different to teach according to their own healing methods and there is no need to believe in their religious teachings to understand elements that are not yet integrated into Western medicine. The medical community does, however, acknowledge acupuncture, which is quickly becoming a recommended form of therapy for various ailments and conditions; so much so that it is usually even covered by insurance! There is even a style of acupuncture known as esoteric acupuncture which integrates chakra healing into it's discipline.

It is not just those within the holistic or metaphysical communities that claim to see or feel auras; people with with autism, seizure disorders or Aspberger's syndrome as well as those with synesthesia usually have experiences with seeing or perceiving auras, too. From my experiences, I've noticed that due to the deep connection empaths have to emotions and the energy of others, many of them have these or similar abilities as well. I've realized recently I have synesthesia; I've always been able to see music as color and vice versa, so whenever I hear a song, I see specific colors in my head depending upon the keynote. I also can hear energy as well. I used to actually freak out my parents by knowing who was coming down the stairs because ever since I was young, when it was my mom, I would hear this high-pitched, twinkling sound like little bells and with my dad I would hear this heavy, large, low tone, kind of the hollow, low sound I look for when I knock on watermelons for the best one (haha now you won't ever buy a bad watermelon ever again!).

I've come to realize that clearing and grounding my energy field and chakra system through the food I eat, the vibrations I send out (like attracts like), the people I keep company with, the things I watch and listen to as well as my physical environment is only part of the process for keeping my physical body healthy (More about this vibrational energy in the video on the right!). The rest is doing the emotional work or 'shadow work' as some call it and releasing or cleansing the negative emotions that are blocking certain chakras. If you have a great cognitive behavioral therapist, they will help you work on these emotions or belief systems we hold within. However, you won't truly find out what your shadows are until you truly have the courage to let go of all defense systems also known as denial.

bowl with burning sage smudge stick
According to healers, white sage 'neutralizes' conflict and calms anxiety.
Obviously, many people don't recognize these methods and those who do only talk about it with others who've also experienced it's benefits. It's somewhat of a stigma, because many people fear what they do not understand or have not experienced themselves. I believe that the mind, body and 'spirit' (also known as energy body or astral body) are all connected. I know this to be true because when I feel my skin developing 'waves' of hives about to erupt there is no question that when I take an Epsom Salt bath and go sit outside to 'ground' myself, I feel better, like I took an allergy pill (more on how to ground yourself here). I also like to burn white sage while grounding outside to further calm myself and clear my energy field.

Of course, if you still need the allergy medication, take it. I am not advocating energy healing before medicine; I'm saying to use it in addition to your prescribed medications for optimal results. If you and your doctor decide you no longer need to take them daily, then that is your prerogative.

 I'm going to share my own personal Epsom Salt Bath Cleanse which has been a huge part of my go-to regimen for cleansing my energy field. This energy cleanse is particularly useful for empaths, or those who tend to take on other people's emotions.

Time for an Epsom Salt bath!
In my opinion, every person with anaphylaxis or severe allergies is an empath and if not, then he or she has a protective wall up which might make him or her seem completely cold, distant or hostile. Empaths absorb other energy from other people, places or things like dry sponges, so it is not enough to simply 'protect' themselves energetically. It is also necessary to self-care and heal by way of self-love. Sea salt water carries a very high frequency and because of this, is used for many energetic and spiritual cleansings of various sorts. You can get a similar cleansing effect from taking an Epsom Salt bath. Here is my particular recipe I use almost daily whenever I feel like I'm starting to energetically feel like a wet newborn baby bird.  

Maya's Epsom Salt Bath Cleanse

2 Cups Epsom Salt (this was best price I found through Amazon)

9 drops 100% pure Eucalyptus essential oil (helps to purify)

18 drops 100% pure Sage essential oil (helps to clarify)

2 drops 100% pure lemongrass oil (imparts positivity for balancing solar plexus)


Simply add the ingredients to hot water, making water cooler to the temp you want as the tub fills up. For full effect, make sure water is at least covering your chest when you are laying down in the tub.I soak for 20-40 minutes depending on when I feel better.

Of course, a wet bird isn't really what our aura looks like when we're energetically spent. It actually is weakened and blocked by negative thought forms of others as well as ourselves, hence it looks more like the picture you see on left.

Every living thing emits a bio-energy field known as an aura. Your seven chakras or energy centers are within your aura. I've come to realize that clearing and grounding my energy field and chakra system through the food I eat, the vibrations I send out (like attracts like), the people I keep company with, the things I watch and listen to as well as my physical environment is only part of the process for keeping my physical body healthy. I also try to rinse out the inside of my nose at least twice per day or better yet, using a neti pot to clear out your nasal passageways is ideal for helping to prevent allergic reactions from your environment. The rest is doing the emotional work or 'shadow work' as some call it and releasing or cleansing the things that are blocking certain chakras such as guilt, pain, anger, shame or regret. This is definitely not an overnight process but it's definitely working.

“That's what real love amounts to - letting a person be what he really is. Most people love you for who you pretend to be. To keep their love, you keep pretending - performing. You get to love your pretense. It's true, we're locked in an image, an act - and the sad thing is, people get so used to their image, they grow attached to their masks. They love their chains. They forget all about who they really are. And if you try to remind them, they hate you for it, they feel like you're trying to steal their most precious possession.”
― Jim Morrison

Sure, he struggled and ultimately died due to his struggles. In fact, many of the most 'sensitive' people on this planet including members of the '27 club' struggled with the most self-imposed challenges due to years of abuse, neglect, pain or trauma. Many of those very same people are revered after death for their 'touch of genius' or are still alive to talk about it. If you know any of their stories, all of them were very emotionally sensitive and were likely highly empathic. Like many empaths, they drowned out their emotions or painful pasts with substances or addictions of various sorts. I've seen studies which link eczema to higher rates of smoking, drinking and obesity, which proves the point that many feel they want to 'get out of their own skin.'.

Abuse takes on many various forms. Many don't even realize they grew up in an abusive home because they thought their home life was normal. They don't even know what normal is supposed to be. Some might have seen the abuse firsthand. Others might have taken some of the abuse on for themselves. Then what happens? Some need chaos to feel anything. Some become so numb to their own emotions and built such a wall around themselves that they no longer know who they are. They might feel lost or apathetic, seeing the world sarcastically and use humor to further numb the pain. I loved sarcasm and in some senses, still do. Do I need to work on certain things? Absolutely. But it seems that as soon as I work on a certain thing that frustrates me, I no longer find humor in it's sarcastic perspective!

Is there something you took on and now supress? Did you feel things growing up that you shut out because you were told you were overreacting? Were you gaslighted (form of emotional abuse which comes from a classic movie, 'Gaslight' 1944) and made out to be crazy for things you knew to be true? Were you ever sexually abused or assaulted? Well guess what? If it didn't heal, it is now affecting your immune system and manifesting as physical illness. Energetically, it is blocking you from being who you are truly meant to be. From the view of the Law of Attraction, it may have caused you to attract similar situations later in life such as abusive relationships with intimate partners or in the workplace since it was something you have not yet healed. Why? So you could attempt to learn the lesson by experiencing it then realizing it for what it is and healing it.

Empaths have a tendency to attract narcissists and perpetrators because they usually do not know how to set proper physical, emotional, energetic or even sexual boundaries. Many have a weakened aura due to low self-esteem and don't know the first thing of what to do to fix it. Or maybe they are still living at home and absorbing the emotions and energy of those in the home. Those who are in these situations must reclaim their own power and self-worth which is their birthright or they will continue to suffer and attract low vibrational situations. For those with food allergies, it could mean attracting situations where you are placed in life-and-death situations due to your allergies (victimization) or situations where people don't believe you (because you haven't healed someone gaslighting you in the past). Awareness is the very first key step and something tells me many of you who grew up with food allergies (and many of you who care for one) will relate to this video about the roots of apathy (warning: get your tissues ready).

There are many various rape, trauma and abuse victim programs and organizations that exist in each state and country. Use keywords for the help you need within Google and get the help. Even if the trauma or traumas happened years ago, you must release it and heal emotionally in order to heal yourself physically. If there is something happening now, do the research to recognize it and get away from the situation. If the trauma happened to your parent or someone whom you live with, it is not your job to change them...only to heal yourself. Many states offer free counseling for abuse or trauma victims and their families.

The act of trying to change or save others in our family or whom we're in relationships with is known as codependency, which I've observed is a prevalent issue for those with food allergies who are empaths as well as those who love and care for them. If you're looking for reading material now on the topic, one of my favorite books on it is Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend.

For now, I will leave you with one of my favorite meditations to help calm anxiety and fears. It contains subliminal statements (which are in the 'description' below the video so that you know what is going into your brain.). This video is also amazing to listen to after the epsom salt bath I outlined above to improve your stress levels and help you to relax. Now I'm off to the gym! Have an amazing week...

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