How Yoga Union Helped Me Heal
It was December 2007 and something was going very wrong with my health.
It started with a seizure while I was sitting at my desk. Before I knew it, the ambulance was called and I was whisked away to emergency at Delta Hospital. At first they thought it was a migraine, treated me and sent me home. But it did not end there. A second ambulance ride back to the hospital and this time they put me through a battery of tests – spinal tap (not recommended) and a CT scan – still lots of head scratching.
Over the ensuing weeks there were multiple trips to Delta and VGH as they tried to determine what was afflicting me. Finally, it culminated with a midnight ambulance ride from Delta hospital to Vancouver General Hospital. I awoke 2 days later from an induced coma to find myself in the neurological ICU wing of VGH.
My neurologist informed me that they had finally confirmed my condition – viral encephalitis brought on by an ‘entero’ virus…otherwise known as the common cold that had mysteriously migrated beyond my sinus passage into my cranium. I had a cold in my brain cavity! Viral Encephalitis is a swelling of the brain tissues that can cause a whole host of scary potentialities. The prospects for health were looking bleak. At age 45, with a one-year old baby, my wife and I were really scared.
There was no silver bullet solution. Along with a heavy duty antiseizure medication, the neurologist told me to buckle up for my recovery would take time, like 1-2 years to fully heal!! I was devastated. Would I fully recover? There were no guarantees. So I resigned myself to finding ways to heal. I started doing some research on my illness and reviewing case studies. I can emphatically say that I consider myself very lucky and blessed to have made it through to the other side unscathed.
Prior to the brain injury, I suffered from chronic low back pain, psoriasis, and cankor sores in my mouth. My posture wasn’t great as I tended to shift my wait towards the outside of my feet. You could see how my shoes wore unevenly!
A friend introduced me to hot yoga at Bikrams in 2002. I left my first class after warriors pose! However, that wasn’t my last attempt. I continued to dabble with it occasionally, but sadly not on a regular basis.
But now with this health scare I was determined to make a full commitment to yoga. I was a husband and father and I knew I had to improve my health and heal my body. I started to attend classed on a regular basis, attending 3,4 or 5 times weekly and have made it part of my daily routine for the last 10 years.
The benefits of a regular practice are many. Physically, I am so much better. At 56 I am more flexible now than I was at 16. My skin has healed, the psoriasis has disappeared, and I haven’t has a cankor sore in years. My lower back pain is virtually non-existent, my hips are more balanced and my shoes wear evenly now! I feel more grounded and more calm since committing to my practice.
Thanks to Kat for her commitment and passion towards building this soothing, comforting environment. It’s a special yoga community where one can come to heal their mind, body and soul.