I think it's a necessity. No matter how amazing, renowned or informed our practitioners may be, when it comes to healing from complex chronic illness, there is only one person who has the final say in what goes on in, around and for your body, and that is you.
Last week I went to a Doctors appointment at the Sophia Health Institute outside of Seattle, Washington. I've been a patient there for several years, and the clinic itself is quite well known because its head doctor, Dr. Klinghardt is famous the world over for his unique and leading edge thoughts in alternative treatments for Lyme disease, MS, ALS, chronic fatigue syndrome, and autism.
Without going too much in depth about my continuous healing saga, I'll say that I have had great benefit from seeking treatment from Dr. Klinghardt and his trained Naturopaths these past few years. Like many such clinics, many of the expenses are out of pocket and the cost to see Dr. Klinghardt alone is a whopping $800 an hour. This is something which continues to drive patients the world over to tears and frustration: the fact that in order to receive quality care, oftentimes you have to be rich. Fact. No sugar coating.
This doesn't have to be the case. In fact there are many grass roots practitioners of various modalities across the country (and the world) who are exceptionally skilled and have amazing success stories with many of their treatments.
One of the most powerful (and sometimes disenchanting) lessons I've learned through 12+ years of chronic illness is that at some point, your practitioner, the one into whose hands you've put your life, doesn't have a clue what to do next. Or maybe they do have a clue, or a diagnosis, or a past case that is similar to yours, and yet it doesn't feel right. You know.
Enter intuition. The subtle yet strong force which we get to know more and more as our relationship with our self deepens.
I remember a Dr. I worked with on the east coast many years ago, who I had put a lot of time and money and faith into working with. He was the best as far as I could see and afford. I put my life in his hands, and he definitely missed the mark. After his efforts to help me get well failed, he decided that what I needed was a strong dose of Levaquin. (If you don't know about this antibiotic, it may be one of the most toxic antibiotics out there with many common, serious and permanent side effects.)
I knew as soon as he suggested this that it was the wrong treatment. No matter how brilliant this doctor was, his diagnostic mind couldn't see what I felt and knew to be true: my body was suffering from a crippling inability to deal with toxins.
I was suffering so badly from toxicity and the inability to cope with it that I was having tremors, hallucinations, nausea and the inability to eat.
Soon after his treatment suggestion I made another move to switch care providers, and six months later was on a very different treatment path which focused on gentle regeneration and detoxification- and I was getting a whole lot healthier.
There have been and continue to be many, many times during my treatment when I couldn't accept a certain Dr.'s point of view or diagnosis, no matter how high ranking or well known. It was those moments when I searched within myself, followed my intuition, and fought for what my gut was telling me, that I broke through to much deeper healing and greater solutions.
Sometimes intuition wont lead us to the direct answer or diagnosis, but it will lead us to the place where we can find the right answer.
Ironically, one of the most powerful things I've learned in the past several years while paying the premium (and watching countless others do the same) for everything from ozonated ultraviolet blood filtration to stem cell injections from wild boars, is this:
On a very deep level, only we as individuals can truly claim health and vitality for ourselves- no doctor will ever be able to serve us true health whether on a silver platter or otherwise.
The moment we choose to connect with and communicate with the deeper essence of ourselves, the part of us that doesn't get sick, but lovingly supports us through all trials and tribulations, that's the moment we begin to heal.
That moment when we restore faith in some subtle, undying, all pervading aspect of ourselves. That connection is what has seen me and countless others through some really, really dark times.
Of course money, time, emotional support and countless other influences weight heavily on the outcomes of treatment, If I could recommend only one single thing to a somebody who is seeking alternative treatment for a complex illness, it is this:
Whatever treatment, practitioner or environment you choose to place your faith in for your own healing, let it be one which acknowledges your whole being, and not only acknowledges but encourages you to question, inquire, keep learning both in the realm of medicine and also within yourself.
Be proactive about going within yourself, trusting your gut, and truly meeting yourself. After all, if you don't now, when will you? It just might save your life.