Weed Wanderings Herbal eZine with Susun Weed
July 2004
Volume 4 Number 7
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Anti-Cancer Lifestyle ...
Symptoms: friends or foes?
by Lady Barbara

If we make the glaring 21st century mistake and allow the TV to feed us health information, we’ll begin slipping into a mindset where ‘relief from symptoms’ is the goal.Now, isn’t that rather shooting the messenger? I say, open the envelope first. Better yet, invite the messenger in for tea.

For starters, let’s look at this odd WORD….symptom. Any word that starts off with five consonants has some kind of agenda.

symptom [n] anything that accompanies X and is regarded as an indication of X's existence

Right there, we see that ‘symptom’ does not EQUAL ‘X’, and that’s the entire point.

One phrase pretty much everyone is familiar with is ‘flu-like symptoms’. Sure wish we could call them something else, something more accurate, like “Immune-Kicker Signals” Then perhaps folks wouldn’t get so frantic to SQUELCH them before they even know what their Immune System is KICKING about. Yes, they’re uncomfortable, that ‘oh no, I’m coming down with SOMETHING’ feeling, usually aching all over, often sore throat, headache, tired, cranky -- everybody’s are a little different.

It’s truly foolish to start scarfing down Ibuprofen to just STOP the feeling if you haven’t listened to WHY it’s happening. It’s also truly foolish to just take the same mindset over to the herb patch and immediately begin loading up on Echinacea root to STIMULATE your immune system if it’s doing a fine job on its own. If you MUST grab a bottle of SOMETHING, how about the empty one over there marked “LISTEN”.

Symptoms are a whole lot like toddlers. The sooner you listen and respond, the less likely they are to start shrieking. Ignore them all together and you’ve got a tantrum lying on its back in the grocery store.

It really changes everything to consider symptoms to be the language in which your body tells you things. They’re the way your body gets your attention, and the closer you listen, the more you learn. I’m sure every one of you has some subtle signal that says you’re just pushing too hard. Time to back off, get a little more rest. Ignore that one for too long and you’re flat on your back.

We also each have a set of signals that tell us of a serious infection. The sooner we catch on to those, the sooner we can start HELPING our bodies really HEAL themselves.

Chronic symptoms are a real pain (how’s THAT for a bumper sticker?) But the more deeply we can understand even those symptoms, the better chance we have of helping ourselves.

One of the best places to start learning ‘symptom-ese’ is with just plain old PAIN. Pain comes in lots of different ‘flavors’….muscle pain, which is rather tight; nerve pain which is somewhat sharp and ‘electric’-feeling; inflammation, which is a hot and swollen feeling (whether there’s actual swelling or not); there’s pressure-pain, telling us something is swollen and leaning on something else. (and all you said was “ow”)

Taking that a step further, it helps to take a little time to just try to imagine what would REALLY relieve/release that ‘symptom’ – not just an OFF button, but what would it like to have happen. If you find yourself thinking of frayed wires, there’s a good chance it’s nerve pain. If you don’t get all tangled up trying to figure it out, and just use your imagination to grab some image (we use this a lot in hypnotherapy) whether it’s changing the color of something, or seeing it as totally unrelated objects, you can get some pretty amazing insights.

One client of mine had a chronic neck pain and when all relaxed down, she ‘saw’ it as a spitball stuck in a straw and had a great feeling that AIR would help move it through. When she explored that in more detail, she was clear that for some reason just BREEZES made sense to her and it also hooked in with some ‘not being allowed to be a child’ issues and round and round we go. It’s all connected.

So, perhaps, before your body feels the need to stick its foot out and STOP you, you might check in with it to see if there are any small messages. If it starts to get truly cranky, try to hear what it’s getting cranky ABOUT, before you send it off to ‘go watch TV, I’m BUSY’………LadyB

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Here are some other articles by Lady Barbara
Wise Woman Wisdom: The Weeds Shall Inherit the Earth

Wise Woman Wisdom:
Conversations with Ourselves

check out our new offering at the Bookshop:
Nourishing Traditions
by Sally Fallon with Mary G Enig, PhD

The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats.

Women's Health Books at Ash Tree Publishing


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