Since I’ve started sharing my thoughts and recipes online at Well Nourished, I’ve come to realise how the vast majority of really successful bloggers have been ‘born’ from overcoming and sharing a major health crisis. So I thought I’d digress back to a little bit about me and how because of my own crisis, I came to become a Naturopath.
I was 13 years old when I suffered my first loss. The only grandfather I had ever known, died suddenly and it tore me apart. I was raised by my mum after my parents separated when I was about 2, and my nan and Nunky (the name I called him) were pivotal in my upbringing. I adored them.
Not long after he died, I got sick, really sick. I was a really well kid, a budding sprinter, and hurdler, so this really came out of the blue. My heart became severely tachycardic (fast). In fact, it was beating continually, 24/7 at over 250bpm, but for no known reason. I felt awful like I was running a marathon all day and all night and I was admitted to the Brompton Heart and Lung Hospital for Children in London. Specialists tried over many weeks to find a treatment to control my wearying heart (standard drugs just weren’t doing anything to help and no cause could be identified – I’m a complexed person, lol).
Eventually, a very new, though effective drug was found and I was sent home to Australia, drug in hand. I spent the next almost 10 years taking it without a second thought until some reports began emerging of it being seriously dangerous. The manufacturers released recommendations “that it should be reserved for patients in whom, in the opinion of the physician, the benefits of treatment outweigh the risks.”
At this point, my cardiologist and I re-evaluated my position. I tried to wean myself off the drug, only to end up hospitalised again. Other drugs were tried, none worked. The cardiologist recommended surgery, but the odds weren’t great and they weren’t entirely sure of what they were dealing with anyway – I was out of options. They said that I would be unable to ever have children and really weren’t too positive about my long-term health given the nature of my condition and the drug I was taking.
At this point I decided to visit a Naturopath, anything was worth a shot. I was just about to finish an Arts degree; I just wanted to move forward without the threat of ending up in a hospital again and again or worse. To cut a long story short, I consulted with a very good Naturopath, she felt supporting my nervous system and cardiovascular system herbally and nutritionally would be my best bet. She explained that my nervous system and the shock it suffered losing Nunky, was the underlying cause of becoming so sick. I began a fairly basic combination of herbal medicine and minerals.
Within six months I had weaned myself off my medication, for good, and I was so empowered, I decided to study Naturopathy myself. I found learning to become a Naturopath so stimulating and graduated proudly as Dux of my year. The rest they say is history. I was offered a job under the wing of a fabulous, very experienced Naturopath before I had even graduated. I’ve spent the subsequent years in clinical practice, on talkback radio, writing health columns for newspapers and lecturing students. I’ve also studied a post grad degree in my early childbearing years to keep my brain stimulated and upgrade my qualifications.
Which brings me to now, 7 years of study, a lifetime of experience and living my dream of being able to share the things I’ve learnt in this blessed life of mine (professionally and in the kitchen) here at Well Nourished.
I truly believe where there’s life, there is hope. No matter how sick you are, make informed choices and please, never give up! Thanks for being a part of my story here at Well Nourished. G x
(I’ve also shared my battle with an autoimmune thyroid disorder called Graves Disease if you’re interested, click here to read).
“It’s your reaction to adversity, not the adversity itself, that determines how your life’s story develops”
Dieter F Uchtdorf