Healing Power of Gratitude

I lay in bed last night with such a terrible migraine that I was actually frightened. I had spoken to the nurses helpline and they had set up an appointment with me to speak with a nurse practitioner via phone. Like many others I am in self-isolation and awaiting the results of a test. I didn’t feel so unwell as to go to the hospital as was the recommendation for my symptoms.

I’ve had these migraines before and I’ve survived. This one had woke me up the night before and had continued most of the day. The call from the nurse practitioner had not come as scheduled and I was aware that the stress was causing more harm so off to bed I went. I lay there focused on all of the people in my life. My form of prayer these days is no longer to ask God for what I want changed. Instead I spent the time telling Him how grateful I was for all the things that I had in my life.

The spasms wracked through my head and it was difficult to breathe. But I had a warm bed to lie on and I live in a country that has already found a way to get medical advice to me at my home. I had been tested and I hadn’t even had to leave my home for that test. I have a home. Less than 4 months ago I was homeless. I have music playing on my phone. Four years ago I had no phone. I have a phone and nurse practitioner will be able to reach me. I have two parents who love and support me. They have a home and are safe. I have four children who love and support me. Each of them has a home and are safe. I have four grandchildren who love and support me. Each of them has two loving parents and a home and are safe.

As I continued thanking God for the many blessings in my life the phone rang. My head was not any better and as I answered it actually got worse. I spoke with the nurse practitioner and I told her a little about myself. I explained my dilemma I not only am not able to go to the hospital I also am not able to take many things for this headache. I have chemical sensitivities after a lifetime of medication and drugs. The old me would be telling myself that I brought this on myself, beating myself up for taking the medications and for using substances to cope with emotional pain. The old me would have caused more emotional pain and created more trauma.

I heard a pause on the other end of the line after I told the nurse practitioner, Kelly, that I had been lying in bed focusing on gratitude. She listened to my symptoms and then told me there wasn’t much she could do at that time of night. She advised me that I was doing all the right things focusing on my breathing, turning off all the lights and all the background noise and staying positive. Then she said something that really scared me. She said, “It’s your brain.”  I focused on my breath and reminded myself that she was just reaffirming what I already knew.  She repeated the recommendation that I go to the emergency room. I explained to her I had been there before and that this hadn’t been life threatening. Then after she said she would call me in the morning when she could provide a prescription for medication and more information she advised me again if it got any worse to go to the emergency room. I agreed and went back to my bed and my gratitude list.

The spasms and the inflammation in my head are trapped negative energy according to one doctor. He’s known me for years and no longer prescribes any medications. His advice is to continue working with my Spiritual practices because they are what’s working for me.  Before returning to bed I was reminded that a friend had loaned me a book recently when I mentioned the migraines. I did the Thai yoga exercises and they released a bit of the pressure. I fell asleep focused on gratitude and when the migraine came back to wake me in the night I repeated the practice. Much the same as I would have in the old days of waking up to smoke a cigarette or take another pill.

I woke before the alarm. The sunrise was hidden behind the clouds but as I wrote out my gratitude list it began to shine through. I spent my meditation time focusing on gratitude as well. The I thanked Archangel Raphael for the beautiful sunrise this morning.  Raphael as many of you know stands in the east and I am always grateful that I don’t wake alone each morning as I see the sunrise I know he is there. After my meditation I did some more gentle yoga exercises in the full sunlight of my window. When Kelly, the nurse practitioner called me at 8:45 she was quite surprised. She said, “You sound so much better I was worried about you all night!” Like my doctor before she was surprised but encouraging. “It obviously worked. I’m so happy for you.” She advised me that she and her colleague had decided to recommend a trip to the emergency room. I told her if the migraine came back I would consider it.  It has come back now. Healing is a process and it requires patience and faith. We are growing and changing and as I would often tell my husband as we watched our children sleep. It must hurt to grow that fast. Today I know it does. I am grateful today for the opportunity to slow down.

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