PART 1 – THE START OF THE BREAKDOWN
We don’t always know what we want to be in life or what we will become, until we have some sort of a breakthrough moment that shines a light on the path you’re meant to take.
For me, I grew up wanting to be a writer and a linguist. I mastered Spanish and I now live in Greece so languages have always been my strong point but, at 30, I still hadn’t carved out a career with any of these skills of mine. Then at 30, I had my 1st daughter, and my 1st breakdown. It wasn’t because of her, it was the timing of events, One now when I look back with different eyes and a whole new spectrum of vision, I SEE WHY, but it took me a decade + to understand it, respect it, learn it and use it to carve out a path for the future.
WHAT DID MY BREAKDOWN LOOK LIKE?
When my eldest daughter was 2, I started having strange body pains and sensations that were literally from head to toe and all in between. I would ache all over. I would not be able to bend or stretch and my body would freeze up. I would get massive headaches / migraines sometimes to the point of vomit and days in bed. I would experience facial pains, tingling, eye twitching, eye pains, pain on my scalp and the sensation of water running from the top of my head, sores in my nose, sinus problems, jaw pains (These were sometimes excruciating to the point I would literally cry and scream), Pain in throat and difficulty swallowing (For a period of 5 months this was every single day and felt like something was stuck in my throat that I couldn’t swallow that lead to tinnitus and ear fullness (I diagnosed myself with Eagle syndrome because of this and due to paranoia) ,sternum pain, under arm pain that would radiate down arm mainly left and in to hand, pain under breasts and in to ribs (this was one of my biggest concerns and I was officially diagnosed with costochondritis in 2014) Stomach pains, IBS, back pains, hip pains and often dysplacia which would make me walk with difficulty, aching legs and then last but not least, chronic pains in the soles of feet and burning toes. Those were just the pain symptoms. I also suffered from nausea, chronic fatigue, dizziness and vertigo, spacial problems where I felt like I was in an echo chamber and everything sounded strange, buzzing in my body, speech problems, loss of appetite, hormone dysfunction, low energy, heart palpitations, emotional overwhelm, very teary and erratic, becoming worried about everything due to all the above therefore withdrawing in to my own little world because everyone I tried to talk to about all these things had absolutely no idea how to respond to me and thought I’d gone mad. I was desperate to talk to someone that understood me.
Physically, I was at breaking point and no one could tell me why or from what. Emotionally, I was worn out because no one understood me and I felt so alone and Mentally, I was paranoid and unsure of myself….(Until I wasn’t. Until my breakthrough came )
You cannot know how many times I called ambulances in the middle of the night because of sharp chest pains that kept me awake and radiated in to my jaw and left arm, the panic causing me to be sick. My husband was at his wits end, I don’t blame him I was exhausting but my conviction was strong as were the pains so I begged for help. What came up on tests? NOTHING. Lungs checked, NOTHING. Heart monitor for 48 hrs, NOTHING. BP high, put down to anxiety
At work, out of nowhere, I would have uncontrollable panic attacks. Without TMI there was one instance where I desperately needed to go to the toilet because if you’re familiar with panic attacks, they can cause instant diarrhea, pretty embarrassing but when you’ve got to go you’ve got to go. These panics would literally stop me from breathing and cause quite the scene. One almost becoming seizure like where work had to call an ambulance to assist.
And then the debilitating paranoia that I was dying because how can something so severe be ‘nothing’? So, I convinced myself that I had every type of cancer, heart disease, lymes disease, autoimmune disease, thyroid disease and the list could go on. It was increasingly clear I was becoming a hypochondriac and ever twinge would trigger further worry and I was sinking fast in to spiraling chaos.
Between the years of 2010 and 2014 I must have visited various doctors probably over 100 times. Now that’s what you call a drain on the NHS! But I felt at a loss and so desperate that there was something fundamentally wrong and there was NO ONE there to help me. I had developed full blown OCD over every single health detail I was experiencing and the experiences were so heightened and prominent that I couldn’t think of anything but these issues. I remember having a lump on the side of my neck, tiny it was, barely anything but because of how heightened I was it was the biggest deal to me. 2 weeks later it was still there. Of course it was I wouldn’t stop poking it and i was manifesting it bigger out of worry and stress. Then one day, I booked in to a chiropractor for a check over and they clearly stated they were not worried in the slightest about this lump so phew, all I needed to be told by someone I could trust was that everything was ok and there was nothing to worry about.
I had fast become an expert on every disease known to man kind, because I had had them all (laugh but eeek wasn’t funny at the time) and I had come to realize that my mind was on overdrive and was about to have a breakdown.
It was in late 2013 when various Doctors that had been saying IT WAS ALL IN MY HEAD and had attributed all of my ailments to anxiety, that I challenged them and questioned how something in my head could possibly manifest into physical pains. Their only answer to me was to mumble parts about neuro-pathways and nerves etc. One went as far as to say ‘It’s not for you to question. As the Doctor, that was for him to know and if I wanted to also I should go get a degree like he did’. I think at this point, they were desperate to shut me up and sack me off so they also came out with a fibromyalgia diagnosis. WHAT IS FIBROMYALGIA? Unknown and unexplained still for the large part but research shows it has to do with neuropathy and hightened sensory pathways etc. I had been utterly let down by the system. No one could explain why I was feeling the way I was. Every Doctor I saw just scratched their heads and handed me the anxiety card.
Yes, I was anxious. Was I always? No. What triggered the anxiety? PAIN! Not the other way around.
So with all this said, I was prescribed numerous anti-inflammatories (even though all my markers came back clear) and I was prescribed pain killers, without so much of any further question or investigation. They basically said, this is the best we can offer you. It was in this moment that I lost all respect for the medical science world in the mainstream sense as they literally have no advancements or intellect to explain to me why I am feeling this way. I may not be a licensed GP doctor but I sure know that it’s not normal to feel the way I felt so there is a reason. They just needed to expand their scientific way of thinking and find out what. Could they do that? No. I mean, in the grand scheme of things I am just one person with an annoying way of turning up on their appointment list often. But no, It’s not just me. I’ve frequented forums, chat groups and various networks of people saying exactly the same as me. How the could the medical profession let so many of us down? What was really going on?
THE START OF THE BREAKTHROUGH
Im 2011, I started learning about mind therapies and CBT NLP practices. It was start of my panics and given how well I know my own mind and as someone who’s always been curious about the workings of the mind, I started exploring my own ways of understanding, independent to what professionals had to analyse and diagnose. I have always thrived on independence. If someone has information about my life, my health and I don’t understand it, that’s not going to be the case for long. So I started to learn about cognitive behavioural therapies, neuro-linguistic programming and talk therapy concepts. The thing that got me the most during these times, were the fact that no one would listen and even if they did, it never helped. So I promised myself that I would be the person that listened to those that needed someone like I did and so they never had to feel the way I felt.
If you ask my friends, they will tell you without a doubt, 100% I am the friend they go to with their dilemas. Whatever’s on the table, I am the one with the most open mind, less likely to judge and has a compassionate, understanding ear. How many times they get off the phone saying ‘Jeez you should charge!’ and I’d laugh haha but yeah, If I had a pound for every phone call…
It wasn’t immediate that I started my degree in Philosophy and Psychology, in between the years I also studied Herbal medicine (This came about from my rejection of various prescriptions that absolutely did not resonate) and because I started batch cooking like a crazy person for my daughter, I started to research natural foods and recipes for kids so I started to tie in the herbal remedies with my issues and her eating schedules. At one point I had a rotation of bulk batches of freezer meals for her I could have started a cafe. But it was due to this that she now eats things like olives and anchovies and octopus.
I started to become fascinated with naturopathy and signed up to do further studies here and it was here where I learned about the benefits of the GAPS DIET PROTOCOL for autoimmune diseases such as Lymes and Lupus etc, Not entirely convinced I didn’t have something of this type even though blood works said otherwise, I started the GAPS and persisted for a whole 6 months and the results were remarkable. I slowly came off this and went on to a paleo based protocol that limited grains, sugars, processed foods and carbs for the most part. In its simplest form it was a version of the WHOLE30 diet that was moderately restrictive but allowed for whole nutrient dense foods only. The 30 part meaning try it for a month but I carried this on after GAPS for a further 6 months and after that year, my body had adjusted so much I had become intolreant to things like alcohol, sugar and bad fats. Even eating a whole chocolate bar made me feel so sick after a whole year of restriction that I knew, I could see it and feel it that my body was telling me that the bad things I am putting in were now being fully rejected and I had become tuned in and intuitive towards my bodys natural responses and triggers.
I set up my instapage @bearandluna in 2014 to document all my food, herbs, nutrition, study and journey through biohacking and I’m sharing some super old post snippets here as I explain this journey and breakthrough because, as I have also learned with Astrology, things move in cycles. Sometimes, you have to look back onn where you were decades ago to realise where you are right now and how it all ties together. This has been monumental in my breakthrough and discoveries!
It’s so great to look back on all the documented work I put out there when I started studying and wanted to keep a track on what i was feeling. You know, it’s not been an easy road and just when I thought I was on track and conquered the whatever s, back I go to square one. That’s the thing about life. It isn’t linear and theres a lot of back and forth. As I said, everything is cyclical. We go forwards and backwards and learn and re-learn and there is no such thing as ‘completion’ as such there is only ‘transformation’.
This is what happened when I had my BREAKTHROUGH.
We moved up to North Yorkshire from Leeds. I was feeling super strong and in a really good place mentally, physically, emotionally and all the rest. We moved closer to my mum which was fantastic and given I didn’t think she was very well, it was nice to be able to spent time closer to her and figure out what she needed. We both started yoga together. What started off as a casual thing turned in to 2 years of twice sometimes 3 times weekly classes with our instructor Mags. This routine practice did something to me that was beneficial in so many ways. I could breath like never before and I had shifted in to a new paradigm of being. I was lighter, fresher, I understood myself more and my purpose. I was working in Veterinary in the company that my husband set up while we were still in Leeds and I knew in my gut that I wanted to find a way to incorporate what I knew about my studies in holistic health and naturopathy in to animal health care. I also wanted to find a way back to focusing on mind health, so I enrolled to complete my degree in philosophy and psychology and make it my focal point. The internet was becoming swamped with people all becoming foodie fashionistas and gurus and I felt like it was saturated with all what was being put out there but the one thing that people really do struggle with is that ability to connect and talk. The internet isn’t a place that’s social. It’s lonely and cold and it separates us all from each other. Someone to talk to is key. So I went back to study and in the studies of SELF, MIND AND CONSCIOUSNESS I was blown away! This was it…my heart was taken.
And the higher and higher my mind went into this field of practice and understanding, I started to really FEEL what I was learning. It became more about feeling my way through understanding and feeling what is coming. I was becoming highly intuitive and empathetic but with structure and purpose. Towards the end of 2019, I said to my husband, we need to set up FORTIS ONE HEALTH because the future of healthcare will be interconnected and it will be natural. He wasn’t so convinced. I was. I pushed it forward and created what I believed would be the triad healthcare structure that combined human, animal and eco healthcare together as one under holistic principles. I said, there’s something coming that will trigger a united front in all sectors. We had already been pushed out of our contracts with our corporate suppliers in veterinary. Not that I cared on principal or ethical values but they were responsible for half of our companies turn over, so there was that! I said, we need to restructure because there’s about to be a monumental shift and I can’t see what but I can feel it and it’s going to break down everything. It’s going to be huge! THEN 2020 HIT….And we broke down.
In the first month of this pandemic, my health anxiety resurfaced. I had gone through years of re calibration and all of it came straight back to me, coupled also with an enormous amount of stressful news on the political front and a lot of WTF stuff in the world of alternative news that was pretty eye opening. All in all, I went in to FULL LOCKDOWN and had the biggest panic attack of my life. I spent days in bed shaking next to my husband, unable to breath, overthinking, over-analysing, completely hitting rock bottom. I couldn’t even try to word what was going on in my head but I did try to explain it to my mum and dad and it was the 1st time ever I heard them get really concerned and upset over my behavior. My mum was actually really worried about me ending up too out of control I’d need to get sectioned. Her very mention of this infuriated me and I kept screaming at her that she couldn’t see my point of view. I was on the precipice of something extraordinary, something revolutionary in my head, my heart and soul and trying to word it was quite frankly scaring people.
If you were to ask anyone that works in the field of psychiatry, where the most tuned in, intuitive, intelligent and creative people in the world are, they will tell you they exist in the nut house! They exist in a whole different dimension and paradigm to most people. They are of a different state of consciousness and resonance and they struggle to portray themselves and be understood in this 1 dimensional world that is cruel and lacks compassion. This is what I had not only learned in my studies of psychology and the mind but I was experiencing in my very own life during these very strange times that I had started to realize, was happening to a lot of people and I had foreseen this coming. I had sensed it and I had put it out there and now, we’re living through the bibggest shift, the GREAT AWAKENING of souls and spirits that are also on the precipice of breakthroughs. WHY? Because the World is changing and we need to adjust with it.
If you go on to my bearandluna instagram page, there is a highlight called philosophy where I documented all my studies, not just of philosophy but psych, politics, consciousness etc and some of the studies and modules I was learning during my finals, were at the time of the start of the pandemic. I documented some of the work as I could not believe I was learning about THAT EXACT THING during THIS EXACT TIME. It was just such a coincidence. I cannot explain to you how my mind and perceptions about EVERYTHING has shifted and expanded over the last 2 years and the one thing that has come out of all of it is
I NO LONGER LIVE IN FEAR!
It all makes perfect sense to me now! It’s a far bigger picture. stranger than fiction, so multi-layered and truly requires an open mind. I always thought I was open minded, hey, my mind was never open before as it was in a constant state of fear. It was completely limited. I was full of self limits and fear. But the moment you see things with a new set of eyes and a different perspective, it changes the game completely.
WHAT DO I THINK WERE THE REASONS FOR MY PERSISTENT HEALTH ISSUES?
I have my thoughts on this. Also quite far out but hardly surprising given all we are learning about our world leaders these days. I’ve spoken widely about my theories on twitter (pinned tweet mentioned these things) so please head there if you’re curious. Hey, I could be wrong, but as I have learned, everything is perspective and there are too many coincidences.
I still have issues from time to time but for the most part, thanks to my self study, self healing and additional protocols and regimes, I am a master of mindset, coping strategies and biohacks. I didn’t know it at the time but, these breakdowns turned in to breakthroughs so that I could turn my insight in to something useful. Something that can help others and inspire others to also take sovereignty of their health and refuse to live in fear.
As mentioned above also, KEEP THE FAITH AND A POSITIVE MINDSET AND YOU WILL WIN
And I will leave you with one other post I created years ago that is beyond relevant to this day and highlights how I always knew these times were coming (I am proud to have remained so consistent)
I have since started using kathrynasherhealth as my instagram page for all things health related however my bearandluna is still active so please feel free to follow me either place should you wish
LOTS OF LOVE. PEACE AND FREEDOM! THE FUTURE WILL BE FANTASTIC