Dear Louise Hay, BITE ME. / by Erica Kathleen

                                                                                                           "hold on" available  HERE

                                                                                                           "hold on" available HERE

*UPDATE: 10 months after this post, I was diagnosed with Hemochromatosis. So, everywhere you read "fibromyalgia", replace it with Hemochromatosis*

i've said before, that everything i thought was true & real has been turned upside down & shaken & i don't know what the fuck i believe anymore . . .

well, this morning i got a huge shot of clarity.

here is what i know:

i know that i am sick. (yep, i said it out loud). i know that my physical body is ill. i know that i have gallstones in my gallbladder & liver. i know that i have fibromyalgia. i know that my body aches so fucking bad, it feels like every cell in my body is dying. i know that my muscles burn, nonstop. i know that my bones ache like a motherfucker. i know that i get so exhausted, it is a monumental effort for me to do the tiniest task. i know that many times i want to be with the people i love, and do the things i love to do, but i physically CAN'T.

these things i know. these things are facts.

then there's this whole culture & way of thinking, which i have very happily subscribed to, until this morning, when this song came on the radio. listen to it, every word, before you read any further.

in an instant, everything i have believed is null & void. it doesn't make sense, and quite frankly, is complete & utter BULLSHIT.

Dear Louise Hay (& other heal-yourself-ers), I am officially breaking up with you today. It's been fun & romantic, with the notions that if I love myself enough, I can heal my physical body. But, I'm done. It's over.

Not that I am going to quit loving myself, or learning things, or growing, or healing . . . not at all.

On the contrary, my choice today, is the BIGGEST step I have taken in really, truly, actually LOVING MYSELF.

How so? Let me tell you.

Listening to the words of this song this morning, really, in one fucking instant, my mind exploded & it all became crystal clear.

What I have been doing, in subscribing to this way of thinking . . . is BLAMING myself for being sick. 

can you see it?

Gallstones. (read that post HERE). New Age would have me believe (& I did), that I have gallstones because I have held on to anger & resentment. Sounds reasonable, (well, it did, then).

I couldn't find any anger. I looked, but there was none there. (read this post) So what did I do? I fucking dug & dug & dug till I found (or created) some. WHy?? Well, duh, because these stones are there BECAUSE of my anger, and so, I MUST have anger &  heal that anger, in order to heal myself from these stones.

Wow. Really? It made perfect sense at the time. Now, it makes me fucking cringe.

DO you see what happened? Because of my beliefs (love yourself, heal your life),  . . . at the very core, I was BLAMING MYSELF for my physical illness, and for not miraculously curing it. 

I was sick, because I didn't love myself enough. I was sick, because I had not let go of anger. Well, fuck! Really? If I'm sick because of "anger", then, to get better, all I have to do is heal that anger, right? Ya, right.

So, I dug & I dug & I dug & I did find some shit to be angry about, real, true, heart-breaking shit. Shit that I had repressed & never acknowledged & was not pretty to visit. WOW! This MUST be it! This MUST be the root cause of my illness. MUST BE. Must be. Let's dig & excavate & re-fucking-traumatize ourselves in the process. Ya. Awesome. NOT.

then there's the New Age explanation for fibromyalgia: "stuffed trauma". Weeeelllllll then, let's fucking un-stuff it. Shall we? For real, I think I have single-handedly traumatized myself for the past few months, trying to "heal myself".

So, let me get this straight, I have fibromyalgia, because I have not properly dealt with a trauma . . . and I have gallstones because I am holding onto anger.

Do you see the fucking irony here???

The belief is that "if you love yourself enough & heal your emotional shit, your body will heal & all will be well" . . .

HOWEVER that very same belief is pointing one big fat fucking finger of FAULT at the sick person. 

It's my FAULT that I have gallstones.

It is my FAULT that I have fibromyalgia.

It is my FAULT, because I am not 'in touch' enough with my spirituality.

It's my FAULT, because some fucking book says I must be angry.

It's my FAULT, because I have not been diligent enough in my spiritual practice & certainly, i still MUST have something really important to learn from these fucked up illnesses, CERTAINLY, or, obviously, I wouldn't be sick. Duh.

Do you see the huge, wide, gaping wound of discontent & NON-ACCEPTANCE here? 

We suffer when we want things to be different than they are. NON-ACCEPTANCE. Well, who wants to be sick? And who, if they COULD heal themselves, wouldn't? So, instead of accepting reality, (i'm sick, ACCEPTANCE), I create HUGE anxiety around the hopes that I actually have some control over this & if I just work hard enough, things will be different (NON-ACCEPTANCE).

I never saw the ridiculousness of all this until today. And even more, I'm kind of blown away at the astronomical number of people (previously me, until an hour ago, included) who subscribe to this way of thinking.

It is so blatantly, BULLSHIT . . . "Love yourself enough & you will heal", but in the meantime, BLAME YOURSELF for physical & biological fucking phenomenons!  BLAME YOURSELF for not healing, because, after all, YOU HAVE CONTROL OVER IT!


How could I POSSIBLY love myself when I am daily, hourly, by the minute, BLAMING myself for being sick??? I'd venture to say, it's near fucking impossible.

I wonder where "BLAME" fits on the physical/emotional wheel? I wonder what kind of damage it does to BLAME yourself every minute of every day? I wonder how conducive "BLAME" is to healing?

If you are still sick... if you are not healing... well then, it must be something that YOU ARE DOING WRONG. Obviously, you are not being diligent enough or working hard enough on your emotional shit. 

Because you are the master of your life & if you "think good thoughts", you will heal. And for the love of God, don't SAY (out loud) that you are sick, because whatever you SAY will become truth.

Ahem. Pardon me, while I VOMIT. If that were true, if our thoughts & our words had the power to CREATE REALITY, then, please, someone s'plain to me, why all of my reading, & workshops, & spiritual work & forgiveness & releasing & positive thinking, & saying "I'm healing", and my gigantic vision board with photos & healing words hasn't done SHIT? Tell me.

Yet, if I were to allow the words, "I'm sick", to fall from my mouth, then I better watch out, because surely, I have just told the Universe that I am sick, & NOW it's gonna be real. (Because before I actually DARED to say it out loud, it wasn't true?) Fuck off.




(bear with me, i'm on one today)

so, then, there's the whole thing of this book . . . which I absolutely fell in LOVE with, scooped up & made it real in my life, used it to make sense of horrible things . . . which worked, until NOW.

Here's why:

The whole idea that "I CHOSE" to come into this world & live 20 years in an abusive marriage, to get a black eye, to be fucking raged at, to be called a whore, to forget who I am, to live in a nightmare, to fear for my life . . . whY? (insert romantic notion here:) . . . well, let's seeeeee . . . I "CHOSE" that so that I could help other women. I "CHOSE" that so that I could make really powerful art. I "CHOSE" that so I could write a blog. I "CHOSE" that because I wanted to learn what "forgiveness" is. (It all sounds very martyr-ish, in hindsight). Wow, how very brave of me, how very unselfish of me, to CHOOSE to live a fucking hell, so I could help other people. Someone, saint me! Quick.


We ARE LOVE. We don't need shitty fucking things to happen to us, to learn how to love. We don't need to suffer, to be whole. We ARE WHOLE.

So, this morning, I am breaking up with New Age thinking. I'm not listening to another podcast. I'm not buying another book. I'm not subscribing to the bullshit.

This is what I know: I am a beautiful, loving Spirit, living on this earth, and right now, my physical body is sick. THIS IS THE TRUTH.. I accept it. 

I know that I have gallstones in my liver & gallbladder. I know that this sent me to the emergency room. (I also know they are there, because I saw them on the ultrasound with my own eyeballs). I also know, that it is possible to rid my body of these stones without surgery. I know that I have done about 6 liver flushes & every, single time, hundreds & hundreds of stones have freely left my body. How do I know? Because I have seen it with my own eyes. I have photos, if you need proof. 

Just to clarify, it was the liver flushes that sent the stones out of my body, NOT the talking, not the spiritual work, but the physical/biological work of doing a flush.

I know that I have fibromyalgia. I know that it is unpredictable. I know that there is no "cure". I know that it fucking sucks ass & some days I want to die. I know that not every day is a bad day. I know that there is still light. I know that sometimes I can't do a god-damn-fucking-thing to make the pain stop. I know that sometimes, it's bearable. I know that acupuncture & yoga & swimming & massage & epsom salt baths all help me to feel better. 

(I also know the the emotional & spiritual shit makes me feel bad. It makes me sad. It makes me feel weak. It makes me feel broken. It makes me feel like I need "fixing". It makes me feel like a fuck-up & a failure).

I know that I am not a quitter. I know that I am stubborn & sometimes a hard-ass. I know that I will keep doing everything I physically can, to feel better. I know that I am committed to loving myself. I know that I made a HUGE step today, in deciding to stop blaming myself for being sick & for not "healing".

So, to Louise Hay & many well-meaning friends, you can believe what you choose to believe, & I can choose to believe what I believe. We all have the right to believe what we want, but from this day forward, I CHOOSE to stop blaming myself for being sick. I CHOOSE to stop feeling bad or feeling like a failure when my "spiritual work" doesn't heal my physical illness.

I CHOOSE to believe in reality. I CHOOSE to accept what is real, in my life & in my body at this moment. Does this mean I am giving up & giving in & resigning to be ill & suffer? FUCK NO. 

But when I have bad days, when my body aches so much that I can't get out of bed, I will no longer tell myself, "You must be doing something wrong. You must not be working hard enough. You must not have healed your inner child. You must not have truly forgiven. You must not deserve to be well yet. There must be some karmic debt you still owe."

Never again.

You see, I'm all about taking responsibility for your actions. If I drink too much wine & have a headache the next day, well then, yes, my actions caused the headache. Or if I eat a gallon of cheap ice cream & get a terrible stomach ache, then yes, my choices caused that physical ailment.

But not one more day, will I wake up, every cell of my body in pain, and BLAME myself for not healing my inner child, or whatthefuckever.

Do you see the HUGE amount of pressure and stress & anxiety this puts on someone? Telling them that they somehow are CAUSING this illness, something they have done, or haven't done, and if they work hard enough & dig deep enough & pray enough, that they can CURE THEMSELVES? Wow. Really?

a very ugly realization about how dangerous this kind of thinking can be . . . not ONLY was I condemning myself & blaming myself for ME being ill . . . but, inadvertently, I was also blaming every other person who is ill, for their own illness. I would go so far as to say that, I unconsciously believed that, people who die from their illnesses, could have, in some way, prevented it, stopped it, or healed it . . . but, that they just didn't "work hard enough to heal their emotional shit".  Now, THAT, my friends, is fucked.

How about this? Do you know someone, have you loved someone, have you ever lost someone you loved dearly, to illness, or disease? Would you ever dare to look at that person, laying in bed, in so much unbearable pain, dying, and say . . .  "If you would have just worked harder. . . if you would have just forgiven Uncle Joe, if you would have prayed for 2 hours every day, if you would have seen a therapist or a shaman, if you would have healed your inner child, you wouldn't be in this predicament . . . you could have prevented this . . . the pain you are in right now is your fault . . . you had the power to heal yourself, but you just weren't diligent enough. You didn't try hard enough. You didn't dig deep enough."

Would you? Ever? Seriously.

I think we are too attached to meaning. We try to find reason where there is none. We want to make sense of fucking horrible things, in an attempt to make them less painful, so we reach, we stretch, we concoct romantic notions that we have any control at all . . . or there is a 'deeper meaning', or 'everything happens for a reason'.

Thank you, Lucinda Williams, for the beautiful song, that exploded my brain this morning. 

"You weren't born to be abandoned
And you weren't born to be forsaken
You were born to be loved
You were born to be loved

You weren't born to be mistreated
And you weren't born to be misguided
You were born to be loved
You were born to be loved

You weren't born to be a slave
And you weren't born to be disgraced
You were born to be loved
Mmm, hmm, you were born to be loved

You weren't born to be abused
And you weren't born to lose
You were born to be loved
You were born to be loved

You weren't born to suffer
And you weren't born for nothing
You were born to be loved
Mmm, hmm, you were born to be loved"

I listen to these words, and I feel my heart breathe a huge sigh of relief . . . what I hear is . . . "girrrrrl, some shitty things have happened, and it's not your fault".



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