There are times when, in spite of your best efforts towards wellness, that a virus takes hold and wreaks its havoc.
In spite of a balanced practice of yoga, meditation and healthy living, the death of my son was the straw that allowed the sneaky bastard in. The rhinovirus. Not to be confused with rhinoceros, but just as potentially damaging to life and limb.
The first sign was a sudden stabbing and choking sensation in my throat – I couldn’t breathe. My adenoids started up their work of seeing to this nasty, but lo, where are the tonsils when we need them most? Sigh…alas, long ago the valiant tonsils were a victim of the fad of tonsil removal of the 1960′s. Tonsils and adenoids being the first line of defense, I was counting on my yoga practice to keep seeing me through like it always does.
So the 2nd & 3rd day, everytime I practiced, the mucous cleared up and I could talk & breathe just fine. Day 4 – the yoga didn’t work, I was still congested & coughing now. Day 5 – struggled through my workday and finally admitted I was sick. Day 6 -7-8-9…Day 6 I had to cancel out on my daughter who was counting on me for child wrangling during her baby shower, child wrangling my granddaughter is my very favorite activity. Day 7 – not sure I left bed – oh yeah, Angus kept running me Epsom salt baths. Day 8 – fed up started feeding my immune system spirulina and vitamin C. All along, I have been drinking water and ginger tea with lemon & honey too. Tried a few homeopathic remedies that brought some relief.
Now, day 9, I felt like I turned a corner this morning. yet by late morning had such an asthmatic coughing fit I wondered what happened to people who couldn’t breathe that pass out all by themselves? Using the yogic superpowers of observation, I splashed cold water on myself, got more water to drink for when I did stop choking and looked up more homeopathic remedies and found a new one to try. Someone survived that one.
My husband asked if I wanted to go to the hospital. I said no way! I know more about the immune system than most people and know that the chances of dying from an infection in the hospital are greater than at home. I probably have pneumonia. So I wait, I looked up pneumonia and research on Vitamin C shows that it cures pneumonia. The CDC says nothing cures pneumonia but it won’t hurt to take vitamins, although, they say, vitamins can interact with any medication you are on…
So there it is again – our health care system. This is why I know so much about the immune system. This is why I do the work I do. Teach yoga and throw in my little health tips. We are the unhealthiest wealthy nation in the world. Fact.
However, my intention is to move the immune health conversation forward, not rant. Here are some lovely facts about the immune system. The immune system has several lines of defense, skin, those glands, lymphatic system and a bunch of different types of cells with different hi-tech names. I will call them soldiers. There’s this one group of soldiers that waits. They immediately start their programming. While the virus injects it’s DNA into the cell to produce a virus factory, the macrophages study the virus. They capture a few in the lymph nodes and run tests. They reverse engineer the virus and then within 5-7 days – ta dahhh!!! Their is an unstoppable anti-virus army produced. The lymph system keeps up the work of capture and kill then. So this is WHY we drink lots of water. What are our soldiers going to swim in ? Sludge? No! Aimee, there may be a children’s book here for you….
The soldiers are the fastest swimmers in the world, and with your help of moving a little bit, and sleeping a lot, they can do their clean up work.
The nasty thing about the rhinovirus is, however, that it wrecks mucous membranes. Then infection can take over. That’s where pneumonia can show up. However, let’s think about this one….mucous membranes can also be helped by certain healing agents. Some I know of (off the top of my head) are Vit. A. and licorice root (not the candy!!!) and one of the best herbs for soothing mucous membranes: slippery elm. That’s in the Throat Coat tea that my kids loved so well and still do. And water.
Now what can kill pneumonia infection? Vitamin C. Yes! Absolutely a well-researched and proven cure. Check it out if you like reading this kind of thing (I do!). click here
So that’s what I do when I’m sick in bed for four days. I’m just glad I’m breathing well enough to be able to read now. I have a renewed respect for my immune system and renewed motivation to be well. Nothing is as scarey as not being able to breath. I also have a renewed understanding of asthma – I am very blessed to not have it, and pray that everyone reading this will never have to experience one. (that is good for your immune health too…prayer!)