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Why I Decided to Try Transcendental Meditation (TM)

I began Transcendental Meditation (TM) in January of 2018. I first heard about this meditation technique when a friend mentioned it might help prevent the panic attacks I was prone to. At that time I was willing to try anything … except take more medication.

A nutritionist by trade, I eat a healthy diet with no gluten, pasteurized dairy, or white sugar. The vegetables on my plate, even at breakfast, surmount all else and I add a spoonful of collagen peptides to my afternoon cup of tea ~ just because. I have practiced Hatha yoga for 20+ years, attended 10 day meditation retreats, and fasted on a regular basis. I am in bed by 10pm, walk everywhere, and generally think of myself as an upbeat person.

I am as healthy as they come. Except I am not. I have struggled with health issues all of my life. As a kid, I got weekly shots for allergies and took corticosteroids for asthma. In college, I took ritalin for ADHD. As a young adult, I was diagnosed with TMJ osteoarthritis and later with panic attacks. 

Even something as simple as having a baby was riddled with hyperemesis gravidarum (morning sickness x 100) and I lost a baby girl due to the condition. Afterwards, I needed blood transfusions because of a sepsis infection. With my 3rd (and last) baby, I was diagnosed with GBS+ and received intravenous antibiotics to keep my birth canal safe for my baby to pass through. Afterwards I was a living mess; within a year I barely left the house because of bloating, acne, vaginal infections, and fatigue. My immune system was shot and anything, and everything, seemed to put me under. In that one year, I was on antibiotics for an ear infection, bronchitis, and pneumonia … I was 33 years old and felt fragile and weak.

In 2010, I was diagnosed with a systemic yeast infection and decided to put all my remaining energy into healing myself with The Body Ecology Diet (B.E.D.); a gut healing protocol. Intuitively, I knew that both leaky gut and yeast overgrowth were at the root of my issues. Within 3 years on a strict version of the diet, I felt better than I had in a long time and my life began to take hold in a positive direction. Yet my panic attacks still showed up and I took lamotrigine to suppress them. My asthma also never left my side and neither did the corticosteroids that I had been on since I was 10 years old. Unfortunately, these medications had a side effect of thinning the mucous membranes in my eyes, nose, and mouth and so I also took medicated drops and sprays to soothe constant burning in these areas. I knew that  these drugs were not good for me and I was ashamed by my need to take them.

In September of 2017, I decided to wean myself off the lamotrigine. I knew I was putting myself at risk for having panic attacks, but I felt ready to handle that. If I could successfully get of this medication, I was hopeful that I would not need to use so much of the eye drops, nose spray, and mouth gel. At the time I did not consider stopping the asthma medication; taking that was as much a part of me as my right arm.

Two months after stopping lamotrigine, I had a full blown panic attack. I was in the shower when it hit. My chest tightened as it does, my arms got numb, and I began to have heart palpitations. I panicked even more and it was all I could do to turn off the water, wrap a towel around my body, and get into the fetal position on the living room floor. I was alone at the time and called a friend, who walked me through each moment. Once my breathing was steady, I became overwhelmed by the idea of having another attack. 

The next day, my friend who had helped me through the panic attack sent a text suggesting Transcendental Meditation (TM). He had not tried it himself, but a friend of his had and spoke highly of the technique. I had never heard of TM, but trusted my friend’s hunch and so got online. I was expecting TM to be something I could learn by watching a YouTube video, but it turned out to be a training that cost close to $1,000. 

I was unsure if TM was something of value or an overpriced gimmick. I did not know anyone who had taken the training and when I asked around I received a myriad of responses; most of which revolved around the price. I understood this concern, yet felt compelled to explore the option. I scoured the main TM website and was pleased to see that one of my favorite directors, David Lynch, was a fan of the technique. I also watched many YouTube videos about veterans with post traumatic stress disorder who found TM to be a life changer. Above all I listened to my self and how good I felt inside when I thought about taking the training. 

After a few days sitting with the idea, I picked up the phone and called the center closest to me in Burlington, VT. The teacher I spoke with felt that I was a perfect candidate for this meditation technique and encouraged me to apply for a scholarship which would substantially lower my fee and allow me to pay in installments. I agreed to this and scheduled my training date for the start of the new year. I moved through the duration of 2017 without another panic attack and looked forward to the training that would begin January 8th 2018.

Catnaps with Transcendental Meditation

Embarking My Mantra with TM

Meet Tara…an Intuitive Channel

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