Feb 19 (Day 17):
Ever since the morning after the cleansing day, I have felt like a completely new person: happier, healthier, stronger and much more calm. Everything negative just sort of evaporated overnight. I’d heard stories about the tiny miracles that happen here…I’m so grateful they were true.
The best way I can describe it is with this illustration. Picture yourself at a metro station, waiting on the train to take you where you need to go, BUT you realaize that you are standing at the wrong track. You can wait there forever, but your train is never going to come. You have to be on a completely different track to get where you want to go. Well yesterday, I woke up on the new track. Like I said, tiny miracle.
This was Emil’s last morning here; he’s in the car right now, headed to the airport. Even if I got nothing else out of this trip but my friendship with Emil, it would have been worth coming here. What a lovely soul he is. To top it off…My new friend, Jan, is here for another week, so I’ll still have a playmate. Today, I feel like a very lucky girl.
This morning I had my first Nasayam treatment, or as I affectionately call it, “ghee up the nose.” They have a medicinal ghee made especially for this purpose, infused with 64 different healing herbs. The doctor puts a few drops in each nostril to open the channels from your sinuses to your brain and down your spinal column. This is done to help with back issues, nerve connections and sinus problems. It burns quite a bit for about a half hour, both in your nose and in the back of your throat, but I am breathing easier than I have in years. (Honestly, If you just close your eyes and trust these people, they really can work wonders.) Sometimes I just shake my head, not believing what I’m about to do. But then I just “get on with it” and it works. It’s crazy…but it works.
I love my therapists too. Greeshma and Reshma: these sweet, smiling girls, each one under five feet tall. They look like beautiful, little brown birds, utterly quiet, and always scrubbing and punching and working their hearts out. What lovely spirits they have. This afternoon, they started another new treatment called Dhanyamla Dhara, which, roughly translated means “sour grain pouring.” Wow…did I ever love this one!
You lie down face up on Cleopatra’s antique brass and wood treatment table and they set out four curving, brass hand-pitchers at your feet, next to an enormous batch of hot, medicinal tea. The two ladies pour pitcher after pitcher over your body while a third woman refills them. They start by working on the front of your body, then you switch positions to lie to one side so they can get your side and your back. Then a return to the front side, then you switch to the other side. After that, you have one last turn face up.
This hot tea, being poured all over your body for 45 minutes is completely relaxing…like a hot bath when you really need one. I loved every second. The tea never stops pouring, pitcher after pitcher of warm tea from your toes to your neck. This is the best treatment I’ve ever had in my life. I sure hope I get to do it again!
Dr. Sankar told me something very interesting today. He said that from the age of 50-55, women almost invariably gain weight due to the falling hormone levels. During these years, it is very difficult to lose that weight. But once you hit about 55 years of age, it becomes much more manageable. (So, all I have to do is wait three more years?) Well, not exactly.
He also reminded me of somthing…From the age of 50 onwards, you must reduce your portion size and consume fewer carbohydrates in direct proportion to your activity level. If your activity level goes down, your intake of calories has to decrease in equal measure. In other words, you cannot keep living the lifestyle you are used to, eating the way you used to, while at the same time lowering your activity level. If you do that, your weight will just increase every year until it’s almost an insurmountable hill to climb. So for those people who never had to watch their weight…get ready. You’re either going to have to increase your activity level or reduce your caloric intake once you hit 50. (Old age makes no room for sissies.)
WORDS OF WISDOM:
“You wanna fly, you gotta give up the shit that weighs you down.” — Toni Morrison, Song of Solomon