I had no clue just how very sick she was when she wrote to me (read her inquiry) and said she just couldn’t sing anymore, but after listening to more of her story and witnessing Sangita/Renee King’s remarkable recovery, I invited her to compose a guest blog. I’m very moved and deeply impressed that this woman’s cane now resides by her fireplace at home; she bounded up my steps the other day to visit me and I’m so happy for her, knowing that the light of her spirit shines, once again – this is a highly spirited woman who believes so much in the power of the word, and her voice and songs are loved by all whom she touches. Sangita is a Lighthouse! Her story is true and very inspiring to me and it’s my honor and joy to share it with you, herein:
October 18, 2013
I honestly can’t believe it has been 73 days since the 8/6th blog that Guruatma wrote about my condition. I’m the singer and musician that had lost her voice and enthusiasm for life because of years living with chronic pain and debilitating spinal degeneration.
I wrote on 8/1/13 “I still suffer with chronic thoracic back pain that is exacerbated with severe TMJ that has now resulted in almost total disintegration of my right jaw joint. I have extenuating complications with scar tissue in my right lower abdomen.”
The incident that caused my pain: I had a severe car crash in 1986 which almost paralyzed me. I was driving 80mph without a seat belt, lost control of the car in a sharp curve, went into a rapid spin, and crashed rear end first into a massive oak tree. My back and neck laid the seat flat and I was found underneath the seat with the back end of the car smashed all the way up to my body but not touching it. That wreck left me with pain that eventually led me to becoming highly addicted to pain medications. In and out of emergency rooms, hospitals and doctors; I tried everything to remedy the pain. The herniation in my thoracic spine was at the T-6-7 level which is an uncommon herniation that innervated my diaphragm and pericardium. Resulting surgery was contraindicated because of the mortality and morbidity rate.
I lived in constant pain in my mid back that attenuated down the right side of my spine in the lower back—it was constant and the result over time was an onslaught of stronger and stronger pain medications, anti-inflammatories and anti-depressants. My tolerance to these harsh medications increased over time, and I found myself going from Oxycontin, Dilaudid and eventually to 100 mg vials of Demerol. In the beginning it was 3 or 4 vials at a time but eventually culminated into me being prescribed 60 – 100 mg vials—that’s 6000 mg/month which I was prescribed 2 shots/day. There were days when I did more than 2/day – I lived to die in pain, and that is not a life.
I turn to Yoga: I turned to yoga in 1989 when I was taken flat on my back after being in the emergency room and unable to fulfill a singing engagement. I went to a Chinese acupuncturist in San Antonio where I was treated for 3 days by him with acupuncture needles and herbal remedies. I do not remember much as I was in and out of consciousness with this doctor. When I regained consciousness, I was free of pain and felt very light, like I was floating – he gave me several herbal concoctions and showed me 2 wall charts which looked like lines going through the body with points everywhere – I later learned after years of yogic study that those were meridian pathways, and that what he did for me during that 3 days was to unblock my Pranic pathways which had blocked the flow of energy in such a way where the pain had spiraled into a trapped loop of pain exacerbation. It was upon leaving his office that he pointed his finger at me and said with great conviction that “if I didn’t do yoga, I was going to die young!”
I believed him – I was only 30 years old at the time and I had tried yoga in the past but never stuck with it – upon leaving his office, it became my path – I later became Hatha & Kundalini yoga certified; and I studied Ayurveda – it was during those years I met Guruatma.
I experienced great strides of welcome relief through the years until the pain returned with a vengeance in 2000 when my T-6-7 disc was re-herniated – I wasn’t ever able to completely recover momentum. My pain kept spiraling downward until I was told in 2005 that I needed a pain pump – I went for the trial and was a candidate but refused it out of fear and conviction that I could beat this. Once again, I detoxed off of all medications, returned to yoga and eventually spiraled down again when my right jaw joint deteriorated and caused my body to go into a severe spasm, once again impairing my spinal injury.
Another pain management doctor led me once again to the conclusion that I would have to have a pain pump, as my tolerance was unprecedented. I was sent to a pain psychologist to prepare me for that eventual procedure.
At that time (6 months ago), I was unable to get around without a cane. There were days when I just sat in my chair day in and day out going nowhere, doing nothing. My husband had to help me up and help me down. He had to help me to the bathroom, and I was in and out of emergency rooms. I wanted to die – I’m a singer, a yogini, a musician and a healer – and here I am unable to stand being in my own body. I had resigned myself to the looming reality of a pain pump.
My saving grace: Then one day, I get a note from Guruatma – she always kept up with me from time to time because we got to know each other through the years at the Khalsa Women’s Weekends and at Kundalini Yoga Central in Houston. She has always been a dear friend and mentor as I love the Sikh ways and resonated with the way she delivered the yogic technology of Yogi Bhajan. Anyway, she asked me how I was doing – it was a light message, and my response was dark and very bleak as I had all but given up on ever coming out of this. I was literally weeks from the final juggernaut that would’ve initiated a pain pump. It was at that crucial crossroads that she told me that it was not my adrenals, but my pranic body that was shut down. She explained how the neural pathways were confused with the pain loop and that they had memorized the chronic pain response perfectly.
I knew intuitively that I needed to start singing again but I couldn’t bring myself to play my guitar or utter a sound. I told her of my desperation, and her prescription was for me to spend 3 minutes/day for 40 days singing whatever came out of my mouth—and if I couldn’t do that to sing 1 minute/day but to be consistent so that I could reestablish a new pathway and enliven my prana and subtle bodies. I couldn’t do 3 minutes – I couldn’t even do 1 minute the first day. I touched my guitar and thought about it the first day. The 2nd day, I picked up my guitar and strummed while thinking about it. The 3rd day I played 2 of my original songs – “When I’m Out of My Mind”, and “Looking Back”. From that day forward I felt an opening, ever so slight that led me to overcome.
As a result, I made an appointment to see Sharon Wetch – my colonic therapist in Brazoria, TX because I was so constipated from the pain medications. She told me about a nutritional supplement called “ZEAL” (a pink powder), that she believed might help. I was skeptical, but took it anyway like she said—every morning – the first day my well being shifted; the 2nd day I had a feeling of hope that I hadn’t had in a very long time; and, 3 days later, she called to check on me – and I was hardly using my cane. I told her at that time that I couldn’t imagine the idea of a pain pump and that I was going to tell my doctor about Zeal– on the 5th day my cane was on the mantle and by the end of the week I was at a family function without my cane playing with my little cousins. I even got on the trampoline and bounced a bit freaking all of my family out.
Because of Guruatma’s wisdom, I was able to access my own intuition and will to live. She has been gifted with an ability to simply but powerfully state an intention that opens the doorway to the body’s innate intelligence. Her gift combined with the synergistic blend of the healing properties of ZEAL has opened me up body, mind and soul to a life full of pain-free passion today. I am sharing my story with everyone and reconnecting to my life purpose with vitality and purpose. I’m singing & teaching yoga again in less than 3 months!! Thank you for witnessing my journey with me.
My website is: www.Likemagic.zealforlife.com (an affiliate link)
Sat Naam –
Renee King-Sonnen “aka” Sangita
Guruatma serves as a mentor for those who suffer from chronic or critical illness, as well as their family members. To inquire about or schedule a one-on-one session, click here:http://yogic-tools.com/services/contact-us/.
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