I had a colonic yesterday. It felt like the magic was gone. I think the actual colonic experience left something lacking, but I can feel something moving in it’s aftermath. In particular, I slept for 11 hours last night. Today I don’t want to move. I feel an irresistible desire for deep rest that isn’t quite the same as the overtired fatigue I usually deal with.
My doctor told me at some point in 2009 that I had to get a colonic (or more precisely, a series of 10 colonics over a 10 week period). I resisted for several months. I asked for alternative ways to clean out my colon and liver. I tried them, but none had the effect he was looking for.
Lyme bacteria produce a lot of chemical signals to communicate with each other inside the host’s body (that’s me, the host) and to modify the host’s body to create a more hospitable environment for it to grow in. Some of these chemical signals are neurotoxins to humans. I’m not sure that their toxicity is the intention of those chemicals, more likely a by-product of a chemical designed to do something else. It doesn’t matter. The Lyme bacteria produce chemicals that interfere with the functioning of the human nervous system. We hosts experience it as pain, stiffness, tingling, weakness, lack of coordination, and if the infection is in the brain, all sorts of cognitive problems.
The human body has ways of dealing with toxins. There are a variety of elimination channels, and when these are overrun, the body either stores the toxins or lets them sit around until it can deal with them. For the neurotoxins that Lyme bacteria produce, it seems that bile is the main channel of elimination.
Bile is produced by the liver, is stored in the gall bladder and gets squirted into the digestive tract to help digest food. Some leaves with fecal matter. The rest gets reabsorbed and reprocessed by the liver, where it binds with toxins and waste products there. Then, along with some newly produced bile, it gets sent back to the gall bladder to begin the process again.
The thing is, sometimes bile, already loaded with toxins, can get reabsorbed over and over and diminish the liver’s ability to eliminate toxins. That’s where a colonic comes in.
The first thing a colonic does is flush out the large intestines. It gets rid of whatever solids and gas are floating around in there. Then subsequent fills of water gently stimulate the gall bladder to eject bile. It rapidly makes its way to the large intestines and goes out with the water. (This works best if you haven’t eaten for several hours beforehand and your small intestines are pretty empty.) As soon as the gall bladder is empty, the liver sends more bile. During one colonic, this process can repeat several times.
The benefit is that the liver starts making new bile which can absorb lots of toxins. For a Lyme patient, that means that the neurological symptoms can diminish significantly after a few colonics. For example, I stopped needing a cane after 4 colonics. (I still used it sometimes and the distance I could walk was limited, but I could get around without it for the first time in 2 years.)
Your body is your friend
My doctor recommended a colon hydrotherapist named Bella Garrison, who was amazing. She didn’t see a colonic as merely a way to get out toxins. She used each of my sessions to help me make peace with my body. We spent lots of time noticing my breathing and she guided me to first pay attention to the sensations in my abdomen then to release any tension I found. After the second session, I felt more in tune with what was happening in my digestive tract all the time, not just during the colonic. By the third session, I had figured out how to let my intestines relax and let everything in them flow out.
To say the least, it was the most pleasant time I had with a medical/bodywork professional. Partly Bella helped me to trust her and partly she helped me to respect the huge fight my body was engaging in to keep me going despite this major infection.
The best part was that I could tell she was always thinking. Bella wasn’t accommodating, trying to meet whatever I was asking for. Instead, she noticed everything that was going on for me and made suggestions for how to move forward in communicating with my body. Sometimes that included gentle abdominal massage with oils or warm stones, sometimes it meant helping me to be still and quiet. She was also thinking a lot about my diet, which I didn’t have any bandwidth to process because I was still working it out with my doctor. But I appreciated the gentle manner with which she treated me: a whole person, not just a (mal)functioning body.
When I said the magic was gone, it was because Bella is no longer a colon hydrotherapist. She’s now doing health counseling, more focused on nutrition, I think.
Meanwhile, I found another person (who I thought wasn’t available at the time I could go yesterday) named Pearl Batista, a colon hydrotherapist at Sana Vita. She also has a lot of attention for helping her clients get in tune with their bodies. Next time, I’ll hold out until I can see her.
Don’t overdo it
When I first went for a colonic, the receptionist recommended that new clients go for two or three on consecutive days. The thinking was that the first one cleans out whatever is floating around in the body. The second pulls out toxins that are stored in the cells. The third helps clean up the toxins that have been released.
If you’re a Lyme patient, like me, that sounds like a nightmare. It’s a very good idea to get rid of the general toxins, including the neurotoxins, that are not stored and waiting to be eliminated. But the last thing I wanted to do was unload 30+ years of toxins that were safely in storage while I still had an infection producing neurotoxins every day. So I did one a week for a few weeks. Then I took off a few weeks. Then I did a few more. Then a few months later I did two more.
By spacing it out, I got the benefits of reducing the load from the Lyme toxins without giving my liver too much extra work cleaning up the old messes.
Rethinking the BioMat
Since yesterday, I’ve been thinking about the too-fast-detox problem. I started to wonder if I was detoxing too much while I’m coiling and Herxing.
So I reread the guides for using the BioMat and I’ve decided to follow the instructions. I’m using the lower setting for the next week or so, then bumping it up slowly. I won’t get to the sauna level settings for a while. But that’s just fine. I don’t want to generate a big detox that isn’t from Herxing.
Just a regular day.
- Bartonella, abdomen, 3.5 minutes
- Candida, abdomen, 10 minutes
I’ve noticed more acne coming up as I continue coiling for Candida and doing a lot of detox protocols. I never remember the acne when I’m writing about my body issues of the day because it doesn’t hurt.
Given the weather and the colonic yesterday, I woke up needing a bath. The BioMat is great, but since I decided to stick to the lower settings for a while, I got in the tub to do a heavy sweating session. It also made my cold bones feel much better for a while.
- homeopathic support
- juiced greens
- skin brushing
- detox bath
- BioMat infrared heating (2 hours medium, 1.5 hours low)
I restarted kombucha today. I’m drinking one cup a day. I don’t notice when I’m on it because the phenomenon is gradual: less hair falls out of my head. But when I’ve been off it for more than 3 or4 days, I can see that a lot more hair falls out when I shower.
Last night I couldn’t fall asleep again. I woke up a few times, once with a night sweat, mostly with strange dreams. But I didn’t fully regain consciousness for 11 hours.
I’ve spent the day in slow motion. I needed the rest after being out of the house for 4 days in a row. Each day the thing was necessary and had to be done then. But really, I need to slow down. If I don’t have a killer Herx, I tend to want to do things to catch up with my life. And I don’t want killer Herxes, so I’m being cautious with the coil, even as I use it regularly. My goal is to have the ups and downs, but to make it more like a kiddie roller coaster than the kind with loops. I’m trying to figure out how aggressive I can be with it. Maybe I can do more?
I spoke to someone yesterday who said she was scheduling rest days each week during which there was no agenda to get anything done at home or with people. I thought it was a great idea. For a long time, I didn’t need to do that; everyday was a rest day because I had no choice in the matter. Now I need to remember not to give myself something requiring a lot of energy on consecutive days like I did this week. It runs me down too much. My focus is on getting better and somehow balancing all the aspects of that process.
I started Maca today. I added 1/4 teaspoon to my breakfast shake. My doctor recommends taking 1/2 teaspoon daily to regulate my hormones and help reverse this cycle of constant fatigue with occasional bouts of unproductive restlessness. My body is so sensitive to the things I take, so I’m starting out at half the dose and will build up to the full dose over the course of a week.
I’ve been cold and tired all day. That’s the worst of it. Less like pain and more like discomfort with a chill. I’m sure that half of it is from the weather–cold and rainy. The main pain issues are in my hands and my head: earache, eye pain, headache.
I’m taking another mostly rest day tomorrow. Maybe I’ll have the energy to do more than type. If not, then rest is the main item on my agenda.