By Amy M., Boynton Beach, Florida
The question posed is: How did you reach your decision to become a homeopath?
The most direct answer to this question is that I found no better options available to me. I have goals and desires for my path in life and the only way that I see to reach them is to become a homeopath. To be more specific, I see a future for myself as an educator of homeopathy. I don’t believe I am allowed by law to “practice” homeopathy in the state of Florida, but as far as I know, there is nothing stopping me from teaching homeopathy. It was not an easy decision to come to, and I explored another option that is available to me that would have been more conventional and possibly an easier road to travel but would not have brought about the same results that I expect to achieve through homeopathy.
I have a Bachelor of Science degree in education, with a concentration in psychology, and considered going back to school to earn my Master of Science degree in psychology. The reason I have chosen homeopathy instead of psychology is that I believe homeopathy is what will bring the most hope and healing to the people I seek to serve. I have a deep desire to help people heal and to bring hope to those who are suffering. I believe that I can accomplish this by learning homeopathy and sharing what I learn with others.
For most of my 52 years, I have lived with poor health and illness. At the age of 14, I was diagnosed with an illness called ITP, by my early 20’s I was diagnosed with SLE (which has contributed to a host of other diagnoses all involving immune dysfunction), and in my mid 30’s I was diagnosed with bipolar 1. I was told that these illnesses are incurable, and I lived my life assuming I would die young. I’ll be 53 next month and I look forward to a long and well life, thanks to the healing I have been able to achieve using homeopathic remedies.
Throughout my life, I sought help from western medicine and it did save my life during several critical illnesses, but my life had become a system of sitting in doctor’s offices, filling prescriptions, and tolerating the side effects of those prescriptions. It was all I knew to do until I finally came to believe that the medications that were being prescribed for me were simply covering up the symptoms (and not very well either), all the while the illness continued to grow and man- ifest in new ways. This belief began as a gut feeling, and I have since learned that my intuition was correct!
During my early 40’s, I began researching natural healing. I adopted a whole foods diet and began growing my own food. I also decided that I would no longer consult with MD’s or take prescription medications. I do believe that there is a place for MD’s and pharmaceuticals, but it wasn’t helping my situation with chronic illness. Within six months of discontinuing all my medications (seven or eight different prescriptions!), I experienced a psychosis (bipolar 1 episode). Even though my family pleaded with me to take the pills, I refused. I felt like I had been living pill dependent long enough and I wasn’t willing to continue. Honestly, death seemed to me a better option than to continue living a life of illness. I accepted that I might die without the medications, but I was going to do my best to heal naturally.
It was a rough ride until my husband found a doctor that I would talk to and listen to. Six years ago, I began being treated with homeopathic remedies by Dr. Mark Janikula, ND. When I began treatment, I was in a full-blown manic psychosis. The remedies were able to help me heal and within a two-year period, I began experiencing the best health I have ever had. My family is now very happy that I chose the path that I did. My sister recently told me, “About 15 years ago, I thought I lost my sister forever. I am so happy to have you back!” I still consult with Dr. Mark several times a year for minor issues and I have not had any need for pharmaceuticals.
But the best thing about all of this is that I have hope for my future. I know that I can live a long life of wellness and I want to live life well! Because of my experiences, I know what it is like to feel trapped in a system of pharmaceutical use and chronic illness. I have also learned how it feels to heal and live a healthy life. I want to share this with others.
Over the past couple of years, I have had the opportunity to begin building relationships with organizations that focus on helping people that are suffering from severe mental illnesses. The directors of these organizations are not sure what to think of my story of healing and voiced concern that my story might encourage others to become “noncompliant” concerning their prescriptions. These organizations work hard to encourage “compliance” with the established western model of psychiatric treatment. I recognize the need to be discreet, for now, because I believe when dealing with someone who is suffering from severe mental illness certain safety nets need to be in place.
There are hurdles to overcome. Many of the people in these organizations do not have the financial means to pursue homeopathic care and many insurance companies don’t cover homeopathic or naturopathic care. Homeopathic healing of mental illness is not widely accepted here, nor even known about by the people I have contact with. I am very selective as to whom I share my story with. Right now, the important element is that I do have relationships with them and I plan on strengthening those relationships over time.
Eventually, once I have learned homeopathy, I hope to be able to offer people more than just a caring, understanding shoulder to lean upon. It is difficult to see the suffering and not be in a position to really help. The first step is to get the knowledge I need to be able to accurately pre- scribe remedies. Once that is achieved, I will have to work within the laws and within our estab- lished broken system. I am not sure what that looks like right now, but I believe I am on the right path!