Here is a guest post by Debby Kowit, a colleague of mine in Pennsylvania. She explores spirituality and wellbeing in her Keystone Health Connections blog carried by The Times Herald in Pennsylvania (under the LIFE heading).
Are you willing to be free from allergies?
The experience of looking a tiger in the eye is one that most of us would rather avoid. However, when we are forced to face our worst fear, we are sometimes driven out of our conventional ways to seek something that will neutralize it. Such may often be the case for those who battle with allergies.
55% of the US population tests positive for one or more allergens according to WebMD while FARE states that food allergies alone plague more than 15 million Americans. The angst associated with any allergic episode produces a memory that is not so easily forgotten. Many simply live with the anxiety which can persist even after an allergy management plan is employed.
But, how about banishing that fear rather than living with it?
Replacing fearful thoughts rather than dwelling on them can be as simple as choosing a food you like over one you don’t. As we focus on the good around us, we begin to see more of it and eventually experience it. Allowing ourselves to feel loved, safe, and cared for goes a long way toward neutralizing fear.
As a child, I was afflicted with a food allergy. But, as I aged, the symptoms went away and the family pediatrician said I “outgrew” it. However, as a young adult, a variety of environmental allergies began to appear. It was as if I was experiencing that food allergy all over again. The more I delved into the cause and possible treatments, the more frightened I became. Finally, I began searching beyond simply managing the symptoms and feelings of trepidation to seeking freedom from the stress of it all.
In a sense, I looked the tiger right in the eye. I shook off the fear by remembering the love, care and reassurance my mother had expressed during those childhood incidents. I reacquainted myself with stories and teachings from the Bible that I had once embraced and increasingly felt could help me find freedom and health. Joy and confidence returned. Stress vanished, and increasingly so did the allergies.
“What happened?” you may ask. To me it now seems simple. I was willing to try something outside of the bio-medical solution; to consider a spiritual approach. And, in my exploration of spiritual ideas that might be of use, I ran across this promise from the Bible in John: “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear:” Stressful feelings about what we are eating or what allergen may be floating around in our environment can be replaced with this sense of divine love, and this can aid us in averting unhealthy thinking and reliving negative experiences.
That mental shift opened my thought to new ideas. Christian healer Mary Baker Eddy wrote, “Willingness to become as a little child and to leave the old for the new, renders thought receptive of the advanced idea”.
When I just glimpsed this advanced idea, I experienced better health.