Saturday, April 7, 2007

Love, Medicine & Miracles

Much of what I've learned about wellness has been from oncologists. I've learned nothing about it from psychiatrists. Almost 18 years ago, when my father was diagnosed with an advanced stage of prostate cancer, I tried to find books to inspire him. One of my favorites back then, which I still frequently turn to, is Love, Medicine & Miracles by Dr. Bernie Siegel. While the following quote didn't pertain to my father, it does pertain to me.

"If a person deals with anger or despair when they first appear, illness need not occur. When we don't deal with our emotional needs, we set ourselves up for physical illness. Yet what are most of us more comfortable with--telling the neighbors we have to see a psychiatrist or that we need an operation? We're uncomfortable saying we're being driven crazy but not that we're being driven to illness.

"The simple truth is, happy people generally don't get sick. One's attitude toward oneself is the single most important factor in healing or staying well. Those who are at peace with themselves and their immediate surroundings have far fewer serious illnesses than those who are not."

When I think about the treatment for bipolar disorder, I ask myself, "Where are the Dr. Bernie Siegel's in the psychiatric field?" When you look at the link to Bernie's Siegel's "exceptional patients retreat," ask yourself if that wouldn't be a healing experience for you. Wouldn't you enjoy a few days where you could study the following topics?
• The Science of Whole Person Bipolar Treatment Care:
the latest research; why this approach works

• Beliefs & Perceptions: the biology we manifest

• How To Live Between P-doc Visits:
become an informed patient

• Spirituality and Healing:
discovering our inner connection

• Building Futures One Step at a Time:
a rational approach

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

You're right but don't you think it's dumb that we'd need to get cancer to get better treatment?

Sophie

marja said...

Yes, yes, yes! You're absolutely right. I like the Spirituality and Healing topic especially. Do you know of the work Harold G. Koenig has done in this field? I just ordered a book of his entitled "Faith And Mental Health: Religious Resources For Healing". The faith-based support group I facilitate also deals with this.

marja said...

BTW: I believe what Harold Koenig says: "Love - unconditional love - is the ultimate long-term antidote for depression, for at its core love is connected with faith and hope."

I think Harold Koenig could be the Bernie Siegel we're looking for.

Anonymous said...

Marja,
I'm responding to you in my blog because for some strange reason, I can't remember the name of yours (clearly a senior moment) and I don't have your email address.

I just want to thank you for all your posts. I do appreciate them. I also appreciate your sharing your own story with me.

I will pick up Harold Koenig's book and read it. We're going on a holiday next week but I plan to post from afar!

Happy Easter!

Warmly,
Susan

marja said...

Susan: Just click on my name in my comments to you and it will take you to my blog: marjabergen.blogspot.com. My email: info@candidsbymarja.com

Have a great holiday.

Rob Johnson said...

Susan,

I also wish there were such a place. It sounds wonderful. I wonder what it would take to start our own.

Rob

Wellness Writer said...

Rob,
I think the most difficult part would be to find one psychiatrist in the universe who believes in bipolar wellness!

Susan

Rob Johnson said...

Susan,

I think there are some, but I think it's in the same vein as "a needle in a haystack". Sadly, I've not found any that would fit the bill.

Rob

Wellness Writer said...

Rob,
And sadly I haven't as well!

Susan