My Journey from COPD to Ayurveda
In April 2012, I had a life-changing experience. I was rushed to the ER in an ambulance because I couldn’t breathe. It was quite the wake-up call.
I had been diagnosed with COPD since the age of 32. My pulmonologist told me that this incident was an exacerbation of my COPD illness and that it would occur more frequently as my lung function declines. Based on my stats at the time, I had a 52-month mortality rate of about 70% according to the BODE index. It was a very scary, yet sobering experience, to come face-to-face with death.
It has been more than five years since my confrontation with death and much has happened. I attended my first program at the Chopra Center in 2012 to help me get back into meditation but in the process, I learned about Ayurveda.
I first studied meditation and metaphysics in 2000. Then my business became so successful that work consumed my life and my meditation practice and studies fell on the way side.
This incident was the wake-up call I needed to stop and evaluate my life. For many years, I had lived with constant stress; I was burnt-out from working twelve to sixteen hour-days with no time for vacations or rejuvenation, and I felt trapped—as if I were a slave to my business. I remember reading somewhere that you will know when a change is due but if you ignore the signs, the universe will force the change upon you. This was my wake-up call from the universe.
I continued to attend many events at the Chopra Center, and I also consulted with a local Clinical Ayurveda Specialist, who helped me with lifestyle and dietary changes. I practiced meditation, yoga and pranayama—yogic breathing exercises, which helped me tremendously with my breathing and endurance. I was able to replace the nebulizer which I had to use twice daily, with an herbal tea that relieved my congestion. Due to my experience, I became very passionate about Ayurveda and was inspired to gain in-depth knowledge of Ayurveda so that I could apply these principles in my life.
As a result, I completed my Perfect Health: Ayurvedic Lifestyle Instructor certification through The Chopra Center in 2015. In 2016, I decided to pursue more studies and completed a 500-hour program in Ayurvedic Digestion and Nutrition. I also completed a course in Vedic Counseling in 2017.
It is my hope and intention to share my experience and knowledge with those of you who are interested in learning Ayurveda, and especially those who are seeking healing through a holistic lifestyle. Healing is not only for the chronically ill. It is for everyone who experiences physical or emotional discomfort and pain. Total well-being can only be achieved when the three layers of life—body, mind and spirit—are fully integrated.