"I am an old man and have known a great many troubles but most of them never happened"
- Mark Twain
I'd completed the evening and first day of my Auckland workshop and everything was going well. It was Saturday night and a few of us went out to dinner at a local Malaysian restaurant. After this great night out I went back at my hotel and went to bed about 11pm, drifting off to sleep in just a few minutes.
At around 12.30pm I was woken suddenly by my heart going haywire! It was beating rapidly and strangely. I knew immediately (from past experience) that this was not a panic attack. I started tapping immediately, though it didn't lessen the symptoms. I got up and took an aspirin, just in case it might be a heart attack. I felt really calm even though my heart was beating out of my chest. I decided to call Sue, my workshop organiser, who is a doctor, for advice. She didn't answer (she'd set her phone to silent) and it occurred to me that with these symptoms she'd probably recommend I call an ambulance anyway. So I did.
I decided to get dressed as I'd likely be making a trip to hospital, and no sooner had my jeans on than the paramedics were at the door. Of course, the hospital was right across the road! They asked about my symptoms, gave me some more aspirin, then gave me a bad chest shave and attached me to a machine, which revealed that my heart WAS in fact beating irregularly. So off we went to hospital.
The trip was short and I was soon in a bed in emergency attached to a monitor, having blood tests. I'd done some light finger tapping on the way and my symptoms had really calmed down by then. It was explained to me that what I'd experienced was Artrial Fibrillation, a disturbance of the heart's electrical system, with irregular and rapid beating. It wasn't a heart attack, I wasn't going to die, and there was no evidence of anything worse.
What's great is that I didn't need to wait for all the tests and the medical staff to tell me I was ok. I had managed to go through the entire experience to that point in the words of Byron Katie, "loving what is". I knew I only had to deal with whatever I had to deal with as and when it happened, and I would only have to deal with what happened in any future moment if and when that happened. This is SUCH an empowering position compared to the story-making, doom-and-gloom, anxiety-driven thinking and feeling I'd have been sucked into in the past.
At a couple of points I did have some troubling thoughts such as, "I might be stuck in the hospital all night" (not ridiculous given it was a Saturday evening), and "I might not get to finish my workshop", and all it took each time was bit of light tapping and using my new Intention-based Energy Process (IEP) to bring me back into the present to a place of calm acceptance, focusing only on what I could manage and influence.
Acceptance didn't mean passivity however! My biggest frustration by then was that there wasn't a phone in my room and I couldn't call my wife Louise as I hadn't set my mobile to make international calls. I tried, unsuccessfully, to download the skype app in the hope I could call her on that, then decided more direct action was needed. So I called for help and soon had a phone (attached to a chain!). Speaking to Louise, I was calm and clear and confident. I knew I was ok so I was able to reassure her too. I'd woken her from a deep sleep however and later she told me she wondered if she'd dreamt it!
Next, I decided that if I wanted to get some sleep and get out of hospital in time to run the last day of my workshop I'd also need to take more direct action to get seen by a doctor. So I asked each staff member who passed by my room to help, and because I'd been using tapping and intending to release my emotional attachments, I wasn't pushy or needy, and was able to get them on side so they each did what they could to speed things along. I knew I wasn't high on the priority list, and I knew how low some of them would be in the hospital pecking order, so I was also prepared if I did still have a long wait. As it happened, my efforts paid off and a lovely doctor came along, answered all my questions, wrote a letter for my doctor and discharged me. I then walked the 300 metres back to my hotel, arriving back just before 5 am. Good. I set my intention to get a good couple of hours sleep and wake up refreshed for my seminar. And that was what happened.
I woke on time and ran the final day of my workshop with no ill effects, had a lot of fun and helped some people. In fact, I felt MORE energised at the end of the day than I did at the start, which is my normal criteria for a workshop in terms of my own energy levels (If I'm tired afterwards I know I worked too hard!).
What was MOST interesting was the triggered reactions of some workshop participants when I told them of my late night hospital experience. Many were very concerned for me, and some were visibly upset. One lady told me she felt so sad that I had to go through all that on my own. I laughed and said, "I think you are making up a story there!", then I relayed exactly how it had been for me. I'd felt really supported all the way and I knew that I only had to deal with what actually happened as it happened. That meant waking up with a funny heart feeling, a call to emergency, a rapid response by a couple of lovely blokes, one of whom I told about the tapping and who was keen to follow this up (!), a visit to hospital where I got great care by good people which cost me absolutely nothing and left me feeling really blessed to be in a country which, like Australia, provides this care for free to all who need it.
I flew home the next day and went to visit my doctor. He was convinced that the AF I experienced was caused by medication he'd prescribed to help me to unblock a sinus infection I'd had before flying. While it HAD helped to keep me from experiencing pain on my flights, the side effects almost certainly were what caused my heart to go funny. So he said a small mea culpa. But then he also remembered a fainting incident I'd had back in 2007 which seemed to be linked to this, and THAT led us down the track of realising a sensitivity I'd not previously known I had. I left feeling blessed to have a doctor who knows me, knows his stuff, who I can talk to and respect, and who is always thinking of my welfare. Ok, I know some of you reading this may have other projections. I however, am really happy with what this brought to light.
I expect no further problems with my heart. The best thing is if there is a problem I'll only have to deal with that if and when it happens. And I'll only know what I have to deal with when I have to deal with it. So there is nothing to worry about right now. Sure there will be challenges in the future. My aim is to deal with them as they happen, without embellishing any of them with a scary story that's not real. And for now, I'm getting on with living and loving my wonderful life.
On reflection after this experience I'm grateful to teachers like Byron Katie, who taught me the world is a lot kinder than our thoughts make it. Through her work and that of some others I was led to discover my new Intention-based Energy Process (IEP) which, together with tapping is helping me and my clients to release the emotional attachments to thoughts which cause our suffering.
I've no doubt that 2 days of tapping and intending with IEP helped me to be in such a calm place. So I now feel more inspired than ever to get tapping and IEP out into the world, to help more people be free from needless suffering. So I'm offering another free webinar on how to free yourself using IEP - You can find out more here.
I leave you with the words of non-duality teacher 'Sailor' Bob Adamson, whose book title says it all: "What's wrong with right now, unless you think about it?"
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