Confessions of The Not-So-Healthy Hooper

I will admit it. I was sick.

Immunity gone. System shut down. My throat was just about swollen shut. My body ached and creaked and had no life. Head throbbing. Ears and nose all stuffy. What? Why? Why me? How could this be?! I AM THE HEALTHY HOOPER! I hoop and move and smile and eat right! I have learned: If you go a weeks without the routine that IS your health, it fails.
I let it slip. I am realizing I test the waters in weird ways. I see what I can get away with. I'll see just how much sugar my body can process before effects are noticed. A little too much time on facebook ad not enough hoop time didn't go over well either. I have learned QUICKLY that I cannot get away with an inconsistent routine. After traveling, being around some smoke, wavering with my food regimen, allowing dehydration to ensue, not allowing enough sleep time and (most important factor) letting my mind start to ramble on about negative outcomes...I fell ill. I was humbled. I didn't even know what to do, actually. I was in this crazy state of fear thinking 'Oh my God, I feel so horrible and helpless. I don't know how to care for myself'. I am so grateful for this pattern and it's arousal within me, for it is teaching me something very important. KNOW THYSELF. Know limits. Don't CHANGE limits. Simply KNOW them. I knew my limits and I walked a thin line. I teetered and toppled. I am human. It is because I am human that I have limits. I also know I am touching the part of my self, my true self, which is limitless.
For me, my health is my main priority. For me to look at my body or face in the mirror and see signs of self-neglect is a huge wake up call. Seeing dull eyes, break outs, soft flesh where muscle once resided is pretty challenging for me. My body changes fast. Which is a good thing for getting back on track with my routine. My body is already responding just to the thoughts! I want to see my eyes crisp, clear and colorful. I want to see ab definition and toned arms, legs and booty. Healthy hair. Happy smile! I want to look in the mirror every morning feeling phenomenal about the image reflecting back to me. That was the lesson in this sickness: love yourself. Always. Just because you are sick does not mean you are a fraud or failure. I was seriously having thoughts like 'You're ill. No one will ever believe anything you say ever again because you are sick and can't take care of yourself. Healthy Hoopers don't get sick!" Then, I realized, I was letting the voice in my head push me around! It had me thinking a few crazy thoughts. The first crazy thought my mind had me believing was that I actually was some sort of identity known as 'The Healthy Hooper'. Yes, I have this online creative entity known as 'The Healthy Hooper', but it is not 'Me'. I AM not 'The Healthy Hooper'. I AM so much more. We all are. This was another major lesson in being ill. I realized I am not who I have believed myself to be. I have released many roles and characters that are no longer me. I let many identities go during this sickness. I found honesty about who I am, where I am, and what I want. I was sick because I was freaking out about everything 'The Healthy Hooper' has to do. She has to write blogs and columns, prepare and eat delicious food for every meal, create amazing hoop videos and edit them and post them, make hoola hoops and send them, study for Qigong, fly to Miami for Qigong, find a way to make money to BE THIS IDENTITY...blah freakin' blah blah blah. My immune system was collapsing as my mind ran in circles about everything that 'had to get done and had to do or the world will explode!'. My solution?
Step away. NOT RUN. Step. Back. Slowly. It takes everything in my power these days to not flee the scene as soon as it's shady. But, I didn't. I'm still here! 'The Healthy Hooper' lives on, alive and better than ever. Here is what I did.
First of all, I let my body sleep as much as it wanted to. Which was so much! For days I slept. I slept 10-12 hours at a time. That alone helped incredibly. Sleep is seriously important for everything. Please, for the sake of yourself and the world, take a nap!
I supplemented. This is where supplements come into the life of a 'healthy hooper'. I dosed heavily on vitamin c, adrenal support, seaweed, colloidal silver and gargled with sea salt twice daily. I ate only liquids. I hadn't been drinking my greens and oils because it was feeling hard to travel and maintain that routine. WELL, I'm back on the greens, hemp, egg and oil combo and feeling better than ever. This has totally inspired me to get the Blendtec blender so I can smoothie fast anytime I want. I needed that and didn't have the tools. Never again! Tools for health and wellness are a priority for me now more than ever.
I allowed help. My beautiful friend Forest that I met in Santa Cruz came over and brought me soup and we sipped our tasty soups in silence (he had his wisdom teeth removed, so we thought we could be invalid together, haha!) We sipped soup and napped and chatted in library voices about how interesting it is for two people who like to do everything are reduced to doing nothing. We read books and sat and simply enjoyed each others company. This was beautiful. We were both feeling icky so we weren't doing anything to 'impress' the other, the way humans tend to do. We just 'were'. It was a healing time for sure. Thank you, Forest :)
Taylor (my beautiful friend and soul sister who I stayed with for two weeks in Santa Cruz post-HoopCamp) also brought me soup and sat with me in my room while I laid in bed. She helped me see things from a very grounded, basic and objective perspective. This encouraged me and I finally stopped feeling like I had done something wrong and was being punished for living an unhealthy life. She sees me for who I am. I needed her to reflect back the good parts. She did a lovely job. Thank you, Taylor :)
I sought silence. The healing silence I experienced inspired me to seek some solitude so I could continue the healing silent vibe. I spent a day or two after that in almost total silence. It felt good to rest my voice. I realized that not much is worth saying, really. Words are amazing, but they only point to Truth. My words can only convey so much. It is the essence of the words that will resonate, or not, with an individual. My lesson here? Be impeccable with your word. Use it when it is needed/appropriate. No need to fill empty space with random words...or you may end up with a sore throat. Ahem...
I received healing a healing treatment. I was on my deathbed and feeling terrible because I made plans to attend a super-charged workshop called Bronnikov Method 1.1. There are multiple levels, and I was all stoked to study the first level, but then I got majorly sick. I decided I wasn't going to go. The thought of driving (or doing anything other than laying down) was simply not appealing and actually made me want to throw up. I called up my friend Blair who was teaching the Bronnikov workshop and told him what was going on. He said "Do you have Skype where you are? Let's do a healing session on you. You will feel better after 12 hours. Even if you don't come to the workshop I want you to experience this, and this is the perfect time." So, we Skyped and he did the Bronnikov Method on me from the airport where he was in Oakland on me laying in my bed in Santa Cruz. I woke up feeling better than I had in weeks. My body aches were totally gone and never came back. I was alive! THANK YOU, BLAIR! (www.bronnikovmethodusa.com)
My throat took a bit longer to heal, which is why I decided to spend even more time in solitude and silence. After I had my session with Blair and was feeling good I decided to head to Northern California to center and settle for a while. As I type this blog I am still up here, enjoying a day or two in town before returning to my remote location in the mountains. No cell service. No internet access. Only my mind and Divine Inspiration. On Monday I will retreat back into the abyss of the woods for one more week. When I come back out again I am sure I will have a clear direction and clear perspective on exactly what it is I am being called to do here. I am so glad I got sick :)
Seriously, I know it may seem strange to some people to hear that. Honestly though, if I never had the contrast of feeling super unhealthy I would not have had this whole healing experience. I learned so much about what I truly want, what matters, and what I am so grateful for. What is true for ME in this existence? What do I need to make sure I am doing to maintain optimal health at all times? I am far more aware now of what my limits are with food, energy expenditure, environmental toxicity and thought patterning. Being ill helped me recognize that I am just giving my energy away. No more! I love giving myself fully, but I have to make time to fill the tank, ya dig?
So, I happily confess to you all that I fell from my own high horse. My own expectations of my self were completely dissolved and I am re-evaluating what it means to be 'The Healthy Hooper'. It means I take care of myself first so I can be of service to all of you. It means I stop compromising and start fulfilling my own needs as they arise. It is that simple.
I am so grateful to all of you reading this! Thank you for holding space for me to work it all out; loud and publicly. It helps me so much to know that someone is going to read this and say 'I needed that'. It creates a little extra space to be filled with more meaning; to know that if I choose to share my experience, it has the ability to aide another human in their own personal experience. Being sick is an experience we all get caught up in. I invite you, if you become ill, to truly embrace the deeper meaning of that message. I did, and it was revolutionary in my development. THE BODY DOES NOT LIE. It is an accurate messenger. Don't silence it. Listen, intently, and in that very moment your life is already better. You're body will catch up <3
Blessings and Healthy Happy Hooping to you all!

For more information on The Bronnikov Method:
For almost anything else you could ever need :)...


Metallatic Mind Force: Qigong

What is Qigong?
First, I will tell you what Qigong is traditionally. According to Wikipedia, Qigong is the Mandarin Chinese term used to describe various Chinese systems of physical and mental training for health, martial arts, and self-enlightenment. There are many different types of Qigong training. The one I have been exposed to and practice called Supreme Science Qigong. I am in the process of training to become a high level instructor in this organization. I appreciate what Jeff Primack (founder of SSQ) has created, as he has incorporated unique breathing practices (Breath Empowerment & Nine Breath Method), Food Based Healing and tons of lecture information on important matters (ie: prayer and gratitude, Sacred Geometry and the massiveness of the Universe) into traditional Qigong practices. This is the most potent and easily accessible form of energy healing I have experienced. This brings me to my second point. What is Qigong to me, personally?
My personal Qigong practice consists of movement, stillness, breath, intention, visualization, written word, medicinal food intake, the study of Sacred shapes and energetic cultivation through thought. I am new to this process and practice. I am still working towards perfecting the healing forms I have been taught, so that I may teach them to others. I am doing my best to make every breath I take mindful, and build the habit of practicing Nine Breath Method daily (and the Breath Empowerment when I need some serious inner reflection and healing.) Qigong can be interpreted literally as 'energetic (qi) discipline (gong)'. Through daily practices and mindful living, I am gradually incorporating this into my life, so that it may become my 'lifestyle'.
The title of this post is called 'Metallic Mind Force: Qigong'. The reason I chose these words is simple. In traditional Chinese Five Element Theory the element of Metal is reflective of structure, cleaning up, strength, edge, discipline, detail and organization. For me, Qigong is a very rigid and structured practice. This is good for me, as I tend to sway in the wind and go with the Flow. I am a dancer, which is pure emotion. This can be messy and scattered. I also have a lot of Fire, which can be hard to contain and is at times destructive. When I add the structure the cultivated Qi brings, I feel more balanced, capable and able to focus all of my creative energy. The metallic structure is what cultivates the Qi strongly; think of a metal tube directing water flow, a knife whittling wood, or fire combustion in a car engine. It feels good to apply Metal into other areas of my life. I am finding myself able to control my thoughts; being observant of them and allowing ones that do not serve me to pass on without effecting my vibration; like a Metal shield protecting my mind. Supreme Science is a highly organized organization. As a Certified Level 2 Instructor, (Level 3 soon to be!) I have been provided many tools for marketing, financial success and strategic planning for a career as an instructor. This information is the perfect tool to use and incorporate into the rest of my life: my own business, my dance, hooping, food planning, finances, time management, prioritizing, my writing practice, studies and sleep schedule. The metallic nature of my Qigong practice is helping me to harness my internal and external energies, direct them appropriately, and strengthen my connection to Source. I feel balanced and on purpose.
How does Qigong relate to hoop/dance? The first time I experience Qigong (Qi Revolution 2008) I had my hoop beside me, and every moment that I wasn't practicing the Qigong healing forms or doing the breath work, I was externalizing my cultivated Qi through my hoop dance. It exponentially increased my energy, endurance, creative force, mind power and confidence. I feel like a warrior with my hoop! The harnessing of Qi has increased my awareness of my Kundalini, my Goddess nature, making my dance more inviting and enticing to watch and healing to experience. My mind is sharp and I have power over the object that is my hoop. I have control over the creation that is my body. I am at ease and calm in the surrender of my dance. There is precision in the totality of My Flow. I have increased my Force, my Power, and my purpose as an Artist. I am more conscious of my connection to the Source of the Flow. Qigong and Hoopdance are blissfully married in my world <3
Today is the New Moon. The Fall Equinox has recently passed and Autumn is upon us. Metal is the element of the Fall, so this post seems appropriate for the season. It feels good to be in tune with Earth and her powerful transitions. I encourage you to explore the practice of Qigong in your own life. If you are a seeker, this is a wonderful place to begin a quest that will take you on an exploratory journey of connection, transformation and blessings abound. There is no dogma here. No creed or affiliation. This is freedom. Freedom to cultivate and harness the energy from which we were all created, so that YOU may create a life consciously and purposefully. If you have any questions or are interested in Qigong, hoop dance, food based healing, Nine Breath Method or anything else you have read about here, please contact me, Shellie White, directly and I will be happy to assist you in acquiring the tools you desire to live a happy and fulfilled life. Namaste!

For information about Supreme Science Qigong please visit www.qigong.com
For information about hoop dance or to order a handmade hoola hoop, visit www.thehealtyhooper.com!