Featured Student: Christine Gafus

Christine Gafus, 46, lives in Grandy, NC. When I learned of her terrible medical situation I paid her a visit in early November 2010 to see if I could help. Christine has celiac and has been diagnosed with fybromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. Regarding the two latter diagnoses, I have heard doctors and medical students acknowledge that these are sometimes used as catchall diagnoses when a doctor doesn't know what is wrong with a person.

I felt the medical establishment had failed Christine. She had a shoebox full of medicines including Percocet, a non-narcotic pain medicine, steroids, and anti-depressants. She told me she has had two operations on her back, and so many prednisone injections that cataract surgery had been necessitated. I told her it seemed to me that she was being stripped of the ability to tap into her own innate healing capacities and that her regimen of drugs was ruining her health and her potential to heal. Perhaps, I told her, if she faithfully performed what I asked of her she might regain some of that ability.

I gave Christine the two-hour introduction and have been in touch with her every day to encourage her to stick with the 15-minute daily practice she learned. Just a few days after she began her (sometimes twice a day) short yoga practice, she already felt so much better that she flushed her steroids and has not taken them since. Christine has been elated to learn how effective and fulfilling it is to take an active, central role in her own healing through daily yoga practice. In early December I received the card shown here.