I have been writing on this forum quite a lot.
A neurologist said to me 2 years ago that I am suffering from chronic hyperventilation. I have sometimes terrible pains in my chest and breathing problems since 1996. After this diagnosis there were two others contradicting it. Now I believe this neurologist was right.
CHV is a very underestimated disease. Sometimes it feels like dying and the symptoms are always different and changing. I would like to correspond with CHV-people about how they deal with it. Recently I have started breath therapy but now the therapist advices me to stop it until I have had a one week seminar in March next year in the Netherlands, where I can learn to breathe properly on my own later on.
Some people here know about my suffering.
I thank them for all their earlier suggestions and prayers but I hope they understand also my enduring suffering and longing for relief.
Hi, Fred, I'm glad to hear that you've finally found the source of this long-term suffering.
Hi Fred--You'll be in my prayers, to be given the help you need.
I'm sorry I don't know anyone with CHV. For myself, and for students when I was a horseback riding teacher, I've found good breathing and some practice of the Alexander Technique to be essential...so I thought I was somewhat skilled in using "mechanical" methods to settle myself and horses.
However--and with no intention whatsoever to dismiss the practice of "mechanical" methods--I found over the last few months that despite some very painful periods, probably some depression, and times when I've said some really angry things to God, my breathing has sometimes become uncannily clear, cool, and free. I didn't make that happen...except maybe as a by-product of turning to God even with my worst feelings. I truly don't mean to sound in the least like I think your suffering is your fault, Fred, so please, please, don't take any of this in that way. Nor do I mean to compare my case to yours, as I'm not you and I know CHV can have multiple causes. I just noticed in myself that a very simple willingness to let God see what He knows already about me seems to have created a physical change that techniques couldn't reach. For what it may or may not be worth, I thought I'd say something about what I noticed. Take care.
The following is from Dr.Andrew Weil, M.D. website. I didn't copy the whole article, if you google chronic hyperventilation and click on Dr. Weil perhaps you will find it helpful. From what little I read about this, it sounds horrid, my thoughts and prayers are with you today.
Chronic Hyperventilation: Breathing Too Fast?
I have chronic hyperventilation syndrome, which I find most distressing. Have you come across this condition, and apart from Buteyko Breathing Therapy what help might I seek? Could the RESPeRATE device help?
A Answer (Published 6/5/2007)
Hyperventilation is rapid or deep breathing, usually associated with anxiety or panic. When you breathe, you inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. Rapid breathing or "overbreathing" may lower the levels of carbon dioxide in your blood so much that blood chemistry is affected, leading to abnormal neuromuscular function. This is the cause of symptoms you develop if you hyperventilate: chest pains, palpitations, dizziness, numbness or tingling, especially in the extremities and around the mouth. Muscles of the hands and forearms may crampMost episodes of hyperventilation are brief, with no lasting effects. Chronic hyperventilation syndrome is different. Although it stems from "overbreathing," this usually isn't readily apparent to doctors or patients. Typically, however, patients sigh or yawn while otherwise seeming to breathe normally. They tend to focus on other physical symptoms - chest pain, feeling dizzy or faint, palpitations, digestive complaints, weakness, irritability and sleep disturbance among many others.
Good that you can name your situation, Fred. It helps to know that one is on the "map."
And nice to see the supportive feedback from Derek, Ariel and Gail.
Thank you, friends for the messages.
I have read on CHV years ago. The author advice above anything a change of lifestyle. Breathing exercices can only be helpful but don't get at the cause of CHV. 95% of these people are perfectionists and this perfectionism stems from lack of self esteem. The conflict with my father in 1996 was I think the proverbial drop of a long lasting overload of my body through feverishly reading books on theology after my Jehovah's Witnesses experience.
I am some stranfge individual who would go at extremes (life or death) in searching TRUTH. It is never ever true enough or good enough. I have to learn to accept the contingency and imperfection of life and laugh with myself.
I have been far too eranest about fionding the TRUTH but what is truth, except for Christ, the Absolute Truth. My background (JW, evengelicals, pentecostals) has been very influential. Even now, with my devotional friends, and although I read a whole lot on meditation, it seems difficult for me to let go word prayer. But I feel I am called into silence an stillness and now that I have stopped transformational breathing again, I find most comfort in sort of vipassana or body scan. It relaxes me (not always) and I get out of my head. Even rosary prayer is too much.
yesterday I was confronted again in a very painful way with my woundedness. Again I received an email from this fundamentalist (sorry for the word) and he was concerned about my conversion since I was always looking for relief in psychology or therapy. Instead of deleting the whole thing I went in some kind of discussion and told him about the desert fathers who covered each others sin! This man says of himself he is a sacrifice soul so after a whole lot of unnecessary words I asked him whether he wished to sacrifice himself for my salvation(ha).
I am so sick of this spirituality from above as A. Grün http://images.google.be/images...um=5&ved=0CCUQsAQwBA
Merton, Nouwen, Steindl-Rast, ... in contrast are people to my heart, since they knew of the ascetic struggle with the false self.
So, concerning my lifestyle, I have started a new role in a play and afterwards I wish to prepare myself for a walking pilgrimage of 2 months next year (West of France =)direction of S. de Compostella).
Greetings and please pray for me.
Love and my prayers, Fred
I have had a blood test and my oxygen level was 135 ...(?) instead of a normal 105 due to (I think) this connected Tranformational Breathing (TB). As Phil a.o. said, it seems not very good for my ANS too!
But... my carbon level is normal, so an osteopath said there is no question of CHV!!!
This man adviced me to have a http://www.babylon.com/definit...acupuncture)/English test.
Then I found an experienced craniosacral therapist, who studied it deeply (and other methods) for 9 years and who works together with this EAV doctor.
Friends, I don't have to tell you this is really something!
There are thousands of therapies and then there is always in the back of my head this question:
I really hope and pray that this CST can help me in order to discharge the anger and frozen defensive responses from the muscles and my nervous system concerning my father's behavior toward me (?), because this pain is getting too much.
What a journey I am on.
And where is the Loving God in all this?
Comprehend that here in Belgium we don't know as much (I think) as in many other countries about developments in alternative therapies/molecular medicine/mind-body connection...
Yesterday I met someone who had lived 10 years in New York. He had a culture shock when he came back to Belgium.
When I first went to the Trans.Breath therapist, she said that I hyperventilate.. now I have never been diagnosed with CHV, but then I never was questioned or tested for any it..
However, not too long ago I did "complain" to my Dr. about my various breathing problems, and he suggested chest xray (which came out "clear"), an echocardiogram, (which showed I have mitral valve prolapse and a lung function test that I didn't get... yet.
I never got around to that.. because my breathing seemed to have calmed down for several months. Lately it has been irregular, labored, and too fast.. I decided I will go ahead and have it done.
So I don't know if my breathing issues are due to MVP, or possibly COPD, or CHV, or what. The lung function test would help determine that. I did used to smoke (for over 20 yrs.)
A couple of weeks ago I went to my massage therapist, who also does cranialsacral therapy. I told her I had two very difficult days (esp. at nite, tho) of labored breathing.. She did the Sacral.. on me.. It helped a lot!!! I had relief since then for the most part.
I have the symptoms of CHV too.. all of them. I do not have actual pain tho.. just pressure and discomfort in my chest. I also always did yawn a lot.. a lot!! And sigh a lot too.
So I really think I have CHV. The best thing to do, in my opinion and my experience, is to just relax.. relax, relax. In other words, concentrate on relaxation instead of breathing problems. I have also heard, and know from experience that my thoughts and my breath are intimately connected... When my thoughs are anxious, and many, my breathing becomes anxious and fast and labored.
Also, for me, I think there may be a physical aspect.. when I exercise too much or in the wrong way it throws my breathing off.
I have yet to piece it all together for myself, but just wanted to share my experiences.
Keep on trying to relax and let go and let God lead you to the answers.. He will. And yes, the TRUTH is Jesus Himself... not doctrines, theology, philosophy. I've been THERE too.
Hope this helps.
Blessings of healing to you.
Thank you so much for replying.
And I am very sorry for your CHV.
Yesterday I read a rather scientific article on the connection of brain and respiration but cannot find it anymore. If you google on the disciplines below, you will certainly find something. I have confidence in this CST. I don't think I have CHV but my chest tension pain is very intense these days. It was around this time in 1996 that all started.
I agree it is best to concentrate on relaxation. Therefore in my case body scan feels best. Thanks for everything!
(Michel Lootens, this CST is trained in:
Advanced Craniosacral therapy
Myo Fascial Core en psycho-emotional body work
Polyvagal Technique - Prof. Dr. Porges
Focussing - Dr. Gendlin
Psycho-pedagogy en Group management
Inner Tuning ® Counseling en Traumawork)
Fred, thanks for the list of disciplines.. I would like to see the article on the brain and respiration connection if you can find it. I do think there is a strong correlation, especially if one has a sensitive nervous system.
There is another breath therapist I like, whose book is titled "Conscious Breathing". I also have a CD of his with an "exercise" that he refers to as the "reset button". It is supposed to balance the oxygen/ carbon dioxide levels... At the end of your exhalation, hold as long as you comfortably can.. Then breathe normally for several breaths.. Then do another reset button, and as many as you need to feel relaxed and have a feeling of well being, and better breathing.
The God who loves you unconditionally, is listening to you, caring about you, flowing to you through those sharing with you here, many you don't even know are praying for you, and Jesus is walking before you, behind you, beside you sharing your journey. Perhaps your pain is letting go of your resistance to opening up to love after being so hurt. All pain is said to be our resistance to love, for it is so hard to believe that anyone could truly love us. We haven't felt the wonder of when someone looks at us through the eyes of the great love of God.
Our heart breaks...and a door opens...and love comes rushing in. Our heart races in anticipation and hope of the One waiting for us.
Love is pursuing you, is present with you, and is waiting with open arms. Fall into the arms of
all who would share your heart space with you.
So well said, Naomi.
Somehow I'd missed this earlier, Fred. Psychotherapy would seem to be an appropriate complement to the other therapies you're receiving. It may very well be that your breathing is being more than just a little influenced by that repressed anger. As the old saying goes, "our issues are in our tissues," and that includes repressed anger. If a therapist could also lead you through some kind of forgiveness process, that, too, coiuld be very helpful.
How we long for friends of the heart,who can be with us in our loneliness and pain and in our deepest wounds! I feel that longing in my own heart at times.
I have a pattern of awakening in the night when the silence brings such clarity to listening to the living word infused in our hearts, and this wonderful message came through that felt like lightning in its revelation. I felt moved to share it with so many of you who are seekers and searchers sharing here.
Powerful concept....in this meditation....think of it...."in my deepest wound, I saw your glory and it dazzled me! Oh, I feel the truth of that! Wonderful point of meditation. Oh the gift of love comes so powerfully in forgiveness...in caring for another....it gives us a chance to love so deeply.
Give me your failure, and I will make life out of it.....what a promise!
This is the redemptive power of the message of love of the gospels.....beautiful healing gift of divine love.
When I feel the depth of loneliness and pain of the world....I enter the wounds and I feel and share in Love's healing touch.
When we feel our poverty....our smallness....or the broken aspects of our selves, and an awareness of our poor hearts, Love comes rushing in to fill the chalice with divine healing. Our humility invites God's Greatness to love us. Here is something of the divinity of opposites that is truly beautiful in the relationship with our Beloved. The burden becomes a moment of anointing.
Thrilling revelation of the power of love.
This is from a meditation by Richard Rohr, who is a wonderful priest and writer and speaker. It is called "Gratitude."
What can our wounds do for us?
Give me your failure, God says, and I will make life out of it. Give me your broken, disfigured, rejected, betrayed lives, like the body you see hanging on the cross, and I will make life out of it. This is the divine pattern of promise and transformation which gives such hope to history. It is probably the central Gospel message.
We are all still handicapped and terribly aware of our wounds, but as St. Augustine (354 – 430) says in his Confessions, "In my deepest wound I saw your glory and it dazzled me.” Figure that one out! He seems to be saying that against all expectations our very failures can be our way through to God and to ourselves. That utterly levels the playing field. Even Julian of Norwich (1342-1416), at the risk of shocking us, says, "God sees our wounds, and sees them not as scars but as honors....For God holds sin as a sorrow and pain to us. He does not blame us for them” (Revelations of Divine Love, Chapter 39, Showing 13). Wow!
If the Gospel is true, we might actually eventually thank God for our very weaknesses and failures.
Thank you all for these wonderful messages.
I was also comforted by this email by Dr. Zeiders from http://www.actheals.org/, a link which I posted earlier.
I think that pursuing healing via alternative medicine can be really helpful. Keep going! In my psychology practice I have the privilege to consult with alternative healers. One of them is a devout Roman Catholic who practices craniosacral therapy. She is wonderful. Try it. I think you might benefit from seeking out ongoing Christian prayer for physical and psychological healing, too. If you could find a group of Christians to pray for you regularly, that could help immensely. God grace is absolutely real for you. My heart goes out to you, because I know that you are frustrated by the apparent slowness of God’s response to you suffering. Take care, Freddy. I will pray hard for you today that God- who really loves you and understands you- will heal you and bless you.
Your Brother in Christ,
Dr. Charles Zeiders
Thanks, Katy for the suggestion about the breathing exercice.
Everything you are saying here, Naomi, I know in my 'head'! I have been reading a few times http://www.spiritualityandprac...ks/books.php?id=2203 and I intend to start a prayer/meditation groupn with some friends, using this book as a manual.
As i said before, it is slow path for me to let go of dogmatic/moralistic notions (spirituality from above) and go in the direction of therapy/healing (spirituality from below).
God is in our wounds indeed? He is the Wounded Healer and in our wounds lie our deepest treasures.
Yesterday I went to a conference about the feast of Christ King and the Rule of St. Benedict. The Benedictine monk http://benedictsdharma.com/a.php?id=521 (initiator of the Laura of which IO am a member)was again very wise in his words, but I felt that I am having enough more an more of all these words, words, words. St.Benedict too was a very wise and balanced man but he mostly speaks in military terms as a Roman (fighting the good battle for Christ King).
With due respect, through psychology and interreligious dialogue we are speaking tmo another language today...
I am at home for 2 days. Yesterday at work a lot happened (alarm signals, PC's didn't work, a lot of other electric things =) above is below, outside is inside!!!)
I had an EAV test (see google) last week and 2 craniosacral sessions. The O2 in my blood is too high but too low in the issues and organs. It isn't CHV! More important is that the EAV and the CST therapist found a high pressure on the sphenoid basilar junction (between occiput and...?) in the skull. This could be a result of external pressure during my birth.
(=) complete black-out of my youth, glasses since my 6 years, prothesis of teeth and hip...). I have always felt like living unbalanced as to the right and left side of my being. My central nervous system (CNS) is highly overloaded and the pain in my chest is unbearable...They say I have to go twice a week for CST but one session is 65 €!!!
I prayed to God. He is silent...
My thoughts are with you Fred. Hope God continues to draw near to you during this difficult time.
Hi Freddy, I was thinking and wondering about you just today, hoping you were feeling better.
Don't know what to say, but hang in there..
Praying for you.
(I prayed to God. He is silent...)
Sometimes, there is so much information in our heads, so many possibilities, we are the ones who need to be silent with God. God is ever waiting for you to enter into that silence with Him...and listen to the greatest source of healing in the entire world....your own heart.
Only love can lead you into the deepest remedy and cure for the challenges that face each one of us.
It may not always relieve symptoms, it may even teach us how to live with the challenges through the gift and grace of love.
Listen to the deeper voice of your own heart. What are your own deepest longings? It helps you to discover the key to your healing.
Love is the eternal gift out of which all cure is discovered. God has promised to be with you.
What is your deepest hunger? your deepest thirst? Your deepest hope?
Others offer the stories of their own cures and solutions....but only your heart can answer your personal search. We are seekers searching for that life-giving power of love. Your spiritual heart is the chalice holding the secrets of life.
Hi there Fred--I appreciate the willingness of you and others here to talk about your problems.
I find myself often reluctant to tell even my closest friends some of my darkest concerns--it's much less out of a fear of being known as from a fear that there are no answers--if I don't ask, I can't be disappointed. So, Fred, even though we have no answers for you, it encourages me to see your desire to relate to people in the midst of your problems--perhaps because of your problems, even?
Fred, I can relate to what you say about God's apparent silence.
My own problems over the last 3+ months have been primarily emotional and due to a bunch of stuff from a number of years ago--an accident that killed a friend I grew up with, and some foolish relationships that followed. I think God has taught me some things Himself through this time, but one of the most helpful things I read has been this idea (from Philip Yancey in "Where Is God When It Hurts?"): God may "bow out"--appear to leave the scene of our suffering--and thereby drive us to the members of His body on earth, the Body of Christ. His embodiment in us, individually and collectively, has been His goal from the beginning of creation. And a body's health is determined in part by how it responds to a member in pain.
I believe Naomi said this before--maybe God is speaking to you through these strangers who are praying for you.
Thanks for the messages.
Yes, my last CST session was about just being there, looking inside, remembering something nice and looking how it felt...going into the pain...It is such a subtle process...
But alone this is very difficult to do.
I cannot tell how or explain, but I am so busy in my head. I was reading before von Franz (pupil of Jung) on alchemical imagination. What an interesting book and how interesting is Jung but how does it relate to Christian faith etc...? And then I am analysing about mind, body, soul, spirit... but every tradition points probably at the same, only from differnet points of view. I think in our church we have lost the body and the soul (read anam cara)... Can ayone expose on this?
I have a whole lot of books waiting there on all this but it is not good to read much now...
Pray for this spiritual (?) addiction...
http://www.ccrt-ctrc.org/congres/handsout/13-2C.pdf =) PAGE 8!!!
Now comes new research from several internal medicine and cardiology professors and physicians that shows that rhythmic formulas such as the rosary and yoga mantras have a powerful slowing influence on our breath and can thus "can synchronize and reinforce inherent cardiovascular rhythms and baroreflex sensitivity." The researchers found, in fact, that "Rhythm formulas that involve breathing at six breaths per minute induce favorable psychological and possibly physiological effects."
You can read this detailed research report at:
In pondering this fascinating research it is interesting to realize is that the world's great spiritual traditions employ ritual methods that slow down the breath: meditation, mantras, prayer, chant, qigong, tai chi, yoga, special breathing practices, and so on. Many of us, however, do not participate in such activities, and so, unless we undertake special breathing practices, our breath (and our life) is usually at the mercy of whatever high-speed individual or cultural stresses we face.
There are numerous ways to slow down your breathing. The important thing is to find safe, natural methods that you enjoy practicing for several minutes each day on a regular basis. For as the researchers found, "Repeated training to slow down breathing also reduces the spontaneous breathing rate, and thus may have more than just short term effects."
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