Friday, January 7, 2011

The power of Visualization

I have an inner ear problem, which causes me to get motion sickness. This is something that I have had most of my life. In 1982 I made the mistake of going out with a group of students in St. Johns' Harbour and my inner ear problem caused me great grief--my students video taped me, so I have proof of the experience :-). So I went to the Dr. and looked at my options. At the time there was a cure but the medication had side effects that made me decide to work on curing myself. So over the years I exposed myself slowly to experiences that would help me cope with my problem. Over the years my battle with motion sickness became easier and in 2006, when we were in Australia I was able to go out to the Great Barrier Reef and spend the day snorkeling and enjoying the open sea without being sick.

We spend the Christmas Holiday in Maui and as part of the 15 days we planned a number of wonderful and exciting events,which I will talk about in this and future posts. One of those events was to spend the day snorkeling and whale watching. We boarded the boat and set off to Molokini and then to the island of Lanai for the day. We arrived at Molokini and I was feeling a bit under the weather, so I decided to get in the water to help fight off the illness that was slowly taking over.  (I had taken biome and gravole before we started). Within 15 minutes of being in the water, I started to feel ill and lucky for me the crew had a member in a kayak who pulled me into the boat. The motion sickness came back with a bang, not a whimper.

I started to throw up and for the next six and one half hours I fed the fishes and struggled to overcome my motion sickness. I lost the Battle for a couple of hours and then I slowly built an image of a stable shoreline in my head and through the use of visualization I was able to win the battle. By the end of the trip, I was still ill and too weak to get off the boat by myself but my bouts with the sickness were further apart. Without the ability to visualize, I think I would not have been able to cope with or recover as fast as I did. In 1982 when I was sick it took me three days to recover, this time I recovered by the next morning.

In 1982 when I was faced with being sea sick, people asked me if I was okay and my response was I was fine--I was too young and proud to admit I needed help. This Christmas, when people asked me if I was OK, I said no and took the help that was offered, and there was much help offered. I appreciated the support and help of all of the people and their concern. I was impressed with the kindness of the staff of the Pacific Whale Foundation and to the passengers on the boat.

I did enjoy the first part of the trip but I did not go out again on the ocean even though we had booked a sunset dinner cruise for the next day I stayed on shore and ate a wonderful pizza and listened to a musician play, while my wife and mother-in-law enjoyed the cruise.

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