Every stage of life presents its own particular trials, hurdles and tests of character and constitution. Successfully navigating the stream of life confers many rewards, not the least of which are robust health and endurance. From newborns to octogenarians and beyond, homeopathy offers the perfect key to provide help and support that transcends generations.
Imagine Brunhilde, known as Hilde, an eighty-seven-year-old great-grandmother. She lives in a senior community and not only breaks the age rules, but redefines them. Her husband died in his sixties and she lives alone in her tiny apartment. Yet Hilde is never lonely. There are over two hundred residents in her community and she is the most popular tenant there. She plays piano during Friday night events, brings her homemade sauerkraut to lunch gatherings, and is as robust, curious, eager and sparkling as her great-grandchildren. The men in the community twinkle and flirt when she walks into the social hall. The women long to befriend her. Even the administrative staff admires her. Hilde is an all-around winner.
HOMEOPATHY: A FAMILY TRADITION
Brunhilde was born and raised in Austria to accomplished and erudite parents. Her mother was a homeopathic physician while her father was concert master with some of the finest symphonies in the country. Hilde traveled and performed on the amateur classical pianists’ circuit in Europe as a young woman until the time of her first child’s birth.
Hilde lived a well tailored life in which culture and homeopathy interfaced seamlessly. When she contracted scarlet fever as a little girl, her mother administered Belladonna 30 thrice daily for a week to her and her sisters. She was up and practicing her piano lessons by the third day. Her sisters’ recoveries followed suit.
When she developed an ear infection after a riding accident her mother dosed Hilde with Arnica 200 and Hepar sulph 6. These two remedies made short shrift of her pain and fever.
Hilde recalls her mother using Pulsatilla 200 when she entered puberty during a trying jump-start of her menarche. Her entire family depended wholly on her mother’s homeopathy skills so that their lives were much simplified and unhampered by chemical drugs.
Homeopathy and Hilde’s physical and emotional well-being were one and the same. Nevertheless she took no notice of her mother’s remarkable achievements in bolstering the family’s health until she had her own children. It was during her second pregnancy when her baby presented in breech position close to delivery that she began to pay attention. Her mother assured her that the baby would turn in short order with homeopathic medicines. The conventionally trained doctor who was also caring for Hilde didn’t believe it. Hilde obediently took Pulsatilla 200 for a few days and sure enough, her breech baby turned like a finely tuned timepiece in less than forty-eight hours.
This watershed event focused and galvanized Hilde’s attention from then on. She became a faithful devotee of homeopathy.
CARRYING ON THE LEGACY
Today a personal library bulging with her mother’s homeopathy medical books and professional notebooks comprises her décor of choice in her small apartment. The residents in her community have come to count on what appears to be Hilde’s inborn knowledge of how to cure their various ills. The word has gotten out that her skills lie in the area of geriatrics, but that isn’t the entire truth. Hilde has simply learned to accommodate her knowledge and expertise to her experiences in each decade of her life.
For example, as a younger woman while raising her family, her forte was childhood dis eases. Even today, she enjoys recalling the way she handled whooping cough in her suburban neighborhood, secretly annoying a local pediatrician, yet delighting those willing parents with her homeopathic medicines that protected many children and cured others. Later, during menopause, her friends counted on her for relief from their hormonal maladies. And so her reputation grew.
Hilde considers her most important work to be what she is doing now. And she will admit that she has professed the same opinion for every decade and stage of her life.
Today, Hilde owns over eight hundred homeopathic remedies, many of which have dates on them that precede her birth and are those she inherited from her mother’s practice. When she occasionally uses those old bottles (more for dramatic effect than anything else), she takes pride in prying off the dry, brown cork from the amber bottles and popping the contents into her “patient’s” mouth. She has noted that these old pills are just as potent as the day they were manufactured nearly ninety years ago.
Her collection includes medicines for the most common sufferings of her age group, with emphasis on food intolerances and allergy remedies. Undeniably, these remedies of hers have treated arthritis, hip injuries, digestive bloating, memory loss, confusion, anxiety, grief, sinus headaches and rashes. Yet she also instructs her young granddaughters in the ways of curing their families and encourages them to keep it simple with only a few books and a hundred-remedy kit to begin. She directs them with her topmost recommended remedies for their age group. Each period in life has its best remedies. But remember, these remedies are equally useful for those on either side of their eighties.
Today Hilde’s hair is bluish-silver and somewhat thinner but her devotion is prodigious. Homeopathy and its empowerment have given her an enviable life that she loves: one filled with mastery, pride, and fulfillment.
Can you influence your generation? Hilde would answer with a resounding “yes!” And I would add that there is no other choice in today’s upside-down healthcare environment. Indeed you are the operative generation; this is your role and now is the time. Homeopathy is a medical strategy that is over two hundred years old, one that can be easily learned. It is supported by ample double-blind and clinical studies proving its efficacy and safety, published in international medical journals. Yet the most telling proofs are the personal accounts of lives emancipated from illness and suffering by this commanding medicine.
Set your own legacy in place and learn to treat your family, friends and community, just as Hilde does. Once you have a few homeopathic medicines under your belt, instead of pop culture synthetic treatments, you too, can become the compelling personality that has distinguished the likes of Brunhide, the blue-haired belle dame.
HILDE’S TOP HOMEOPATHIC MEDICINES FOR OCTOGENARIANS (AND OTHERS)
1. Ignatia 200. This is a personal favorite because it raised Hilde out of the crippling grief she endured after the loss of her beloved husband. She has also seen it move her friends from tragedy to triumph following other inevitable losses in life. She instructs her friends to take this remedy daily for weeks or months after significant disappointment, grief or sadness. It has protected many from the tempestuous days of sorrow. One friend who lost her son in an auto accident collapsed emotionally and physically so that she was unable to rise from her bed. On the day of her son’s funeral she was unable to dress herself. Hilde was called in and after a few doses of Ignatia 200, Helen was able to attend the funeral. Days later, after many more crying jags and corresponding doses of this most miraculous remedy, Helen brought Hilde a lovely corned beef dinner thanking her for saving her life. Hilde takes this recognition in her stride.
2. Hilde has several bottles of Rhus tox 30 and 200 for her friends with arthritis. But she finds that fewer and fewer of them need her help with this since it works so well. She’s repeatedly witnessed that over time, it becomes unnecessary. Indeed, she too suffered from arthritis but it melted away after increasing her fermented vegetables and coconut oil and employing Rhus tox 30 daily for a few months. She calls this combination of WAPF-inspired diet plus homeopathy the dynamic duo.
3. Unfortunately, many of the residents in Hilde’s complex are taking prescription medications—an all-too-typical
state of affairs for most of that age group in America. The typical side effects of these drugs give rise to constipation, irritability, insomnia, and many more complications which erode the quality of life, and are too many to list. In these circumstances Hilde recommends Nux vomica 200 or Coffea 200. These remedies help them become more comfortable with the inevitable side effects of drugs such as blood pressure-lowering agents and steroid pain medications. Then she gives them a good scolding for falling into the clutches of chemical medicine shenanigans. In spite of the upbraiding, her friends still adore her.
4. While many of her generation complain of memory problems and some are lost in dementia, Hilde has recently
employed a new secret homeopathic remedy that is girding her and her keen friends. It is a remedy I taught her
from having worked in the Banerji Homeopathic Research Foundation in Calcutta, called Helleborus 30. Certainly,
her mind is well-oiled since she regularly consumes cod liver oil, lard and fermented foods, but for those who
are not able or willing, Helleborus 30 is the remedy she uses to help with the aging minds of her contemporaries.
She reports to me that that she seems to be able to keep them at a non-degrading level. (This has certainly been
my experience as well.)
5. For even more extreme conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, Helleborus 30, twice daily can often halt a further decline in mental capacity. Generally speaking in the world of homeopathy, other than prophylactics to infectious disease, we treat the presenting illness instead of treating in advance. That’s where a diet low in processed carbohydrates and high in saturated fats comes into play as sound prevention.
6. Arnica montana 30 before bed is one of Hilde’s favorite medicines for her own occasional insomnia, but many of the residents tell her that Arnica sometimes works irregularly. This is when she goes to her next favorite insomnia selection.
7. Coffea 200 is that second choice for insomnia, particularly when her mind is what she calls “stepped-up” at
bedtime. Just as coffee can cause over-stimulation and sleeplessness, its homeopathic version allows the restless
to drop off to sleep. HIlde has often been heard admonishing her friends, “Hands off the coffee and chocolate
doughnuts at church!”
This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly journal of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Summer 2014