This article first appeared in the Jan-Mar, 2011, issue of Venture Inward, pp. 35-36. The Edgar Cayce readings and article copyrighted.
While at an Arizona retreat center in February, 2008, I had the unfortunate experience of having a sudden fall and acquiring three fractures in my elbow involving the ulna and radius bones. Drat! Through a comedy of errors, I would not be able to get a cast on for five days. Although I really wanted to go home to Denver to my own doctor, I talked with Dr. Gladys McGarey, and she asked my husband not to drive me home but to wait for the doctors in Arizona. She said if the bones would shift at all, I could be in real trouble. So we waited it out, and I got the cast put on. I was told that if the bones did not shift I would not require surgery, so I was to have it x-rayed when I was back in Denver. Believe me, I did not want surgery.
During the six weeks of tolerating the cast, with no shift of the bones, and no surgery, I noticed that my hand was extremely painful and becoming immobile. I kept telling my husband the pain was not in my elbow but in my hand. My cast was removed on April 1, but I had lost complete function of my hand. My hand and fingers were swollen, translucent red, and immobile. The pain was excruciating, and I couldn’t bear to have even a towel touch my arm or hand. The diagnosis: A full-blown case of Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD). This happens with about three percent of traumas such as surgery or fractures. I had no idea what I was dealing with at that point; all I knew was that the pain was intolerable. When I mentioned this to several of my friends, they gave me bad news: one person’s neighbor had it and has been disabled for 20 years; another friend said her cousin is totally disabled and needs to carry a pain injection with her at all times.
After seeing the physical therapist, I went home to research this RSD on the Internet. What I found was devastating: “Every day you face the same relentless pain. Moments of relief are few and far between. It takes everything you have to fight through the pain and depression and keep going. What causes this chronic pain? It is Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD) and the battle has only just begun. RSD is a severe condition that causes chronic pain. It usually involves a leg or arm. It is a chronic, painful and progressive neurological condition that affects skin, muscles, joints and bones.” The report proceeded to say that it was a progressive disorder with no known cure, extremely painful and debilitating, and the affected extremity could become frozen and disfigured. The pictures that accompanied this info were frightening. There was no known treatment or cure and the prognosis was that it would eventually get worse. It stated that many victims become clinically depressed and require anti-depressants and contemplate and/or commit suicide to end the pain. Well, now, this was definitely a predicament. What was I to do now?
I went to the physical therapist twice a week, as the one method of possibly controlling the disorder was exercise—painful exercise. I can say I did these exercises diligently for five months. But most important, I knew there would be information in the Cayce readings that would give me hope and an avenue of treatment. I researched the readings in depth on fractures, elbows, wrists, hands, deformities, etc. I wrote down the various suggestions, wondering what would be the best for me. I decided to try every avenue possible.
The readings talked about damage to the sympathetic nervous system involving the brachial plexus area and cerebral spinal system. They suggested salt-and-vinegar packs to the brachial area, down the arm, and into the hand. They talked about massage which concentrated on the cerebrospinal and brachial plexus areas. They talked about olive oil with tincture of Myrrh, peanut oil rubs, castor oil packs on the affected area, violet ray applications, Epsom salts baths, heat treatments, prayer and meditation, attitude, etc. I knew I had to get busy.
As it turned out, I don’t know what exactly helped me the most because I tried them all, but something worked. I was blessed to have a wonderful massage therapist, Marsha Clark, who loves the Cayce material and spent the whole hour with me working with the areas suggested in the readings. She had me come twice a week for several months. Also, my wonderful friend, Barry Ryan, who is a graduate of the Cayce/Reilly School of Massotherapy, worked with me with massage, energy, CranioSacral, and the violet ray treatments. I worked assiduously with the salt-and-vinegar packs, the different oils, heat treatments, Epsom salts baths, etc. A study group member brought me essential oils. My physical therapist was knowledgeable and knew how to work with me. My wonderful husband had to dress me for three months and cut up my food. My daughter had to wash and fix my hair and apply my makeup. But something good was happening, and we could tell. My physical therapist told me I had come farther faster than any patient she had ever seen with RSD. She couldn’t believe the progress. I was exhilarated. Eventually I could do my own hair and makeup. My big breakthrough came when I could tear off a piece of toilet paper, put on my own bra, and button my clothes. Small progresses? No, huge steps towards healing.
Six months later I had regained 95 percent function of my hand and had very little pain. I can shake hands with people without fear of intense pain. I can take total care of myself, cook, clean, etc. I have always had faith in the Cayce readings, but this info was exceptional, simple, and gave me back the use of my hand. By the way, the fracture area at my elbow is perfectly healed and I have no pain or motion restriction whatsoever. These treatments and remedies work.
I will be forever thankful to the man who laid down his life for his fellow man to give those readings and for every effort the A.R.E. puts forth to make this wonderful knowledge accessible and workable for anyone who seeks. We only have to seek.
Salt and Vinegar Packs
Here is an excerpt from the reading that talks about Salt and Vinegar packs. I include this as a fantastic example of what these readings contain. It is just one paragraph from 14,000-some readings and it helped give me back the use of my hand. There are so many jewels of information for all of us, just for the asking. Taken from reading #51-1:
“As to the specific conditions as are already existent in forearm, or wrist—right side—these, we will find that with the building up of the system in the manner as has been outlined, for at least three to five weeks, we may then begin with the massaging of same each evening before retiring with that of a saturated solution of plain salt, preferably that that has not been clarified, or in as near raw state as may be had, or with sea salt evaporated, or evaporated salt from sea water. These would be the preferable, making same with a saturated solution of pure apple vinegar. Heat, not to be hot, but as to be warm even for the body, and for ten to fifteen minutes each evening massage this thoroughly into the wrist and hand. This followed, in the next cycle or afternoon, with an application of the plain violet ray, and every third day we would take that of the sinusoidal in its high frequency, from the flexors of the brachial plexus and that in the elbow in the internal side. This given for at least one-and-a-half minutes, and we will find this will be a much better manner of relieving the conditions than by operative measures; for with the massage, not only is each bone, or each segment put in its proper position one with another, but their relations, of the cushions, or of the cartilage lying between each, are magnified or retarded; that is, built up or removed from, in such a manner as to bring the better activity for the body.”
Darlene Bodnar was an active member of the Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.) for over 45 years, serving on the Board of Trustees, as Coordinator of the Rocky Mountain Region, and was a long time study group participant.