• Erin DiMaggio

"Woman Heal Thyself"

After suffering from severe chronic pain in her uterus, Kundalini Yoga Teacher, Valinda Viriam Kaur, was told she needed a full hysterectomy. She is sharing her personal story on Enlightenedmommas.com as a testament to the power of listening to one’s intuition and to assist other women who may be going through a similar health challenge. ~ Erin DiMaggio

I love the book, Woman Heal Thyself, by Jeanne Elizabeth Blum and I have used it more than you know…

For those of you who know me personally, it has been a roller-coaster ride to say the least! I have had so many people praying for me. Thank you so much. For those of you close to me who will ask me why I am choosing to share this with the world, here you go:

I tell my story in the hopes of helping even ONE other woman out there in the world with the same issues as me.

I tell my story because I am human and I realize, even as a deeply spiritual person, I do not control life, I just might affect it.

I tell my story because I am a teacher, but even more so, because I am a student.

I tell my story because I have to.

I tell my story even though it scares the hell out of me!

After experiencing intense, chronic uterine pain, I was told on July 12, 2011, I needed a full hysterectomy and that I possibly had ovarian cancer. I was also told, I was definitely going to lose my right ovary.

Several ultrasounds showed an image of a 5 cm “complex cyst” on my right ovary (meaning it had tissue in it which could be malignant = possibly ovarian cancer + two other diagnosis I won’t even go into…).

I immediately, began doing research on-line. I found forums, chat rooms, blogs, you name it, about women with my same issues and what they had been through. I pretty much resolved that I needed to go the “medical route” with this one. Ovarian cancer takes you FAST, it isn’t anything to mess with, and I have a small child for God’s sake!

When I asked my Doctor, “How bad does it look?” She said, “It doesn’t look good, we definitely need to biopsy it to make sure it’s not cancer, you will probably lose the ovary, and quite possibly have a hysterectomy while you are under anesthesia.”

I thought, “OK, this is the card I was dealt.” My husband and I both cried and hugged as we left the doctor’s office that day. I apologized to my husband for having to deal with this, and then I thought, “Wow, I am a yoga teacher, a spiritual leader and a health promoter in my community. How is this going to look?” Yep, I actually thought that.

I am a classic generation X’er. I believe in alternative and occidental (western) medicine. I use them both. I have been criticized for this in the yogic community, but hey, I’m strong, I can take it. I decided to get several opinions before moving forward with the surgery. I had 3 specialists (EXPERTS in the field of oncology and uterine issues) tell me it was “impossible” for a complex cyst to go away and I should be more worried about it being cancerous than trying “alternative healing” techniques.

My surgery was scheduled for August 24th, my 45th birthday. I saw this as a good omen. I accepted my fate and I was getting prepared. I got all of my yoga classes covered for 2 1/2 weeks for my surgery and recovery. In the meantime, I continued to teach all of my Yoga classes as I waited for approaching surgery.

Preparing for my surgery, I continued to do my acupuncture, juice my veggies, eat mostly vegan, stay off coffee, take my minerals and supplements and do my Hatha and Kundalini Yoga practice (yes, even with my pain). I even added Yoga Nidra, everyday. I then dropped a yoga class, because after having a conversation with my cyst (Yes, Louise Hay in full effect!) I learned I was putting too much in the out-put box and not enough in the in-put box (e.g. self care).

I continued to think positively and I used ALL of my tools everyday, without fail.

My pain was getting less and less and exactly 6 days before my scheduled surgery, my pain was completely GONE. This, after being in chronic pain for almost 2 months. I called my doctor immediately and told her, "I need an ultrasound because my pain is gone." I saw an image of myself going into surgery and the doctor finding NOTHING. My doctor tried to tell me it was impossible for the cyst to be gone, but I begged her to “humor me” (she’s the one that backed my home birth, so she knows me well). She told me to come in that day.

When I went in, she did the ultrasound. She could not believe it. The cyst had shrunk to about the size of a cherry and it was filled with fluid. It was no longer ‘neoplastic’ (abnormal growth of tissue). She was literally, shocked! She sent me to the radiologist right away and I went four days before my surgery. I am so happy to tell all of you that as of August 23rd, the cyst is as small as a raisin, only 2 cm. “Ok great!” I thought, “I am cancelling the surgery.”

When I called the surgeon’s office they really could not believe it and the nurse told me they still needed to do a laparoscopy to biopsy it; to make sure it’s not cancer.The nurse then told me and I quote, “The cyst could have burst and it might be spreading cancer in your uterus.”

Meanwhile, 2 other doctors told me cancer does not shrink in size, and I did not need the surgery. However the oncologist/surgeon STILL INSISTED I needed the surgery!



I told them, "I WILL NOT be coming in for surgery." And I hung up the phone.

I then, called the other specialist I had seen in Van Nuys who told me complex cysts DO NOT go away~(to share the great news). The nurse then shared with me that yes, by gosh she did remember one woman whose went away, and she said, “It came back 6 months later with a vengeance.” (Can I get a break here?)

I went ahead and made another appointment with YET ANOTHER SPECIALIST/EXPERT in the field, this time at one of the most reputable institutions in the country (possibly the world), Cedars Sinai. After seeing the oncologist at Cedars Sinai last week, he confirmed it was not cancer because cancer does not shrink. He also confirmed that I DID NOT need surgery. He could not explain how the complex cyst had shrunk, he said, “It rarely, if ever happens.” He did, however, tell me I must continue to monitor it and have ultrasounds regularly. He said, "keep doing what you are doing, you did something right.” He said one thing to me. He asked, “I’m just curious, why did you go back for another ultrasound before your surgery?” I told him, “intuition.” Yogi Bhajan says, “Intuition is everything.”



About the writer:

Valinda Cochella (Viriam Kaur) MA, E-RYT has been

teaching Yoga in the South Bay for over 15 years.

She has a daughter, Bellina who is 10 years old. Valinda is

passionate about teaching moms how to lower

their stress, stay calm and grounded in the midst of life! She

has a Master’s degree in Dance/Movement Therapy

from UCLA and worked as a therapist for years. She

recently completed her 5th year of Level 2 Kundalini

Yoga Transformation Series in Conscious Communication,

Stress & Vitality, Mind & Meditation, Authentic

Relationships & Life styles and Life cycles.

Again, thank-you all so much for being on this journey with me and allowing me to share my deepest truths. I LOVE you all! Om Om Om, Sat Nam, in radiant health :)

:)~ Valinda~Viriam Kaur

http://SouthBayYoginis.com http://Facebook.com/ViriamKaur http://Twitter.com/ViriamKaur http://www.youtube.com

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