The Panchakarma Experience – Part V – The Final Days

As I head into the last phase of the panchakarma I am doing specific cleansing procedures with Dr. Sujatha every other day. They are the emesis, purgation, enema and nasya. These procedures are very gentle. They usually start with a herbal concoction that I drink or a pill that I swallow that has the desired effect to get my body to release toxins from specific areas.

For this last phase the massage treatments have changed.  I have a 40 minute massage called a Pizhychil. As I lie on a slanted wooden table,  some warm special sesame and herbal blended oil continuously flows over my body and is  combined with a soothing massage. This rejuvenating therapy counteracts stress and promotes positive health by balancing the doshas, correcting flow of prana (energy) and blood. Two massage therapists pour cups full of warm sesame oil all over me. I am so slippery during these treatments I can’t even roll over or get off the table without help from them.  It’s followed by a shirodara treatment which is a steady stream of warm coconut oil gently poured over my forehead.

In the treatment room

One night right after this treatment I dreamt I was at party completely naked, except for these cute stilletos shoes, and my skin was glistening.  I was glowing as I walked through the room completely confident in my body. I went out the front door onto the street to look for a friend who was arriving and as I walked through the doors I became aware I was naked. I subtly began to worry what people might think seeing me naked on the street, so I confidently looked around for my friend and then headed back inside to join the party.

I’m waking up in the morning literally feeling like I am shedding old skin, as if I am releasing an old body with emotions and reactions attached to it. With that layer gone, it’s as if I can feel it floating in the room, or it’s topsoil that was removed and discarded to plant the new garden.

At this stage I’m also moving back to solid food for breakfast and lunch. Moving on from kitcheree and soup. When this ends in the next two days, I’ll be moving into a house where I can cook a few meals for myself and gently move into going to restaurants and eating meat and fish. What I’ve learned from this is the balance of avoiding certain foods when I’m feeling a certain way, take into consideration the weather, how I’m feeling and what time of year it is. I’ll start to avoid certain foods like, bananas, peanuts, yogurt & milk. They just don’t agree with my constitution. Other things I love I may not have as often, but I’ll have them every so often. Things like ice cream I’m not giving up…I just have to watch when I have it and pay attention to how I’m feeling.

I’m  learning to live and eat according to what agrees with my constitution and understanding what doesn’t work. Then continuing to work with my body when I feel out of balance to bring myself back in harmony. It takes time but anything is possible. After this my friend Sara comes to visit and then after her stay I head off to do a 5 week yoga and Ayurveda retreat in mountains. That’s where a lot of this will really start to stick. In between that I plan to practice some balance with Sara Schor…a few drinks out…some dessert…balance in all things and anything is possible. Even walking through a party totally naked except for a hot pair of stiletto shoes and feeling totally confident.

“Oily” with Dr. Sujatha

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