To make a long story very short, I was experiencing terrible back pain, numbness in my extremities, and a feeling like if something didn't change very soon, I was going to have a heart-attack, G-d forbid.
I've had weird episodes before, but this one continued for a whole week, and I truly thought that maybe I was actually dying (once again, G-d forbid).
In the not too distant past, the fear would have got so overwhelming that I would have just got my husband to drive me over to the local hospital, to find out what was going on.
But this time, despite all the extreme and extremely distressing physical symptoms I was experiencing, I knew I was in the middle of a massive spiritual test, and that talking to G-d was the only way to go.
So for a week, I prayed my socks off. I made a ton of teshuva. I apologised to a number of people who I'd stopped talking to because they hurt me really badly, and I generally tried to do all the spiritual chores that I'd been ignoring, or putting off or avoiding. But once I thought I might be dying (G-d forbid), my resistance crumbled, and I found I was willing to eat any amount of humble pie, as long as it meant I felt better again.
After a week, I stopped feeling like I was at death's door, but I still didn't feel 'right'. I was beyond exhausted, and I still felt so weak and fragile I was seriously worried that I could experience another bout of whatever it was imminently, and not have the strength to come through it.
But I was equally adamant that I didn't want to go the conventional medicine route. So what could I do?
I emailed my Rav, and he suggested I find a naturopath doctor. Naturopaths treat their patients holistically, and their general philosophy is that the body wants to heal, and already contains all the components it needs to return to good health.
So, you might ask, what's stopping it?
The answer, according to most naturopaths, is that a person prevents this natural healing process from occurring by overtaxing their body with bad food, bad emotions and bad thoughts. Once the body doesn't have to spend all its energy on detoxing from all the day-to-day junk, it can start to martial its strength to rebuild a person's health, and get them back to good health.
This philosophy is very similar to a lot of Rebbe Nachman and Breslev teachings about health. But I've had so many 'bad doctor' experiences, that I was still a bit wary of going to anyone.
Which is when I found out about Amanda.
Amanda Wright defies description. She's created her own brand of healing that combines food medicine with healing energy blocks, with a ton of mussar, and a few other things, besides.
She was going to be in Israel for Pesach, and she agreed to see me.
I wasn't quite sure what to expect. I knew I would probably come away with a whole different diet (and I did. And let me tell you, seaweed can actually taste pretty good.) But Amanda is far, far more than a healthy eating expert.
By the end of our session, she'd helped me to clear out a couple of deep-seated emotional blocks that had been tying up my body's energy for years and years.
One of my biggest issues is that I'd been nursing grudges and resentments against a whole bunch of people, and I hadn't realized how much damage it had been doing to me, both spiritually and physically.
Spiritually, G-d was sending me one message after another to back down and make peace, and I kept ignoring Him, which is why He made me really ill before Pesach. Physically, I'd run out of energy because I was using it all up fighting imaginary battles with these people in my head.
Amanda, as G-d's shaliach (messenger) told me in no uncertain terms that I had to forgive and forget; smile a lot more; turn my brain off; and go and walk in the dewy grass every morning, to get more grounded. (Oh, and I also had to eat more sauerkraut and seaweed.)
I came away from my session with Amanda feeling more energised and happy than I had done for years, and much, much lighter.
I learnt many things from this episode, a lot of which I want to share with you, dear reader, on this blog. But probably the biggest lesson I learnt is that while healthy food is really important, healthy emotions are even more crucial. Happy people are healthy people. Calm, optimistic, forgiving people feel much, much better than angry, pessimistic and vengeful people.
Of course, this takes work. Sometimes, it takes a lot of work. And often, we really, really, don't want to do that work. Which is when G-d backs us into a corner and gives us a choice: fix this, and feel good; or don't, and go from bad to worse, health-wise.
Even though it's a 'no-brainer', it still really isn't. We often need a helping hand, a guiding force to help us make the right choice, and that's where people like Amanda are worth their weight in gold.
When someone can feel all your secret resentments literally choking your gallbladder to death, it makes it that much easier to listen to them when they tell you to let go of it, already. Or at least, it did for me.
You can find Amanda's details in the Resources section of this website, and if you're really ready to change, to heal, to do things differently, drop her a line. Yes, it might shake up your whole life. But sometimes, that's just what the doctor - and G-d - ordered.