I’m thrilled to share my first talk on a Podcast from the 28th of August 2020. So grateful for Dr Charlotte de Courcey-Bayley’s invitation. Charlotte is the host of The Mindset for Health Podcast, her vision to inspire people to take responsibility for their health through compelling stories, captivated me and I felt honoured to be part of it.

Podcast:

“Venezuelan-Australian Energy Coach, Counsellor and Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) practitioner Monika Moller joins us this week to discuss the power of the mind in overcoming challenges. She went from a terrifying right-sided paralysis to a diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis to eventually climbing a mountain in La Gran Sabana! Listen now to hear how this exceptional woman overcame incredible challenges.”

Sharing my story on
Dr Charlotte de Courcey-Bayley’s & Monika Moller during the Podcast Interview

The Cave Corner was born during the eighteen months I spent recovering from an intense burnout. Secluded, bedridden and housebound, unable to sleep or do anything because of extreme exhaustion, I desperately leaned into mandala paintings and meditation. It saved me from drowning in the the rough moment. I started small, doing five minutes at a time. Slowly, I adventured into new ideas: organic flow paintings on rescued wood planks from my front street and more hours sitting still. I called the place I sat down my “cave corner.” And after a year, on my good days, a bus would take me two stops further to my favourite spot, the cave with the bear head. Celebrated my amazing minutes of triumph, then back to my urban cave again.
This natural cave inspired me profoundly, I find incredible how the wisest teachings come from nature. The bear, a symbol of the cycle of life, strength, death and renewal; also represents a period of introspection. And bears give themselves time to recharge during the year –to hibernate in their cave. I can’t wait to tell you more about this story.

How can darkness open an opportunity for Light?
How can a striking terrifying illness be the source of the meaning of life?
An intriguing paradox, only possible to understand by looking back and “connecting the dots”.

It happened in 2007, I was 27 years of age and living in the land of tapas. Months before, excited and exhausted for finishing my master’s degree in Art Direction, I had been hired for my dream job in an advertising agency. But I woke up one Tuesday morning, naïve about what was going to happen to me. I opened my eyes, and all of a sudden felt a part of me was freezing. I had lost the right side of my body. I was not only towards a body paralysis but towards a life paralysis.

Shocked and terrified, I was taken to Madrid’s hospital.

The paralysis happened progressively and fast. My right leg and arm were not moving nor had any sensation. I also became literally speechless; had full consciousness, but no words would come out my mouth.

There was no definitive diagnosis. I was told most likely I was not going to be able to walk, nor move my arm again. Tears were in vain hidden. My whole world vanished in front of my eyes in disbelief.

I had been so strong and sporty all my life. Nah. That prophecy is not for me. You’ll see me walking out of this hospital. I said with a slow marble shuttering voice; the voice that started to re-appear after a week of lying on the hospital bed. Their answer: So cute. If only all patients were so positive as you.

Two weeks felt like an eternity. Still incapable of even sitting for 10 minutes, and the wheelchair the only way of moving, I had to make crucial decisions. I decided to go to my hometown Venezuela to find a second and third opinion.

Dad on the right, mum on the left, three minutes per step and with my head spinning, I did make it to the hospital door in crutches.

After endless tests, the verdict was outspoken. A demyelinating neurological injury – clinically viewed as MS.

Ouch.

Still feeling in limbo land, I chose to try a different approach from what was usually suggested by traditional doctors. The personal and physical work that I went through was massive with no guaranty. From neuroimmunology medicine, psychology and healthy diets to chakra balancing, meditation and visualisation. From learning how to move a finger, grab a glass, to learning how to crawl; something I didn’t know I had to do before I could learn how to walk. I was born again. I was given a second chance.

Walking is not my best attractive feature, and don’t even mention high heels. In my worst days, I walk like ‘point, coma’. But I learnt a very important lesson: I’m capable of getting up after falling. Knowing my weakness made me stronger. And knowing more about me has helped me move towards a life that I wanted, a life with peace of mind.

I was able to overcome the horrible experience after a long and hardworking recovery process, which I now thank for. If I could do it, so can you.

What would you do if you wake up one morning with half of your body paralysed? If you realised that your life, plans, dreams had frozen with no melting time in sight? How do you deal with an unexpected life-long earthquake? And after the pieces are all broken, when even your loved ones are all shaken, how do you find balance again? How do you find hope to construct a solid life again? And how do you live with your worst enemy, or saver, called fear?

Nine years have passed, and doctors see me now as a “miracle”. A miracle because I went against medical odds? I can walk and move my arm, and for that I thank life. I recovered my life 100% after the terrifying diagnosis called multiple sclerosis. From my experience, the recipe for miracles like this is: a full spoon of bitter hard work, drops of acid inner-self discovery and a ton of sweet positive mindset. I’m a normal person, with no special powers. If I could do it so can you. Rising after falling, has been the best thing that happened in my life. I reconnected with myself in a deeper level, and I reconnected with life in a joyful level.

Whatever the shade of the fall, the intensity of your earthquake –while the thunder is at its peak, if you search carefully enough, a rainbow you’ll see between the clouds. The most breathtaking sky blooms after the storm. So rise and fall, my friends, because the fall brings rewards. And remember, as Osho says: “This too shall pass”.