Certified Reiki Master and Foundational Practitioner of Reconnective Healing™

For 40 years I happily lived a sedentary North American lifestyle thinking I knew who I was and what brought me joy into my life.  I lacked any consistent form of exercise and fed my body whatever I desired.  This included high fat, processed products along with a low inconsistent intake of natural whole foods.  I shunned drinking water, as I enjoyed fruit drinks, soda and alcohol.  . I enjoyed frequent visits to Kentucky Fried Chicken or McDonalds often stopping for quick snack as I drove home to my wife’s perfectly home cooked meal – hiding the take out bags in the trash so she wouldn’t see them.

You’d never have known the extent of my decline (and neither did I), because externally, my body didn’t show the adverse conditions I was bringing upon myself.  At the time I was 6 feet tall and weighed 195lbs, so aside from a small “daddy tummy” I otherwise looked good.  I even had low blood cholesterol thanks in part to the prescription statin drug (Zocor) which I was taking, knowing full well that I was using it as a cushion to shamelessly eat whatever I wanted.

I gradually started experiencing various health issues which I either chose to ignore or use off the shelf remedies to mask the symptoms so I could continue on my familiar path.  For years I had been suffering from severe acid reflux along with painful stomach bloating, gas and cramps resulting from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).  I would medicate with Rolaids – another cushion.   It got to the point that the 80 or so tablets I would ingest in a given month were no longer working; so I turned to a prescription antacid drug, Prevacid.

In addition, I was struggling with plantar fasciitis which was a painful muscle inflammation in both of my feet that had started a year earlier.  On the worst days it was like walking on broken glass.  Compounding all of this was a daily ritual of waking up each morning to chronic fatigue and a foggy brain, even though I made an effort to get  8 hours of sleep each night.

As strange as it may seem, I never considered myself to be in overwhelming trouble.  I was able to ignore each malady, with the help of convenient, over the counter pills, creams and devices.   Making personal changes wasn’t even on the radar screen, because the causes of those maladies were the exact things that I “felt” brought me joy in my life.  At the time, chicken wings and beer were at the top of my joy list.

Everything changed at the beginning of 2009.  I started to notice muscle twitches happening all over my body.  These ranged from small muscles in my face, to the involuntary flexing of major muscles in my arms, legs and torso.  They were random and consistently happening throughout the day or evening.  My nervous system was so traumatized that at night I would lie on the mattress, my body trembling for hours as if someone was shaking the bed.  This progressed to my hands shaking uncontrollably after any sort of activity such as playing with my kids, raking the leaves or cleaning the house.

Deep down inside something told me I could no longer ignore this.   My wakeup call had arrived!

I did what many people would do and visited my family doctor.  I was hoping to receive a quick solution but that wasn’t in the cards.  Without hesitation, he referred me to a team of neurologists and gastrointestinal specialists for assistance.  After many intrusive tests at one of Canada’s top neurological hospitals, the doctors acknowledged the reality of my symptoms, but were unable to diagnose them as any known disease.  My doctor explained that since they could not tie what I was experiencing to anything they understood – then by default, they were unable to offer me any type of help or advice.

I was simply asked to come back in 6 months to be tested again to see if my symptoms became more conclusive.  I was dumbfounded.  I had at least expected to be given some guidance or a plan to start dealing with my distressing condition.   Instead, they kindly showed me the door.  Feeling totally lost, I took their advice and allowed another 6 months to pass.  During that time my health continued to decline in every respect.

When I returned 6 months later to the same regime of tests, the neurologist still couldn’t correlate my issue to a known disease.  I was asked to come back to repeat the entire process.

In that same moment, just before I left my hospital bed, the neurologist went behind another patient’s bed curtain.  I could hear them delivering bad news to this patient about his test results.  They went on to say that something could be done via surgery but the prognosis was bleak for his future.  I literally felt that patient’s world fall apart on the other side of that curtain.  I left the hospital determined that wasn’t going to happen to me.

Thus my 4 year journey back to health began.  Through a set of circumstances that I can only describe as being guided, I began to create a personal network of alternative health care practitioners that included dieticians, homeopathic doctors, meditation teachers, acupuncturists, Shamanic healers and a Reiki Master.  I discarded the ignorance of my past and instead, I opened myself to receive any possibility that would help me heal.

Initially I worked on improving my diet to feed my body what it needed.  There were many early victories, including dropping 20 pounds in the first 2 months, simply by reducing the amount of sugar I was consuming.  As an example, I eliminated my daily intake of two double cream double sugar coffees.  That alone removed 1 pound of sugar every 5 weeks from my diet.  There were also no more side trips to fast food restaurants on the way home from work.  Along with the small victories, there were also challenging setbacks.  There were times of frustration, worry and anxiety when things didn’t go according to plan or worse, when my maladies returned with a vengeance.   It was during these troubling setbacks that my personal determination along with the knowledgeable help of my practitioners and coupled with my loving wife’s unconditional support, that I always seemed to find the right answer or next step even when one was not always apparent.

I can testify that the path back to optimal health is not an easy road.  From my experience, I now understand that it takes personal desire, helpful guidance and time to reverse the damage.  Time is the key element along with developing patience as a new virtue because true recovery is not about treating the symptoms you suffer from but rather the discovery and resolution of the root cause.  That being said, root causes tend to be evasive and hidden behind many layers.

My root cause originated within my gastrointestinal tract.  It was unable to process the food I ate.  I would later discover that its weakness to perform wasn’t just a result of the poor quality of food I chose to consume, but also the bombardment of emotional stress from my life.  That lethal combination destroyed my stomach’s capacity to efficiently extract the nutrients that my body needed to repair and rejuvenate itself.

For the next 4 years I treated that root cause with kindness and patience, changing what I ate while learning to deal with my emotional stressors.

My journey taught me that the path back to optimal health requires you to treat your body, mind and spirit as one complete being.  When you do that, you bring balance back to your whole self and as a result, your symptoms eventually start to fall away because they have nothing left to cling to.  It’s as if the path you chose to follow towards a state of “Dis-Ease” is then travelled in reverse through your process of healing.   Your wake-up call starts you on a journey where you “drop off” your maladies one by one in the opposite sequence you acquired them assuming your body is left with something to work with.

I know full well that 4 years of healing is a long time in a society that wants instant gratification and “quick-fix” pills to address its health issues.  In the beginning, I begged and prayed for that one pill or that one person who would make everything I was experiencing simply vanish without effort so I could continue living the life and being the person that I was.

What I hadn’t considered at the time was that facing a critical illness can be a powerful tool to discovering who you really are.  It has the amazing ability to unlock the gifts that are unknowingly inside of you and put you on a life path that you could never predict yet bring you the greatest joy.

In 2013, I felt as if the journey back to physical health was nearing an end, as many of my original maladies had been resolved.  Without a conscious effort on my part,  a new phase began to unfold.  I started to explore the interrelationship which undeniably exists between our physical biology and the energy that drives it.  I learned that there is a rhythmic flow of energy within us that conducts the orchestra of our biological body.  The energy goes by many names with the Chinese calling it “Chi” or the Japanese who call it “Ki”.  When that rhythmic flow of energy is unobstructed then we are considered to be in an optimal state of health and wellbeing.  However when blockages occur, the flow of energy is disrupted thus causing the corresponding areas of the body to be starved of the balance they require.  As a result, a state of Dis-Ease starts to set in.  If the blockage is not resolved, then eventually, Dis-Ease can manifest into physical and/or emotional discomfort that we then consciously recognize as an issue.

As a result of that awareness, I began to introduce new modalities into my life, including meditation, Tai Chi, acupuncture, Reiki and Shamanic energy healing (along with continuing a healthy diet, exercise and sleep).  Each of these effectively works to remove the physical and emotional blockages in our bodies and thus restore the rhythmic flow of energy.  In essence these modalities (and many others you may want to consider as I did) restore your entire being of body, mind and spirit back to its optimal level of vibration.

During this time I also began to question and replace the limiting self-beliefs I once held true about myself such as “not deserving”, “not good enough” or “got to get it right”.  In essence, my 2009 wakeup call not only forced me to face my biological health issues, it caused me to deal with many of the emotional traumas I had experienced and stored within myself over the previous 40 years.

These new energy modalities which I was exploring helped me shed a life time’s worth of emotional baggage.  As a result, my personal confidence, strength and inner direction slowly returned.  Then something totally unexpected happened.  I uncovered a dormant gift that I never knew was within me.

. I discovered that I have a unique ability to connect with and use the universal energy that helped me heal body, mind and spirit to help others.  I went from being the person who received energy healing to being the person able to provide it.  At first the gift was a novelty, but it began to unfold with a clear message and I found myself going down a path I couldn’t have predicted.  I contemplated the reason why I was discovering this gift now – at a time I perceived to be the end of my journey, with many of my largest health issues resolved.

The answer was in the rearview mirror of my previous experiences.

It revealed that my gift could only come forward after I experienced the path back from a personal health crisis, which in turn was the catalyst to release all of the toxic physical and emotional layers that had originally covered it up.  The gift was always there.  I was born with it.  All that was required was to peel the onion back one layer at a time to reveal it.

As I explored this new gift, I learned how to interact with the energetic frequencies as a modality to help myself heal as well as other people.  From the ashes of my original health challenges I unexpectedly discovered something greater than I could ever have anticipated.

I discovered my Dharma, that being my true, authentic purpose in this life.

This discovery was so profound that in the middle of a separate and successful career, I was compelled to open up a private practice as a new beginning to offer my energetic services to those seeking help as I once did.

Hence a new journey has begun.  . To live my life as an energy healer, sharing my gift to help others return to a state of balance, wholeness and vitality.

If you ask me why I practice energy healing my answer is simple, by healing others I heal myself.  It’s a continuous process and the most wondrous gift that I am compelled to share with an open and compassionate heart.

Matthew Onyschuk