Yoga and My Thyroid

So, I'm doing the waters to dissolve my nodules.

And I'm meditating, visualizing, altering my diet and doing acupuncture (more on these in future posts). And I'm going to go hunting in my jewelry box for a blue gemstone (I must have a 5-karat sapphire in there I've forgotten about).

Gosh, it's amazing I'm getting anything else done (secret: I'm not) (well, not totally true).

So much for a controlled experiment on which tactic is most effective.  But I'm going for the full-on assault here. I've got a second biopsy coming in January and I am visualizing the Radiologist saying about my huge nodule,

"Wow! Where did it go? I've never seen this happen before!"

I now have something else to put on my action list.

Turns out there are yoga poses that are particularly helpful, too.

The Shoulder Stand and the Plough (from the Shoulder Stand, you drop your legs/feet down behind you to touch the floor.)

The Fish.

The Lion. This video is makes me laugh - the reference to a Kiss concert and the great depth it goes into for something pretty simple. 

Any Yoga yogis out there with more advice on good poses to flow this nodule away?

The Fish

The Lion

Gratitude, Birds and Jill Sobule

On June 13, 2013. I go to a "group reading" event with Elana Kilkenny in New Canaan, CT.

Elana is, to quote her blogan inspirational psychic, intuitive Feng Shui designer, healer, writer, and spirited teacher.” 

To quote me, "she is awesome."

Elana is HIGHLY intuitive. I met her through my friend Mindy Levine (another very inspirational individual). I had seen her for a private session about 9 months before, when I felt I was at a crossroads in my life. She summoned up some incredible insights and information – way out there (I had been a samurai??), but way right on.

So I go to this session at Rosie Cafe in New Canaan. There are about 25 of us, and we each pull a card from the tarot deck. Elana, using the cards as a psychic prompt, provides a reading for each woman (it’s all women, surprise surprise).

Somehow, I feel almost everything she says is directed to me. 

Stop telling the Old Story. TELL A NEW STORY.

Focus on the SOLUTION not the Problem. Not the Why, but THE WHAT NEXT.

Look at the world and others with INNOCENCE.

See people differently, hold them in your heart differently. 

Which of these really speak to YOU?

Now she comes to me. She says:

"I don’t know what this means, but I’m hearing, Get back to the ELEMENTAL BETH." 

(When Elana talks, it’s as if she’s channeling voices she hears. She says some people have clairvoyance – she has clairaudience.) 

Then she says/they say:

Write. Write easily, simply, just do it (thank you Nike for ruining that phrase forever). UNBLOCK yourself.

I think, This is exactly what I have known in my heart for ages. Is this the kick in the psychic butt I’ve been needing?

Next morning, I get up and a lyric leaps out. For the first time in a long time. Full-formed, like Aphrodite on the half-shell. 

See, there is this bird who sits on the rearview mirror of our old Ford Focus parked in the driveway. He checks himself out. Just about everyday. 

I see that bird, and I write. 

Red Bird

Looking in the mirror

What do you see?


Red Bird

Looking in my rearview mirror

Loving what you see,

Happy as can be.

                  To be a bird

                  Flyin’ free.

                  Not just any old bird

                  But a Ruby Red Bird.

                  Look at me -


When I’m

Looking in the mirror

What do I see?


It’s like I'm looking

In the rearview mirror

Not me I see,

It’s the me I used to be.

To be a bird

                  Flyin’ free

                  Not just this old bird

                  But a groovy new bird.

                  Look at me -

             Northern cardinal

Scarlet tanager

Vermilion flycatcher

Red-breasted nuthatch

Slate-throated redstart



Oui Oui...

Red Bird

Stop looking in the mirror

And look at me

I’m a liwi - whee…

Now, I really want this to be a pop song. But that bridge - the laundry list of strange red birds - yanks me back to musical theatre land. I like that bridge. But I hate it, too. I put the lyric away.

11 weeks later, late August, they find the nodule on my thyroid. The BLOCKAGE.

As I've written before, I believe this blockage, this nodule is connected with the fact it's been years since I wrote freely, effortlessly and years since I sang at all. Okay, some of you may be rolling your eyes.  Roll away. I believe what I believe. 

Early September, I sign myself up for a songwriting class in Ridgefield CT with award-winning Kevin Briody.

In that class, I write my first piece of music ever - for "Red Bird". I write 2 other songs, too.

Early November, I record "Red Bird" – with me singing the vocal. Singing. Finally. Something I vowed to my mother I would do as I sat down after singing “Ave Maria” at her funeral 18 months earlier (she used to so love Xmas church service, the only time I sang anymore).

Then a couple of days ago, Elana sent out a note about Gratitude. Feeling and expressing gratitude restores our love of life, of others, of ourselves. She shared a few ideas about how to express. 

Writing this blog about Elana's gift is how I’m expressing my gratitude to her. For her kick in my psychic butt. 

It is also how I express my gratitude to you, Kind Readers. I now know for a fact there are a few of you out there who do read it and, miraculously, find value in it. It is that that keeps me writing it.

I ask you now: 


I’m always looking for My WHY. Why bother to write? If it’s just for me and my notebook, it feels like masturbation (sorry for the off-color reference, but it feels the most apt).

But if you read it and find value – there’s My Why.

If someone hears one of my songs and feels infinitesimally better, if someone sings it and connects to it successfully – there’s My Why


It can be fame. It can be fortune. It can be sheer cussed competitiveness. It can be a song-writing contest. It can be a wedding. 

Where's My Why, my pipeline, for this new kind of song for me? A song that's kinda pop, kinda quirky (you can take Beth out of musical theatre, but you can’t take the musical theater out of Beth).

Actually, it's reminiscent of Jill Sobule. She’s kinda pop and kinda quirky. She's found her way, has her own distinct voice. Love that song she wrote about global warming (below).

There's not a lot of funny pop songwriters. Randy Newman, Loudon Wainwright III, We Might Be Giants, Alanis Morissette.  Though even Taylor Swift can be funny (2nd below).

(Who am I forgetting? Nominations, please.)

Back to the whole thesis of this series of blogs - I wonder:

If I write more funny pop songs and maybe even sing them –

will my nodule go away? 

Only one way to find out.

Have you written a funny pop song? Send it to me - if I laugh out loud, I'll post it. There's a Why for you.




Can I Shatter My Wine Glass? (or Healing the Singer)

It’s a muggy day in June, and my friend Susan and I (plus my friend Sharon) are doing hydro-calisthenics in Susan's pool in Wilton, CT.

Susan is telling me how she was cured of Lyme disease after 3 years of being on and off antibiotics.

By drinking electrically charged waters.

I’m only listening with half an ear because I’m busy treading water (I really do not like hydro-calisthenics).

90 days later I am on the phone with Susan, listening with both ears wide open. Doctor S. has found a mongo nodule in my thyroid, and I don’t want to leap to surgery. I want to try something “alternative.” 

For those of you who don’t know from alternative therapies, there are LOTS of them.  There’s -

Acupuncture, Chinese herbs, Qi Gong, Feng Shui, laser therapy, hydrotherapy, diet, reiki, crystals, aromatherapy, homeopathy, meditation, crystals, toning, aromatherapy, colors - even healing with Tibetan bowls.

And more.

Many of these therapies work by releasing blockages in our energy meridians - channels that connect our body in somewhat mysterious ways (stick a needle in your left ankle and your right elbow feels better – I speak from experience).

Some treatments, more specifically, stimulate and restore healthy vibrational balance. And that’s what these electrically-charged waters do. It’s called VIBRATIONAL HEALING (or Quantum Healing), and master herbalogist Andrea Candee is the one who “cured” Susan.

For those of you with Lyme disease – or a loved one with it - Andrea has an extraordinary cure rate for what has come to be, for many, an uncurable condition through a combination of these waters, in combination with with herbs and a low-inflammatory diet.

Vibrational Healing, as practiced by Andrea and a handful of others around the world, is based on the laws of Quantum Physics. Everything has a specific vibration, a specific wave pattern, even solid items. Expose one item and its vibration to an object with the exact opposite vibration – and that first item disintegrates.

Just like the opera singer and the wine glass. When her high note vibrates in directly inverse waves to the crystal champagne glass – you guessed it.

Ditto for pathogens - bacteria, viruses, parasites, etc in your body that cause disease. They have vibrations. Introduce the opposite wave to them, and they dissolve.

And how do you introduce those waves into your body?

You drink them. Electrically charged waters.

It’s more complicated than a blog can support. If you're interested, read more at  Healers Who Share. 

So – back to that phone call. When I hang up, I’m super excited.

However, after 20 minutes of fruitless Google searching, I’m nervous.

There is zero about it on-line. Except on Andrea’s and Healers websites.

But you know, I’m like this: once I’ve opened the door and looked in the room, I can’t not go in. I will always wonder, Brando-like, what might have been.

I guess this is my Quantum Leap. Pun intended.

I decide to do it. 

Though the doctors say my thyroid needs to come out, I've now got a way to see if I can avoid that. As they say, it ain't over 'til the fat lady sings.

En Vogue didn't just say it - they sang it!

Heart Leaf.JPG

The Road Less Taken - and Why We Make Art

Which way do I go? Follow everyone else, or strike out on my own?

I'm talking about treatment for the huge nodule in my thyroid.

So, to recap:

  1. Doctor S. finds aforesaid huge nodule in the left side of my thyroid.
  2. Odds are 15-20% it’s cancer.
  3. He recommends I have it out. Don't mess with cancer, and the nodule is huge. Have it out.
  4. I’m not so sure.
  5. I start looking at alternatives.
  6. I fall in love with Dr. Bernie (Siegel) who believes in the connections between our thoughts/feelings and disease. 
  7. I wonder what's going on with my thoughts/feelings and this dis-ease.

So now:

  1. I press the doctors for other options to immediate surgery.
  2. They say it’s ok to wait a few months and re-biopsy, get a second set of cells for more clarity on the big C.

So that’s what I decide to do. Wait.

As I wait, I wonder:

  1. What have other people done, in the same situation?
  2. Has anyone not taken it out?
  3. How do I find out?

I google around. Not much. Huh.

I go on Facebook. I ask friends.

It seems everyone follows their doctors’ recommendations. Most have it out. Only two regretted the choice  - one because her parathyroids were compromised, the other because she can't get the dose of replacement hormone quite right and now has weight/energy issues. 

I’m surprised. Nobody tried anything short of surgery?

I’m also a bit nervous. Am I overreacting? Really, no biggie, have it out.  I am clearly so in the minority.

But I can’t seem to let it go. Like Robert Frost, I'm inclining toward the path less traveled.

Part of it has to do with that weight gain thing. Petty, I know. But I was a chubby child. (The neighbors used to chant, “Two Ton Tilly was a hippo, the fattest of the fattest of the hippos.“) My weight fluctuated over the years, but has stabilized at a reasonable level since I had my son. I largely processed those fat demons through my writing (see video below). But I have no desire to reconstitute them.


How have YOU processed emotional scars with your art? 

Please SHARE –

I’d love to share your stories of


And for me and my thyroid – what next?

Maybe I should let it go. But the problem is: I’m really interested in this journey. In your journey.

  • Why does disease appear where it does? For me, at the figurative center of my creative life – my voice.
  • And why does it appear when it does? For me, when I had already downshifted from a lot of career pressures. Did I intuit it was coming?

I think I know the answer - answers. More on that in the next post.

Until then -  Creative Coach Eric Maisel – genius – has great tips for breaking through creative blockages, whether you’re designing costumes or composing music on the computer. Check him out!

Alicia Krakauer sings "You Are What You Are," music by Jenny Giering, lyrics by Beth Blatt. From The Mistress Cycle. David Gardos on piano, Jonny Maldonado on guitar.

I Love You, Bernie

Have I ever not taken a doctor’s advice?

(Have you? Think about it).

Maybe I’ve not followed it to the letter – not been super respectful of all the stretching reps I’m supposed to do for a shoulder injury – but I’ve always been a pretty obedient gal – a Good Girl - in all ways.

So I wonder why I am not jumping to do what Doctor S. (as I’ll call him, in the German style) has recommended. Take out my thyroid. At least, the half with the huge nodule.

I don’t even feel conflicted or guilty about this insubordination. Doctor S. may end up being right and it may be Bye Bye Thy – but I am clear I have some stuff to figure out first.

Can I shrink this big ole nodule? If I can do that, half my problem (the sheer size of it) diminishes as well.

And if I can shrink it, can I normalize those irregular Hurthle cells, too, while I’m at it?

Not 2 minutes into my Google search, the Universe gives me a powerful ally: Dr. Bernie Siegel (or just Bernie, as he prefers it).

Bernie's book, “Love, Medicine and Miracles,” is subtitled “Lessons Learned About Self-Healing from a Surgeon’s Experience with Exceptional Patients.”

A Western doctor talking about “self-healing”? I like it already.

And not another 2 minutes after that, my brother returns my earlier call so I can update him on my situation.  Bill has bravely and brilliantly dealt with MS with a combination of medication, meditation, biofeedback and diet. He has actually reversed lesions in his brain. That never happens.

I tell him my good news: that the cancer chance for my nodule is low (15-20%), that all my tests for thyroid function are normal.  I tell him I’m not rushing to take it out.

I ask Bill if there are any books I should read.  This is the first time I’ve been “sick.” He is a law professor who is incredibly thorough about everything and a very, very deep thinker (I say he is an oil well, I am an oil spill).

Guess his first recommendation. Yup.

Though Bernie is a surgeon, he doesn’t feel like his major job is cutting (for anyone who knows a surgeon, this is pretty extraordinary).

Bernie believes that -

We …”can change the body by dealing with how we feel.
“...emotional growth toward greater self-acceptance and fulfillment helps keep the immune system strong.”
“...most self-induced cures don’t get into the medical literature.”
Illness “can allow a person to take time off to reflect, meditate, and chart a new course.”
(All bolding is mine).

And lastly, he suggests we ask the $64 question:

Why did you need this illness?

There is no blame in his question, no fault implied. 

So - if you are not well – in ways minor or major – I ask you what I am asking myself:

Why did you need this illness?


Doctor my eyes
Cannot see the sky
Is this the prize for having learned how not to cry?


What Happens When You Stop Singing (or Thank You, Universe, for The Ear Infection) – Part II

On August 23rd, I go to the ENT for an ear infection. I’ve never had an ear infection before in my life. I'm really healthy, and don't even have a primary care doctor. 

I wouldn’t even be at this ENT if this ear infection weren’t really, really persistent, resisting 3 courses of antibiotics (which I haven’t been on in years – did I mention I’m really healthy?) and multiple visits to the GP at the Emergency Care Center.

Thank you, Universe, for getting me to a real ear doctor.

So after the ENT vacuums the wax out my ear (ouch), he catches a glimpse of my neck and says, "Whoa, that's a big mass you've got there."

It’s funny, but my reaction is a total lack of alarm.

Six days later, the ultrasound guy confirms it is, indeed, big: a  6.7 cm nodule on the left side of my thyroid (which is shaped like a butterfly, for those of us ignorant about thyroids). The size gets a Wow out of him, but also some comforting perspective (he sees nodules all the time - though maybe not this big).

I remain unalarmed.

The next day I have a biopsy (a FNA, for you detail-oriented types), and a few days later I get the results. 15-20% chance the nodule is cancerous. That's not very high, I think. ENT thinks I should take it out (the thyroid, that is, at least the left side, and maybe the right, too, while they're in there).

Really, I think? That low a risk, and take it out? Just like that? 

Better safe than sorry ( which I can get). And even if that nodule isn’t cancerous, it is really big. 

I'm not so sure. And still unalarmed. 

Three days later, I luck into a cancellation from the endocrinologist (again, thank you, Universe). His recommendation: take the thyroid out (again, Really?). Though he does say it would be safe to wait a few months, get a second biopsy, maybe even a second opinion on that biopsy, then there would be a greater degree of certainty on the cancer front. But even if it isn’t cancerous - you guessed it: it’s awful big. Get it out.

And yes – I'm unflaggingly unalarmed. Kinda strange. Kinda nice.

I do get their point of view. The nodule will (may?) keep growing. It will require regular oversight. It may be a constant cause of concern (or not).

I do hear their advice. They are excellent physicians. I like them. I trust them. They see thyroid problems all the time. This is standard operating procedure (literally). 

I ask both doctors what caused the nodule. Neither hazards a guess. It seems – irrelevant?

I ask both doctors if there’s a way to shrink the size of the nodule, since size seems as much a concern as the cancer. Neither makes a suggestion (the one option, radioactive iodine, is not an option).

They tell me the thyroid is merely a sort of factory. It manufactures certain hormones, but doesn’t decide how much of them to make or how to use them. They tell me there are manmade hormones indistinguishable from the real ones the thyroid makes, and that 95% of people take that one pill a day (for life) and never notice the difference.

The doctors believe taking out my thyroid is no biggie.

I believe the parts of the body are amazingly, magically, beautifully interconnected.

I believe the mind has tremendous control over the body.

I believe I’m not going to “take it out.” Not yet.

As Dr. Bernie Siegel says in his book, Love, Medicine and Miracles, “physical symptoms are often only the ‘tickets of admission’ to a process of self-discovery and spiritual change.”

He then quotes a poem by the French poet, Guillaume Apollinaire about taking a leap of faith:

Come to the edge.
No, we will fall.
Come to the edge.
No, we will fall.
They came to the edge.
He pushed them, and they flew.


Am I going to fly – am I going to fall? What do I do next?

(on the subject of flying - take a break with this classic Steve Miller tune. You gotta check out the lyrics. Who knew you shoed children??)