“My health deteriorated so much due to fatigue and medical trauma that my career spiraled down considerably. I was struggling with my marriage and everything in my life was falling apart. I was just living mechanically, while I had lost my desire to live. But somewhere an inner voice was telling me that only I could cure myself and no one else.”
Amrita Ghosh in conversation with Deep Pant (NV Life Fellow & Editor “Whispering Wisdom”) – Part 1/3
Pranam Amrita and welcome to this conversation. Please tell us about yourself, your childhood, and a little bit of your background.
I am 45 years old and have been working for the past 22 years in a very high-paced corporate environment. I have run a couple of global businesses which demanded a lot of my time, and I had to sacrifice my health.
Since childhood, I have suffered from traumatic medical issues, which kept getting worse as I grew up. I suffered third-degree burns as early as 2-3 years of age. At the age of 4, I had to go through a lifesaving surgery for my condition called intussusception due to which a small part of my intestine is missing. This condition happens to one in a million children.
I have lived with several autoimmune degenerative conditions. I have survived a lot of accidents, third-degree burns, fractures, and lifesaving surgeries. My childhood was a medical trauma, which also led me to be bullied by friends and family. It affected all my relationships. I did not know why this was happening to me. At some point in time, I formed a belief that I am special. Maybe it was my mechanism to cope up with the pain.
When did you make this belief that you are special?
I always felt like I did not fit in. My way of survival was by forming this belief that “I am special” without realizing it. I did not realize it until I came to NV life. I would tell myself that maybe I am going through so much suffering because God has some special plan for me. I did not realize to what degree I was using this belief to justify these events in my life and life in general. Only during NV Life Programs, I became aware that it is my survival tactic and belief that is manifesting these patterns of events.
I lived in a joint family as a kid where I was subjected to a lot of bullying, the pattern later translated to school and at work, places as well. I worked intensely in a male-dominated workspace, which was a lot of struggle in those days, and I had immense pressure to fit in.
I had to suppress my feelings at the workplace and felt a similar suppression when family and friends bullied me as a child. I had also suffered sexual harassment and on one occasion, I had to jump off a running bus to save my dignity.
I suffered from severe osteoporosis. I fractured my spinal cord twice. I also sustained a wrong surgery for which I had to go for another surgery to save myself. Nevertheless, there was internal bleeding that the doctors could not see anything in the scan, and in order to save me, they had to cut open my stomach.
I sustained a second incident of third-degree burns at the age of 17. It was so bad that my parents had to put a cloth to cover me up since I could not wear anything due to the severity of the burns.
All events that happened in your life, how did you deal with them and with the world at large?
It was traumatic and left me very confused. I had to go through third-degree endometriosis because of the wrong surgery and subsequent surgeries. I was in so much pain. I was put on all kinds of medication that did not suit my body since the doctors did not know much about my condition and alternative treatments.
In my adolescence, when I would visit a gynecologist due to intense pain, I would only see pregnant or menopausal women in the waiting room. It was so stressful. The doctor would not even bother and give me a strong dose without any concern for me and tell my parents that she will be fine once she gets married.
How did you feel and your reaction when the doctor suggested marriage as a remedy to your entire medical trauma?
I felt extremely angry and upset. It is a functional tool of our society to feed emotional romanticism in us. The romantic fool in me led me to believe that marriage is my sole savior – my one-stop solution to my problems. I was too naive to believe this. I had lost interest in my studies. However, I loved dancing a lot.
At what age you pursued dancing and why did you not pursue it further?
I started learning Bharatanatyam at the age of 7-8 years. Continued with it and at older age learned fusion and western dance forms. Until my early 20s, I used to be a stage dancer but due to fibromyalgia and endometriosis, my health deteriorated and I had to stop performing. My father too fell into bad times financially. Therefore, a girl who was told that her only aim is to get married was now suddenly thrust into the task of fending for herself and her family.
I came from an extremely sheltered upbringing. Then at the age of 22-23, I was introduced to this big bad world. It was extremely difficult navigating life on a day-to-day basis with all those health challenges and nobody seemed to understand my condition. My diseases were invisible so whenever I shared my story, it would be casually brushed off or people would warn me not to talk about it as it might affect my chances of getting married. The morality coming from societal conditioning only made my woes worse. I was perennially upset.
A lot happened in your life. What kept you motivated? What made you keep moving forward?
What kept me moving was the belief that there is some purpose in my life. That there is some reason for my survival. That I am good at something. I went through some horrific times and I would keep telling myself that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and I believed in it. Moreover, if I am still alive after all that I have gone through, that means I still have not arrived at the place where I am meant to be.
Was it faith or ambition that kept you going?
Both I believe. I did not realize that those were my survival mechanisms as I mentioned earlier. I became aware of it when NV life came into my life. These survival mechanisms got so ingrained within me, that it became a narrative for my existence that I would tell myself and convince myself with.
Read Part 2 to see the step-by-step shifts Amrita experienced as she was introduced to NV Life, the Book Meditation – The Cure, and the online courses.