I've had a hard time putting these thoughts into words, regarding my brother-in-law, John Doran, and still feel like anything I say won't validate how important his life was to those of us who knew him...Especially his kids. But, I still wanted to write a positive legacy that I knew he would like...even thou this isn't perfect. This also was the beginning of a journey and the attempt at WELLNESS... so his story is important.
Over twenty years ago I met John and my sister-in-law Carol and we all had an immediate connection. We never had the opportunity to live in the same state or even close to each other, but when we talked on the phone we could discuss anything and could pickup right where we left off... without skipping a beat.
My brother-in-law John Doran was an amazing person and always had positive outlook on life and was given the ALS diagnosis a few years ago. He was a great family man that always made me laugh every-time I would visit the Doran family in Connecticut. He and his wife (Carol) would always make an effort to drive from Danbury to Westport when the kids and I would visit, even if it was during the week! We would usually order pizza (East coast pizza is the best), and spend time catching up on things! Also, on every visit we would try to head out on a sail boat or kayak because all of us had a love for the water (walking from the house to the beach in Westport is simply the BEST), but it's even better to play out in the water. We sometimes would try to go out to eat and find a restaurant that had lobster (my favorite)...I think we only did this to amuse me.
One summer while on our visit to Connecticut, Carol and I were on shore while John took the kids out on the kayaks. It was John, my 2 sons and my niece Jenna. I can remember it like yesterday because it quickly became a day I wouldn't forget. The tide changed without allowing any of them time to get back to shore. From shore Carol and I watched in disbelief as we could see John trying to get back to shore with the kids. Unfortunately, with the winds he was fighting a battle he wasn't going to win. Luckily, a police boat went to rescue them and brought them back, but I will spare you the ugly details of my behavior at the time. I turned into this crazy mama bear taking on Mother Nature...it wasn't pretty! The importance of this story is that a few months later John was giving the diagnosis of ALS and he remembered feeling weak on the kayaks that day and he could pinpoint not feeling himself and not having the strength to get them all back to shore. This ended up being a turning point in his life but, how he handled these next few years showed nothing but courage, strength and determination to stand strong in spite of what he was being dealt. Even more amazing was watching my sister-in-law (Carol) become this amazing advocate and looking for a way to get him healed... (Seriously she is smarter than most Dr.'s I know). Carol and I began private messaging (on Facebook) each other for hours talking about health and wellness stuff. In fact, we still talk about what herbs, vitamins or minerals we are now reading about or taking. She is most likely one of the most amazing, humble women that graces this earth. So much so, that if she even knew I wrote this about her she would call me demanding I take it off this blog (I'm thinking I won't tell her, HA!)
Now, this brings me to why Wheatgrass has become so important. During John's illness he visited a Wellness Center in Florida and they put him thru a Detox that was most likely the most amazing thing I had heard of. John knew I always was into Heath and Wellness and even had an herbalist during my pregnancy's so, he would tell me all the specifics of the Detox and how he felt. One day while on the phone John brought up that he would be doing Coffee Enemas after he mastered the pure water ones. When I inquired about the specifics he told me that this was the ultimate Detox and he could remove all the Black Mold that was in his body thru this cleansing along with food choices. You can only imagine how interested I was regarding this so I asked him to give me the low down on this procedure. He told me he was having a hard time holding the enemas in for the recommended 20 minutes, but once he mastered those he would move to the coffee enemas. We also began our usual teasing each other and he said, "Tiff, I think you should do these". I paused for a minute and then said. "Well, if you can do it I know I can (and I laughed). By the end of the conversation I told John I would do one enema a day to support him...and so I did. Unfortunately, John ended up passing away this past summer (his heart was stressed) and this world just is not as bright without him.
I have sense kept up my research (talking with his amazing wife Carol) and have found a ton of information regarding the benefits of Wheatgrass including the story of Dr. Ann Wigmore who was the founder of The Hippocrates Health Institute. (I have attached her story below). I also have now had a another friend confidentially tell me they are fighting an aggressive form of cancer. This person (who wants to remain nameless), wanted to know what I thought they should do to try to fight the cancer. I seriously didn't even think twice and I said, "Wheatgrass and I'll do it with you". So, another sickness begins and another battle will be fought.
|Having Lobster with my two favorites in Rhode Island before the Illness.|
FOUNDERS FILE: The Story of Ann Wigmore
submitted by prokopton on Mon, 2009-01-19 21;35
I see a world without sickness...a world in complete harmony and in perfect physical, mental, and spiritual balance by following nature's laws of cause and effect.
- Ann Wigmore
Despite our historic love affair with grains and the worldwide abundance of grasses, no culture has ever cultivated the drinking of grass juice until the latter half of the 20th century. The popular consumption of fresh squeezed wheatgrass juice is due largely to the efforts and genius of one woman, Ann Wigmore.
Sickness and adversity lead to innovation
Born in Lithuania in 1909, Ann Wigmore had a rough beginning. She started out by being born prematurely. Then she was abandoned because she was a sickly baby and a burden to her parents seeking a new life in the United States. Her grandmother, a self-taught naturalist, rescued and restored Ann to normal health. She learned a lot about healing by watching her grandmother heal wounded WWI soldiers with herbs and weeds. But at age 16, she still had no schooling and couldn't even write her name! At the urging of her grandmother, she left for the United States to get a proper education and reunite with her estranged parents. She wanted to do well and adopted the American lifestyle, including a typical American diet. Eventually, this resulted in colon cancer. Then a terrible automobile accident shattered both her legs. Gangrene set in and the doctors recommended amputation. She refused, and against her own father's wishes was sent home.
My homecoming was not a happy one. Neither my father nor my mother would come near me, and only with the help of my uncle would l find something for breakfast.
Ann knew there was a better way. She returned to her previous "peasant" diet of vegetables, grains, seeds and greens and restored her health by doing what she saw her grandmother do. She picked wild weeds and greens and applied them to her feet. This was not the desperation of a diseased mind but the result of her grandmother's teachings about the healing powers of grasses and weeds. Ann developed a ravenous appetite for anything green. She nibbled on grass and sucked out its juice. She sat for hours in the warm summer sun watching the greenish-blue ring or the "creeping death" as her uncle sorrowfully called it rise up her legs. Winter was approaching and there would be no more fresh grass. What to do?
I asked God for direction. He supplied an exciting solution: the use of grains to grow greens right in the kitchen.!
One day, to her surprise, the little white dog who gave her so much needed love and affection started to lick her legs. This was the one part of her body he never touched! "My first thought was for the animal's safety," said Ann, "I impulsively raised my ann to move it away, when the injunction of my grandmother came to mind so distinctly I could almost hear her voice: `Instinct-guided creatures, left to themselves, do not make mistakes."
That puppy was the first indicator of Ann's recovery. Rest, sun, wild herbs, weeds and kitchen-grown grasses rejuvenated Ann's health. She knew she was not going to die. The doctors informed her father that she was apparently out of danger. According to Ann, "This infuriated him, because he couldn't accept that he was wrong in his decision to have my feet removed." It was several months before her feet were completely healed and she returned to the hospital for an examination. The doctors "made no comment when X-ray films showed that the bones had knitted firmly, said Ann. Years later, Ann Wigmore ran in the Boston Marathon.
Living foods for living bodies
Ann tested her indoor grasses on her animal friends. Wheat became her favorite grass because the animals chewed more of it and it was sweet tasting, easy-to-find and inexpensive. To further her studies, she even adopted a sick, cancerous monkey. Ann nursed the monkey back to good health with creative techniques and live food recipes including sprouted seeds, fermented nut and seed "yogurt," and rejuvelac, a cultured sprouted wheat drink. These, along with wheatgrass, would later become the cornerstone of her Living Foods Diet.
Though she knew she had stumbled on something very valuable, she had no practical way of making it widely available. Most people would not eat their front lawn, no matter how sick they were! There had to be a better way. Then, at a local yard sale, Ann picked up an old cast iron meat grinder on the chance that it might grind the grass. With small modifications, such as the addition of a stainless steel straining sieve, this grinder became the first wheat grass juicer. It was a real innovation because commercial vegetable juicers could not at all manage the ligneous fiber of grass. This made possible her program whereby anyone could grow grass in their kitchens and extract the juice in their homes.
Ann began delivering fresh wheatgrass juice to bedridden ill and elderly people in her Boston neighborhood. Then in 1958, she turned an old mansion on Commonwealth Avenue in Boston into The Hippocrates Health Institute. It was founded on the principle of Hippocrates, the Greek father of modern medicine, who along with his Hippocratic oath, is often paraphrased as saying: "The body heals itself. The physician is only nature's assistant." Dr. Ann, as she was fondly called after she became a doctor of divinity, believed that the body can act as its own physician given the proper tools -- living foods. "Living foods for living bodies, dead foods for dead bodies," said Ann.
Many were healed by wheatgrass
Although Dr. Ann was neither a marketer nor a scientist, Hippocrates Health Institute, situated in the heart of Boston, attracted many celebrities and researchers who helped confirm and give testimony to the healing powers of grass. Among these Were Dr. Chiu-Nan Lai, Dr. G.H. Earp Thomas, Renee Taylor, Dennis Weaver and Dick Gregory. Even Yoko Ono purchased wheatgrass for juicing in her home. People came from all walks of life and all comers of the world, usually as a "last resort" with the hopes of beating cancer or some other degenerative disease.
Vibrating with health and vitality, Ann Wigmore is constantly on the run. Reaching out to all that are open to hear what she has to say, she emphasizes through her program that anyone can live a healthier, happier and more fulfilling life.
-- Dennis Weaver, actor, 1984. Ann had two visitors who were enormously helpful in promoting her work. One was Viktoras Kulvinskas, who helped Ann establish the Hippocrates Health Living Foods Program. The other was Eydie Mae Hunsberger, who had breast cancer. Her surgeon told her, "You have an 80 percent chance to live one year and a maximum life expectancy of five years." Eydie chose a lumpectomy that removed the cancerous tissue. But her cancer spread to other parts of her body. Depressed and frightened, she looked everywhere. She ended up at Dr. Ann's door in 1973. After two weeks on Dr. Ann's program, Eydie was confident she was going to beat cancer. Two years later, with no trace of cancer in her body, she wrote How I Conquered Cancer Naturally, which was very successful and brought many people to Dr. Ann's door.
Dr. Ann has a long list of stories and testimonials from guests who improved their health with the help of wheatgrass. Wheatgrass and its sister, triticum barley, have by testimony helped guests with ailments such as high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, gastritis, stomach ulcers, pancreas and liver troubles, asthma, glaucoma, eczema, skin problems, constipation, hemorrhoids, diverticulitis, colitis, fatigue, menstrual problems, arthritis, athlete's foot, anemia, bad breath/body odor, and burns. In addition, wheatgrass has served as a wonderful first aid for red eyes, wax in ears, congested nasal passages, bleeding gums, tooth pain, sore throats, and inflamed mucous membranes.
Ann tried to spread the word about wheatgrass to the U.S. government. She even went to Washington, D.C. But the political/nutritional climate of the 1970s was stubbornly closed-minded. She had a much greater reception from foreign governments and spent many years launching Living Food programs and research abroad. She visited some 20 countries on her world tour and was especially honored in India, Sweden, Finland and Canada. Ann learned that sickness disregarded all international borders.
Let us make a concerted effort to remedy the global problems by correcting the physical and mental imbalance in each of our lives...The industrialization of our society has created an artificial lifestyle in which humans are being led further and further from the basic truths inherent in nature and the...interrelatedness of all creation. My life has been and continues to be dedicated to the wellness of all humanity.
- Ann Wigmore, 1909-1994
In February of 1994, Ann Wigmore died of smoke inhalation in the middle of the night from a fire that destroyed the Boston home of the original Hippocrates Institute. She was nearly 85. Although she has passed on, her work continues through the efforts of the many lives she's touched. Her single clinic in Boston now has offspring in six locations in the United States alone and others in Australia, Sweden, Finland, and India. Her discovery and teachings have changed the lives of millions.