Joan Young’s life dramatically changed when she was diagnosed with Immune Thrombocytopenia. After an overwhelming response to a website she created, Joan eventually founded the Platelet Disorder Support Association or PDSA. The PDSA has been running since 1997, and this organization now reaches out to blood disorder patients in over 130 countries.
WISH BY SPIRIT is the story of her journey. From the very beginning, the reader knows that this is a story of healing. I began reading this book knowing that there was a secret waiting for me at the end of the book.
A long time has passed since Young came through her battle with ITP, and many things have changed since then. Treatments, attitudes, knowledge and understanding have all developed to help western and alternative practitioners treat patients with ITP together.
The Introduction to WISH BY SPIRIT is quite engrossing. It’s clear from the start that Joan is a great writer. I loved reading the conversation she had with her doctor where all the radical treatments were discussed and decided on before Joan had a moment to understand the disease she had.
It was eye-opening. So many patients are already taking treatment before they have time to go home and process the disease. She couldn’t even remember the name of the autoimmune disorder she had started taking pills to treat. It’s a reminder of how quickly the medical system can work.
After resisting prednisone as a first line treatment, Young eventually agrees to take the drug as she was discharged from the hospital.
Joan is drawn to eating more vegetables, and I instantly wonder what her blood type is? If her taste for vegetarian food matches the recommendations from EAT RIGHT FOR YOUR TYPE. I was naturally drawn to a paleo diet which fit perfectly with my blood type recommendation.
In the middle somewhere this story does get a little lost in the administration of it all. There are few story devices to drive the reader on through that administration heavy middle of the book. But it was the promise made on the cover, that Joan Young healed her autoimmune disease that drove me through the story. Having been through all of this myself, it was perhaps too familiar.
Chapter Eleven is where the detox begins, very interesting! Young is an active patient throughout the story and is constantly researching everything and asking questions. Kinesiology and the sinus cleaning – wow! I also understood the desire to meditate. Young even writes about her experience with Louise Hay but it is sad to see her family was not 100 per cent behind her health changes, baking cookies and rebelling against her new recipes.
Our house was polarized around food and none of us was willing to change our positions. I was eating to save my life. They obviously didn’t have that motivation…It seemed the better I felt and the more I took charge of my health, the more Paul, and I argued.
Towards the end of the book, you are right behind her as Joan starts to lose prednisone weight and feel confident and in control. She is willing to try new things, says yes, and finds herself trying transcendental Mediation. This was also pretty great. I liked this healing woman Julie and wished I was in America so I could go and see her.
This book takes you so deeply into the worst of living with ITP that the good parts are so satisfying to read. The final two chapters were wonderful. Definitely worth a read. It’s motivating, informed and eventually positive.
Young certainly knows her stuff.