When I was 3 years old, I died on an operating table in the Ukraine, my birth country. The hospital physicians were unable to revive me after several minutes and chose one final effort by injecting a needle directly into my heart and pumping it with adrenaline. Since the moment I returned to this life I have never lost my passion to live. I don’t know if it was the adrenaline to the heart or experiencing death. Or both.
A year after I had died, my father brought my mother and I to this country for a better life. Living there, and the difficult struggles to get by, was something my parents had become accustomed to. But almost losing a child gave my parents the momentum they needed to seek a better way of living.
And that’s what I really cherish.
To actually feel alive.
Right out of the gate, that’s been the gratitude, momentum and will of each breath. To just live.
I have consciously experienced the spiritual travel between life and death… and life again. I have witnessed and experienced the extreme contrasts of living in a country where poverty, violence and fear is commonplace… and a country where opportunity, freedom and safety is provided as a constitutional right.
I grew up here, as an immigrant, never really seeing things as others did. Not really understanding the point of views I listened to because, to me, it felt like a lot of lives were not being lived.
People were alive.
But not living.
Not feeling alive like I did.
So much chaos, sadness, consumption, greed.
Illness, disease, corruption, anger, blame.
Too many people being seen by doctors, yet not healed.
Same problems everyday. Same injuries. Same drugs.
Since I was a kid, all I wanted to do was fully experience life and feel every single breath the same way I did when I opened my eyes after death. I wanted to show my parents that their struggle and choices, though difficult, had purpose.
I’ve always been fascinated by the human body, how it works, how it functions. I never played with toys as a kid, in fact my mother says I’d stay busy while they worked late hours just taking things apart and putting them back together over and over.
I always wanted to understand how it worked rather than just enjoy what it did.
Although I was a shy and quiet teenager, usually kept to myself and was a good kid, I went through a phase of getting into trouble and making the wrong decisions in an effort to feel that sense of aliveness. I pushed the envelope too far one day and ended up sitting in jail contemplating life at 18 years old. I was also overweight and unhappy with myself and I saw what my choices were doing to my parents and where it was taking me if I didn’t change.
I walked out of jail and immediately stepped into my journey of becoming a coach, therapist and practitioner.
I chose this because I wanted to help people experience life in a healthy, sustainable way that also supports the earth and those around them. I want them to feel alive. Not just live. Not feel better. And not simply just get stronger. But to really feel and experience being alive. This is my passion, and my purpose is help you get there.