Where it all began: After experiencing healing during a panchakarma treatment in India, I wanted to shout it from the rooftops
I released my first book on August 11, 2020, right in the middle of the COVID-19 lockdown.
It was an auspicious day for me in many ways.
I felt the first stirrings to write Cleanse Your Body, Reveal Your Soul in 2014 after several weeks in India during which I experienced the eight-day cleanse known as panchakarma.
A part of me wanted to shout from the rooftops about the beauty of what I have experienced with panchakarma and Ayurveda, which is the ancient medical system based on holistic healing. The word Ayurveda means the science of life.
More than once, I talked with the director of the clinic, Sunil Joshi, MD (AYU), about why there was not more information available to the general public about this deeply stirring, detoxing, healing, rejuvenating process.
Panchakarma is an eight-day process that supports a deep cellular detoxification for the whole body and brain. Once there is a level of deep enough of a cleanse then it is possible to enter a phase of rejuvenation.
Here in the United States, the eight-day process often is modified for multiple reasons, but it is possible to find places that honor the full eight-day process. This is true in India as well.
I understand there also are centers in Tibet, Nepal, parts of South Asia, Europe and South Africa but have limited experience with them.
After I experienced the eight-day cleanse, I decided to write about it so more people could learn about panchakarma and Ayurveda.
Writing the book
I wrote this book in the midst of my work life. I learned that this creative space required a dedicated time to enter that place of sharing via the written word.
I also realized that there are multiple phases with one phase of completion opening up into a whole new level of requirements and expectations for the next phase.
Writing the book to a place of completion has its own rhythm. For me, it took about three years.
The next phase was the rewriting and editing process to prep the book for publication. This phase took about a year.
In the meantime, I was looking for the best fit with a publisher to accept the book for publication. This required writing a book proposal, which was about 60 pages.
Mango Publishing accepted the book, and it was published about one year later. The initial publication date was to have been May 2020, but it got pushed back to August 2020. There were many hours needed for the final hurdles of final edits and modifications, plus COVID-19 complicated things.
Promoting a book during a pandemic
To promote Cleanse Your Body, Reveal Your Soul, I did a Facebook live on the release date with my friend, Alexia Neonakis, who is trained in Ayurveda and Jyotish, which is vedic astrology. The word “jyotish” in Sanskrit means “science of light.” We celebrated together!
She, along with so many people, have supported me on this journey. I had friends and family who stopped by to offer their congratulations.
With my six-year-old grandson, I did an unboxing video, which was fun to do. He was excited for me.
I did a few podcasts including one with Melisa Caprio, author of Postcards to the Universe and host of the OM Times Radio show of the same name. It was great to be able to speak about the book in a formal interview. I found this format fun to do.
Bookstore events were all virtual
In September, I did my first bookstore reading with Bookworks, the local, independent bookstore in Albuquerque. Friends and family came again to support me. It was fun to read parts of the book and about my journey with everyone. My grandson was attentive for the hour we were all on Zoom.
Afterwards, he came over that week. I found him picking up my book to read it. He even asked a couple of questions.
This summer, other bookstore events have happened with East West Bookshop in Seattle and in Mountain View, California.
Because all the events were virtual, I realized I needed to go beyond the reading and sharing about why I wrote the book. I began to teach more about how to Build a Better Morning, which became my first online class. In this class, I share ways to enhance self-care with an Ayurvedic morning routine.
Release of audio version
The audio version of Cleanse Your Body, Reveal Your Soul was released in February 2021. This has done quite well with many people finding this format more accessible.
As the first-year anniversary is upon us, I realize that there is a journey attached to this book that I have created. In the midst of a pandemic, this journey has only begun. I am excited to see how the next year unfolds.