Margot Ridler

The 8-Month Long Illness That Wasn't an Illness

The Collapse of my Life begins...

Incapacitated and Unable to Get Out of Bed
January - August 2003

After facilitating Family Constellation Work for several years, I began to feel an unease inside myself. Something wasn't right anymore. I sensed that I was missing something important with my work. At first, I just brushed that inner restlessness aside. We were doing such beautiful work for people. I discarded the disquiet as nothing. But that feeling wouldn't go away. In fact, it only intensified with time. Eventually, the inner agitation got so unbearable that I had to take a look at it. By then, many months had passed. My body had weakened drastically with the constant pressure it was under, which I had worked hard to ignore. Literally, I had become a physical wreck. I no longer had enough energy in my body to hold myself up physically. Dr. Eileen Kenny, my dear friend and alternative health care practitioner diagnosed me with silent pneumonia. She did her best to treat me but nothing she did was helping. I, on the other hand knew that my symptoms had nothing to do with a physical illness. My malaise was a direct result of me not listening to my intuitive knowing. For way too many months, I had ignored that something essential was no longer right with my work. All in all, I was incapacitated and out of work for eight months. I'd barely any energy to stand or walk. I felt absolutely exhausted and weak. It seemed that I had very little vital energy coursing through my system. Eventually, upon Dr. Kenny's recommendation I saw a wonderful homeopathic doctor. He did some tests on the strength of my life force. It made total sense to me when he told me that I had scarcely any life force operating in my body. Knowing of the Family Constellation Work I'd been doing, this incredibly perceptive doctor told me that I'd demagnetized my own energy field by continually working within the field of the dead. My life force had gotten to such a weakened point that I could have died would I have continued my work for much longer. I was told I needed to find a shaman who is an indigenous medicine practitioner adept at working with the field of the dead. He said that a shaman would be the only individual who could assist me with my condition. No professional in the Western medical field, alternative or allopathic, would be able to help me. I wasn't sure if I'd find such an individual in our Western world but went to my computer to begin a search on the Internet. To my surprise, apart from many Westerners promoting themselves as shamans, there were some individuals who I sensed were true shamans. One of them was Malidoma Some. Malidoma is of West African decent who was taught by a circle of elders in his native Burkina Faso. What I found on the internet about him impressed me and made me feel that I'd be in good hands with him. It also happened that he lived in Northern California, not too far from Los Angeles, where I lived at the time. I sent an email and was linked up with a couple, Ted Duncan and Rowena Pantaleon. Malidoma had trained and certified them to perform healing work in his tradition. Malidoma himself was no longer available tp provide individual healings for people. Trusting that Malidoma would put qualified practitioners to work in his name, I went to see Rowena and Ted as soon as they had an opening. The couple, amongst other treatment protocols, performed two very (to me) strange African rituals. But surprise, surprise! Within two days I felt better. Plus from then on, I felt like I was gaining strength every day. Beyond a shadow of a doubt, I know that it was due to Ted and Rowena's intervention that my energy started to rebuild my body. I'll be forever grateful to Ted and Rowena for helping me regain my health and vitality. I'm also immensely grateful to Malidoma, the Dagara healing system, the Dagara elders and the Kontumblis, who in the first place, made my healing possible.

Studying and Incorporating Shamanism
September 2003 - December 2005

Totally fascinated, I began to study what I could about indigenous healing practices. It was then that I learned of Martin Prechtel, another true shaman who lives in New Mexico. Martin practices ancient Mayan healing traditions he learned from a powerful shaman in a remote village in Guatemala. Martin's perspective as described in his books was also very helpful at the time. (I connected up with his former wife by total chance when traveling in Guatemala several years later in 2007, while living my wandering hermit existence. I'd forgotten that Martin had lived there. But that's another story to be told some other time.) Once I felt strong enough to go back to facilitating Constellation Work, I was moved to drastically change my previous approach. Equipped with new wisdom and insight gained from my shamanic studies, I incorporated into constellation work indigenous ritual and ceremonial practices. I found my work with clients became infinitely more powerful and effective. Suddenly the knowing field provided information that was inaccessible before. This phase of my work with family constellations brought me in touch with the collective soul field or collective human memory bank or story line. I'd no idea that we could touch upon long-standing collective human issues, which are perpetuated for thousands of years while working on the personal level with individual clients. Please sign up for my mailing list if you are interested in this topic since I'll eventually write about all that I learned. To sign up for my Mailing List please click here. Working in this way was extremely gratifying even though my business had dwindled. I was sick for too long. Another woman had taken over my spot at the facility I'd been offering constellation work. Plus, I was working on such deep collective levels. A lot of people were frightened by the enormity of the collective issues that surfaced. Nevertheless, I had a very small and trusted following in Los Angeles and Milwaukee. With those incredibly brave people (whom I hold in highest regard to this day), we were able to see, feel and experience the collective human drama in ways that are incomprehensible to the mind. I'll be forever grateful to those dear friends who accompanied me the last year of my work. Their unquestioned trust in me allowed us to experience the depths of the collective soul field, which would proof enormously beneficial to me many years later. The understanding gained from that period was instrumental in developing my grasp of living beyond body consciousness and attaining true freedom. To a great extent, I owe my journey since December of 2005 to this group of people and the opening this deep collective work facilitated in me. After about a year of having offered Family Constellation Work again, that same feeling of something not being right resurfaced. This time, I was acutely aware of the inner agitation and paid close attention. Soon the Curve Ball came flying....

All Currently Available Entries