I thought I’d elaborate a touch on the great article David Costello wrote up about me and my Malieta Honey journey in today’s Courier Mail. Previously a high school teacher with no beekeeping interest or experience, stumbling upon such a life changing practice (beekeeping) has been amazing.
My health issues are complex, but in short Vestibular Migraine is a condition (basically an improper flow of blood in brain) that affects one’s inner ear and balance system. A Vestibular Schwannoma (benign brain tumour) likely has something to do with my complications, but the typical triggers aren’t unlike those of the more traditional ‘migraine headache’. Technically, my longest migraine episode lasted over a year…an average migraine episode is only 72 hours.
The subsequent upsets in my balance from the lengthy migraine episodes I experience added to the complication in the early days of trying to find a diagnosis.
In 2014, I was invited to a field day held by the Bayside Beekeeping Club. I soon realised that after being around honey bees for a couple of hours – I felt….good. It wasn’t long before I started craving the calm hum of honey bees.
Once I started being around them more, the stings started coming in hard and fast. It took a few days before I realised the stings were doing something to also make me feel at ease. Don’t get me wrong, the stings still hurt (a lot!) to this day, but the feeling after a few good stings – whether it was something in the venom or simply pain distraction therapy, my mood improved and I started feeling more alive. I remember the first time I got stung on the scalp (about 5 stings). It felt as if my whole head relaxed for the first time in years.
Within a couple of months, if I went a single day without being around honey bees I would experience an episode that would keep me house bound for a week – back to how I was. I learnt quickly that a day away from bees was a day of misery. I still struggle every day with complications, but my connection to the honey bee certainly takes my mind off the matter.
Since then, the bi-product of my love for honey bees has taken shape as Malieta Honey!
During my journey, I’ve heard about ‘bee venom therapy’ – people who suffer from joint swelling, nervous disorders and other illnesses are prescribed a certain number of bee stings in a certain spot. There’s some links to acupuncture here too. Type ‘bee venom therapy’ into your search to find out more.
Other sources will tell you that bees impact human neurology through their communication with one another – maybe this is why I feel a difference when I’m around a hive of 50,000 bees?
Or maybe it’s simply the intrigue of the colony, the quiet apiaries, the beautiful outdoors and the raw honey that has had an impact on my quality of life. It’s more likely a combination of all it.
Stereotactic Radiosurgery on my brain tumour may have saved my life, but it’s the honey bee that has enabled me to live.
If Raw Honey Heals, then imagine what bees can do for all us.
Welcome to November!
Lionel and the pesky bees.
PLEASE NOTE: Some people are seriously allergic to bee stings. If you think you may want to see if beekeeping is for you, see your General Practioner for advice before hand.
Also, beekeeping is extremely addictive.