"Lumigrate" -- What Does it Mean ... and What IS it?"

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Mardy Ross's picture

Hello, and thank you in advance for your interest in Lumigrate.  I'm rewriting this in December 2016, a decade after the start of the process that resulted in what you see as "Lumigrate" began.  "Amalgam" is a word I like to introduce to people early on in my teaching of what I see as key health and wellness / illness concepts.  It essentially means "mixture", and comes into play when talking about the mainstream dentistry aspect.  

What is Lumigrate?

"Lumigrate" is an amalgam of the words "luminous" (light) and "integrate" (to bring together and mix).  ("Functional" definitions I'm providing to "keep it super simple" (KISS).  (Yes, I know the popularized version of KISS is "keep it simple stupid", but we'd not want to be bringing things down with using 'stupid'..... yes, another concept of what I've created within the content of Lumigrate, sometimes sublely.)  

The Lumigrate Logo --- IF EVERYTHING HAD BEEN THAT EASY!..... A few hours and three people in a room, me with the idea in my head, the graphics artist who was masterful at driving his software and taking our collaboration flow, and the very 'good head' of my new and talented assistant at that time.  Purple was my favorite color that resonated for me about occupational therapy always -- I'd get a purple dry erase marker for my part of the white board when in a PT/ST/OT team.  Linda/ assistant's favorite color was green which goes well with purple.  We didn't know what was represented with the color choice when you got into the 'outside the box' circles of information, though I've now learned it.  It was looking almost 'great' even before the light burst out of the center, which was my idea.  The artist did that in a few keystrokes and There It Was, our logo!  

Coming up with "Lumigrate" took way more time, money and patience.  We jokingly were preparing videos saying we were We Don't Know Our Name A Grate, because it was taking so long.  I'm grateful for having been guided by such capable people.  Grate-Full, LumiGrate-Full. 


Who am I?   Selfie, Aspen, CO 2012 

                                                                                                  I'd just found out my most 'important' professional writer at that time was going to hospice, pancreatic cancer.  Literally, JUST found out.  This was on the heels of finding out a week before that one of my original cast of writers with fibromyalgia, one of two I know of who went on to have breast cancer, was with breast cancer.  Alice passed/died in July of 2016, this summer, after having posted so brilliantly from her hospital bed 'Each one, reach one.'  I hope in my personal time to continue reaching one to deeply, significantly help as 'Mardy PopIns' ongoing, and with Lumigrate to reach many.  YOU! being one! 

Hi -- I'm Mardy Ross, and I created Lumigrate, which has been on the Internet since March of 2009. In this overview, you'll see the diversity I hope to provide -- something for people who like cats, dogs, graphics, family dynamic thinking, conspiracy fact / rabbit hole thinking, and hopefully presented simple enough that it's easy for people who are tired and can handle more difficult sometimes, or for those who always need it simpler.  However, the concepts just are very complex, so you'll have to be prepared to put in TIME.  Use your energy.  You'll not need to use any money here, unless you want individual assistance.  My information to contact is below for those who get through the information to find it.

I want to provide a lot of photos to show how my symptoms come and go, my health has waxed and waned over the years.  I've found there's one thing of primary importance -- once you know what is causing the issues for wellness, the more you work to overcome, the more the results. And when you get tired of working so hard and ease up, my experience is I'll be fine for a while and then I'll rapidly have symptoms come back or new ones onset. 

Below, I'm with my OT mentor, who has written in the Forums as Petie the OT.  I'd consider this my 'average baseline' based on appearance of my face and neck, hair, etc.  I believe this was five years ago, 2011, just as she'd turned 75, so I was 50. 

She just turned 80 and it was so neat because she grew up with Robert "Bobbie" Redford, and he happened to be Colorado Springs shooting a film with Jane Fonda I believe she said it was, and they had 20 minutes or so to catch up -- on the set. 


March 2004 About four weeks into getting Myers Cocktails before they kicked in after another four weeks.  Interestingly, the MD (pay to play, didn't take insurance since so much they would do for patients wasn't covered by insurance AND opens a can of worms for the providers) totally missed the excessive tissue on the thyroid area in the initial visit, then at my three month check in,  but right after that, a parTICularly good massage therapist caught it! And did a good thing -- refused to schedule me again until I made a special follow up with the MD.  Who then did his job better and teased out for the FIRST TIME, my life-long (based on symptoms of being cold) thyroid issue. Oh, it's so nice to not be chronically cold, that was miserable!

Below, from 2005 when I was 45, and enjoying the 2004 massive turnaround I accomplished with the help of one of my magic bullets, that's not easy to come by (nor cheap), Myers Cocktails, a form of IV nutrition.  


In a relapse, 2012.  But Ronda Hummel still did a great job catching me for a good photograph. 


Here's a photograph I'd like to use here, because it was a 'highlight' of the formative years of Lumigrate.  I'm with the first woman to register and write about fibromyalgia, as a consumer and YOUser of Lumigrate, who had wanted to meet me the next time I was in Denver.  We'd had a lovely dinner with her family, which she prepared.  She'd benefitted greatly from what she learned from me and Lumigrate and using Facebook to connect.  This was just prior to my turning 50, fall of 2009, when Lumigrate was only on the Internet about seven months.  My new MD was promising and promising to get to the IV nutrition aspect of the new clinic he'd started.  I was doing okay in terms of how I felt, but in retrospect can see the symptoms creeping back in!  I'd later go to a holistic dentist who had me check iodine absorption and walked me through how to correct that as an underlying problem, and then after that I've not needed any supplemental thyroid hormone and think I have looked 'right'.  (Why didn't the MDs tell me about that test? One said they didn't think there was an effective lab test for it, but the lab in Lakewood the DDS connected me to is highly regarded in Internet users circles of those solving their issues with complex chronic health / wellness.)



Circa 1990, age 30. After recovery from initial health crash, with my father, who was autistic. The only photo I have of us sitting next to each other or with any kind of physical contact.  My now ex husband was on my other side and that's whose leg mine are hooked over. 


I'm a Colorado native, born in 1960 in Denver, and raised in the mountains southwest of Denver.  My parents raised golden retrievers on an AKC kennel called "Terranglo Kennels", which they started about five years before I was born.  The timing of their move there and starting that business was to coincide with when my mother started having difficulties conceiving and having a baby go full term, so I am grateful if the boy before me that didn't make it did some detoxing so that I could come along successfully, kind of.  Forceps after five hours of labor due to the doctor having a golf game at 3 pm that warm spring Saturday, incubator for a few days, then home.  Ear infection at six months, formula fed, just a few of the gems from my history.  I encourage YOU to think about your history as well.     

I'd learn to pull myself up on dogs when starting to walk, and fall, preparing me for the hard knocks of real life because they'd move and I'd have to start over again!  Here's a photo from once I got my Earth legs! 


Home movies of my first birthday would indicate I missed being diagnosed with autism.  Today I would HOPE a mother who took a child in special with the concerns mine did when I was toddling and having odd behaviors, would not get dismissed as she had. 

She'd also read Dr. Spock book or books with the ill advise about letting children cry themselves out of their crying.  My first memory is in my crib in the afternoon and wanting out of my crib, crying, not having my needs met, and standing up and screaming and choking and having a big fit and my whole family of origin -- father, mother, older sibling, looking in the door and laughing.  I remember my thought being "what kind of family is this I'm with?" 

Sadly, it was a very typical family for the times, I think, in many regards.  I'd start realizing nobody from my area of origin was well behaviorally and/ or physically, when my health crashed and after.  But that's to everyone's advantage and I'm grate-full for it now because I've had to address so many facets and issues, and it's simplly in my nature to address and investigate, work on things, solve problems, etc.  And the results from SOME OF THAT comes to you at Lumigrate.com for free.  And if a person wishes to compensate me for 1:1 or 1:2 or 1:group time, you'll get a more customized experience commensurate with the compensation.  I want people to get the help if they want it, so I make it accessible.  

I'd go to Colorado State University after graduation from high school, in 1978, and eighteen years later finally complete a bachelor of sciences degree.  In occupational therapy.  Occupation is anything that occupies your time and OT is about function and implementation of things you'll learn from PT if  you're lucky enough to have a good PT on your team.  It's based in what makes people motivated to do activities, and on 'engage the mind and the body will follow.' 

OT is therefore very psychological and that's what appealed to me.  I'd wanted to be a psychologist, or veterinarian and my father wouldn't allow either.  I figured out how to get off his puppet strings my second year of college but it required working a LOT of hours at $5/hour as a typist, and that impacted my studying and how well I did at school.  I got into a big spiral of anxiety, depression, low self esteem, partying hardy on weekends to have FUN and blow off steam, and have a lot of great and not so great memories as a result. 

I consider that 'dealing with family stuff' very basic, conventional mental / behavioral health and very important, naturally, but I don't belabor that kind of information in the forums at Lumigrate, I try to provide things you might not learn of otherwise.  And if one spends enough study time there, the dots of information as I present it should connect, or start to.  I love to help people 1:1, 1:2, 1: group, so get ahold of me if you're wanting to schedule something. 

(970) 462 - eight six six two ..... is my phone number. 

Email is currently mardy dot poppins at yahoo dot com. 

I'm working to get the Lumigrate email straightened out and cleared out, it got full with the spammers registering that caused any new registrations to have to send an email -- and it's just a matter of taking me a LOT of time to do that type of thing, so I find a work around like this -- having a yahoo and posting it all over where people will learn of it.  Hence the Contact Us is not the way to go at this point in time.  

What caused the long timeframe to graduate as an OT? For starters, nobody who got paid or should have helped me learn of OT as a parent or other caring adult around me told me it existed!  I found out from buying a mobile home to live in near campus, the seller's fiance was graduating as an OT and told me about it.  It sounded neat.  I took Intro to OT four years after starting and struggling along in business classes, and LOVED IT / knew right then it was what I was supposed to go into.  That ended up being a struggle that entailed a divorce before I could go back to school at age 34.  

But also, I really did not realize how significant my health issues were, nor my learning differences -- which are intimately tied in causation as I see it today -- so therefore I didn't learn to compensate, get therapy or proper glasses and etc.  Please check out the information about perceptual, behavioral optometry in the forums.  It's so important -- everyone today has a little or a lot of impairment as far as I'm concerned, and it will apply for sure to someone you know at some point and possibly help them.  It's what I wish someone had done for me!  And so do unto others as you were not done to but wish you had been !  

Grins.  Take a little break, chuckle -- sprinkling humor's important!

Having my health collapse due to too much 'load'/ stress in my late 20s had a silver lining, because it  lead me to the vision therapy and more specialized optometry I'd needed all along. One day I just could not get my eyes to train on anything when I was wanting to get up and go to work one morning.

It was after a lot of personal life stress (years x2) at a time of a lot of work load, time, and stress psychologically (about 1 year) as well as physically at a biochemical level because we were into a new building with outgassing items I was sensitive / reacting to without my realizing that was a problem given my genetics.  I was baffled because nobody else 'crashed' from our work group, but 'back home' the neighbor man had crashed into something similar.  In his case he ended up living the life of a 'bubble man' almost, in Denver in a stripped down house, reading things out of a box with glass to keep his exposures from the printed material down.

My doctor would tell me there was an outbreak of what I had in Fort Collins, but that's not found in any statistics or reports I can find -- it was a few years after what happened at Lake Tahoe in California with all the disruption caused by media attention.  So I suspect it was supposed to be kept quiet.  But was it really just Fort Collins, since the man next door two hours away in the mountains had the same thing happen.  I'd enjoy conversing via Facebook connections and group with Erik Johnson who has inserted himself into the chronic fatigue story at Lake Tahoe in a most interesting way;  grate-full to so many 'teachers' along the way.

My mother was a learning disabilities expert, ironically, and knew of the type of expert in Denver that she wasn't up for taking me to be helped by, since I wasn't having any 'problems' in terms of school. Her colleagues and friends were my teachers, who apparently would push her to at least see what my tested IQ was, so then she'd realize there WAS a problem as I was not among the very top students in the class but the next tier down. 

                © Lumigrate 2012

              Load Theory Model, above.  Thanks to Forum contributor ceasing in 2014, WMSpurlock, MD

I was starting to realize by sixth grade something was wrong, I was goaded by a so-called friend for my not getting as good grades in junior high on higher math tests --- there was a problem, just not one worthy of the time and anxiety production for her in driving me once a week for a while to Denver for something after school.  "I'm a teacher" was her excuse for slacking.  I say this so y'all know I've been through it, same as everyone else, and I've worked to rectify and resolve the feelings and results of such dysfunctional parenting.  Body, mind, spirit -- whole person has to be addressed to have wellness OR fall away from it, in the information we provide at Lumigrate.

I'd work from age 19 to 23 typing statistics and working reception at two offices, one at Colorado State University and one just off campus.  At 23 I'd get hired to assist a now 'infamous' researcher, and did everything from buy the pencils to the computers and advertise for AND hire all the people needed to run the show (upon his decisions, off course). I never had to get his coffee, unless he was tethered to a phone call and couldn't reach the pot, and his inner decent person would shine through with rare humility asking in sign language almost to get him a cup of coffee. 

One day the task was to buy all the equipment he'd specified at a Denver audio / visual retailer, and staff it.  That would come into play that night in December 2007 when I got to thinking 'I wish I had the money to start a website to put videos of great seminars on, like I saw YouTube doing but we'd then have the presentations and other resources".  I'd not yet seen Facebook, or My Space, but somehow I had enough of an idea ......

Many are surprised to find out I was and still am technologically challenged -- at that time I had to be shown how to attach files to emails.  I take increased repetition to learn anything new, my scanning visually is impaired and I require extra time and make more mistakes than I would otherwise, which I hopefully catch due to good compensatory skills, and then correct.  That's waning as I'm getting older overall BUT gets better when I do the things I know to do to reverse symptoms of overall complex chronic conditions!  (Look for info in the forums about cyanobacteria / algae and marine mammals with spatial orientation or attention problems that run aground, which inspired Johns Hopkins to go on to study brains of people with known learning problems --- also had algae in the brains....).  Just to picque your interests in what all is provided as content at Lumigrate.

What is Lumigrate? (From above but then with more detail going further)

"Lumigrate" is an amalgam of the words "luminous" (light) and "integrate" (to bring together and mix).  ("Functional" definitions I'm providing to "keep it super simple" (KISS).  (Yes, I know the popularized version of KISS is "keep it simple stupid", but we'd not want to be bringing things down with using 'stupid'..... yes, another concept of what I've created within the content of Lumigrate, sometimes sublely.)   

In this rewrite on 3 December 2016, I am reflecting upon these things which all occurred in December in years past: 

-- in 2003, I'd pull into Grand Junction, Colorado for what I'd agreed was going to be a three week job as an OT (occupational therapist) in a skilled nursing home with subacute rehab.  I just knew within that first day I was supposed to be moving to "Junction", and that happened.  Within a year I had created a 'kerfuffle' advocating for a patient and the staff that was not mismanagement, as I like to call them humorously, and was once again fired in mainstream medicine.  That was the last time that occurred, and I believe I ended my OT career for good after doing three years of a mix of home health 'to pay the bills' and outpatient as a contractor within a PT clinic within a medical building that was being built within eye shot of the skilled nursing facility when I pulled into town. 

 -- in 2006 when I'd have a bungling of medications after a fairly routine surgery, which is when I had a 'download' of what's going on and that I was going to play a part in it -- essentially it went like this (I put it into words, the communication I receive does not come in a form I 'hear' as language in my head, it's like instant, direct telepathy) --  "if you know all you do, had things in order as you did, and this happened to you in a superior city and hospital like this, imagine what's happening to others elsewhere.  Lots of people are going to provide the solutions, and you're going to be one of them". 

-- in 2007, I'd have gotten some money unexpectedly, not enough to start a new business with, per my business brain boyfriend at the time, unless I came to live with him, he proposed over a calculation on a napkin at a diner next to a jewelry store.  Since January 2005 I'd been providing occupational therapy services in Grand Junction, Colorado, within a conventional, mainstream, "organized" medical building which had  40,000 patients in it's database, everything you needed typically as a consumer 'under one roof'. 

Dozens of providers of primary care, between the MD/DO types and the NP/PA types, and yet never once did they refer a patient for occupational therapy.  The ONLY time they sent someone down was 'dumping' a difficult, demented, patient who they'd found out had driven themselves that day.  Not sent them with a prescription for an evaluation so I could bill for it, just 'go down and talk to them about setting up an appointment', which would entail my basically spending time doing a 'sales job' on them on something their doctor should have sold them on.  It was so crazy!

The following graphic applies to figuring out organizations with problems, families with problems, just like a person with health problems.  It's showing in the onion layers going out from the root cause, through underlying conditions, then out to surface symptoms (or what some might not think shows any symptoms -- many think they're in perfect health and you can see, if you see as I do, they're not).

Sometimes they've just gotten so used to something they're not seeing it as something that wouldn't be a part of them if they were well.  And the ironic thing is, often people have to struggle to give that 'thing' up.  So bringing 'relationships' into the discussion, and comparing it to your relationship within yourself to your issues is appropriate at this point, and is covered in many topics in the forums.  

And I'm so grate-full for that 'money angel' to have come my way in late 2007, and the timing that was seemingly 'divine synchronicity', because I was just wishing I had money to start a website to put video of the great seminar series we were putting on in the live education group I'd co-created that year. 

It was inspired by the first new patient on my schedule after my 2006 surgery; she had a diagnosis of 'fibromyalgia', which the management had not allowed me to meet a doctor's request to serve in our therapy group.  They had their reasons, I understood the reasons, they were understandable and valid from their perspective but it was due to their not knowing what the condition was and what to do about it, as an overall provider group.  Patients had been hurt, overall, by their PTs in the past, I'd find from interviewing people I'd encounter.  So just teach the providers to do differently. 

Why was this so difficult, proving to be impossible, despite my putting tons of time and energy into trying to make different things occur?  I'd finally 'go down the truth rabbit hole' and figure it out, in my fifties.  I don't want anyone to unnecessarily waste time, energy and money not knowing the truth, so over the years at Lumigrate, the content has shifted to reflect this. 

The invitation from my then-boyfriend, before Christmas 2007, coincided with when I had to make a decision about what I was doing about renting an office at the new integrative center that was to come to happen in January would have me 'in action' once it was too late to turn back, once his grown children meddled after being home for the holidays.  (Why would they meddle?  They didn't know his legal work was all done and no woman would stand in the way of what they wanted to get from him, plus I caught the things his brain wasn't clicking well enough to 'out them doing', which was a lot of manipulation and nonsense.) 

They were all decent or even good people, really, just basically a gang as impossible to break into as the big medical building clique I was giving up on trying to make a living through. Eventually I'd come to learn of the cabal running the world, secretively until we're all telling each other about it now with the help of the Internet. And I'd imagine if you 'follow the money' up a lot of tiers or 'degrees' in the secret societies, you'd find clues to the answers. 

They did me a huge favor, I'd figure out in retrospect.  And so I am grate-full to all involved.  It was, I see, meant to be. 

Within a month after my surgery on 14 December 2006, I was registering for a business incubator 'entrepreneurial' class that met three hours every Tuesday night and did not have comfortable seating, setting me up for the rest of the week until I had more time to exercise than the work week, to be more painful and stiff-ful than it would otherwise. 

Diagnosed in the late 1990s with 'fibromyalgia', a decade before that with 'chronic fatigue', many bafflements and wastes of time, energy, money going to providers, plus many that were of benefit over the years, I had been really working on shoring my health up and reversing what I could during 2004-7. 

I simply wanted to share with others, what had helped me so much that I would not have qualified for a diagnosis of those things at the time I created Lumigrate!

I was asked by one really "out there" provider who wanted me as a client when I wanted to simply interview him in an appointment, what my goals were, and I said 'to get as healthy as I can and take the rest of the world with me'.  He said -- in front of someone else I didn't know, demonstrating his lack of boundaries and confidentiality -- "well you have a long ways to go".  I was offended.  But he was right. I have come a long way! 

 -- Lastly, I'm reflecting on this week in 2011, five years ago, when I'd be waking up to a debacle created by the webmaster in 2008/9 in setting things to not require scrutinizing people to approve new registering users (see the comment, below, I left an example for learning by those reading). 

Clearly, I made the decision to jump off what I refer to as the "organized medicine" wheel (picturing what we give rodents to occupy their time on, or a treadmill for humans and now other animals such as dogs) and into the grass roots, at that time, of "integrative medicine" and "functional medicine".

Since then I've seen those strands of grass grow to be quite big and on their way to become the next "conventional, mainstream, organized medicine", replacing the failing and falling insurance-based system that was our past "conventional, mainstream, organized medicine", also called "Western medicine", but most definitively being "allopathic medicine".  

"Allopathy", which fluorished once science came up with "pathogens", was defined in one of our initial videos (and free/ $0) at launch in 2009, by Dr. Chris Young (PhD psychologist and pain specialist / neuro - focused), where he brilliantly showed how the predominant model of medicine being used in the US was leaving the patient -- YOU most likely at some point in your life -- out of the center and power position of their care and information / results / documentation and frustrating them with 'the run around'.

What will be the next phase in the US for mainstream will be a melding of the the two, or something still not working for people expecting fully functional health care.  It's just too bunched up with money-making to not be corrupt, really.


Ancient History of What Inspired and Lead up to Lumigrate - "Fibromyalgia Forum" in the Primary Care Partners Building, June 2007 to Spring 2008.

When we presented this to groups each week in 2007, anyone new that week would be initially relieved that providers were saying that they understood what they were going through, and typically they would cry.  This was wonderful for them, and initially for the 'repeat customers' who came every week if they could, but the group was overall wanting new information and to move forward, not process newcomer's reactions to the foundation of our group with what is now The Lumigrate YOU! Model.  I consider it a "cornerstone" at Lumigrate.


People were better served by what we proposed with the 2007-created "YOU! Model", which was drawn on a white board sometime in early 2007 when Dr. Young and I met each week for one hour (of non-billable time, so in allopathic medicine you're already lowering your productivity by 1/40th for a week if you work 40 hours.)  He went on to get a grant to bring 'integration' of behavioral health into the primary care offices in the building, inspired by what we collaborated on at his instigation in 2007.  For which I'm grate-full, and feel it was meant to be!

The disciplines you see on this model were my chosing in our formative year, which was 2008, as I rented space within a brand new integrative medicine center that had intentions overall, with the group initially asked to talk about the collaboration, to focus on helping people with complex, chronic illness -- also known as "environmental illness".  However, the focus diverged almost immediately, and everyone who was renting and hoping to collaborate under one roof went their separate ways within the first year or two. 

In the mean time, as "luck would have it", while I was looking at nearby space to rent because despite my having just signed a lease there was a medical specialist MD type wanting the biggest office, so I was asked to forfeit what I'd just set up shop in (big computer for video editing ($15k), printer, fax, copier ($500), phone for their system ($250 for the set, then a portion of the install cost), DSL, modem, furniture, and on and on, a man helping to move the people leaving the space I was looking at overheard me talking to the guy showing me the space. 

"We just moved here, my wife hasn't found work yet."  And she happened to be nearby, had her resume to leave at the clinic's front desk.  Their staff was looking at it when I walked in, as they were needing to hire more help.  I glanced it over and said 'I recruited this one, ladies, sorry'. 

I called, she came right in for an interview and I knew the second we saw each other it was the right person at the right time and meant to be.  I'm happy to say we just got together recently, as she was returning on vacation here, and in telling her new life partner about the times and what we went through -- good and difficult, and everything in between -- I was reminded of how special her contribution was due to her unique capabilities and experience, and that it really IS part of the story of Lumigrate for eternity.  So, Linda, this shout out's to you, and the now-ex who connected us.  I'm grate-full to you both!  

She got to see the ending of the education group that Dr Young and I had collaborated to co-create in 2007.  It was the last time we'd meet in the building I'd just left, where Dr. Young continues today, integrating things a bit through much hard work and enthusiasm for collaborative care, and I was explaining to the group what the new center I've moved to over by the mall (further west about two miles) was where we'd have the meetings at noon (per people's request for mid-day), and that we'd likely be moving to something with a small fee associated with it. In previous meetings, the 'regulars' had said they'd pay $5/week for what they were getting from the group -- and this included those on disability and Medicaid.  I have to get funding for my time somehow, they didn't have a problem with that.  

But, a newcomer that week stood up, had a fit, and stormed out of the room -- essentially saying "providers always trying to make money off of sick people".  The long-term group members handled it well, because we were a 'team' by then, but then, unbelievably, the provider who had said he wasn't in on Mondays so noon on Mondays was the only day we could use the central 'bull pen' meeting / seminar space sublet his office to a provider who was very displeased with having people talking for an hour and a half. 

I was very disappointed that the main reason I moved to the integrative center was not being supported by the team of providers at that center overall, and decided to not further dilute my time / energy / money resources having a weekly education group 'live', we'd wait for the website to get completed, which meant we had to go to all the seminars the center put on and harvest and produce the ones that were the best fit for Lumigrate's launch, which was about what was, in those days, being described and labeled as 'fibromyalgia'. 

Lumigrate finally was live on the Internet in late March, 2009 -- and we were ready with functional Facebook pages and places and profiles! And what did I hear as feedback about the $20/download fee for high quality hour-long seminars?  Same thing as the woman who'd stormed out of the last forum meeting in my old building! The Internet market had not yet decided what it was going to pay for and not.  I heard the author of the book Googled say, when driving over the Rockies for Christmas 2009, if I recall correctly, that the experts still weren't seeing what the Internet was going to do in terms of consumers paying subscriptions and memberships and etc.  Basically we were ahead of the curve. 

I learned from two brilliant women I knew, one in their 30s and one of about 70, that they didn't realize the words on the solid purple bar were tabs, they were used to tabs on websites looking like tabs with boxes around them.  "About Us, Blog, Forums, Products....."  they thought it was just our saying what we had if you looked around on the landing page, not realizing they were words to click on to navigate.  Then the concept of downloading a big file to a computer, then there were those that didn't trust security for credit card information.  So the selling of videos was not working, I set the price to $0 so people weren't deterred by that aspect, and we got some idea of how that changed what people would do and not.  So I basically was learning a lot of lessons -- the hard (and expensive) way. 

I was totally out of funds for my business (and self) by the time I was to present in Berkeley, California, in July 2009 -- at the Chronic Pain Documentary Film Series kickoff event.  Intended to get publicity to get more funding, attendees to get funding to create a film series, it served as a lesson, eventually, in how 'trolls' get into honest people's work and corrupt, even buy up the projects and businesses trying to do honest work and bury them, so the truth doesn't get out.

To start Lumigrate, I'd utilized funds from my dad's cousin's estate, which came to me by total surprise in December of 2007, just as I was thinking "I wonder how much it would cost to create a website you could have videos on like that YouTube I saw once, I wish I had the money to do that."  I was going to spend half, use half on my future for retirement.  Though she had been a massive career woman, and in physical education and wellness, she'd died before I had this vision and had hinted that she hoped I'd be able to travel when I was older and have a life like she did. 

I had already gone through the local business incubator's entrepreneureal class and played with the idea of a very basic website about fibromyalgia being your friend, along with you for life to play a game of clever chess or tennis with, hoping to stay ahead of it overall. My father's funds got me through without big enough batches to do anything for Lumigrate with, due to the goofy lawyer and executor situation, but it kept a roof over my head and food on the table. 

By 2014 that was completed and I looked to go back to work in the System, and the HR VP of a nonprofit I talked to about how to reverse the condition their organization serviced in their town suddenly retired the next day. Allegedly retired, I should say -- allegedly is another word or concept I teach at Lumigrate.  I suspect he went to his higher ups who said "you can't hire someone who'd cure these people, that's ruining the whole game we're part of".  Who knows, but I heard the place had been great, had just hit the skids as organizations typically cycle through, and so I took it as a sign to figure something else out.  

I'd had it in my mind's eye, literally, a particular type of RV -- older, small vanlike RV.  I had a great professional friend, Karen Richardson, who provided the OTR/ CDRS content in the Forums about rehabilitative driving for medically impaired, who'd sold her things and bought an RV with her husband once reaching Medicare / retirement age, and I started thinking 'I'm supposed to sell my things and go touring around somehow."  So, this I did -- for months in the fall of 2014, and spring of 2015.  But it didn't seem I was supposed to get in an RV and go around in that way, what came to me was being "Mardy PopIns (Poppins for email purposes", I'd call it. 

I cut my costs per month by 2/3 by trading housing for helping the home owner / renter and literally doing work on education and implementing whatever information and change support in the home.  It worked!  I was in two homes in Grand Junction area, but in both cases their habits for who's in the home long term was either a family member or guest, and they didn't have success remembering it was a teacher, or someone like the well known Mary Poppins.  The first house had started out as house sitting, but then turned into helping the woman and adult but not yet matured-to-adult "child". 

I realized that it had been ideal in the weeks before the people arrived at house #1 as Mardy PopIns, and the first person who asked me how it was going, which was when I was in the second house where the same issues had come up as in the first with it just being too intense a process to have someone there 24/7 connected me to someone who had a house and dog needing to be sat. 

When I arrived to meet the dog and see the place, I was 'wowwed' to see the RV that had been 'in my mind's eye' a year before!   The first house, when meeting the owner about to leave, had a white van in the driveway per the instructions and I was presuming I'd see the van from my mind's eye but it was not 'the van'.  

Then I met the dog.  I'd figure out he had chronic pain, joint stiffness, and lumps in his back muscles similar to what people get with 'fibromyalgia' (plus what is called by mainstream veterinary medicine 'fatty tumors').  He'd seem depressed, anxious, and to have OCD, and other traits similar to what gets called 'autism' in humans.  Could it be that dogs are getting the environmental illness 'stuff' humans get, and it's like doggie or kittie autism, etc.?  I decided so, and that it seemed to me like what's autism in kids gets diagnosed as complex chronic conditions in young and middle adulthood, and then shifts as the years go on to being more movement and cognitive disorders/dementias.  

This brought me 360 degrees around to my mother, who was a controversial, outside the box, "Indigo" person way before the mass of "Indigo children" were described in certain 'outside the box' circles.  "Franny" had become a fourth grade teacher in my elementary school, the year I was in fourth grade.  She'd screen all third graders from my class for 10 years, looking for sensory processing issues.  She'd then take the 1/3 with the most issues and have them be in her home room, where she'd elect to do therapies proven to help but which were not in the curriculum for fourth grade. 

This was fine with the initial principal, but then he was to go off to another school and in would come a blond woman who ran the place like it was Nazi Germany, it sounded to me.  I was in high school by then.  

In the last class to be screened, if I did my math right and remember things correctly, would have been a young Trey Parker, who would become famous in certain circles for his infamously raw humor cartoon show "South Park".  I suspect the Mayor character was inspired by the afore-mentioned Nazi-like blond principal.  Mr. Mackey is definitely known to me as the guidance counselor who was to come in my eighth grade year;  names, locations, physical appearances have been changed for legal reasons. 

But it's so important and fits into my work today, to share here that my mother found that only one student in all the hundreds she screened over the years had no evidence of neurological impairment, and that was Shellie in my class (permission from Shellie to say this, she's now an activist in Texas, promoting healthy living with a focus on food, extraction from The System for things unnecessary and unconstitutional, etc.). 

I remembered her family was written about in the local paper for participating in 'Grange' which I understand to be homesteading skills.  I checked in with her once I fully appreciated the diet /  gut aspect of wellness or unwellness, and learned that they had their own cow, chickens, pig, vegetable garden, and made most of the bread the family consumed.  We all had well water, so nobody was getting what's added to municipal water supplies. And I knew many families from that area for many decades and this was unique.  I meant to inquire about school lunch versus bringing from home.  It's a work in progress how I personally get my opinions and information, which influences what I provide on Lumigrate. Sometimes that includes invitations to providers to collaborate on topics, other times it has been me going solo.  It's more time consuming to get the others involved, slowing how much content we can create with me being "solo" the last years. 

Having been diagnosed with fibromyalgia in the late 1990s, chronic fatigue in the late 1980s. Horrendous migraines in the early 1980s, horrendous blood sugar issues in my mid teens, horrendous periods from teens until hysterectomy at age 46 -- and on an on, so much 'suffering' that was needless, once I figured out what had caused it all.  Being cold all the time, as a child and after.  Being so skinny my clothes fell down when I was a toddler. 

"You needed to be wormed" the ranching son of the family that sold their property to my family in 1955 before I was born, said in 2015 when I contacted him to ask if they sold because everyone got unwell there like seemed to happen with my family.  I joked that he could have saved me a lot of pain if I'd talked to him long ago -- now people are finding out it is parasites in us, causing the chronic conditions (autism and so on and so forth). Look for information at Lumigrate about something called 'the fenbendazole patent trail', and pairing with medicinal mushrooms (red reishi is strongly encouraged in the protocol provider I learned from, but I've branched out to others).   

I can think back to how Shellie was in my class and in terms of grades we were similar (as it's on the old honor roll listings I have in my pared down momentos from life).  I remember she'd be able to perch on the bars on the playground, and I couldn't -- I didn't have the neurological system enough in tact / well, to do that.  Her clique of girls who could perch basically became the cheerleaders in junior high. 

We'd play flute next to each other in fourth grade, I'd be racing her to the main building after one day when she was tripped by a boy and fell, cutting her head where it bled like crazy and scared us both a lot -- a fond memory we bonded over I suppose, as much as sharing a bottle of wine in 2000 or so at a reunion. 

We'd be in art together in 8th grade and she was the class pet, I was frustrated with not being able to get my body to coordinate to get out what I had inside my mind to create. And I found it creepy the way the art teacher lurked.  Maybe I was shy at that age about men, talents, or maybe my gut was right that it was something to do with her being 'attractive'.  I'd distance myself. 

I'd sing in choir, as a soprano despite my having more comfortable range for alto, like Shellie was, but I had perfect ear for being at the right pitch so I'd keep the sopranos from going flatter than they would have without. 

So we were never 'close' but we were always friendly and peaceful to each other.  Facebook changed that, and we had time in the years we were new activists on Facebook to chat about the younger men inspiring us, seeming soul mate types in my vocabulary.  I get a kick out of how the two of us, in a class of under 100 students, have such a presence on the Internet in what I fondly call 'truth rabel rousing'.  She'd go on to marry and have children, I'd go on to marry and divorce and not have children. Now that I know what I do, I'm glad for that, I spared us all a lot of pain and difficulty that would have been involved in reversing symptoms.  I became an 'autism mom' anyway, in 2009 at Thanksgiving, when the five month old feline fell into my 'lap' in a most 'guided' of ways, clearly. (Look for information about SpoildeyCat, feline autism if you're interested -- it's on the vaccine plan topic for starters.) 

In this photo, below, she's calming herself with the pressure of the recliner under her.  This is basic sensory integration theory, from my OT schooling and what my mother worked on with children for her time teaching fourth grade in my local elementary school.  Dr Lepisto, the ND who helped me starting in 2006 as a patient, then with content at Lumigrate in 2008 and after for a while, as collaborators in the integrative center, was to receive the chair in 2015 when he happened by when I was selling it as part of my "Mardy PopIns Project" phase.  It seemed symmetrical.  Then, when you read about O'Rio, later, he knows O'Rio through the owner, he got to see the new, mellow fellow when I ran into him before the 2016 Super Bowl when picking up refreshments.  

It took me five years to figure out what that clearly 'special needs' and 'my teacher' kitty was to teach, long past when she was euthanized for what I finally realized was 'autism'.  Thanks to an autism mom online describing her child's pupil response with going into crazy rage fits, which were improving after years of the usual diets for such things, as she'd found out about the fenbendazole / reishi protocol.  She'd been the poster gal that had the links being handed to I'd later learn from the group founder, to post about "the fenbendazole - like patent trail".

Thankfully a DVM of the homeopathic / holistic kind put a video on her website about a cat with autism-like symptoms she treated, successfully.  Interestingly it was also a tortie (within the calico grouping, considered intelligent, sensitive, etc.)  And I've spoken with Temple Grandin, who agrees with me that cats and dogs (and horses and ..... ) are having a rise in symptoms that are essentially autism in those species. 

O'Rio is the dog that I'd get connected to in June 2015.  O'Rio Grande, "of the Grand River" --  the Colorado River that runs through Grand Junction used to be called the Grand River, plus in the winter he looked like a locomotive for Rio Grande railroad from the old days chugging down the tracks -- he was so big in the winter of 2015/16, a year ago.  Now he is so rehabilitated, and it's inspirational! Part of the reason for the pseudo name was his owner's name given to him is the same name as the first person I'd be 'connected to' for helping as Mardy PopIns, trading housing for helping.  So that helped to provide confidentiality for the people involved.

O'Rio, early 2016. Muddy, needing a bath to get 'The Stuff' off of him, which contributes to health issues.  The things in the car to lie on were then also needing to be cleaned, and new strategies for keeping The Stuff reduced, such as drop cloths that are washed daily or almost daily, as needed, where the dog lies the most. More frequent and thorough house cleaning.

Notice his eye redness -- similar to mine in 2013 in the photo of me, below.  Is there a connection? Maybe so!


       Taken at reunion of my peers from "South Park" elementary and junior high, which is actually West Jefferson in Jefferson County, Colorado.  (See what I refer to about the show South Park, here, for more details about that.  Many find it some of the more interesting things I offer as 'insight'.  Yes, we're all goofy and / or sick, just like the show portrays!)

I just yesterday helped O'Rio's owner give him a self-serve wash at Chow Down Pet Supply in Grand Junction, and now she's well underway with reversing her symptoms she'd not yet figured were environmental illness-related until 2015 and 2016 in the summer.  She went about what to do aggressively with true 'take charge' patient proactivity; to learn, grow and create a YOU! Model of providers mixed from what's great from modern medicine that insurance pays for AND what's great from other providers that one has to pay for out of pocket.  This was clearly, to us, guided and 'meant to be'.

While she was feeling really unwell, was homebound due to the side effects of treatments which are now proving successful, I opted to dedicate each day to rehabilitating her house. Each one, reach one, is the concept -- thanks to Alice, Amazing Alice who wrote that last summer just before she died of cancer after also having fibromyalgia.  And at about the time O'Rio's owner 'had her aha' about what was going on and got on it -- and is now improving.  Yay! We were very proud of ourselves for having the endurance and strength and brainpower to wash TWO large dogs in one hour! All were happy campers after.  Grate Full to Chow Down in the Redlands in Grand Junction! 


My Professional Dilemma As a Provider in Mainstream Being Reversed Via OutSide The Box Providers

I'd always been able to get 'weller' by doing a mixture of what I learned from insurance-based providers, books, and later, providers 'outside the box' that didn't take insurance.  But I'd not been allowed to tell my patients about that kind of thing when I was working as an occupational therapist in insurance-based outpatient in the big mainstream medical building. 

I got away short term with having some truther-telling providers mixed in with our seminar speakers from within mainstream, organized medicine and from our building, but it was raising eyebrows and there were questions about my competence to oversee hand therapy, since I didn't know hand therapy well -- but I know how to supervise well.  Despite no known denials of payment, complaints by patients -- quite the opposite.  (Just sayin'!)(and this is partly why I'm known locally in professional circles as a 'bridge burner', I want to add. 

I'm here for the patients / consumers, ultimately.  Even with the providers I find on Lumigrate.com to give information, if I find out their products are not doing right for people, or they're continuing to sell a product to people after there's new information that would indicate that product might not be good for the patient, I move on to find providers and content that will keep on the cutting edge of truth. 

I want to support those providers who are with good intentions, trying to provide good services to help people, but in explaining what's going on with health care to educate people and be telling the truth, I end up revealing things.  So if you're appreciative of that, Lumigrate's going to be a place you'll hopefully value and utilize.  The Lumigrate YOU! Model is as 'patient centered' as it can be! 

Lumigrate has been a massively difficult undertaking for me. Like most business starters, if you could fore-see everything going into it that would occur, you'd not have started it up.  I like YOUsers to have my transparency about the highlights of what I've done to create and nurture it along.  Having initially been estimated to be $8,000 the developer pulled a trick and didn't bill me for the first two months, which were the busy holiday seasons of November and December. 

My father would have a debacle health issue / fall -- almost be dead and definitely out of his mind delusional -- just before Christmas, and I'd then be going over the Rockies every week (except one when I had a bug hit me and everyone else here, influenza then cold symptoms), for six weeks.  

I'd hired a wonderful former patient as part time business manager and bookeeper, who wanted to start in January, so she got hit with bills just as she got going for 2-1/2 X the expected amount, and a website half completed. My parachute for funding was my father, who'd just offered me money at Thanksgiving and I'd asked to wait until I was home end of the year for Christmas, but that visit would take place at a hospital and he'd be getting a feeding tube with my supervision and signature at the hospital -- required by them as he was so incapacitated cognitively.  Talk about "The Perfect Storm", eh?

It only got more complicated from there, both with the web developer and my father and family dynamics.  It would turn into something you'd see in a good novel or movie, almost unbelievable things that occurred, such as his 'old lawyer' who he preferred using secretly rather than the lawyer I had found and suggested, being old like my dad AND not far behind him in what appeared to me to be the same disease process!  

So he wasn't competent.  But he was the founder of the practice, so his partners or whomever didn't have him step aside until the week my father passed and it was clear in our meetings that I was seeing what was going on and wasn't going to take a back seat with it the way the family member in charge of things had gone about it to that point. 

The family member wasn't a professional in a field like what I'm experience with, nor do they have the abilities I have for seeing things going on and reading situations -- and said they literally had not 'noticed' that the lawyer was not competent. 

I'll not say more about the website development issue aside from that I learned from an employee at my reputable hosting service that this is something they hear about happening about once a week to their customers who tell them their tales of woe from working with people they hire as webmasters.  I'm wanting there to be transparency at Lumigrate, and for YOUsers, as I termed the users of Lumigrate due to the YOU! Model, to get the history of me and Lumigrate in general.  I hope you're finding it interesting so far! 

I've shifted with the content as the days, weeks, months and years went by having Lumigrate on the Internet. I'd learn of a book called "Honest Medicine", whose author is part of what I include in a topic in the Forums (about LDN or Low Dose Naltrexone, as her core information but she goes out into all directions from there, similarly to how Lumigrate does in general with our content in Forums (and blog, and etc.)    


The Lumigrate Logo --- IF EVERYTHING HAD BEEN THAT EASY!.....

We're very proud of our logo, which receives amazing feedback and truly shows that 'a picture is worth a thousand words'.  The purple and green 'threads'  represents 'integration': to bring together; we believe there is some work involved to weave or knit things into something new, strong and functional. 

The light burst from the center represents "luminous".  You'll see the slogan with our logo is "Lighting the Path to Health and Well-Being".

We're glad you're here, and in case you have the same question most people do, here's something to start with to explain what Lumigrate 'is', and 'integrative medicine' means.  In order to make a good 'first impression' and welcome newcomers, we won't change this page frequently, but the blog is regularly updated and something's always new in the Forums! YOU could write there now! Fun. Progressive. Valid. Streamlined. (Are the main concepts we're 'integrating' with Lumigrate).

Lumigrate is bringing health information to you based on the concepts of 'integrative medicine', which basically believes in 'body, mind, and spirit' and 'functional medicine', which looks at the underlying causes of health or illness and works from there, not from treating the symptoms.  You'll find one of our core beliefs is it's not 'one cause .... one effect', it's an accumulation sometimes. 

The "You Model" on the home page is intended to empower the patient/consumers to build a team of health care consultants around themselves and know they are in the key, central role with their health, NOT the providers. Medical providers who are open to such a concept will be receptive from education coming from their consumers, and with educated consumers getting information to others, much change can occur within the health care system, we believe.  Big changes take a long time, but with a philosophy of 'many hands, light work', Lumigrate has set out to have a big impact on health care for all those who find it and utilize it with THEIR teams! 

With the integrative medical model, the MD and/or DO is part of a team of many -- naturopath, acupuncture, exercise physiology, nutritionist, aesthetics (as people care so very much about what's on the outside AND it is a reflection of what is going on within the body), chiropractics, spirituality, psychology, therapies such as physical, occupational, speech, nurses and nurse educators, massage, homeopathy, etc. We realize that most people don't have an integrative center in their community or the time, energy and money resources to go to all of these providers, so we're providing information from each aspect AND providers who work remotely through technology and oftentimes at a reasonable price because of their reduced overhead on 'brick and mortar'.

Underneath the logo and the slogan, you'll see the 'tab bar' that has Eight Videos (6 are about hour-long, two are 10 to 20 minutes from MD, ND, Psychology), Products (which highlight things from the videos about books, websites, products (foods, supplements)), Blog (where I regularly write on a variety of topics and highlight different valid and progressive providers and information sources), and then ForumsPodcasts are currently listed in Forums, and have been very popular; they can be listened to from the computer, you do not need a portable electronic device.

Since we believe the health-educated public has much to contribute, we encourage consumers as well as providers to write in the Forums. Many people in these changing times have seen the emergent and emerging need for 'more hands on deck' and are quite knowledgeable without the 'formal training and certifications' required in the times of 'modern medicine'.  We encourage and also scrutinize sources for their backgrounds, motivations, and authenticity. 

Much of our initial content was about 'fibromyalgia', which is a health challenge for an increasing number of people, potentially 20% in the United States have the symptoms consistent with it's developing if changes aren't made to reduce the stress and burden to their body/mind/spirit.  Most information sought after to help manage/reverse this one chronic illness that I call 'the F word', also is information most busy, stressed people will find helpful for their health.  These are also 'regular people' and have interest in information about older parents, aging, colds and flu, supplements, exercise, skin, nail and hair care, etc. so we continually offer what is 'of interest' to our followers! 

Chronic wellness instead of chronic illness the intention. Prevention if possible, finding those sliding from wellness to illness and intervening before a health 'crisis' a goal. But for those who are at the bottom -- I've been there, and Lumigrate is about what I know works for me and millions of others.

Lumigrate's premise is that YOU are the most important person with your health care and you're recruiting and securing the team of providers and information sources around you to help you with the 'occupation' of your health care (as it 'occupies' time).  I have fifteen years experience as an occupational therapist working with the elders of our country, those with mild head injuries, and even driving rehabilitation with young through old, so I will be sharing information about adaptations and equipment for when medical impairment occurs in increase safety and function.

So now you've had your Intro to Occupational Therapy, Integrative Medicine, and Lumigrate, and I look forward to what YOU do from here! New information is added all the time, so please come back regularly AND tell others about us!  Each person makes a difference, and it's very synergistic, 'organic' and dynamic and we look forward to being a resource for more people to positively change their health and well-being.

Live and Learn. Learn and Live Better! And thank you for joining and promoting Lumigrate! ~~ Mardy 



Live and Learn. Learn and Live Better! is my motto. I'm Mardy Ross, and I founded Lumigrate in 2008 after a career as an occupational therapist with a background in health education and environmental research program administration. Today I function as the desk clerk for short questions people have, as well as 'concierge' services offered for those who want a thorough exploration of their health history and direction to resources likely to progress their health according to their goals. Contact Us comes to me, so please do if you have questions or comments. Lumigrate is "Lighting the Path to Health and Well-Being" for increasing numbers of people. Follow us on social networking sites such as: Twitter: http://twitter.com/lumigrate and Facebook. (There is my personal page and several Lumigrate pages. For those interested in "groovy" local education and networking for those uniquely talented LumiGRATE experts located in my own back yard, "LumiGRATE Groove of the Grand Valley" is a Facebook page to join. (Many who have joined are beyond our area but like to see the Groovy information! We not only have FUN, we are learning about other providers we can be referring patients to and 'wearing a groove' to each other's doors -- or websites/home offices!) By covering some of the things we do, including case examples, it reinforces the concepts at Lumigrate.com as well as making YOU feel that you're part of a community. Which you ARE at Lumigrate!

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Example left to Learn From -- Spammers Struck in December 2011

Mardy's note, from December 3, 2016 -- with 23,000 reads of this so far --- In the wee hours of a night in December 2011, this week it'll be five years ago, when I thought anything that would go wrong from how the website was turned over to me / us was past, it would turn out that the guy's recommendation to just let anyone register and not have me/ us have to approve new users would be flushed out as yet another not so great thing he did. 

I spent much time removing all the others on this thread, but am leaving this one so people can see and learn, in my transparency today (December 3, 2016), coming up on five years on that UGH morning when I got up to see tons of new threads from spamming, and comments on other threads, or on the ones they created. 

UGH is ironic as much of what they're selling cheap or knock off versions of was Ugg boots... grins.  Gotta keep your sense of humor!  I've replaced their links to their unethical , wrong, perhaps illegal sites with bolded underlined words like were in the links....

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........ and on it went, I'm just removing and not adding underlined bolded words from the rest -- there were another seven, below ..........

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