Tuesday evening I was in a favorite place, the kitchen, slicing and dicing veggies for what I hoped would be a delicious dinner, as is my custom, happily listening to NPR. There was a story about recognizing the need to care for women who were pregnant, or recently post-partum dealing with depression. Given the fact that in a past life, (pre-Masters in Oriental Medicine and current beloved career path), I had been certified as a psychiatric and mental health RN, I listened up and hand cut the onions rather than allow the Cuisinart to compete for these words.
Yesterday afternoon found me a little tired, and ready to call it a day when my last patient arrived. We chatted briefly about her upcoming vacation, and her excitement about that. She then volunteered that her last period was the BEST period of her life!
It was fun to see the shocked expressions as people gravitated to our table at a recent Health Fair. They had followed he sound of laughter – only to learn it was caused by pricks of a pin! Or, to be more accurate, an Acupuncture Needle, which five of the women standing there sported.
The women had each voiced curiosity about Acupuncture, mixed with a fear of needles. When offered the chance to try the needling experience at an actual Acupuncture Point, (eleventh point on Large Intestine meridian, in the crook of the elbow), they had all agreed. Well, a few had to be goaded on! Still, their response was consistent, pleasantly surprised. I have told anxious needle phobic people in the past how fine our needles are. How, for example, you could put 18 acupuncture needles in the bore of one hypodermic needle, but, I guess there’s nothing quite like experience to prove a point, (pun intended!)
Earlier this week I was waiting at the very busy deli counter to order my pound of turkey. The obviously frenzied woman looked up at me, saying ‘I’ll be right with you.” “Take your time,” I said, and her face softened. Meeting my eyes she said, “Thank you… that’s the nicest thing anyone has said to me today.” It was such a simple thing to say, yet it was received so graciously! How many times in the course of our days, when we are rushing here and there, do we stop and give ourselves permission to take our time It makes me wonder if perhaps that’s part of the healing journey.
Yesterday afternoon found me at Costco, and like all other Big Box stores, Costco has aisles that seem to go on forever, the pharmacy is no exception. While looking for Vitamin D I found myself in what must have been the gastro-intestinal aisle. There had to be a hundred different items there, something to address every segment of the alimentary canal. At least a half dozen offerings for heartburn, or gastric reflux. Further down the aisle there were pills, tablets, and liquids promising relief from bloating, gas or distention. Then, those for constipation, or diarrhea. When I finally reached the end of the aisle, I laughed to myself, and wondered if it was a wise pharmacist who had designed this area, because there at the end were items specifically for the tail end of our wonderful alimentary canal, hemorrhoid creams and ointments, suppositories which promised quick relief!
Sometimes a break during the day can be a really good thing. My first inclination is usually one of disappointment, as I am in the most fortunate position of really loving the work I do! However, today during my ‘downtime’ I came across an article published by HealthCMi, dated 6/11/2015 titled ACUPUNCTURE BENEFITS ALZHEIMER DISEASE PATIENTS. It was a perfect article for the day, as I’d just learned an hour earlier that a patient I’m quite fond of has just been diagnosed with this dreaded disease!
Have you ever been told you were nominated for a high position? I mean really high….?
A patient told me once I should be canonized! Which for those of you unfamiliar with the Catholic faith means to be made a saint! I’m sure there are at least a few of the good nuns I had in my 12 years of Catholic school who might beg to differ. Still, there was a part of me that was tickled at the notion.
The act that brought about such praise was an Acupuncture Treatment Protocol I’d just learned, referred to as a ‘Pre-birth Treatment’. The simplicity of it is absolutely elegant! My patient reported that after treatment her labor and delivery was entirely different than her first, and she was thrilled!
Yesterday afternoon I was listening to NPR about how poorly our area hospitals ranked in a national survey. I couldn’t help thinking this was one more arrow in my quiver when I speak about or write about how terribly important self-care or preventative medicine is.
The CDC estimates there are roughly 1.7 million hospital acquired infections resulting in 99,000 deaths every single year! That’s 99,000 deaths from infections caused by someone going into the hospital! I cannot imagine anyone reading this and not sharing my shock, and outrage!