PUT THE NEEDLE ON THE... (MY LOVE FOR ACUPUNCTURE)
Updated: Jan 30
With everything going on in the world currently it’s important to remember the moments that bring us calm and peace. It’s also important to remind ourselves of the practices which bring those moments to fruition. I have a particular affinity for acupuncture. I’ve been doing acupuncture for over a year now. I’ll share what brought me to acupuncture in a moment but let me give a brief capture of what acupuncture is for those who may not be familiar.
What is acupuncture? How does it help? This form of medicine can be a mystery and yet, it has been around for over 3000 years. Yes, 3000. The first documentation of acupuncture described it as an organized system of diagnosis and treatment. This system is made up of points in the body that are connected to different organs and when stimulated can help heal. It can not only help heal acute circumstances but can also manage things like stress and anxiety which can cause the problem in the first place. For me it is both acute healing and preventative at the same time. I’ll admit I don’t know everything there is to know but it’s a fascinating practice.
So why acupuncture for me?
Well for starters, I’m particularly lucky that my acupuncturist has been a great friend of mine for almost twenty years so it wasn’t hard for me to be open. I’ve been around the practice in some form or another vicariously through her own experience and expertise. I also had an unexpected life change a couple of years ago when my mother was starting to show signs of dementia. It didn’t matter how much transformational work I had done in the past, nothing prepared me for the unpredictability of what was to come. As the stress of being a caregiver began to manifest itself physically and mentally I decided to get acupuncture. After all, it couldn’t hurt to manage the feelings, thoughts and stress that can arise when caring for a loved one.
I can only speak of my own experience, as everyone’s experience with acupuncture is unique, so do not take the following as the “norm” when seeing an acupuncturist. However, what I will say is that part of this is about the intention you bring to your own healing. It’s a partnership between you and the acupuncturist. That’s one of the things I find beautiful about this practice. It’s a unique empowering experience where you get to participate in your own healing.
Since my acupuncturist knew me so well already, we dove right into what I was feeling and what kinds of emotions I was carrying around. We talked about how that was impacting my health and other areas of my life. Again, this is my own experience and every acupuncturist is different in the way they practice but I feel compassionate conversation and being heard is incredibly important in healing ourselves before a needle even enters the body.
Once I expressed myself and was heard I felt my body was ready and open to receive the treatment. It’s really a state of vulnerability that allows healing to occur. For those with a fear of needles, you barely feel them go in. There are times where you might feel sensations that can be more intense on particular parts of the body but that’s the internal system moving along what is stuck so blood flow can be achieved in the body. Basically, it’s all good.
I will share with you a particular treatment so you can get a sense of what could happen in a treatment room and the ripple effects. My mother was in a stage of not wanting to eat or drink. She was refusing and I was stressed out about how to create ways to get nutrients in her. I no longer saw her smile or laugh and we were no longer having conversations. I walked into my appointment with this weight and responsibility on my shoulders. After sharing my feelings and then laying on the table for the treatment, my acupuncturist suggested an idea. She said, “let’s treat you as if you are your mother.” I was all in. I laid on the table with needles in me, resting and replaying an image of my mother laughing, being joyful and feeling her spirit within me. I cried and cried, releasing all of the emotions I was holding onto. As a caregiver I tend to forget, especially in the middle of a crisis, to think about myself and the importance of expression. For the first time since my mother decided to stop eating I could breathe. After the treatment, I cried some more and realized I needed familial love. She suggested I go over to her parents’ house and they welcomed me with open arms, some soup, some hugs and a roaring fire (not something to expect if you just met your acupuncturist).
Later that week I checked in on my mother and she was eating again, being playful again. The aide even told me my mother grabbed her hand and kissed it. It was an amazing moment of realizing we are all connected. Acupuncture has given me a sense of spirituality and has allowed me to get in touch with the power I have within me to make change and heal, no matter how small. If I heal myself, I can heal others. This is the beauty of acupuncture for me.
Acupuncture gives me the space to be quiet, to get in touch with my body, my spirit and my emotions. To listen to what’s being asked of me and to understand that we are all connected. I’m grateful for this ancient wisdom and healing modality in my life. I’m also grateful for the practitioners who provide this alternative to healing. It’s important to understand the options we have in bringing health and wellness to our lives.
This moment in time in our world is asking us to go within so we can understand how to balance ourselves, heal ourselves and love ourselves. If we do this, I believe we can start to heal the world.
What are some of the ways you find balance? What practices do you have in place to help in healing?
Much gratitude to my acupuncturist for the support and love: Wellessence.
Be safe, healthy and blessed everyone!
one love! David
© David Medina