“Heal”, the Movie

When I was 13, I was blessed with the onset on chronic pain.

Wait, what?

Yup. Of course I didn’t see it as a blessing till much, much later. But from that young age I was exposed to the limits of western medicine. The doctor offered me some stretches and suggested I spend this time of crisis lying on my back on the floor. While that helped to some small degree, it certainly was no remedy for the suppression of emotions and crushed first chakra energy that plagued me. There is no remedy for the spinal malformation that creates a weak link in my low back, except for perhaps surgery, which fortunately was never recommended.

The blessing lies in the shift of my life trajectory which led me to the chiropractor, yoga class, applied kinesiology and resulting dietary changes, homeopathy, massage, Reiki, meditation, affirmations, and spiritual exploration. Not only did holistic health become my path for finding comfort in my body, but eventually my career and passion. Before this pain, I was destined for a future seeking fortune and happiness outside of myself and very likely some soul-sucking job that drained my life- force and health gradually.

Over the decades I’ve learned much about healing. Some key points are that pain is a message that imbalance is present and ignoring or suppressing the message is not helpful;  pills don’t cure; my thoughts, beliefs, and emotions affect my health; and the biggie: I’m the only one responsible for my well-being. I feel blessed that I began these lessons at such a young age and have had so many opportunities to expand my understanding. Rather than waiting for everything to fall apart at 50 as I see so many of my peers doing, I’ve been perfecting my practice of self-care and well-being. I anticipate turning 50 in a few years and feeling better than ever!

I was overjoyed to find this movie online, featuring many of the healers and teachers I’ve come to admire over the years. People with the courage to step out of the mainstream way of thinking and follow their hearts and intuition to share gifts; gifts which are often beyond the comprehension of the general public. Not only have they helped so many people find health and happiness, but they helped pave the way for the likes of me. This documentary is quite comprehensive in content and heartwarming in essence.

If you’re curious about alternative medicine, dissatisfied with the results of conventional medicine, or yearn to go deeper into the metaphysical realm you might find some understanding or perhaps even inspiration here. For me it brought a sense of belonging to a bigger community of believers; a bit of healing in itself as I often find myself confused and struggling in a world that makes no sense to me.

If nothing else, it might plant a seed that healing is a way of being and relating to yourself with love and kindness. From there, miracles are possible.

It’s Going to be the Best Year Yet! And a Supportive Reiki Special

That’s my intention anyway. Many years ago I stopped making new years resolutions. I realized that mine were always based in judgment and shame. I would inventory all the things that were “wrong” with me and my life and vow to change them. Given my commitment to loving and accepting myself, exactly as I am, the resolutions had to go.

Instead I choose to focus on my intentions for the new year. I reflect on what is working for me and what isn’t, what I’d like to experience and create, and how I’d like to feel. I spend some time at the beginning of each year getting crystal clear about where I’d like to be heading during that revolution around the sun.

Once I know where I’m going, I have a reference point for making all my daily decisions. No matter where I am now, it’s simple to consult my desire and choose options that point me in the right direction. An important part of this plan is surrendering the specifics, allowing myself to receive unexpected gifts and guidance, and acting when I feel inspired.

person s holds brown gift box
Photo by Kim Stiver on Pexels.com

This is so different than the forcing I used to do with resolutions! There’s much less banging my head against triple-locked doors and much, much more gliding through open windows. When I’m in the flow of divine timing, I find synchronicities pointing me in helpful directions. I find myself in the right place at the right time. I find myself meeting allies and being supported in surprising ways. I find myself receiving in ways I never dreamed of. I find myself believing in magic.

The perfect example is when I left an alcoholic and emotionally abusive husband ages ago. We were living in an RV on the outskirts of Santa Fe. I had absolutely no money and nowhere really to go, but I knew I couldn’t stay. I found myself a cute little studio apartment and was all set to move in. Except I didn’t have anything to move! I didn’t let the small detail of a lack of furniture or dishes cloud my determination to be free. Miraculously the tenant who was vacating was in a hurry and unable to take his furniture and dishes. Voila! I never could have planned such a blessing. All I knew was that I wanted my own living space; I followed the signs I was shown, and it was provided for me.

I want us all to have more experiences like that this year, and I wish to be of service to those wanting to make changes in their lives and lifestyles. I find Reiki to be an amazing tool for clearing the way. I’m offering a special on a series of long-distance Reiki sessions: 6 for the price of 5, only $275 through the end of January. My  goal is to offer monthly support for your intentions in order to help you get clear about where you’re going and to remove obstacles (hint: these are usually thought patterns!) along the way. No matter where you may live, Reiki has the capacity to find you and raise your vibration. Contact me to purchase via PayPal and get your first session scheduled!

 

This is NOT the Crown I Ordered!

Tomorrow I go back to the dentist for a filling and a crown. After a two part root canal, I’m feeling quite confident that it will be a smooth and easy procedure. I’ve been paving the way with Reiki. One of the most amazing things about this healing energy is that it isn’t limited by time or space; so I’ve been sending Reiki to this appointment since I scheduled it. It will be there waiting for me, filling the office, and creating a safe and harmonious space for all of us.

This is not the crown I’ve hoped to one day wear!

rust king iron bronze
Photo by Gratisography on Pexels.com

I’m prepared with arnica, propolis, and aromatherapy for any inflammation. Soup and smoothies are ready to blend. Hours have been cleared for recuperation. My favorite comfy sweatshirt is clean. Yoga and meditation will be practiced in preparation. Rescue Remedy, the Bach flower essence for trauma, is on hand. My Kindle is stocked. Intentions and visualizations are ongoing.

Best of all, I have an appointment next week with my Reiki practitioner, who also does cranial-sacral therapy. She did some amazing, gentle intra-oral work for me after the root canal and I had the good sense to reschedule. Yes, intra-oral. Translation: fingers in the mouth. It really helped to relieve the tension in my jaw and realign the joint. It’s now an essential part of my master plan!

Meanwhile I continue with my new Boka electric brush, natural toothpaste, and floss. Remineralization is happening as I type through nutritional choices. Reiki is being used daily for reestablishing healthy flow of life-force energy to the teeth and jaw as well as for accepting what is happening and releasing any negative associations with the procedures.

All hands are on deck for maximum oral health and I’m totally crushing it!

Relieving Upper Back, Neck, and Shoulder Pain

Probably the top complaint I hear from clients is that of chronic and intense discomfort in their upper backs, necks, and shoulders. You’re probably familiar with the nagging sensation, usually beyond reach, often between the shoulder blades. You know, that spot that occupies way too much of your attention and won’t go away no matter how you try to work it out.

The reason that pushing on the spot that hurts (with your own fingers, a friend’s elbow, or a massage tool) doesn’t resolve the pain is that the pain is often a symptom of imbalanced posture in the upper body. Treating the symptom might feel good and bring temporary relief (hey, there’s nothing wrong with that!) but until the root cause is addressed, it won’t be very effective. It’s rather like running around putting out fires rather than taking the matches away from the toddler.

In today’s society, many conditions can cause the head to drift forward of the body.

  • The near-constant rushing and stress that has become common in our culture, and the physiological tightening of muscles that results.
  • The time spent with arms forward of the body: typing, driving, sewing, drawing, holding and nursing babies, etc
  • The long hours spent looking at screens
  • The tendency to be mentally inhabiting the next moment and the next place rather than being present here and now
  • The desire to energetically protect one’s heart
  • Feeling unsafe and wishing to hide emotionally
  • Every other scenario that induces slouching or hunching

Ideally the ears should hover over the shoulders, allowing the vertebrae to support the weight of the head. When the head is chronically positioned forward of the torso, those tired and achy muscles of the upper back are working overtime to hold the head up. Muscles on the front of the neck and shoulders become shortened over time, and those on the back become overstretched.

forward-head-posture

This image comes courtesy of Erik Dalton, a world renowned bodyworker, educator, and creator of Myoskeletal Alignment Techniques. It shows the simple physics of how the weight of a 12 pound head increases to 42 pounds when it is held 3 inches forward. Those muscles are cramped and fatigued because they’re overworked and overextended! Pummeling and poking them is not the answer.

The remedy is in returning the head to a more neutral position. The work of the massage therapist is primarily in releasing the tight anterior neck, chest, and shoulder muscles. Some therapists would argue that working on the muscles of the upper back only make the problem worse! I personally believe that this is an extreme view, and that some soothing Swedish massage of the back can help by releasing trigger points and encouraging circulation. The most important step, however, is one of awareness and continuously correcting posture throughout the day.

I’ve helped clients to overcome this chronic problem that had plagued them for decades. Through a combination of managing posture and stress, targeted stretching on a daily basis, and receiving a maintenance massage once or twice each month, they’re able to experience freedom from near-debilitating pain. Once they stopped treating the symptom and began working with the cause, the results came quickly.

If you’re frustrated that your valiant efforts are not producing desired effects, consider that you might not be treating the source of the problem. Put down the fire extinguisher and gently but firmly remove the matches from the hands of the pyromaniac toddler.

Holiday Special

We have officially entered holiday season. Here in Philadelphia, the weather has turned quite cold and people are bundling up. ‘Tis the season for stress and busy-ness, colds and the flu. More than ever it’s important to make time to rest and restore one’s balance to promote good health and mental well-being.

snow woman winter snowflakes
Photo by Kristin Vogt on Pexels.com

Getting sucked into a whirlwind of constant activity is exhausting. I encourage people to literally block out time on their calendars for self-care. Then when you’re invited to do something, you can consult your agenda and truthfully say, “I have a previous commitment at that time.” Many of us, myself included, find saying “no” difficult, but this little trick works wonders.

My mission is to support and cheer others on as they uncover the wholeness, worthiness, and wellness at the center of their being. In the hopes of making this easier during what can be a challenging time, I’m offering a special on packages of five sessions.

These packages are each valid for one person for one year from date of purchase. It’s possible to mix and match treatments, so there’s no need to decide up front if you desire Reiki and/or massage. This special is available till the end of 2018. Convenient PayPal payments are an option, as are cash, check, or card if you prefer to stop by my office. 

Five sessions for the price of four. That’s a 20% savings!

Five 60 minute sessions = $320 ($80 savings!)

Five 75 minute sessions = $400 ($100 savings!)

Five 90 minute sessions = $480 ($120 savings!)

Five long-distance Reiki sessions = $220 ($55 savings!)

If you’re feeling inspired to spread the peace and joy, you could even use the savings to purchase a gift card for a friend.

Contact me for details or to arrange payment. Or schedule an appointment in the month of December, and we’ll get you set up then.

 

 

 

Reiki for Root Canal, Part 3

Tomorrow I’m scheduled for a root canal. I’ve been preparing for weeks. (See part 1 and part 2 of this dental journey if you wish.) My motivation is two-fold: for the procedure to go as smoothly as possible, and to avoid having to go through this ever again. I’m enlisting all the holistic tools at my disposal to make this a reality.

I continue to use Reiki daily, both for my teeth and jaws, as well as sending it to the procedure itself. Given what I know about trauma, the body’s fight-flight-freeze mechanism, and its physiological responses; my strategy is to promote calmness. Reiki, breathing practices, and yoga are the techniques that come to mind.

I’m also interested in minimizing inflammation, for which I’m using diet, herbs, and aromatherapy. I have propolis and arnica tablets standing by for after the procedure and ibuprofen as a last resort. Rescue Remedy, a Bach flower essence for stress and trauma, will no doubt be a huge help as well.

I was delighted to discover askthedentist.com during my research of holistic support for a root canal. This sight is devoted to functional dentistry. I didn’t even know such a thing existed! There’s tons of information about how to maximize oral health that extends way beyond brushing, flushing, and trips to the dentist. Nutrition is a prime focus as a preventative measure. I ordered a new electric toothbrush and natural toothpaste based on the thorough product research provided.

I’m feeling quite well prepared. My doctor comes with the highest recommendations and I’m doing everything possible on my end to ensure a positive outcome. Naturally massage, plenty of rest, green smoothies and other soft foods, and several book and video distractions will all have a place in my recovery. Taking an active role in my wellness plan (which now thoroughly includes preventing future invasive dental interventions!) has been an empowering process.

I’m ready for my first and last root canal. Bring it on Dr. Lim!

 

Body-Mind-Spirit Integration

I spend a lot of time thinking about what “healing” means. I have physical issues that remain unresolved, but feel “healed”. Likely because I’ve come to terms with these issues and have opened to receive any and all messages they carry. I’ve seen other issues supposedly cured, but not “healed”. The symptoms disappeared, but the underlying condition remained unresolved, allowing other issues to pop up as a result. I would not call this chronic chasing of symptoms “healing” even though it might appear to be so on a superficial level.

So, what then is healing?

The current understanding I have on this complex topic is… (drum roll please!) Healing is the integration of body, mind, and spirit.

It is the recognition that while I have, appreciate, and care for this body; I am not my body. Likewise, I am not my mind. Nor am I my thoughts or my aspirations. I am most definitely not my history, the wounds of my past, the failures or successes I’ve experienced, or my genetic blueprint. I am not my status, my career, my possessions, or any of the other labels I have become attached to or identified with.

I am an extension of the divine, here to have a human experience. The more fully I awaken to this reality, the more fully I embody this truth, the more fully I align my thoughts, words, and actions with this concept, the more fully I am healed.

It seems the key to embracing healing is being present in each moment with a loving heart. Being willing to feel all the feelings and speak the sometimes difficult truth. Making choices that reflect my values and taking leaps of faith when my intuition guides me to do so. Quieting my thoughts and taking care of my body so that I am not distracted by their demands. Honoring my tender heart and nurturing the spirit within. Revealing the inner light and sharing it with the world.

In short, the path to healing is remembering that I’m not separate from anyone else or from the divine. And when I forget, I remember again. And again. And again…