Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Am I a New Age Hippie ?

I have joked before that it generally takes no fewer than two professionals to keep me running....various yoga instructors, my chiropractor, Dr. Mike, a therapist for a while, and now a Chinese herbalist and acupuncturist. Writing that out I apppear to be a new-age hippie, or maybe just a DINK with no religion to tell me that Chiropractors are quacks, yoga is for people in San Francisco, you should never air your dirty laundry to a stranger, and that Chinese Herbal Medicine is most definitely a farce. Maybe.

The reality is that I have suffered from neck and back pain for like...hmmm, counting those years I was a child....100 years! Much of my mother's family suffer from the same issues. The difference is that I just don't really want to be 40ish and relying on a steady diet of prescription meds and laying flat on the floor. Of course who knows, I may end up there anyway. (and I love those people- don't get me wrong here- just trying to learn from them).

My attempt to waylay this seemingly inevitable fate drew me first to yoga. Okay, I was also drawn to yoga by the the fact that you get to take a nap as part of your exercise routine and wear cute pants. But those are just fringe benefits. I loved my time spent at the yoga studio. I went 3 times a week. I participated in every new class offering. My arms had definition and I had fun. Of course it was expensive and my neck still hurt.

After we moved away from the yoga studio I started seeing Dr. Mike. At first it was 3 times a week of chiropractic adjustments and it was a lot of money. For the first time in years I was able to move my neck the right way. Score! I still go once a week. I no longer take near daily Advil. I no longer have tingling in my shoulder blades. All good things, but Chiropractic medicine doesn't do anything for muscle tension.

Enter a referral to the acupuncturist. Now I subject myself to this:

and I like it! (and this video is not of me) This practice is called, gua sha, is like having a deep tissue massage in one specified area. It doesn't hurt and immediately releases tension. Of course it leaves you looking like someone dragged you over a cement sidewalk and kicked while you were down. Of course the acupuncture sessions also include the traditional use of needles, relaxing music and a heated mattress and treats a variety of my other personal ailments, of which I will spare you the details of.

lesson for today...very very glad that my friend kate spoke so highly of acupunture this summer. thanks!


hows yr edge said...

I knew I smelled patchouli!!

Kate Mc said...

ooo look at me getting a shout out!

and ps. I love yoga too, who wouldn't love nap time in comfy pants??