Four Letter Word

Fear. It has dominated most parts of my life. There have been many things I have done that I did not want to but was afraid to say no; there have been many things I have not done because I was afraid of doing them. In both directions, my life has been ruled by fear.

This applies to my wellness, too. I have done and not done things simply due to fear. ‘I need to have this test done because of scary stories about people who did not; I need to not eat that food because it will clog my arteries.’ Fear, fear, fear.Fear

Sometimes tests do need to be run; sometimes food really does clog my arteries. However, these decisions need to be based on something other than fear. When I act out of fear all I get is more fear; suddenly I am in a spiral that cannot be checked. Suddenly my health is no longer there because it has disappeared in a giant puff of fear.

Fear is such an ingrained response for me, I don’t even see it coming. I often think that I am operating on other principles; it is easy for me to fool myself. It is easy because our culture is bred on fear. We learn that fear is the natural response and what we should be feeling. “You are not afraid? What is wrong with you?”

Fear stops so much momentum in my life. It stops my very breath; when I am afraid I am not breathing. Life is based on breath and when I am holding my breath my life goes on hold: all motion stops. The funny thing is, motion helps me combat fear. When I am proactively taking steps on an issue there is always less fear than when I am cowering in a corner. Even if the steps are small, they are motion. 

Acupuncture works well with my fear. Each week that I come there is motion: the energetic motion created by the insertion of the needles and the physical motion of me showing up for an appointment. There is also the motion of me committing to a course of treatment and seeing it through.

The treatment itself works with my fear. Each time needles are inserted I learn another lesson about my body’s physical responses. I learn that responses I thought were negative and fearful are not necessarily. I learn how my body interacts in the world, a language I am very disconnected from.

Acupuncture asks me to be present in the moment and open to what is going on, another antidote for the fear nibbling at the sides of my brain. Any time I am severely caught in a fear reaction I am usually not present.  When I am caught in this reaction I am not engaging in life.  I am closing my door to all experiences, not just the scary ones.  

Acupuncture helps me to loosen the grip on the negativity that eats my brain. Fear and negativity are buddies. Acupuncture slowly replaces that negativity with positive truth; this is not the same as a sugar coated reality. Acupuncture does not allow me to circumnavigate my situation but it shows me how positivity exists even in hard places.

Acupuncture teaches me to be grateful for what is, the greatest remedy to fear. It teaches me to appreciate the journey; it allows me to move past that four letter word.

 

Are you Living, or Just Alive?

Life is described as many things by different people, but one thing it can never be defined as is stagnant.

Life is always changing, evolving, increasing, or decreasing in capacity. It is in a constant state of flux.  While you are sitting there seemingly doing nothing, your body is always on the job building and repairing tissue, creating new cells, growing hair and nails, digesting food, etc.  The degree to which your body is able to do these things depends primarily upon the health and vibrancy of your meridian system. There are certainly other factors that come into play such as proper nutrition, level of exercise and adequate rest, but even their potency is diminished when shackled by a weakened supply of energy flowing through the meridian system.  Life is supported by the meridian system and emanates outward into all of your cells, muscles, nerves, organs and tissues.  All other variables being equal, the body is at its healthiest when there is a steady and free flow of energy within the meridian system.  When the meriLiving or Dyingdian system is blocked, or out of balance, your quality of life diminishes.  Think of it as a hose that is pinched and not able to supply the adequate amount of water to a growing plant. Eventually the plant will  die from lack of water.

It is not necessarily safe to assume that you are at your healthiest, or to put it another way, at your most alive, simply because you are living, breathing, and exhibiting no obvious pain or symptoms.  While your level of health may seem completely stable on the outside, in actuality it can be fluctuating under the surface.  A cavity quickly becomes a very painful toothache when the nerve is exposed, but the process leading up that point can take months, or even years.  Nobody would argue that all the while the tooth was unhealthy under the surface even in the absence of symptoms.  To ensure that your body remains at its healthiest, it is essential to maintain a balanced, optimally functioning meridian system and to continually supply your body with the power that it needs to thrive. To merely be symptom-free is not enough.  While many people associate acupuncture with pain relief, the true essence of an acupuncture treatment is to support the normal and balanced flow of energy within the body.