Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘acupuncture’

This morning, I dozed back to a restless sleep after my kids left for school. Semi-insomniac that I am, I had a couple of bad nights this week; paired with my lingering health problems, I have been needing more sleep than usual. Some day, I hope to return to productivity and my old “morning person” persona. When did I get this way?

As I slumbered (ha ha, don’t you just love that?), I had a dream with spiders. Huge spiders whose bodies mimicked the fruit of the sweetgum tree, aka, monkey balls (I don’t think that as children we thought they referred to a monkey’s testicles even though every kid knew what balls were).

There was a musician playing a guitar. Another man, too, but I don’t remember who. And Paul was there, I think to save me from the spiders. The spiders were key. There were many, sort of hanging around off the wall and they were huge and some of the spiders had babies. I thought the spiders should not be squashed and that if they were, they would make a bloody mess; bloody both in the British sense of the word as well as the bodily fluid.

I know why the spiders looked like they did in my dream. Yesterday, I had an appointment with my acupuncturist. There are 4 treatment rooms in her clinic and I was in the Herb Room. One wall is made of built-in shelves and on the shelves are glass jars comprising a Chinese pharmacopoeia. One of the jars has something that looks like the monkey balls of which I speak. I am guessing they are the very same, but since I don’t know the Linnaean name nor can I make sense of the Chinese words, I have no way of knowing. I suppose I can check next time I’m in the Herb Room, but I will have forgotten by then.

I think this photo is so lovely. It makes me think warm and happy feelings, like spring. Can you think a feeling or are thoughts and feelings distinct? Certainly, humans have the unique ability to summon feelings. Feelings, as well as thoughts, are simply neuro-chemical impulses after all.

Some time late in my college years, I made a beautiful mobile out of natural objects. A crab claw, a feather, perhaps some sweetgum fruits strung on thread. I can’t really remember. These things perish because they are not rocks or bones or sand. Maybe feathers, like hair, last a long time. Crab claws, they break. We see so many of them on the beach, their shells, too; they are thin and brittle. Maybe they become sand.

The long and short of it is that when I did get out of bed, there was a small, jet-black spider on the wall. It’s not the usual spider we get in the house, but I’ve seen them before. I meant to go back and grab it up into a tissue and put it outside. But I forgot. It dipped down pretty cold today, a freezing wind and no sun so it would have died. I try not to kill them in the house. This creates a dilemma in the winter. Sometimes I do suck them up when I am vacuuming.

Is it better to be squashed to death if you are a spider or to be put outside to freeze? Sometimes, I need my space to be free from spiders, but more often in the winter, I just leave them alone. In warmer weather there is no dilemma.

Are your dreams ever prescient or do you not cotton to that kind of phenomenon? No matter; I believe in the inexplicable and it’s often good enough for me. Science has its charms but I don’t think it can measure everything.

How many spiders live in winter? how many billions of neurons are in your brain? how many stars are in the universe?

Estimated guesses, my doves. You can leave the rest to the poets and dreamers.

Read Full Post »

When I was a little girl in the ’70s, I did not have a scale like the one pictured above.

We seemed to have had the one same bathroom scale forever. It was green, rectangular, and the numbers sort of looked like the ones above, but their little window was rectangular, not ovoid (oval?). But maybe that is wrong. The scale was made of metal. I am sure it didn’t work with any accuracy for at least the last 20 years that my mother had it.

After my father died, my mother moved from a place they had in Toledo to a condo in a suburb of Detroit. After she lived there for about 8 years, she moved again to a condo near us in Stow, Ohio. All this time, she still had that crazy green scale. The mucilaged laminate-covering was starting to peel off at the edges.

It was completely wonky, but I would still get on it every time I used the upstairs bathroom in her condo. I loved the sound it made when I got on it, metal and weights, mechanical movement. I loved the way the numbers took their time going around and finally came to center and I loved the way it was completely wrong. I don’t remember what I weighed on it, but it was not correct. I weighed between 138 and 142 my whole adult life after college and before kids. That’s what I do remember. Maybe my mom’s scale read 135. Maybe it read 155. Who knows, who remembers these things, and why?

I know I had a scale in Kent because that is where I had my pregnancies and babies and I know I weighed myself a lot at that time. I just don’t know what scale we had. Did it break? Did we move it to Massachusetts with us? Did I throw it out, donate it?

Right now, we don’t own a scale. We had one that I really liked, a sort of minimalist glass thing with digital numbers. According to Paul, the thing never worked. I must have bought it at Target, but was it here in Massachusetts or back in Ohio?

it wasn’t this model, but you get the idea

I had to ask the company to send some part for it because it didn’t work right. I think I did that twice. It needed a little watch battery in order to function and I replaced it often, or as often as I thought I should according to the fact that Paul said it didn’t work.

The great thing about the scale not being accurate is that it measured low. So I always thought I weighed less than I really did. What a shock to get to the doctor’s office and weigh around 5 pounds more than I did at home. I always attributed this to being clothed, but we know clothes only weigh about 2 or 3 pounds, maybe 4 in the winter, at least for someone around 5′ 5″ like me.

In each of my pregnancies, I gained 25 pounds. Textbook. I noticed that the very tiniest women gained the most weight. I knew one gal who gained 80 pounds. But that stuff comes right off on those teeny gals.

I took all of my pregnancy weight off after Violet in one week. That is because I was very dehydrated. I slowly gained 8 pounds back and eventually took it off again.

After Annie, I gained a lot of new fat. So even though I eventually weighed 142 again, I had fat on my hips and thighs that remains today. I have never liked it.

Eventually, I got my flat belly back, even after Annie. Until I became anemic in 2006. That was the end of my youthful belly.

When I was anemic and I was seeing my old acupuncturist, she told me that the Chinese say a woman should gain 10 pounds after the age of 40. Is this something I wanted to hear or not? I think about it often. She also said you should never try to lose weight after the age of 40 because you need it as you age and start to waste. This is exactly what Susun Weed says. I saw it happen to my grandmother and I have seen it happen to my mother.

My acupuncturist at that time also told me that in Traditional Chinese Medicine, you don’t weigh yourself. Your weight is none of your business.

I think the point is to use food as medicine and to live a healthy life full of natural movement, warmth, and fresh air. Oh, and sex. I don’t think I’ve ever been to an acupuncturist who didn’t ask me if I was having regular sex.

I know it’s creepy to post this image after talking about sex. My job is not to keep you comfortable.

tres moderne, n’est-ce pas?

The thing that was creepiest about other people’s bathrooms when I was growing up was if their bathroom toilet had a semi-circle of shag carpet on the floor in front of it. Then, a matching toilet seat cover and a matching scale cover. Usually, these were a very dark green. You know of what I speak.

This was the same time that Harvest Gold, Avocado, and Burnt Orange were the most popular kitchen colors.

Now correct me if I’m wrong, but since pee tends to splatter to some degree in any bathroom, weren’t those shag fibers simply pee-absorbers? And why wouldn’t you do the German thing and wash your bathroom once a week on your hands and knees with a bucket of soapy water and rags instead?

I don’t know why I am being so confessional and nostalgic, but all week, I have been thinking about that green scale.

This may be the scale that comes closest to the one in my memory. I probably would have killed for a pink one.

All the scales I find at Target in the last 6 years or so are crap. Made in China of crap, by crappy companies who don’t know anything about Traditional Chinese Medicine anyway. I know I’d have to order a doctor’s scale for about a hundred and fifty bucks if I wanted an accurate scale. But even the doctor’s office nowadays has given up the beauty of metal weights for digitized numbers. You even have to plug the thing in.

I found photos of a neon pink scale on google images. And I found lots of photos of naked pregnant women and let me tell you, that is a wild ride.

Read Full Post »

If you are new here, if you searched for twinklysparkles on google to get here, for instance, you may surprised to discover that I have a tendency to chew on the negative, to get the blues, to sit with my own dry crusty thoughts*

*from the poem What Have I Learned? by Gary Snyder, from the book Axe Handles

I’ve been a bit funky lately and not in a good James Brown sort of way. This condition has put a damper on my creative juices (or is it the other way around, chicken-and-egg like?). This is entirely the reason that I invented Thankful Thursday (yes, I invented it; I was the first, I swear).

I love many things today

I love yoga, the 2 studios I frequent, the teachers whose classes I attend. I love the yoga class I was in on Tuesday night wherein my teacher taught to the body of spring, to our spring bodies, to the shift in the air and light. I love how deep yoga goes, how it inspires me, the coiled snake, the mud, the ooze, the tones of my being, the heat, the invertebrate that resonates in my soft tissue, below the bones. I love the 7 chakras and that each has a sound, a color, and a desire or higher manifestation. I love the double helix and the spirals of my muscles which wrap around my bones.

I love that to be a student of yoga is to be in a state of unknowing, same as to be a student of the Alexander Technique. That in the West, thinking one needs to be positive alone to attain enlightenment is a misunderstanding of complexity. I am not enlightened; I am only on a path and that path has no destination.

I love acupuncture and the lessons my practitioner shares with me. That the Chinese system of looking at the body is more complete and encompassing than a Western approach, that it is both subtle and complex, that I will never understand it, that I know only the tiniest bit about it, but what I know I understand and want more of. I love that the Chinese understanding of the body includes how we relate to the world seasonally, that there is an explanation for how our bodies chime with the brightness of spring and that sometimes this can manifest in restlessness and anger. I love that there are foods and activities that nurture our bodies and that these change seasonally. I love that every part of the self is interdependent. I love the 5 elements though I have little understanding of them.

I love that my Alexander teacher, Missy Vineyard, sent me a link about this.

I love that I wrote my original Thankful Thursday post almost a year ago today. I had no idea when I went to search for it just now. I love symmetry and anniversaries and time as much as I hate them; therefore, I love asymmetry and random occurrences and timelessness.

I love so much that sometimes I am taken down by it. I cry with the spring, I wait for the rain, I walk the earth alone; I let my thoughts whisper and hope they take flight in the moonless, cloudless night. I bear witness to the air, the red planet twinkling, the new prey being eaten in the dark, all that goes past us and beyond our time here.

Read Full Post »

I like when my inbox has fewer than 400 emails. I achieved this about 2 weeks ago–was almost down below 384, but it’s slowly inching up. When I first had an email account, I could keep my inbox to 20 and less.

I love acupuncture. I now have a low tolerance for an aggressive needle-technique. I wonder why I was able to deal with painful-er needles for a number of years. My current practitioner is so, so gentle with the needles. Almost as soon as a couple of needles are in, I feel my system re-balance; often I relax and doze. My long-time toyohari practitioner (a Japanese interpretation of acupuncture in which needles are NOT inserted) said that I take treatment well; my body soaks it up and responds easily. It is good medicine for me. I love acupuncture.

The way eggs feel when gathered right out of a nesting box. I like the way the eggs are warm and the way they are smooth. I like the rosy-colored ones and the chalky green ones especially.

I’m struggling today to find things for which I am grateful. Could you tell?

Read Full Post »