Thursday, October 11, 2007
On Pins and Needles
I tried something brand new yesterday. I guess it's been around for centuries, but it was certainly new to me. Acupuncture. Yep, that voodoo doll-like thing where you pay good money to have someone stick you full of needles. And then they have the nerve to tell you to relax!
For a number of years I've been plagued by peripheral neuropathy in my left foot (now invading my right one too) and Restless Leg Syndrome. And did I mention insomnia? The medication I'm taking for the neuropathy and RLS is something I will be on the rest of my life. I'm hoping for another 30 years or so, and hate the thought of having to take meds all that time. My husband, who is very traditional, suggested I look into acupuncture.
Yesterday was my first session. After an involved interview concerning my health history, the doctor had me lie on my back on the exam table. A wedge (not to be confused with a wedgie) was placed under my knees. I must confess I was a wee bit nervous. I do fine with blood draws and shots, but still....
She placed a total of 14 needles in my feet, around my knees, and in my hands. Lucky number 15 went between my eyes. And you know what? I can honestly say it didn't hurt. Most of the time I could just barely feel something going through my skin. She turned the lights down low and put quiet music in the player. Before she left me for about 10 minutes, she said my job was to just relax and breathe deeply. Breathe in whatever I wanted, whether it was energy, or love, or peace. And to breathe out any impurities. Then she closed the door behind her and left me on my own.
As a Christian, I wanted to be sure I wasn't falling into some mystic religious thing. I relaxed and thought, "Okay, God is the source of all energy and is constantly working. What I want to take in is Jesus and His power. So I just kept saying the name of Jesus with each inhalation. And exhaled anything God didn't want in my life. I pictured Jesus being the River of Life freely flowing through me from top to bottom.
It ended up being a spiritual exercise for me, in the best sense of the word. I felt very relaxed and rested when the doctor came back in, as though I'd just had a massage. She tweaked each needle and then removed them, and I set up another appointment for next week. I'll let you know if this works for me.
Photo courtesy of eganu rirrun