Healing Touch: How it might help you…

A few years ago I was living in Connecticut where I had grown up and found myself vocation-less! I had returned to Connecticut from California  in order to be with my mother who was ill at the time. I had been working in the career center of the Haas School of Business at Berkeley for ten years teaching communication and though I enjoyed my work felt ready for a change. A move across the country was not an easy one at midlife but I believed it was the wisest choice at the time. I thought, at first, I would attend a graduate program in health advocacy at a nearby college but soon found the program to be lacking in material interesting to me. I worked at the local hospital for a few months as part of the graduate program and enjoyed this work very much. I really liked the interaction with the patients and their families as well as learning about specific medical issues.

In my own life whenever I have had a medical problem or someone I loved was ill, I have always enjoyed doing research on what the potential therapies were that might help. I have found that complimentary care has often been more useful to me than traditional medicine. I have had an ongoing back issue and without the help of my complimentary therapists who used  rolphing, Reiki , osteopathy and massage, I wouldn’t be able to function as well as I do. I found these angels through a long search using friends and others. One day back in Connecticut I was speaking with my sister about life and she suddenly announced she wanted to become a healer. She was closing her bookstore of 30 years standing and wanted a new career. She asked me to find the most reputable place to study.Well, before I knew it, I was fascinated by the idea of being a healer as well and embarked on a path to find the best place for our training.

I found Healing Touch by searching through databases showing practices used by nurses in hospitals as I wanted to find something that was recognized by nurses and doctors as well. My sister and I began our rather long and very rigorous training thinking we would just take the basic course and then go to work. Imagine my surprise when I realized , three years later, I had completed the certification process and was now a Certified Healing Touch Practitioer!

The journey was a long and interesting one and I am grateful for my clients and my mentors who helped me along the way. I was lucky to be invited to work at the Boyd Center in Greenwich, CT  and I set up practice in a room which was supplied to me by Dr Barry Boyd, and was eventually hired by the Greenwich Hospital Integrative Center as their Healing Touch Practitioner. I spent  three years working with many different types of clients: some were very sick and some were depressed and some were normal folks who wanted help with sleep issues or depression. I love my work and can’t imagine a better and more satisfying career at this point in my life.

Moving back to California has been wonderful in most ways but more difficult in others as it is hard to begin again and re-establish a practice in a community. I am diligently working on doing this and I know I will succeed.

Work is very important in life and it matters not only in terms of a livelihood but, more importantly, a vocation. The passion of work is the biggest gift we can give ourselves. Without this passion life is very mundane, rather like picking up the phone each morning and listening to a dial tone. Many people are surprised to find I have a career,  as it seems that I don’t need money. They are missing the point of life. It is interesting to imagine what your life would look like if you had enough money and didn’t have to work. I know most people are not lucky enough to have this oppportunity.  What would you do with your time? If your children were grown and there was no one to account to, ask yourself how would you spend your day? Many people think this is the best idea they have heard and imagine true and complete happiness at this freedom. Don’t get me wrong, I know how lucky I am in having this blessed life. I do think it is interesting to look at what we would really do if we didn’t have to think about salary because it isn’t as easy as it sounds. The hardest part of this search is discovering within yourself what work you truly value for the work  itself, and not the salary. You could be a gardener and not enjoy what you planted. You could be a psychologist and not be heartened by the strength you help nurture in your clients. Whatever you chose to do in life is only worthwhile if you believe it is worthwhile. The interesting part is discovering what you value and why.

I value my work with Healing Touch as I help my clients feel better. It is as simple as that. I get enormous satisfaction from hearing that a client feels better when they leave my treatment room and hearing they feel happier, lighter, and more positive. Healing Touch has brought meaning to my life in a way nothing has before and I am grateful to have found this path.

Labor Day and Other Holidays for Single People

I have been conducting a survey  of the single population and researching attitudes about holidays. I have been doing this because I hate holidays and I wanted to see if all my other single friends felt the same way. The answer in a nut shell is : some do and some don’t but most do. I hate holidays because they make me feel alone if I have no plans and I can easily fall down that rabbit hole of anxiety and think I have no friends, no life, no interesting work, I am useless, etc, etc, etc….everyone else is out there in a happy group having fun and laughing and feeling cozy.Now I know all of you who are reading this will think to yourselves, no, she doesn’t really believe that, but, in fact, I can think those exact thoughts. I was speaking with my daughter the other night and she was saying that I had always liked to make plans for holidays. At first I resented this remark as I felt defensive hearing her say that. I felt as if I were defective in some way having this character flaw so I began my research into the matter. Was I alone in feeling this way or did others fall right down the hole with me?

It is interesting as many long term singles(I count myself in this category) will not state openly they hate holidays as they have become used to not acknowledging their own feelings of loneliness no matter what! As people who have chosen to live their lives without a partner we have certain responsibilities to the rest of the world. We must appear as if we are happy and content in our solitary lives and some or most of the time we are. If we appear this way we are more likely to be seen as entertaining people who will be invited places. This is important as we like being invited places. For some reason holidays are times when people invite family and not friends to join them most of the time. My family is spread out all over the place and therefore I can’t impose myself on them here.

I hate the feeling of abandonment and anxiety as I don’t know how to make it go away. Well, that is not completely true.I do know at this popint in my life how to handle it and here are some of my tricks and solutions:

Tell yourself this will pass and remember how it has passed in the past(I like the rhythm of that statement)

 Look at only the day in front of you beginning the night before and make some small plans for yourself that involve only you! The gymn, a yoga class, a hike, a meal out sitting somewhere you enjoy, an art project or something similar, a visit to a museum, a movie. Make a schedule in your mind and follow it the next day.

Be sure to think of yourself following the schedule and feeling happy and content as this is what makes these tactics effective. Visualize yourself having an amazing day.

Speak to strangers. This is a very good thing to do. Obviously we can’t speak to all strangers but be selective and enjoy the people you will meet.

Take a walk in your neighborhood.

Lie on your back in the sun.

Buy a new book that entices you and then go home and read it!

Play with someone’s pet for at least 15 minutes. This could also be your own pet!

Drive around SOMEWHERE NEW!

Plant something even if it has to be in a pot.

Choose a movie to see that is completely unlike you(childrens or scifi or whatever)

Go to the zoo.

speak to more strangers

Be sure not to stay home during “L’heure bleu” the hour of darkness between 5 and 7 as it will tend to make you sad

call up someone and invite them for a walk

think about the world and wonder what will happen and then write down what you wondered.

If all of the above don’t help you then email me and I will. I find doing my healing work really makes me feel happy and peaceful in the world. If I am feeling a bit sad I look for someone who needs Healing Touch and I offer it to them. After a session I always feel grateful I found this work. In the long run there is no one to help you with these feelings of sadness in life. There are buffers you can use like family and friends and they do help but learning to conquer the fear of abandonment is one of the greatest hurdles we face. If we stick to it eventually we learn how to surpass it and we know what to do when we feel it. We stop trying to push against it and allow these feeling’s to wash over us and pass on which is much less unpleasant that one might think. If we spend a lot of time and energy trying to avoid the pain of finding ourselves alone we miss the pleasure that can be found in it.

I am an optimist and a romantic and I hope that before the end of my time in this life I find a partner to share my life with. Most of my single friends have given up this hope but I refuse to. What I have been pondering recently is why it feels so hard for me to imagine another person in my house or my life all the time?I have successfully avoided this for may years telling myself this was right for me. Now I am wondering what it would be like to share space with someone and to trust that person to allow me to be truly myself. I think it might be a good thing. I am practicing this thought. I know when I am finished the right man will appear.

Labor Day for Romantics: some ideas on what to do…

 

Three days before the real world begins again and snaps us up with its giant zig zag grip of organized days and hours labeled with to do items. The last sweet days of summer meant to be filled with hyaciinth and jasmine, mustard and ketchup, cats and dogs, loud and soft, bitter and sweet, all jumbled together to make a memory. Where to go? What to do? An almost desperate need to hold on to the moon’s edge and dangle over summer night, dipping toes into the summer lake of dreams, walking barefoot over the sharp beach pebbles and feeling the last sweet breath of the night jasmine over the arbor in the meadow. Why not lie in the fragrant hay field and keep still for an hour watching the small ant colony pack up their wares and get ready for the move south? Split open a watermelon and suck the sweet juice from the corners while counting the small black seeds like many eyes upon your face. Make a costume for your dog out of scraps of felt and let them walk you in the parade on Main Street even if there is no parade. Have a Dusty Miller and be grateful for malt and coffee ice cream. When the dark hour of the day appears shine a light on your memory and wash out everything there but joy.

AN OLDER WOMAN THINKS ABOUT HER LIFE

 

The Mother

 

            Where the Hell is everyone? She is alone again. It’s cocktail hour and there’s no cocktail. No nice little frosted glass of that California chardonnay she liked. No nicely starched butler to serve it to her. The butler. Oh yes. The butler had died. No more Grasshoppers. No more being called Madam. She liked that. “Madam” Had a nice little ring to it. He was an annoyingly bothersome man but she had fun with him. She got him back. He thought he had won all those times he snotted her. She got him back after all. But she did miss him. Now there was no one to play with. No evening repartee. The sun set all by itself and there were no canapés to slip down with it or sly smiles to edge around the windy nights. His wife didn’t cook anymore she wept into the food, making the soup watery and the sauce, curdled. It really wasn’t any fun around the dinner hour. Not that there was fun around any other hour either. What the hell happened to fun? They had fun years ago when there were parties and people were over and they dressed up: wore clothes from the cedar closet and slipped away to corners of the house where no one was. Corners where things happened that you might have only dreamed have and the next day everything was back to black and white.  The trouble was with the weather, everyone knew that.

 

It was dark more often,

Hurricanes came: wars, rain, tears, liquid made from pain,

Explosions in our minds without warning,

Soon it will be too dark to see.

The world longs for another,

A sister globe to pull up alongside us,

And she can unload us, her human crop,

To start again on a pure globe, free of the knowledge of destruction,

Filled with rich ochre and rudimentary origin

A sister ship of optimism,

She will slide alongside before winter, and the first to go aboard are the ones

Who are dying from the pain of the watch.

Quentin Tarentino

Quentin Tarentino is considered to be a genius by many film lovers in today’s world. I am writing this blog to ask why this is? I have made this my research project for a few days. I asked people I respect both old and young why they like his films and whether or not they liked the violence in them. Most people liked his films very much and did not object to the violence. Men and women felt this way. One friend said he found the violence “appropriate” and not “gratuitous” I now wonder why so many people find it appropriate to have violent films be considered entertainment? After I saw the newest Tarentino film I had to go home and watch  “Bewitched” through three episodes. Luckily there is a channel that repeats them for a while. I had visions in my head of people being scalped, guns exploding and blowing apart someones head, and lives ending all over the place. Where does this love of violence come from, I continue to ask. One friend said he liked it because it was the bad guys getting their due. This was a whole new thought process for me. Revenge was at issue here, I thought. Bloody and instant revenge which produces a sense of joy in the beholder. Again I thought how frightening this was in a culture. It is much like our children being exposed to needless violence on television but more important, on the nightly news channels. Do they grow up wanting more violence to be entertained? I know I am alone in thinking this way and many consider me to be old fashioned but I find this love of Tarentino something to be frightened of. I don’t like violence and I don’t like blood and I hate to be scared. There is only one place I like to be scared and that is the roller coaster. I couldn’t wait to be tall enough to go on the Cyclone at Playland in Rye, New York. The slow and jerky crawl to the top of the first big hill was the high point of my childhood and the sudden drop down the hill with a scream in my throat is something I will never forget. I still love remembering that moment today and though I wonder if I would like to repeat it again it is very satisfying to me.

I think terrorism is scary. I think letting terrorists go free is scary and I think governments who do that are incredibly stupid. What frightens me about the recent incident in Scotland is that Scotland has gone from being a romantic and fanciful place  filled with visions of queens and lake monsters to being a country that was now suspicious. I can no longer think of Scotland as a benign place but have to see it as a country with unstable leadership making illogical decisions. What kind of a deal could they have made in order to release this terrorist?

So there you have it on this Tuesday. Terrifying films and terrifying decisions by national leaders. Maybe if there was a universal channel and we all watched Disney cartoon, Lucille Ball reruns and Bewitched, things would end out better in the long run.