Sometimes my clothes make me happy. Today is one of those times. I bought a dress in Louisville a couple of weeks ago and I wore it for the first time today. It’s soft and has these little velvet pockets and I’m really happy with it even thought the sales person who took my money said, “We almost sent these dresses back because they looked nothing like the photo…so I’m glad you like it.” Yeah, well, I do like it.
I also like the floor length 70’s number I bought for five bucks at the same store where the same clerk kept insisting that surely I was purchasing it to serve as my Halloween costume. No, I assured him, I was buying it because it was a sweet five dollar dress that I planned to wear in my normal non-Halloween life.
Speaking of Halloween, I still have glitter on my boots and that makes me happy, too.
This was my massage day. I seriously can’t think of any ill that a good massage can’t put right. Well, except vertigo maybe.
I did take Tracy to the doctor yesterday and found out that his severe vertigo isn’t caused by any other physical condition (good to know). He got some meds that seem to be doing the trick, thankfully. Can you imagine spinning for a week unable to tell up from down? The doc told him the condition would resolve itself in four to six weeks, or he could take a pill and get better faster. Mmmhmmm. We got that pill.
I may have mentioned before that I go through periods of my life thinking that I want to go to nursing school. What I’m specifically interested in is working for hospice, but I’ve always had this weird nagging thing about nursing even though my logical mind knows that I would mostly hate going through the things nurses have to endure and that I would philosophically disagree with much of what I’d be asked to do. Taking Tracy to the doctor’s office nipped my latest bout of nurse-thoughts. As soon as I walked in that place I was flooded with the understanding that nope, this is not for me.
I was thinking about how, when I go to my massage therapist’s office, I am enveloped by a warm nurturing beautiful environment that smells delicious. When I go to get a Reiki treatment, I am welcomed into a warm nurturing beautiful environment that smells delicious. When I used to go to my holistic doctor in Brooklyn, I sat in a visually pleasing, airy, calm waiting room (with live plants!) just like the one I sit in at my acupuncturist. I am/was taken care of from the moment I walked in, my senses tended to, my whole self considered. In each case, I am listened to and respected. I am free to cry, laugh, explain, and I am heard. My body, mind, heart and soul knows as soon as it enters one of these spaces that it has entered into the safety of healing and so the healing begins.
The waiting room yesterday was an assault of hostile florescent lighting and ugliness. Why, I wonder, does western medicine not consider the whole person or the impact of environment on wellness? I know in many cases it’s because clinics and practices are just trying to hang on, working within an impossible system under impossible pressures, but this office I’m talking about is a practice run by five established physicians and a team of nurses and receptionists. They could make changes with very little cost to them that would dramatically improve the well-being of their patients before they even lay hands on them. So much good could be done simply by shifting the focus to wellness instead of illness.
I’m also aware that this is the least of the problem with our healthcare system.
So I’m not complaining so much as I’m just wondering. But still, it does puzzle me, and it also scares me a little that someone like me who doesn't shun allopathic medicine* but is dependent upon complimentary and alternative therapies is a non-entity as far as the establishment is concerned. That’s all right for the likes of me but it’s not all right for people who are financially overwhelmed or are otherwise compromised, disenfranchised and silenced.
See. I would be a really ornery nurse.
I have this joke with one of my friends that I’m “fringe.” It just suddenly occurred to me one day that most of what I hear in dominant culture – most of what’s presented on the television and all around me just couldn’t be further from my own beliefs and perspective. (I watch the Today Show for about 30 mintues every morning and I'm deeply offended about ten to fifteen times during that half hour--although I do like Nancy Snyderman.) I’m talking about big issues, but small stuff, too. I guess maybe what I really am, is a radical – except a peaceful one. I’m a peace radical! A glittery rebel rouser! I take to the streets with my velvet pockets and demand love for all!
And Tracy loves his doctor. He actually said, “Man, I love my doctor,” which is how it should be and I’m happy for the two of them – that they’ve found one another. You need the wellness practitioners on your side, whomever they happen to be. And that, I suppose is my point. This is not a one size fits all world. You must do whatever you can to find the stuff that fits you.
I’m thankful for the healers the universe has sent to me because they are gifted and they enhance and transform my life in tremendous ways. Without my acupuncturist and my massage therapist, I would be in a sad sorry state, indeed. I’m thankful that I’m in a position to be able to make choices. These are the treatments that enable me to thrive. I’m thankful that I’m able to pay for them and thankful that I can afford food that isn’t filled with preservatives, dyes, and high fructose corn syrup. I wish that for everyone.
Did you know I’ve passed the six month anniversary of eating vegan? I still can’t believe how easy it’s been and how much good it’s done me. That doctor in Brooklyn, if she remembered me, would be proud. She tried so hard to get me to change my diet, but I wasn’t ready then. Eating vegan is growing me younger instead of older and that is an incredible unexpected blessing.
A blessing like this dress. I was really on to something when I bought this dress.
(Wear the clothes that feel good – give away the ones that don’t.)
*No, I do not. I have had my share of medicine and innoculations and tests and many of my loved ones are kept alive by the pills they take each day and the treatments they receive. I know I sometimes seem like I'm bashing "medicine" but I'm really not. I'm grateful for medicine. I just don't believe in blindly accepting what dominant culture hands us. I believe in questioning everything. If that makes me fringe, so be it.