As a yoga teacher and studio owner I am very interested in learning about holistic wellness options that treat the mind, body and spirit as a whole. I am fascinated by the different healing modalities that I have been learning about and have been meaning to incorporate more of these holistic treatments into my regular yoga and meditation routine.
Where to begin? I searched around my city and surrounding cities for wellness centers hoping to find a place that offered multiple holistic services, but found that for the most part what I was looking for was scattered throughout Northeast, Ohio. Some of the services I searched for were difficult to find and others had so many options it made my head spin. I meet more and more people certified in reiki, life coaching and other popular alternative services. I love seeing growth within the holistic community but there is always the question of who is credible and who to trust. I guess there is no one-stop holistic shop, sigh... and so I decided to pick one from my list and start there. I chose to begin with acupuncture. I mean, who doesn't want to learn how tiny little needles can be inserted into certain points of the body to relieve a multitude of symptoms and increase the flow of energy throughout the body?
I really did not know much about acupuncture, aside from when Charlotte received a treatment on Sex and the City... You all know what I'm talking about.
Acupuncture originated in China and is now widely practiced in the West. Many medical offices and hospitals offer acupuncture as a complementary medicine to help treat conditions such as muscle pain, back problems, headaches, neck pain, knee pain, digestive issues, allergies, nausea, mood, depression and the list goes on.
Acupuncture practitioners believe that there is a flow of energy or life force known as "qi" or "chi" that is located throughout certain meridians in the body. By stimulating energy channels in the body through these specific points using needles, chi can be balanced which can help to alleviate pain and restore optimal health... I'm in!
I looked around and found some practitioners who worked in a medical office, but I really wasn't looking for another doctors office setting. In my search for holistic healers, I am looking for settings that smell less like disinfectants and more like incense or essential oils - perhaps some candles, crystals and mystical statues scattered around. I want more of a metaphysical feel - but still sterile!
I found a place in Painesville by the name of Lake Erie Acupuncture. The owner and practitioners name is Austin. He met me at my studio upon my request, although I believe he primarily works from his office, which I have not seen. As seen in the pictures, I laid on my mat with a bolster under my legs and blanket over me. Austin was very professional and seemed very knowledgeable and experienced. I was in a room with a person I just met lying on the floor, and I was pleasantly comfortable. He began by asking what I wanted to work on... Where do I begin? In an attempt not to scare him upon our first meeting I decided not to unload all of the crazy that can go on in my head all at once and instead eased in with a few of the things that were bothering me. (1.) My husband and I are working on growing our family - for the last 4 years. (2.) I am taking on a lot of projects and need to focus and center myself. (3.) My knees crack... (why not throw that one in)?
As Austin began inserting the needles, I felt unusually calm. Thoughts did come and go - "How long will this take?" "Will it be uncomfortable?" "I hope I remembered to shave my legs." You know, normal things.. I stayed in Savasana for about 30 minutes, which at one point in my life would have been pure torture but since I began my yoga and meditation practice, Savasana is a happy place for me.
Can you see the needles? Look closer. They were placed around my ankles, arms, face and ears. There was a needle inserted in my ear to treat my knee! The needles are tiny and thin and I did not experience any discomfort. After the procedure I had feelings of lightness and contentment. Throughout the day I felt surges of energy. Kind of like when you get goose bumps but more intense. It was always during a time when I learned something good which seemed to happen a lot that day.