Jeff on Finding Time for Acupuncture Self-care

I know that getting some regular acupuncture would help me function better as a human being. My life isn’t too insanely hard, but I am stretched thin between my roles as acupuncturist, reluctant homeschool tutor, and dad. With my schedule being sorta nuts, my windows of free time are nearly non-existent. I’m one of those people who has elementary school age children and has been precariously balancing helping the kids with distance learning with work and life. My wife’s work schedule is more rigid than mine. We’ve been lucky that I’ve been able to find some flexibility with my schedule at OAP, so I can be home with the kids and help them through the complicated web of zoom meetings and asynchronous assignments. The downside is that I’m home with the kids A LOT, and getting them through a day of school without anyone crying (myself included) is not easy. My supply of patience is running low. Stress is running high. The time and the will to do the things I love (gardening, music, writing and yoga) is dwindling. I wake up at the crack of dawn to exercise, but my only other window of freetime happens on Friday, just after lunch and it lasts 30 minutes. 

It took about 3 weeks of the clinics being open before I was able to make it in for a treatment. While I can do acupuncture on myself, and have done so during the various shutdowns, it’s not as good. Ear points, for me, are an essential component of the treatment to help manage my issues with addiction and insomnia. But, when I try to do my ears in the mirror, everything is backwards, and I often bungle the location slightly. Once I treat one arm, I have to put needles in the opposite arm while having needles in the arm that’s doing the needling. It’s not ideal. The worst part is that, my opportunity to do acupuncture on myself, is at the very end of the day, after the kids have gone to sleep, and I’m tired, burnt out, and grumpy. And, nobody wants a tired, burnt out, grumpy acupuncturist working on them, even if it’s themselves. I much prefer to come into the clinic and have a bright, vibrant, and cheerful acupuncturist, like Kelsey take care of me.

Butternut Squash Pie

The night before my appointment, I had made a butternut squash pie (like a pumpkin pie) and came into my appointment with a generous slice for Kelsey. If you’re wondering if the acupuncturists at OAP like tasty treats, the answer is an enthusiastic “Yes!” Whether it’s tacos on Tuesday or donuts on any day, we are a hungry bunch and relish the treats you all bring. 

I told Kelsey a bit about what’s going on with me. My sleep is crap, my stress is high,

I feel stretched to my limit, my back hurts, and, while I’ve only slipped up once in the last year, with my stress level very high, I’m still craving cigarettes. She quickly did 5 points on my right ear. I couldn’t see exactly what she did,

I’m pretty sure it was the NADA (National Association of Detox Acupuncture) protocol, which is super helpful for those managing addictions of any kind. We had a quick banter about pie and tasty treats as she put in the rest of the points. 

It took me a long while to relax. I was more tense than I realized. It was about 15-20 minutes before I conked out and lost track of time for the last 10 minutes or so. I got up feeling refreshed and unusually cheerful. Somehow, I found that same time free again and I’m coming back this week for another session, but this time with Holly.

I’m overjoyed that OAP is open again.

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