Monthly Archives: March 2016

Crossing Bridges!

Bridges

Bridges

If you travel at all or live by water, you know the dependence upon bridges. For the uninitiated, high and long bridges can be intimidating and even frightening. In my usual way, I am speaking both metaphorically and literally. When we speak of bridges and we speak of waiting until we get to them to cross.

Maybe, some bridges take preparation before crossing. Some bridges may need to be avoided. Taking the long way can be inconvenient, but avoiding a safety concern or detour may be the best decision.

Keeping our options open and exploring for new and different bridges just might offer access to something brand new to us. At the very least, knowing some of our options prior to making a split-second decision could be helpful.

Looking at a Change in Direction!

Holistic Approach

Holistic Approach

Parkinson’s disease (PD) remains a mystery to science almost as much as it does to the public. This illness impacts each and every patient in a unique and solitary way. Enter a room full of Parkinson’s patients and there is little chance of finding two who share the exact same symptoms nor the same drug regimen.
Determining the cause for one patient may unlock answers for one flavor of the disease. It may very well be that PD is more than one illness encased in a bubble labelled, “Parkinson’s”.
The complexities that surround the brain are revealing that what was once thought to be strictly a brain disorder may very well encompass a whole host of other systems, such as the digestion system, autonomic nervous system, and others. In short, it appears that it is all connected.
If it is all connected, one could easily make the leap that what we hear, see, smell, and eat all have influence on our mind, our body, as well as our spirit. Slowly, but surely, scientists and researchers are starting take a promising holistic approach to unravelling this devious and menacing illness.
The late best-selling author and motivational speaker, Dr. Wayne Dyer used to say:
When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.’
I believe this to be applicable to PD. This illness very well may require a new model and a fresh perspective in how we perceive this disease and how we break it down.

Picture of the Week-Appreciating Beauty!

Take time in your life to look at all the beauty around you.

Take time in your life to look at all the beauty around you.

Taking the mystery out of a reiki treatment.

 

Calm and Very Cool!

Calm and Very Cool!

The time has come to demystify the word reiki (ray-key). “Rei” means light and “ki” or “chi” means energy. Many of you who follow my blog, know how important this complementary therapy/energy treatment is to me and just how it has changed my life for the better.

Just this weekend, friends who have known me for over 15 years, were amazed to see me bring a halt to my dyskinesia just by using the practice of reiki. One dear friend, who was in agonizing back pain, came to my wife and I for a treatment in hope of some relief, to which she got. Reiki doesn’t do everything you need and it isn’t a cure—it is one more tool in your toolbox. We are all unique and the code that works for me may not register for you, but isn’t it worth investigating? Everyone can use one more tool!

Reiki is a practice with ancient roots.  The reiki method/protocol I use was developed in Japan over a hundred years ago. The reiki that I practice comes out of a lineage call Jin Kei Do which combines a practice of Qi gong, meditation, and the use of touch to transfer universal energy.

Reiki can be effective for: balancing one’s personal energy, reducing fatigue, lowering anxiety, helping to get a better night of sleep, reducing pain, and a assisting a variety of other challenges. The practice is performed by nurses and some doctors in over 100 hospitals in the United States. Slowly, this treatment is gaining the credit that it deserves.

How is a reiki session performed? A reiki treatment or session is very simple. The client, unlike a massage, remains fully clothed and either sits in a chair or lies on a massage table on their back while the practitioner lightly touches or even works inches off of the body. The client does remove their belt, shoes, and eyeglasses and gets on the table or chair and is asked to relax and to just breathe. The practitioner very gently and lightly touches the head, chest, stomach region, legs, back, and feet.  The client may feel heat, cold, tingling, or nothing at all. Often, like my first time with reiki, I fell asleep on the table, for over an hour and woke up feeling much better and more refreshed than when the session began–that is what started it for me almost 20 years ago. That is why I decided to learn reiki for myself. I was skeptical, until I actually experienced it. Once the session is over, the client is gently awoken, given a drink of water, and sent home. Benefits may last weeks until the next treatment. Sessions can last as long as 1.5 hours or as short as 15 minutes and usually are about the price of a massage.

The beauty of a level 1 reiki class is that it is all about self care, so you can learn to perform reiki on yourself, whenever you choose. If you decide you want a better understanding of this energy treatment there is level 2,3, and mastership, which in my lineage is a 1 year training program.  I suggest going to your practitioner/teacher to receive the benefits of their treatments and to experience it before, you commit to learning it yourself. The reason I decided to become a reiki master is that I saw the benefit of reiki help my Parkinson’s so I wanted to teach reiki to others with Parkinson’s.  In order to be able to teach reiki, one must become a reiki master (in our lineage).

Combined, my wife and I have worked on at least 100 people with Parkinson’s disease and their carepartners. We have seen benefit from these treatments, even when they sometimes can’t see the results themselves. The first thing we notice is a clarity in their eyes, sometimes an improvement in clarity of mind, better mobility and flexibility, or just a release of tension and anxiety. I also have seen smiles and a softening of the face muscles.

In 2013, at the World Parkinson Congress (WPC) in Montreal 2013, I had the privilege to work on 9 people with PD, and 8 of 9 expressed a benefit from the treatment. I even saw an improvement  in the person who didn’t see a difference. They were more relaxed and appeared more refreshed after the treatment. Some people don’t verbalize their experiences with reiki as fully or clearly due to this new sensation.

My wife, Angela, a reiki master, as well as many other experienced reiki masters, massage therapists, yoga teachers, and I plan to work at WPC 2016 in Portland, Oregon at the Wellness Way area of the conference. Wellness Way is an area where you can experience therapies or just take a quiet respite and enjoy a  moment or more for yourself.

I encourage you to explore reiki and other such therapies to see if they might assist you along your journey as you look for relief from stress, anxiety, or fatigue. I encourage you to find a referral for a reiki practitioner near you to offer you a free sample or trial period to see if you like it. Please make sure that they are experienced, sensitive and aware about your condition.

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