September. This past week especially, the change has been palpable. Cold, crisp mornings. Breeze slightly more cutting, bit of an ominous edge to it, alluding to the season that has yet to descend upon us. Warm afternoons that lull you into complacency, cut short by a sudden evening darkness, noticeably earlier day by day, one week to the next. And so it goes. Shifting seasons, a brand new page. September. This year it's not just the transition to fall and the end of summer t
I am in absolute awe of the humans who have come forward since the launch of my “unclinic” in the forest. DIA is not relaxing, feel-good acupuncture in the moment. It is deep and sometimes uncomfortable work. The feeling good part only comes after a bit of struggle and effort. And the people who have shown up to do this work haven’t had easy life experiences. They’ve had trauma, PTSD, anxiety, long-term chronic health conditions. They’ve been afraid, hesitant, concerned about
“Who. Are. You?” demanded the Caterpillar. “Well, I… I hardly know sir. I’ve changed so many times since this morning, you see.” “I do not see. Explain yourself.” “Well, I’m afraid I can’t explain myself, sir. Because I’m not myself, you know.” “I do knot know.” “Well, I can’t put it any more clearly, for it isn’t clear to me.” “You. Who are you?” ~ Walt Disney’s “Alice in Wonderland”, 1951 While I was manic, I was obsessed with the question “who are you?” (Fun fact: mania br
I don’t know if severe clinical depression was an experience I ‘needed’ to have. Maybe it occurred in part because a crash, a low phase, was necessary to balance out the high of mania. Maybe I was processing the trauma of the whole experience. It’s likely there was a chemical component - perhaps I had used up a 6 month supply of all those happy brain chemicals in a matter of days or weeks and needed to rest and rebuild them. Or if psychiatry has it right, then I’m at the merc
The Void is the space in between. It is a space in consciousness, between objective and subjective realities. As we fall asleep at night, once our conscious minds slip away but before bodies sink into total slumber, there is a spaciousness. And in this space, energy moves easily. People might experience twitches, jumpiness, or restless legs as the body naturally discharges tension accumulated during the day. With the mind out of the way, we can better explore our pain and lea
Everything that we have has been Given to us. I, for one, have earned nothing - Not this life, not my body, not my health. Not my family, nor community, Or the thoughts in my head or the skills in my hands. If you resonate with the idea of a force greater than yourself, you may give thanks to that. We can all, however, give thanks to ~ our parents, our ancestors, our genetics, our upbringing, our education. We may give thanks to the people that surround us and support us ~ Th
We tend to see some slow days at Heart & Hands Health Collective as we enter the summer months. The weather is improving, and all those seasonal depression sufferers are out soaking up the sunshine and feeling happy. The allergy sufferers of spring usually get some reprieve by this point as well, as the pollen overload calms down. Students are much less stressed and insomnia-prone after finals are over and holidays begin. People are away traveling, and not seeing clients beca
“I’m just getting tired of the pain. First it was in one place, now it’s another… and I just want it to GO AWAY. I’m getting frustrated and angry and depressed and I can’t think about anything else because it’s always there and I’ve tried everything and nothing helps!!” I hear some variation of this desperation every single week, and it's always a little heartbreaking. Yes, we all have pain from time to time – a sore lower back, a kink in the neck, a headache or migraine - a
A really unfortunate and yucky incident happened to me the other day. The kind of yucky that persistently runs around in your brain, over and over again, until you're forced to spew it out on paper (or screen), even if you should be attending to more pressing matters, like packing for the 3 month trip to India you're leaving for... in 3 days. And so I'm gonna share my yucky story with you. I had gone into a store to buy myself some late afternoon chocolate (not an uncommon oc
I took a look at my website yesterday. It had been awhile.
And then I realized that I hadn't written a blog post in far too long.
So here I am.
"What have you been doing, Madison, if not spending your summer regaling us with ridiculous and oh-so-wise tales about acupuncture and yoga?!?!" - you ask.
And I reply - "I have been learning to play. And it is good."
I've spent this summer shaking off the last SEVEN YEARS of full-time school plus part-time work, studying for
When I am good at what I do, I am fully present. I'm not at my best when I'm coming up with the most accurate diagnosis, or the most intricate acupuncture point combination, or when I'm treating as many patients as possible. I'm an awesome acupuncturist when I'm sitting there, listening to someone, and really seeing them. Because we all want - we all need - to be seen. And when we're not seen - when we go unnoticed, feel unappreciated, undervalued - that's when people transfo
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is built on the foundational theory of Yin and Yang. Some people might recognize the Yin/Yang symbol and associate it with the 1960's hippie movement. Or maybe you've heard Yin and Yang used as terms to categorize - men are described as Yang while women are Yin. This theory, however, has much more far-reaching applications. Yin and Yang are comparative terms, ways to contrast any objects or states in relation to one another. Day is more YANG
Some of us have studied the human body- anatomy and physiology, the structure of internal organs and their respective functions. And to some degree, most of us are aware of our outer bodies- whether our hands are moving when we talk, feeling our sore feet after a strenuous day. But how many of us- even if we have an intellectual understanding of the processes that occur inside our bodies- are actually aware of those activities as they are happening? At any given moment our he