Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Just Call Me Gwyneth

Who remembers the infamous marks Gwenyth Paltrow showed off on her back about half a decade back?

It was attributed to cupping, an Eastern medicine technique that works much like acupuncture.

Well, yesterday I tried both practices. I'll save you the in-progress photos, because they're pretty gross (especially the cupping), but I'm keeping my fingers crossed it will help me. So far I feel the same, but I know these things take time.

I've tried western medicine, physical therapy, vitamins/supplements, diet elimination, chiropractic, massage...but nothing works. Not really.

I've been told I could have fibromyalgia, been told it's just stress, been told I have a "military neck," among other theories, but mostly nobody really knows why I'm in moderately severe pain just about 24-7 and have been for at least 5 years, probably closer to 10.

The one thing I have been told by just about every source is that I NEED to incorporate stretching/yoga into my life again. Consistently. Daily, if possible. I don't know why I've been so resistant. I love yoga. I used to practice it regularly and I'd still love to, yet I just can't seem to make the time. :-\. If I really make a valiant effort I hope it does help. I'm beginning to lose hope that anything will ever help. But I'm willing to try most things. I just really want to know WHY, not just pop a pill to cure the symptoms, ykwim?

I've been curious about acupuncture for awhile, but never seriously considered it. I didn't know where to begin. But my Mom started going for her lung issues & has made progress almost instantly. Of course it's a long, bumpy road to recovery, but it's great she has another tool to help her along the way.

As I mentioned above, I didn't have any noticeable progress after my first attempt, but I will definitely keep it up and see where it takes me. *fingers crossed* My only complaint is that it's SO hard to sit still that long, but otherwise it was relatively painless. I had one needle-area that was kind of tender/uncomfortable, but nothing I couldn't handle & I couldn't feel the others at all. The cupping felt a little odd (but just barely), & again, not painful at all.

My acupuncturist did tell me I need to tone it down with the weights. She said I can still lift, but need to cut back the weights by about half. I don't know if I agree to that extent, but I will experiment by cutting back maybe 25%? That seems like a fair compromise to start :-P. She said my shoulders, arms and legs are very fit (I'd disagree, but I'll take it lol), I'm very in shape and athletic, I'm a genius, beautiful, blah blah. Yep, buttering up the client, never a bad thing. HAHA. But...good thing my Mom prepared me for this...

She's very...invasive. All up in your space. After saying I was in great shape and very strong, she then proceeded to grab my side/stomach and basically said I do need to lose all of my love handles/stomach area as the final step to really be healthy (although she was not very eloquent about it lol). You kind of have to check your ego at the door. And on my way out she kept grabbing/rubbing my ass. Yeah. I think it's her way to show comfort and that everything will be OK, but it's certainly no way I've ever left a doctors office before, that's for sure. LOL.

I've also never had a doctor ask if they could bruise me before.

Since my ego is already checked and all, you can see what I answered...

No, it doesn't hurt. At all. Promise. But I've been told it looks like I've been beaten (except for my brother, who says you can't be beaten in perfect circles.....). They're only supposed to last a couple days. I'm already kind of looking forward to my appointment next Tuesday to see if repetition helps.

Anyone have any positive experiences (or negative, neutral, or anything in between) with less traditional (to the western culture, anyway) medicine? I'd love to hear about your thoughts and experiences.


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