Clinic as Crucible

Don’t know about you but 2014 has been an intense year—in both good and bad ways. The news around the US—Ferguson, Ohio, New York—has been heartbreaking and the news around the world—the devastation of Ebola and the brutality of ISIS—remains terrifying.

In my own family, my father underwent a radical surgery following a year-long treatment for an invasive, aggressive cancer. There have also been difficult problems and health challenges that I know many of you have faced this year.

Lately, when people come in, there’s been a running joke when I go out to meet them in reception. We exchange warm “hellos’ and “how are yous” & even though they answer “fine” we both laugh knowing that’s not wholly true or else they’d be somewhere else.

People don’t typically come to acupuncture when they are feeling great. True, acupuncture, ideally is a preventive medicine but most of us don’t use it that way.

Despite the tumultuous year, LBCA has been a sustaining force for many and certainly for me. I am continually amazed at what occurs in this plain old brown building. This past year has been a place of joy when health issues have resolved, a long-awaited pregnancy occurs, body pain dissipates, or depression loses its grip.

I like to think of LBCA as a crucible, a vessel that can accommodate virtually any transformation within it. People come to the clinic feeling one way and leave feeling another—usually better. Some people leave the chairs with a burst of creativity, having a resolved an issue during their needle nap, come up with the week’s sermon, or figured out the next thing to do to a painting.

Healing is a funny thing—not necessarily what we expect it to be sometimes. I’ve learned this over the past year working with you all and witnessing my father’s own transformation and journey toward healing. I know I say this a lot but I really am so grateful for your trust in treatment and your support of this clinic space—your presence here, allows others to be here, and all of us to get through our lives a little better.