... I was guided into a treatment area with several private alcoves, each with a private bed. Melodic classical music soothed me, and the heated bed relaxed me, as I lie on my back and the first treatment began. A heated pillow, of medium weight, was placed on my belly, directly over belly button, and I lie for 20 minutes, relaxing. I'm not sure what this does, I will ask next time. After that, Dr. Choi (pronounced "chway", not "cho-ee") came in and instructed me to turn onto my stomach. This part of the acupuncture was to address the knee damage I have inflicted upon myself from 20 years of running); I have to admit it was quite painful. He did something to my hip that felt like he was pushing a needle into my hip bone, but the pain was so short-lived-- I survived. I have to get more info on this procedure as well. Then I turned back over and he applied antiseptic to all the areas where he would insert the needles I felt some surprise and trepidation as he wiped the top of my big toes, the side of my baby toes, my belly, my lower legs, and the back of my left hand and thumb. I looked like a pin cushion!!! Once I gained the courage to look! It is an incredible feeling to have a needle inserted into your skin (it doesn't hurt at all by the way, you can't really even feel the needle!) and feel the energy rush - how else to describe it! - surge through your body! Some points are so sensitive, and I have a feeling that these are the areas where most of my healing needs to take place. For instance, my ankle is still causing me acute pain due to the sprain I experienced in February, and the needle he applies to my shin results in a very intense shooting of electrical nerve stimulation down my leg into my foot. It's like a little lightning bolt of energy zaps down my leg, or like an electrode has been appled to the nerve that runs down the front of my leg to my ankle! It's an intense sensation that is sudden and surprising, though not painful; it's just a very strong physical response.
What was incredible, surprising, and amazing is that during our initial consultation, he addressed some of the physical needs and conditions I had, without me having described them! Or, he described them in the same way I had been feeling them, though I had not yet expressed these concerns! Without going into too much personal detail, I am having some endocrine system imbalances that have had serious adverse affects on my body and health and lifestyle the past two months. I can't sleep, I'm exhausted all the time, and I've gained 5 lbs. despite not changing my diet and exercising vigorously, regularly. He easily diagnosed my fatigue, lack of energy, and low chi (life force); recommending I cut back on strenuous exercise until my body has healed and become stronger. This will be hard for me because I have been enjoying pushing myself further and further on my bike, doing strength exercises for climbing, and of course, running and climbing! He also mentioned something I've noticed the past year, that my aging process has accelerated the past year. I look at pictures from less than a year and a half ago, and it looks like I've aged 10 years! Pictures from Key West, taken 16 months ago show I look 35, and now, my face has aged so much I look my age, which really kind of sucks!! ha ha I have all these wrinkles I didn't have, and now I have this layer of fat around my belly that wasn't there. aagh! As Wayne Dyer stated: "I will not allow an old person to inhabit this body." Exactly how I feel!
Each treatment is covered by the national health insurance plan, and I pay about $6 (6300 won), and the 3 week supply of herbal drink I take twice daily cost $244 (250,000 won).
In the end, Dr. Choi believes treatment will help and I believe so as well. I'm taking some natural herbs that already seem to have taken affect, and I will be getting acupuncture treatment 3 times each week. He also suggested I take a herbal drink he created for me, saying I should begin to feel a little better day by day! If nothing else those words will manifest a guaranteed placebo effect! I took it easy this weekend, never leaving my bed or desk chair on Saturday, except to sit in the sun on my roof in the morning and drink my daily dose of chai tea. Today, Sunday, seems a repeat of yesterday, although I might still get on my bike for a ride sometime later. I feel kind of tired and might take a nap instead. Hopefully, the nutrition, exercise, and well-being improvements I'm making (more fruit and veggies through smoothies, higher intake of fresh soy, increased intake of natural nutrients received through kelp, grains, soy, and fish, herbal tinctures and infusions, acupuncture, increased yoga and meditation, health visualizations, affirmations, exercise, etc. will make an impact soon, and return me to the vibrant, energetic, enthusiastic SPAZ I usually am! supercalafragilisticbabee!
...is in Korea loving Korean food and culture!