I will never forget the first time that I had acupuncture. Upon walking into the quaint and peaceful clinic in NW Portland, I was skeptical but open. A few of my trusted friends had had good experiences and some even life changing, so I figured I had nothing to lose. This exploration into the unknown began with a detailed series of questions and a reading of my tongue and pulse. In absolute awe with this process I lay face down on the table ready for what would turn out to be one of the most pivotal moments in my life.
I could barely feel the needles go in. What I did feel I didn’t expect at all. A surging pressure ran down both sides of my spine, my lower back opened up, I felt warm and my kidneys began to pulse. I stammered and asked what they were doing to me, “nothing” the doctor replied, “it’s the needles doing the work, moving qi where it needs to move in your body.” I lay there in utter delight as I began to feel and connect with parts of myself that I had forgotten, all sorts of tension lifted and I felt at ease. “So this is what it feels like to feel good,” I thought. Afterwards my senses were heightened, everything seemed brighter, and I felt lighter in my own skin. All of this from a few, carefully placed hair thin surgical steel pins. Needless to say, I was hooked. Two years later I was on my way to becoming an acupuncturist myself. Today I am honored to be a part of this profession and to get to share this ancient medicine (that is thousands of years old by the way) with anyone and everyone I can. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine truly are a gift and a genuine investment in feeling great in your own skin.
My personal expression and description of this unique medicine:
Acupuncture is used to help your body restore balance so it can learn to heal itself naturally. Energetically we live in an interconnected web of life, to each other, to the earth, to everything. Within the system of Chinese medicine there exists a microcosm of this very same web within our bodies, much like a holographic energy grid. This has been defined as meridians, channels, nadis or energy lines. When we stretch, breathe and open our bodies we unblock areas of stagnancy that can lead to physical imbalance and disease. In the same way when we tap into these highly active energetic ‘acupuncture points’ along the gridlines of the body, we accomplish the same thing, and often times on deep levels. Our mind, body and spirit become renewed and restored to a state of natural balance and integrity resulting in a stronger sense of connectedness, integration and grace within the world.
Kileen Swenson is a licensed acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist; She currently practices at Yoga Union Community Wellness Center where she has also been teaching yoga for over six years. She is grateful to her community here and is honored to be of service to anyone and everyone. You can find out more about her and the medicine at: www.kileenswenson.com