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The Importance of Mother

Mother’s Day is approaching. It is time to take a few minutes to reflect on and appreciate just how important a mother is to a child, how important your mother is or was to you. We learn how to love by being loved. Note the feelings that arise when you see a mother gently attending a small child. That is a picture of love.

As much as I’d like to write a flowery story of how wonderful a mother’s love is, being a mother is fraught with many difficulties. The age old, “the child isn’t born with an instruction book,” is so true. And as we age, some people realize how young their mother was when they were born. How does a seventeen, eighteen, nineteen, year old know how to mother? More often than not, they are still trying to fill their own needs. Until they have the opportunity to live independently and get a real grasp of what it is like to be responsible, their maturity is lacking.

A baby is so cute, but as they grow, they become a lot of work. Often a child gets less than what they need to feel secure in the world. In my practice I hear story after story of difficult relationships with parents. Let’s face it: if we are honest, there are almost always issues between a child and a parent.

How could it be otherwise? You have spent an abundance of time with your mother and it is humanly impossible for a mother to be 100% attentive to each and every need the child has. It is the human condition. There are no perfect parents and as children we need good enough parents. Good enough parents to help us develop and become happy, well adjusted and responsible adults.

No matter how wonderful the parents, there are issues. They may be small issues. And others may have been abused or neglected or mistreated and they have large issues. And there are those whose mother’s were absent for whatever reason, and they will have another set of issues.

So my question is, as a child, where are you in the quagmire? Do you have unresolved issues with your parents whether they are dead or alive? And if you are a parent, are you aware of the issues you have or your children have with you?

It is wonderful to spend mother’s day celebrating the person, but what about giving yourself one hour on mother’s day to reflect on your feelings about your mother and, if appropriate, as a mother in relationship with your child. How better can we spend our time than understanding our life and the issues we have with our mother.

This isn’t about confronting your mother. This is personal work: work that you do with and for yourself. Sometimes people say, what difference does it make because my mom is dead. Are the issues dead? You are not doing it for your mother. The work is to be done for you. A great way to start this is to simply take an hour on Mother’s Day to journal your thoughts and feelings of your mother and perhaps your children. Feel free to mention the love as well as the difficulties. I hope there are many good memories. However, I know they aren’t all good. Life usually gives us fodder to work with and much of it comes from the mother/child relationship.

Some people ask, “why do that? I already know how I feel about my mother.” Yes, you do. And you might find that in the quietness of the moment, you will discover more. More thoughts, more feelings and more love. Most people keep themselves very busy these days and I often wonder if it is so they don’t really have to deal with their lives. They keep going because if they stopped, their issues just might come right to the surface.

As for a gift this Mother’s Day, consider a gift of health? Maybe you could give her a gift certificate for a massage or a basket of scented soaps and toiletries.

Feel free to leave a comment below about what this article brought up for you. There aren’t many larger emotional landmines, outside of trauma, than the relationship between mother and child. Happy Mother’s Day to all the great mother’s that I know in my family, circle of friends, and patients!! To all good mothers, I give a salute!

Please note that I will be teaching a muscle testing class in June. Call the office if you are interested in taking the class.

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I Love Willie, but…

I’m not sure how many are fans of Patsy Cline, but I love her voice and the songs she made so famous! Of course, my favorite song she made popular is Crazy. The song was actually written by Willie Nelson and he made it even more famous years later.  I love Willie! Maybe it is because I am from Texas!

Songwriters, for the most part, write about some angst, which brings up deep feelings.  Perhaps their song is a celebration song that brings out joy, which is also a deep emotion. Emotions are one of the reasons we love music.

Willie wrote, “Worry, why do I let myself worry. Wondering what in the world will I do?” It makes for a lovely song, but in real life worry can be a big problem and an albatross around our neck.

Often times women in my office say, “my mother is driving me crazy because she such a worrier. She worries about things that don’t matter.” My response is, “yes, and you will be just like her unless you start working on accepting things as they are right now.”

We may have a vision of our older self. My vision is to be healthy, have fun and accept things as they are. Of course, if I have the capacity to change things I don’t like, I will do so. Most of the things people worry about are things we simply cannot change. We don’t have the power to change them.  We have to accept them. We either half way accept it while kicking and screaming with a lot of drama, or we work with it in a way that is supportive and self-loving until we can accept things as they are. I’m not suggesting it is easy to do, but a decision we make. If there is nothing we can do about a situation, we can say a prayer and let it go. Allow it to be taken care of outside of our domain!

In childhood, I was fortunate enough to have a good role model in regards to worrying. My Grandpa was a cool, calm and collected sort of guy. From what I could tell as a child, he was not a worrier. But once in awhile, my Granny would say something to him that would indicate she was worrying about something. My Grandpa’s response was always, “You are borrowing trouble.”

If we want to just sit a moment and ponder all the things that we “could” worry about, the list would be exhaustive. But what would the point be? When we consider that most things we worry about never happen or never happen the way or in the time frame we worry about, worrying is such a waste of time.

Worry is a habit that we develop in the nervous system. If we give it our energy, we will encourage it. Just like any habit, it can take hold of us and then we become slave to the habit, whether it is excessive alcohol, smoking or worrying.  So yes, I classify it as an addiction.  Why? If you are a worrier, try stopping. It is not easy, but it can be done.  It takes considerable work to re-train our mind, just as it does to stop smoking or drinking.  I consider worry a killer just like smoking and excessive drinking.

Worry undermines a person’s health. When you worry, you are thinking of the person, event, or situation that you are worrying about. Your brain doesn’t really know the difference whether you are actually experiencing it or simply thinking about it. The body reacts the same. So our body is stressed out, often meaning we are in a fight or flight response. That response begins the cascade of adrenaline flow and over time, we are worn out.

It is similar to having a bad dream where you are running, perhaps for your life, and you have to keep running and you wake up exhausted. You were asleep, but you are exhausted from your sleep. That is how worrying wears out the body.

Although people seem awfully busy these days, some people worry because they aren’t busy enough. This tends to occur as we age. There are senior citizen activities, card games, puzzles, crafts, helping children learn to read, volunteering, and numerous other productive things to do with our time. Be selective and proactive! Let’s spend our time exercising our brain and body or having fun with friends and enjoying our lives while we let go of any tendency we have for worry! Nip bad habits in the bud. In the long run, this choice will support your health which is a sign of loving yourself, and there is nothing more important!

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Be the CEO!

One time a patient told me her little boy asked who the boss of the family was, the mom or the dad. We laughed. It can be confusing to a little guy. But, who is the boss of you, and better yet, who is the boss of your body?

There is nothing more sacred than our body. A mother shares her body with her baby for a short time, but ultimately, after childhood, we are all on our own to decide how to treat our body.

We decide how to feed our body and how to exercise it as well. Do we get adequate sleep? Do we meditate? Do we get manicures and pedicures? Do we let our hair grow long or grow a beard? Do we go to therapy or not? Do we repeat the lives of our parents or do we create a new way? We get to make all of the decisions. And when it comes to having problems with the body, we get to decide what kind of doctor we go see.

Over the years, I’ve had people who were afraid to come to me. I tell them, they are in charge. If they don’t want me to do something, I won’t do it. Just be willing to speak up. I’m not that good at mind reading! Then we laugh!

Sometimes when I suggest a patient needs to go to their medical doctor, they don’t want to. I ask why not? They are afraid of what they will do. I have to remind them that they won’t do anything without their permission. There is no need to be afraid. The need is to speak up.

Recently, I had a patient go to the medical doctor for her hip and they gave her a cortisone shot. She had a bad reaction to it. She said she didn’t even want it and that she wasn’t hurting bad enough to get it. But she didn’t speak up. I’m sure it would have been fine with the medical doctor if she had said, “I’ll consider getting that if it doesn’t get better, but right now, I’m not ready to get the cortisone shot.” Remember, if you go to the doctor, you go for a reason. Many times you need imaging or want to find out if your condition is something you should be concerned about or not. From the doctor’s perspective, they want to do something to help you and you are the one who has to speak up if you don’t want it. Let me remind you that you are the CEO of your body. Most of the time, I recommend people go to their medical doctor for testing so the insurance will pay for it.   The reason they are going is to get information. You don’t have to have anything done. If they make a recommendation you can always say, “let me think over my options and I will get back with you.”

Be willing to pay for their expertise. You go to a lawyer and talk to them. You pay them and leave. You don’t leave with anything but information and you are happy to have the knowledge. Do the same thing with a doctor. Take your time. Most things are not a rush and you will know when it is necessary to take immediate action. Those things are usually the ones that send us to the ER.

I remember going to a car dealership years ago and I told myself, “I will not buy anything today.” I will just look. You can make the same agreement with your body when you go see a doctor.

I am writing about this topic because I have patients that have a great deal of resistance around going to the medical doctor. They do not want to go. But, just like a child who doesn’t want to go to school, sometime we must do what we don’t really want to do.  You need a definitive diagnosis. Only then will treatment be determined. Most people don’t mind the testing. It is the treatment they fear.   Speaking up will allow the treatment to be determined by you. Otherwise, you may leave feeling you got treatment you didn’t want. Don’t hope and pray your doctor will be able to read your mind. I really wouldn’t count on that. Instead, speak up and be ready and willing to be the CEO of your body!

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Inviting What We Want Into Our Lives

Today I am going to write about a book that could change the world if everyone would read it. So, let me be realistic. It is about changing your life, if you want to. There may be many such books, but this one is short, concise and funny at the same time. It is worth the time and energy your kids will love it! It is a great book for parents to read with their kids and discuss over dinner.   What great table conversation!   I am sure the children would love to do some of the experiments that she asks you to do in the book. It will give you connection that children desperately want and need and they would learn the principles of the book. Some of you may have already guessed the name of the book. It is E squared.

With quantum physics being table talk these days, the way she talks about energy is refreshing. That is, of course, if you bring an open mind to the book. The part I probably loved the most in this book is how she talked about prayer. It isn’t new really, but just the way she says it makes me smile. She says that our thoughts are energy and the energy will do anything we ask of it.   Each thought is a prayer. Now, scan the thoughts you have had today and see if that is what you want in your life? For most people, it is probably not what you would want to bring into your life. So, we are talking about training our mind to see the reality that we want in our lives. And for those who meditate and think, “we should quiet the mind,” that is not discounted. The key is we are not simply talking about what happens for 20 minutes to an hour each day in prayer or meditation, but what happens all day long.

We know this information instinctively, but she puts it on paper for a person or a family to experiment with the ideas and see for ourselves if she is right.

In terms of me personally, years ago, I met a woman and we became fast friends. Several years later she and her husband moved away from Denver. Over the years, our friendship kept blossoming and we became best friend even over the miles. We had similar thinking in terms of health and life.   One day she called me and said, “I have breast cancer. “ We talked for some time. During that conversation she said, “I always thought that I would have breast cancer.” I was shocked! Don’t we know our thoughts have energy and that thinking that way draws that toward us? I can’t remember if we talked about thoughts, but how could we have not.   We all have our “stuff” as we say and I love her and always will. I know it can be very hard for people who have a parent or sibling who had the unfortunate diagnosis to not think about it or worry about it because of genetics, but that is when training the mind is the most important.   For me, everyday, I say out loud to the world, “I am so thankful and grateful that I, through the power of divine love, have abundant health!” Sometimes I indulge myself and say it over and over. And, as Ms. Grout, the author of E squared said, that is my prayer, over and over.

Many years ago when I first heard about how our thoughts as well as our words affect us, I had this habit of adding a few words to something after I said it if I realized, I don’t really want that. For example, I said, “I am so mad at myself for not getting here on time.” I would then follow it by saying, “cancel, cancel.” I was canceling my words and thoughts. I did not want to be mad at myself. I was trying to learn to love myself! I was training my brain in the late 70’s fashion. It can take awhile to train our brain so there is no better time than the present to get started.

You can get your book here.

Read the book, and please email me with your thoughts about the book and what happened in your experiments!! I am very interested in hearing your stories!


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Why People Are Sicker Than Ever!

Today I am going to write about why so many people are sick today which may give you some ideas of how to keep your own health from being affected.  You might or might not be familiar with some of the items I mention, but if you are forty years old, you know that health has been compromised, because when you were a child, people were not nearly as sickly as they are now.  I’m talking about the people who don’t feel well and have difficulty finding a diagnosis.  Those people often end up taking some kind of anti-depressants or other drugs “to see if they will help.”  Often they don’t.  Many people end up on disability.  What has happened in the last 40 years that has caused so many people to be sick?

If we look at the nervous system stimulation people have on a daily basis, it is so much more than I had as a child on the farm.  We had television, but they were calm shows like Andy GriffinLeave it to Beaver and I Love Lucy.  Compared to television today, television in the 50’s and 60’s would now be considered BORING!  Why?  Year after year, people want more stimulation!

When you go to a restaurant, have you noticed how hard it is to talk over the noise?  I remember reading a book about thirty years ago reporting all the noise in our lives, especially in a city.  We talk about air pollution and they referred to the noise as sound pollution.  If you think about all the input that our body and our brain has to deal with, it is overwhelming.

Next is the air pollution.  This refers to inside air as well as outside air.  Walk down the aisle of your favorite store that carries the large bags of fertilizer and pesticides.  I try to avoid those aisles, as the smells are so bad.  In fact, just try taking a walk in the city.  Some years ago a friend and I walked every morning.  You wouldn’t believe how many people were drying clothes in the early hours and you could smell those sheets you put in the dryer to make the clothes soft.  Instead of smelling nice clean fresh air, we smelled the dryer sheets wafting out the dryer vent and into the air.  Let’s not forget all the smells from the vehicles and the gasoline.  I have to change lanes if I am behind a diesel burning truck that likely needs a mechanic.  All of those chemicals you smell, your body takes into the lungs for your body to attempt to detoxify but often end up in other parts of the body, like the brain.  And we wonder why so many people  who have never smoked have lung cancer.

Then there is the water.  The word is finally getting out to people not to flush their medications down the toilet.  Why?  Those medications end up in our water.  Yes, they may be in low doses, and maybe just in the energetic signature of the drugs.  However, I don’t need the drugs and I particularly don’t need them in my water.  Not to belabor a point, but just remember water is recycled.  Much of the medication a person takes is urinated out in time.  All of that medication as well as street drugs, in fact, anything we take, gets recycled.  Is there a filter to apply to our water to filter out all the drugs and chemicals?  If not, then we drink them after they are recycled.  Yes, they are in small amounts, but can that be healthy for us?

When we consider all of these forms of pollution that were not there when I was a child, we can see that we are asking a great deal of our bodies to detoxify all of the incoming chemicals.

And we haven’t even talked about living in a Wi-Fi world.  We love our computers, our cell phones and our mini pads.  Even though I grew up in a world without these devices, we can hardly imagine our lives today without being in constant contact with the outside world.  Are we paying a price for that?  Our body is constantly being bombarded with the signals of our era and scientists are thinking this may have health ramifications.

So, with all of the above said, anything you can do to avoid these types of pollution will be beneficial for your health.  We need to think in terms of constant detoxification.  Gratitude arises that our bodies are so magnificent that they continue to work for us through all of the difficulties mentioned.  Let’s help it out by having some quite time each day, drinking water as pure as we can get, using air filters and taking small vacations from being wired!

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How I Approach the Body

Today I am going to give an overview of my approach to the body in my practice. I am a chiropractor and, as a profession, we are most known for our structural work. There are three reasons why you can have a misalignment: structure, chemistry and emotional/energetic. What this means is that maybe your neck hurts because it is out of alignment. But what caused it to be out of alignment? It could be because you fell and hit your neck. Or it can be because you ate a food you are allergic to and the response of the body was a cervical vertebra out of alignment. Or it could be that something triggered an emotional response in you that resulted in a cervical vertebra being out of alignment. No matter what the cause, your neck hurts and you can’t turn it in a normal way.

In terms of body structure, just watch people move and you will see just how important structure becomes, especially as we age. I was in a business the other day and saw an elderly man whose steps were about 2 inches long. I turned to Valerie, the massage therapist I share space with, and said, “that is a man who has never had any body work.” You don’t want to be that man!! We will all get old, if we are lucky, so take care of your body. One thing you can do for yourself at home is stretch. It takes only a few minutes. Do it daily and you will experience the difference! Doing it once won’t give you the results you want. The structural patient is what most people consider the typical chiropractic patient to be. Often an adjustment of moving the vertebra in the spine gives relief. If uncomplicated, it is easy to restore proper motion in the patient. It gets more complicated if the problems are combined, meaning the cause is partly structure, partly chemistry and partly emotional/energetic.

The biggest complaint I’ve ever heard about chiropractors is that “they help me, but I have to go back.” Most people don’t expect instantaneous results, but we should make progress. And when we don’t, there is often a chemical component that keeps the structure stirred up. Currently, inflammation is considered the cause for our problems. It is in all the magazines and health related articles. There are products you can take for inflammation like tumeric. That’s fine, but the question should be, what is causing the raging inflammation in our bodies? Sadly, it is often foods that we are allergic or sensitive to, often because the foods are genetically modified or have chemicals on them our body doesn’t like. Or it is because we have subclinical organisms like fungus, bacteria, virus, parasites or heavy metals that burden our body. I treat these with diet and supplements. These patients often come in with problems with their digestive tracts. Their stomach hurts. They don’t feel they digest well. Or, these people can have a pain syndrome that is very stubborn. I use kinesiology to determine the foods they are sensitive to and what supplements they need.

The body has energy coursing through it all the time. This is the energy referred to as chi and is referred to in acupuncture. You have probably seen on television or read that the body remembers everything that has ever happened to you. This memory of our experience is in the cells of the body. We used to think that our emotional memories were stored in the brain but, in fact, we now know they are stored everywhere in the body. Our body will remember things that our conscious minds have forgotten. Our body has a physiological reaction to negative emotional experience. So our body wants a resolution to that reaction. I use NET, the Neuro-Emotional Technique to help resolve the physiological response to negative emotional experience. Much of the time we are completely unconscious to this situation. I also suggest people use tapping at home, which is in the book, The Tapping Solution by Nick Ortner. A patient came to me from the airport, not being able to stand up. I treated her for three days in a row without much success. I questioned myself, “what am I missing?” I decided to check to see if emotions were involved. In about five minutes, the patient walked out of my office without pain. How fabulous is that? If this article has left you with a question, please email me and I will try and address it in my next blog! Have a great month!