The fellowship has been a pain in the ass. For any of my bosses or colleagues who may read this, it is not the “fellowship” per se. It is the fact that 4 fellows are crammed in a little office and must navigate each other’s schedules, personality quirks, and inner-battles with the fact that we got into medicine to specifically NOT work in an office job.
Without going into detail, there is a lot of friction in the office. I try to stay neutral, but occasionally I get drug into the negativity and take sides temporarily. I don’t mind calling someone a bitch when they have been one… I consider it a gift of honesty, and would appreciate such honesty from others. I can take the lumps. Probably why Josh and I get along so well. But I hate saying it behind the person’s back. This leaves me feeling… icky.
In such a tense environment, I found myself wilting. I was uninspired for awhile, hence the lack of writing, and feeling drained. I found myself snapping at people and being very condescending. My weight loss went from easily 2-3 pounds per week to 1 pound every other week, maybe. I woke up at 7am everyday, but didn’t get out of bed until 7:45pm… so filled with dread to start the day was I.
But then I remembered my energy techniques I learned in a Pranic Healing class back in December. Oh did I not mention that? Well, that was intentional. I figured if people hear that I took a course in healing through “energy”…(where you don’t even touch the person!).. . I’ll forever get crazy stamped on my forehead. So yet another excuse emerges to the lack of blogging… but hear me out…
There are certain “levels” of OMM (osteopathic manipulative medicine) knowledge. In your first year, you learn musculoskeletal, where you can by then end of it treat most mundane aches & pains. In second year, you start to delve into the visceral, where you learn to manipulate the autonomic nerve system. But then there is a third level, one we don’t teach. You will only see this at an OMM conference, or in the OMM clinic, or in the rare instance in lab where a doc will non-chalantly do something, for lack of a better word, magical.
What do I mean by magical? Well…for example… the doctor correcting you on your neck diagnosis by just touching your patient’s ankle… or fixing an inhaled rib by simply laying his hand near the rib, without any apparent form of treatment other than the laying of the hand.
To learn this magical form of treatment was the main reason I took the fellowship.
After a few months in, I felt like a lot of major questions had been answered in my mind. Some came from just learning the anatomy better. The next step was studying the diaphragm relationships and fascial patterns of the body. Then I was exposed to treatments we don’t teach to students, like ligamentous articular strain, point myofascial release, and neurofascial release. Lastly, I have come to realize how sleep patterns and psychological stressors manifest in the body. The breadth of knowledge I have acquired is astounding for such a short time.
However, I was still noticing gaps. Like how did the doc just seem to KNOW what was wrong by looking at them lying on the table. Seeing them walking around, I could understand, because people demonstrate their pains in how they carry themselves…but just lying there?! I made it known that these gaps in knowledge officially bothered me, and by showing my openness to whatever the answer was, the magical docs felt comfortable confiding their beliefs, and thus I was referred to the Pranic Healing class.
Now, I have desperately wanted to write about this, but it has taken a long time to find the words for what I have learned. So here it is… with a small primer: “Energy” can be described in many ways. It can be taken literally as it is taught in class. It can be taken extra-literal by quantifying it scientifically as “our electromagnetic resonance.” Others can assimilate the idea when talked about as “peace/stress” or “negativity/positivity” or “negative and positive emotions.” Spiritual people can understand it as their “spirit” or “soul.” Religious people who externalize God can see it as “His spirit” or “divine energy.”
Whatever you may call it, I believe we are all talking about essentially the same thing. And that is that everyone gives off an “energy” that can influence your own. I experienced that all too well in the fellows office. You feel the tension when you walk in. And its so draining! At the end of the day, you can’t help but be tired and cranky. So I have been applying some of the energy cleansing techniques once I get home.
I could go through the actual steps of cleansing and cutting the negative cords, but that would not convey the essence of the treatment, which is that we need to forgive and forget. Can you imagine the peace you would feel by deciding to forgive all the drama and just leave it behind you before you go to bed?
There are also meditation and self-healing treatments, but really, these are moments when you focus on your needs. In your crazy busy life, if you could just slow down, silence all the noise in your head, you would be confronted with everything you are trying, intentionally or not, to drown out. Whether it be something physical, like a mild ache you never noticed… or something emotional, like a comment someone said that’s been quietly bothering you… you can acknowledge it and finally deal with it before it steamrolls into an illness or a rift in a relationship.
I have been applying it at work where I can. I can feel it when another fellow is pissed off or a student is stressed out. They are giving off a bad vibe, negative energy, or whatever you want to call it. It used to make me feel uncomfortable… then stressed and cranky like they were. There are “stress hygiene” techniques to shield against this, but the point is that you can acknowledge another’s mood without having to react to it. Just because they are in bad mood, there is no need to let their negativity seep into you and get you all agitated.
With this knowledge, some of my questions have been answered. When you walk in a room, and you are paying attention to the energy the patient is giving off, then you can glean information about what is bothering them. As for how I can apply this…well there are a hundred more questions right there, the pursuit of which could label me a little kooky. But that’s ok. If it’ll help patients, I’m willing to get the odd looks and be labeled a kook. I can take the lumps.