|Welcome to Summer! Summer represents the Element of Fire in Chinese Medicine and it corresponds to the Heart & Small Intestine system. It’s emotions range from love, laughter, enthusiasm, abundance and joy to… anxiety, restlessness, panic, sadness, irrational fears and phobias. The good, the bad and the not so pretty ;)Balance is key ☯️The balance between doing and being. Active Yang and restful Yin. Having presence in our bodies and our minds. Not one or the other, but both. In Chinese Medicine, it’s often referred to as the Heart-Mind connection.|
Some summer heat imbalances are:-restlessness, sleep disturbances, palpitations-skin rashes, hives, inflammation, heat stroke-feeling overwhelmed, anxious, and panicky. Cooling foods, water and more contemplative calming activities will keep the heat at bay. I really noticed during the heat wave the difference it made just by drinking more water. Wow was that hot!
Ok, back to Joy! This time of year happiness and joy are more accessible, so let’s go for it. At Christmas, my family gave me The Book of Joy, Lasting Happiness in a Changing World, by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The take away for me was that they had cultivated such an inner sense of joy, that all other thoughts and feelings could fit inside, like a compassion container. This compassion can be felt several meters away. I remember when I met the Dalai Lama, I could feel his presence before I knew he had arrived. It went through me like a wave and enveloped my whole body. I now go back to that feeling when I call on my compassion part to hold space for some of the tougher emotions that go through me. I tend to learn through my body, and that was a good lesson to learn. Recently, talking with a patient, we both realized that Joy was a little harder to call on this year. There seemed to be more barriers in the way. Like there was more to work through before getting to Joy. My thoughts lately have been, maybe Joy or Compassion or Empathy could be the container to work through the ” hard stuff”. What do you think? Has Joy stayed with you along your journey this year? What are your barriers to Joy? It’s a little tricky, right!? Would love to hear from you.
I’m taking some holiday time in August. I’m going camping from August 10th-19th. I’m back in the clinic on the 20th.
Book yourself in before August 10th. I’d love to see you, or after the 19th. Acupuncture and body work is a great support to help let go and relieve emotional and physical pain. See you soon:)I hope your enjoying your summer. The island is a great refuge.
It’s time to book, I miss you!
Returning to the Body can be our Refuge. The Mind can take us to so many places, yes…but do we feel safe there? (in the past or in the future…in our worries) The Mind and Ego are influenced by fear and isolation. The body can be a safe place to find Refuge. This year I have experienced a lot of deep triggers (fears) and I’ve really relied on my body to come back to peace and safety. Thank goodness. The body knows! The body can be our Compassionate Container for all that we are experiencing. Acupuncture can bring us out of our heads and into the body…ahhh.
In my last Newsletter, I asked the question. What is acupuncture for you?
Here are some to those answers. Thank you
Acupuncture is balancing.
Acupuncture is an inward adventure.
Acupuncture is ancient wisdom, and empirical system of healing.
Acupuncture is a practice. It’s a place of healing my body and mind. It helps me relax and see more clearly what my body is telling me. It’s a ritual I follow once a week that I’ve very much benefited from.
Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend. Non-being is my greatest joy~ Lao Zi
Acupuncture is transformational.
Acupuncture is healing.
Acupuncture is getting connected to your inner healing gift with the support, guidance, wisdom and skills of an excellent acupuncturist like Gigi. (toot toot)
Acupuncture is an opening from the inside out.
Acupuncture is hope.
Acupuncture is a supportive healing technique that assists with unblocking the stagnant energy.
Acupuncture is being open to healing, receiving, and surrendering…
Acupuncture is refreshing, centering, energizing and or relaxing.
Acupuncture is a unique healing process.
What are you waiting for? Come back to the body, your own healing power, your own knowing. How cool is that?!
Thank you for all your contributions.
Hello Everyone, Happy Spring!
Last week, as I was saying goodbye to a patient of mine (who was going through something challenging) was super relaxed, so I said to her. ” Wow you’re really good at this! ” and she responded ” Well I’ve been coming to you for over 10 years.” and then I thought, yes she has lots of practice, practice! That’s it!
Have you ever heard a friend or relative say “Oh I tried acupuncture once and it didn’t work.” Now I know what to say. Yes, acupuncture is a practice. It’s not black or white. It’s not it works, or it doesn’t work.
It’s a practice of breathing, letting go, softening, forgiveness, kindness, compassionate awareness, going inwards, curiosity, connecting to your own healing power, being you’re own best friend…love.
There are a million ways to heal. Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine is one way, there are so many. Hooray for you! Any healing you do is projected out into the world 10 fold…or 100 fold or more! I love walking along side you as we heal together.
What is Acupuncture (or Tuina Massage) for you? Post it on my Facebook page or email me firstname.lastname@example.org
Hope you are feeling well and supported…and having some fun!!!
Here’s a song by Sinead O’connor called the Healing Room. It made sense to me 20 yrs ago and still does. This is where we go!
We’ve entered into Spring, the Liver/Gallbladder Wood Element.
Liver holds a spectrum of emotions and virtues. The trick for me during Spring time is to hold my wood emotions (irritability, anger, rage, aggression, which may naturally arise) with the virtues of wood (benevolence, kindness, creativity). What are my emotions trying to tell me? How can I help? What do I need? Basically allow myself to feel these emotions, sit with them and learn. Cross your fingers, wisdom may come forth!
Allergies are a common springtime occurrence. There are lots of options to help manage and reduce your symptoms to help your body welcome Spring. Give me a shout if you’re wanting some relief.
P.S. I’ve added a Waitlist function to make things easier for you to book if the day/time you’re looking for is booked. Please remember you can text or call if you’d like to get in but the schedule if full. People do cancel/reschedule sometimes, so I can schedule you in. It’s win win for both of us.
Looking forward to seeing you or hearing from you
Happy Chinese New Year 2021!
It’s the year of the Ox. When I think of the Ox, it brings me back to Asia and the rice fields. I think of the Ox as being very patient, slow and steady. I think it’s going to be more of a Yin year. More peace, more respect, more equanimity. Lilian Bridges is a well known author and teacher of Facial Diagnosis and Five Element Feng Shui. Here are her predictions for the year.
About a year ago, Eckhart Tolle reminded me of a famous asian saying: “The Teacher and the Taught Together Create the Teachings.” I love that quote and that idea. I really believe this to be true. As I pondered this idea, I had hoped this was what we were creating in the clinic. This idea of reciprocity, sharing, learning and healing together. From our work together, it gave me the courage to apply for a teaching position at Pacific Rim College. I’m now teaching one day a week in the student clinic as a Clinic Supervisor. I super duper love it! I’m learning a whole bunch of new teachings. I get to share our energy and excitement for this healing modality with them. They are super grateful. How nice💗.
I’m thinking of you as we transition into a new year, a new beginning. I’m working on letting go of ideas or thoughts that don’t serve me anymore, and making room for abundance and grace. Sound good? What are your thoughts for the new year?
Looking forward to seeing you and hearing from you.
Drop me a line 🙂 email@example.com
Love and Grace
Hello Everyone, how are you? how are we? how am I?
I’m checking in…I think I’m feeling a little sad, that’s natural this time of year, summer fun days are over😔. Autumn is the time that corresponds to Metal, the Lungs and Large Intestines. It also corresponds to the emotions of grief, disappointment, integrity and respect. I like to think of Autumn as a time of year of Receiving and Letting Go…breathing in and breathing out. The ease in which I breath, tells me a lot about my state of mind. I’m feeling a little heavy, so it’s my cue to take some time for myself to reflect on how I’m doing and do some breath work (pranayama in yogic terms). One of my favorite breathing practices is Dirgha Rechak Pranayama. This involves a regular inhale and a long slow extended exhale. Exhale with a pause at the end, allowing the inhale to come naturally. You can do 5 rounds any time of the day as part of your routine and it is also very helpful in times of stress.
So back to the Letting Go part. If only we could do that as easily as the trees let go of their leaves…maybe we can! With compassion and forgiveness anything can happen to make space for Receiving something new! That’s our practice.
Here’s a song that’s helping me let go
Autumn is a good time of year to take care of our bodies (our garden, our terrain). What have you been doing that’s been helping you? Email me firstname.lastname@example.org and share what you’ve been up to.
Practicing Gratitude helps put a spring in my step. A big thank you to you. My practice has been open since May, and I’ve been full and steady ever since…Alleluia! These times have not been easy for some. My heart goes out to you. Reach out if you are wanting to connect to yourself and find peace within, or you’re wanting a tune up to strengthen your immune system, or if you’re in pain of any kind. I’m in the clinic Monday, Wednesday, Friday.
Take good care
Please note my prices will be going up in the new year 2021 by $5.
It’s the end of August…how are you? How am I? How are we?
I read this on my friend’s Facebook newsfeed yesterday;
” Sometimes I just want it to stop. Talk of COVID, protests, looting, brutality. I lose my way. I become convinced that this new normal is real life. Then I meet an 87 year old who talks of living through polio, diphtheria, Vietnam protests and yet is still enchanted with life. He seemed surprised when I said that 2020 must be especially challenging for him. ” No” he said slowly, looking me straight in the eyes. ” I learned a long time ago to not see the world through the printed headlines, I see the world through the people that surround me. I see the world with the realization that we love big. Therefore, I just choose to write my own headlines. Husband loves wife today. Family drops everything to come to Grandma’s bedside. He patted my hand. Old man makes new friend.
What would your headlines read?
I have so many sweet ones. Neighbor asks for help. Sisters connect. Family finds solace in the mountains. Mother sees her child as she is. Brother says I’m sorry. Beans taste good. Mom and Dad love me.
I have noticed I do this a lot. I make up my world from the people around me, and I make up my world from my inner world. I find solace in my body. I connect. Gabor Mate says ” Safety is not the absence of threat, it’s the presence of connection.” Connection to self, connection to others, connection to nature, connection to something greater than myself, connection to…? How do you feel safe?
Elaine Alec writes from her new book Calling My Spirit Back “In order to create a safe space, you need to be a safe space.”
When I let that sink in…what does it mean to be a safe space? Wow for me it means I need to practice and cultivate a lot of self compassion. Being there for myself in conflict, being there for myself when things feel awful or hopeless, or simply being there when I feel jealous, disappointed, sad… or asking for help. Easier said than done, right! I do think and feel that these times require it. There is a lot to digest on the inside as well as on the outside.
Here are a few reminders for the upcoming months to keep strong and vibrant.
There is no end to what we can do to feel confident and healthy in 2020!
Deep Immune is a powerful combination of herbs that increase our immune cell activity, increase our digestive function, down-regulates our nervous system and calms the mind. Hey I want some of that! Marseille’s Thieves Oil is a combination of essential oils famous for warding off the plague in France in 1413. Available in 100% essential oil blend, bees wax salve, and now a hand sanitizer spray.
If you’re needing some guidance with your health and well-being, give me a shout. I’d love to help.
I’m taking my family to the mountains for a few days next week. I’ll be back in my clinic on Aug 31st.
I leave you with this excerpt from Walt Whitman’s poem Song of Myself, 20 given to me by a dear friend and patient for my birthday.
…I know I am August,
I do not trouble my spirit to vindicate itself or be understood,…
I exist as I am, that is enough,
If no other in the world be aware I sit content,
And if each and all be aware I sit content… Walt Whitman
“Stand In The Light of Your Own Being” is an elegant way of saying
Zheng Qi (Upright Qi)
A general term to describe the various forms of Qi that support/protect the body from exogenous pathogens. Usually used when contrasting the strength of the body’s Qi with the strength of an invading pathogen.
Here’s an exploration of the theory of Guest Host Theory. Over two thousand years ago, Zhang ZhongJing, author of the Shang Han Lun, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zhang_Zhongjing saw humans as part of the natural world. One of my teacher’s Dr. Edward Neal posted an elegant picture of a husband and wife kneeling down to welcome a guest that was also kneeling down, neither sides in battle with each other. It was very touching for me during these times where the Narrative at large is to protect ourselves from something evil. Viruses, bacteria, fungi are not evil per se, but they do their thing. They spread, they replicate, they have functions and programs. The take away from this image for me was to welcome the guest, have tea, and then send it on its way. Could our Zheng Qi accomplish this? Could my Zheng Qi accomplish this? Would I stay calm and not let my nervous system take over, taking energy from my precious immune system? Well I definitely have experience with both these scenarios, especially with the kids. When they were little, I remember not wanting them to be sick at all! I would get nervous and upset and do everything I could to get this thing out of them! Now as I mature (ha!) and the kids get older, I have more faith in their immune systems and I feel I allow them to get sick (have a guest) have tea, and send them on their way. There’s an idea that we will all benefit somehow and learn something. These days, this question percolates… It really does depend on our individual circumstances doesn’t it? We are all so different, with different histories and experiences. (and inside we are all the same)
In modern times, we often see ourselves as “Us vs Them” not with, but against. This need to protect and defend ourselves sometimes prevails, with good reason, sometimes…(but at what cost and could we do it differently?) I’ve been really investigating this idea within me, deep in my belief systems. Wow, I’ve experienced a lot more clarity into how I operate in the world, in my family, in my mind! I don’t think I’ve ever spent 8 weeks at home! I’m really curious as to how your experience has been. I am looking forward to welcoming you into my clinic, a place of connection and peace and letting go.
I’ll be getting in touch with those of you who had booked during the months of March, April and May, to re-book your appointments. Those of you who would like an appointment please contact me or visit my online Schedulicity calendar. Remember if you would like to work on something and you don’t feel comfortable coming into my clinic, we could set up a phone call or video chat.
Please feel free to express what you need when you come in. Bring or wear what you need to feel comfortable. We’ll do this together.
My first day in the clinic will be Monday May 25th. This will give me time to become familiar with the protocols put in place by the Ministry of Health and the CTCMA (College of Trad. Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists).
With deep respect and gratitude
My hours at the clinic: Mon 12-7 Wed 9-4:30 Fri 9-4:30 2508820659
“I wish I could show you the astonishing light of your own being.” Hafiz
“Stand in the light of your own being.” I originally saw this quote on Lillian Bridges website
Hello! How are you?
I’ve been taking lots of moments to really ask myself how I’m doing…asking my body or heart space(not my mind, our mind plays tricks and just says I’m ok). I certainly have been feeling lots of different emotions. Then I ask myself, what do I need? That usually gets me somewhere. Making tea for myself is a self-care ritual I do often this time of year. Here’s a picture of my lemon balm growing in my strawberry patch. Lemon balm is a gentle nervine, that helps calm and rejuvenate the nervous system. I grab a handful and sometimes mix it with other herbs or green tea. Other herbs(or weeds) that are growing right now are dandelion greens, nettle, and cleavers. Weeds are very useful this time of year to help our bodies do what we are doing anyway. Detoxing! Yes the liver is saying hello with all it’s grumpiness and irritations. So grab some weeds, or leafy greens and add them to your day.
Lavender is another one of my go-tos. Essential oils are easy to use and affordable and lots of fun. In March I was using a lot of Thieves Oil https://marseillesremedy.com/ in my clinic and at home and now I’ve switched to more calming/ nourishing/ uplifting oils such as lavender, citrus, peppermint. Rose oil I keep handy for special times like these where my heart space needs softening. In Chinese Medicine, Rose helps move the Liver Qi. (moves pent-up energy)
I’ve been spending a lot of time with my family doing simple things: gardening, chores, bike rides etc. I’ve also been learning a lot online with my colleagues, staying connected that way. We’re doing a lot of meditations together, reviewing formulas and herbal combinations to help restore the body’s vitality through illness. Some of my colleagues in the States and China are sharing their approaches to Covid online for everyone to benefit and learn from their experience. Chinese Medicine has studied novel viruses for thousands of years. One of our special treasures is called the Shang Han Lun, written around 2000 yrs ago. We are still using the wisdom found in this treaty to help patients process this virus. The Shang Han Lun sees humans as part of nature. Seeing how our bodies can become in a workable relationship with nature. This really resonates with me and my belief systems. As I get older, I feel I want to protect myself less and less from others, or the outside world. I’m taking this time to go deeper inside myself and stay soft (when I can). Every day I say a prayer for all of you, and to all beings.
Today when I checked in with myself, I wanted to take pictures and write and connect. Voila!
Thank you for reading
Here’s my email if you want to say hello email@example.com
Hello and big hugs to all of you. I have returned to Victoria after a week of hiking and biking with my family. Our family reunion plans to Guatemala were re-routed to Parksville. My husband and I decided Parksville beaches and trails would ease the blow of not seeing Grandma and Papa in the tropics…and it did!
I am sure things are feeling and looking differently for you too. I miss you and I am thinking of you! I have come up with some ideas I hope will address our needs. It’s a work in progress. Here goes:
I’m going to start calling my April bookings to check in with you to see how you are doing.
Next, I have set up 2 Telephone/Video options for us if you would like a longer more in-depth consultation.
Dr Bonnie Henry, our Provincial Health Officer has advised all Health Professionals to cease all non-essential services. I take this to mean non-acute or non-emergency care. This directive was received through my College (CTCMA) on March 23rd/2020. I have a stirring energy inside me that’s thinking, what about Preventative Care? or Convalescent Care? This is where Chinese Medicine has always provided so much hope and solutions. So whether it’s for emotional support, pain, herbal care and support, diet, acupressure protocols, yoga, meditation, breath work, you name it. I’m here. On my Schedulicity App, I have added 2 services to address these needs. These services can be done over the Phone, Messenger Video or Zoom. After I have checked in with you, I will cancel your in-clinic appointments for the month of April (we’ll start there). You can rebook your appointment as a Tele/Video if you would like a longer and more in-depth conversation. You can do this online now by clicking Schedule Now at the top of this page, or email, text, call 250.882.0659 firstname.lastname@example.org
Now we can connect no matter where you live!
We are never alone and please remember our bodies, mind and spirit have potentiality beyond words.
” I wish I could show you the astonishing light of your own being” Hafez
May we be filled with loving kindness
May we be well
May we be peaceful and at ease
May we be happy
May we know the depths of our true spacious nature
May we be healed in this moment
May we be free of fear
Happy Year of the Rat! The rat is the clever one who won the race by tricking the bull into carrying him until the finish line. At that point the rat jumped off and crossed the line before all the other animals. I know this story because I’m a rat. When I lived in Taiwan and found out I was a rat, all the children made sure I knew I wasn’t a lowly rodent, but that I was a clever rodent!
Lillian Bridges has written up the forecast for 2020. “Rats favor their young, so this is a year of youth empowerment and reclaiming one’s youthful self. People will feel younger and livelier.” That sounds good. To read more of her predictions, click the link below, than click the purple title that says The Year of The Rat Forecast.
There’s a new free 21 day meditation coming up by Oprah and Deepak. It’s about living our healthiest life. Here’s the link:
Meditation for me grows my compassion muscle. It shines a light on my mental stories and games that I play. If I can grow to like myself more, this helps me understand others on a deeper level. The road can feel bumpy…and it’s worth it.
Winter is upon us. We got treated to some snow and sliding! My daughter Alia Blue, who is eight years old, couldn’t get enough of the snow. One night after her bath, she decided to get her snow pants on for one more go! Yes, good thing! It melted fast.
Winter is Kidney/ Urinary Bladder time of year. Our energies are deep in the body. It’s important for me to check in to see what I am needing. If I try to do too much…argh it doesn’t feel good. At the same time, it’s important for me to keep my light shining bright and my Qi moving with some treatments, yoga, meditation, slow time with family, singing, walking, creativity…What are your tricks?
In Chinese Medicine, it’s time to keep the body warm and preserve our Qi, for Spring and Summer are around the corner. Change change change. Everything comes and goes.
My hours at the clinic are Mon, Wed, Fri…with some overflow Thursdays.
Remember you can text, call, email, or book online.
Looking forward to our visits.
Gigi Vincentine Dr. TCM