“Number 4 Spawn,” my mother said not too long ago, “always make sure that you keep a sense of balance in your life.”
Thinking she was alluding to the fact that I’d single-handedly eaten all the fudge she’d made for the holidays, I went into mega remorse mode. “Look, Ma, I’ll make more fudge for everyone. It was an accident. You always put nuts in the fudge, and, well, I hate the nuts. But this was pure fudge – as God intended it – and…”
“Forget the fudge,” she said. “It’s your life I’m talking about.”
Mom is good at handing out sage tomes of wisdom that make me think. What’s uncanny is that she does this at the times when I need to hear it the most. This time was no different because I’ve been experiencing a crisis of faith. No, not the dogma kind – I believe in the Cosmic Muffin and all that – but the foundations of where I stand with integrative healing. It’s kind of like when Mary Katherine Albaugh kept telling me I had bird legs when we were freshmen in high school. I heard it so much that I began to believe I really did have bird legs.
I love medblogs and read them religiously because I respect the docs who author these blogs. They have great senses of humor and make my morning cuppa a joy. Until talk turns to integrative medicine. Then my cyber heroes turn into people that shake me to the core. It’s not that I don’t believe that we all aren’t entitled to our opinions. And it’s not like I don’t share some of their same concerns. It’s the vehemence and absolutes in which they attack something I love. With them, there is no gray area, or “let me consider the possibilities.” It’s a case of “anyone who believes in integrative healing options is full of shit.” I know it’s not personal – at least I’m pretty sure it isn’t. Well, okay, there was that one blog that got really ugly, and I don’t go there anymore.
But in reading these blogs that deride integrative healing with tsunami force, I found myself questioning my own beliefs. Since derogatory vitriol was all I heard, my perspective became skewed. Not every doctor feels this way, and I needed to remind myself of this fact. Salvation came from the strangest place – a submission. A well-respected neurosurgeon submitted an enticing manuscript about his journey to integrating alternative healing options into his surgical career. We’ve exchanged a number of emails, and I found it refreshing to hear a doc whose world is steeped in science let words like “spirit” and “karma” slip off his tongue with ease. Within a day, I felt a cosmic sigh leap from my lungs. I felt grounded and more at peace with my writing and my direction.
Mom was right. My world had been out of balance, and I allowed my empathy for docs’ concerns to override the amazing stuff I’ve seen over the years. Thanks, Mom.
And, Mary Katherine? Just so you know – I have great legs.