Cycle Much?

Image by Lauren Ellis

The tires on my bike are flat. I have yet to pump them up from their very long Winter's rest. The day will come, though, when I inflate them and off I go... down the wide, carefree, kick-the-can streets of my childhood. Hopping on a bike is a direct transport to FEELING free, adventurous & mischievous. 

While I relish the feelings that pedaling on a bicycle brings I'm not an avid bi-cyclist. I am, however, in training for the Olympic Cycling Team of LIFE. Have you noticed that Life asks us to ride the cycles of emotions, aging, hormones, seasons, relationships?  We are all in flow, in flux, in some cycle -both grand and small - in every moment. 

The silly thing, though, is that I forget that I cycle.  Do you forget? When you're in the midst of the 'funk' do you forget that you've been there before? Do you forget that it will pass? Do your thoughts begin to run amuck?  I forget that I don't have to 'know how' to get out of it. I forget that these 'unpleasant' cycles are part of a process of deeper integration and higher levels of functioning. I forget that I am intrinsically designed to cycle, to flow, to learn & to grow. We were  made to get high & to get low. There are seasons of flourishing and seasons of decline. We must pass through the dark, slight of Winter before we arrive, once more, in the exuberant arms of Spring.

In the 'low' times it's as if the goodness, beauty & love in my life are eclipsed by being in that 'uncomfortable' place. I get anxious. I panic... when will this end? Why am I here AGAIN? What's wrong with me? What should I DO?  My thoughts go on a wild midnight ride of their own recklessly zig-zagging through the dark alleys and potholes of my psyche. At these times I do not feel free, adventurous nor mischievous. In such times the joys of coasting evaporate and life feels like a steep hill. 

I am learning the art of acceptance. 

And, you, how do you cycle? Do you feel sad at the lessening of day light hours? Do you experience a paralysis in the dark, house-bound days of winter?? Or, maybe, you expand & breathe more deeply as Autumn wafts in. Do your insides clap & dance and  march towards the stark, crisp days of Winter?  Does the approach of Spring bring dread? Do you have obsessive thinking in the morning but by mid-day the fog burns off and you feel present, clear & grounded? There are countless ways in which we cycle. For some of us the cycles are more dramatic, more visceral, more disruptive to optimal functioning.  For others, the cycles of living are more muted, less demanding.

No right. No wrong. Just complexity, uniqueness, & learning. 

In some ways, it's easier for me to understand and accept that the subtle shifts in Nature directly impact physiology, emotions & the spirit. Chinese Medicine provides a spiritual, scientific & philosophic context in which I understand my connection to the whole.  It's the days, though, when I'm in a seemingly inexplicable  'funk' that it's harder to practice acceptance because the mind wants to figure it out...

I am learning the art of acceptance.  I find it to be the best slow-burning fuel during days of intense 'uphill' training.  We are all in flow, in flux, in some cycle -both grand and small - in every moment. The forgetting and remembering is another cycle of being human that we move in and out of. The invitation is to draw the circle around myself large enough that it includes all phases of the waxing and waning of my being. Day in... day out. Month in...month out. 

Keep on pedaling my friend. You'll be coasting again before you know it. You got this!!!

Please  check out my upcoming workshops here: 

 

 

 

 

Maintenance: How to Proceed after the Cleanse

"What do I do once the Cleanse is over?"  

Participants initially perceive the Cleanse as a finite period of time.  For us, though, the Cleanse is not about 'fasting' or 'detoxifying' for two weeks. It's not meant to be a 'quick fix'. Rather, it's about discovering or, perhaps, rediscovering, how to deeply nourish your body, mind and spirit. The Renewal Cleanse series is an invitation to reset the rhythms of your body to the Seasonal Energies. By eliminating inflammatory & allergenic foods the healing wisdom of your body can grow brighter.  

The recommended formula remains the same after the Cleanse: eat lean proteins that are locally & sustainably harvested, enjoy lots of local, seasonal veggies, and be sure to include healthy fats in each meal. If and when you choose to reintroduce corn, eggs, soy products, nightshade veggies, legumes, root veggies, grains, gluten, sugars, caffeine, dairy and/or alcohol remember that these are inflammatory foods. Introduce these foods one at a time. Allow 2-3 days between each reintroduction as it can take up to 48 hours to feel the effects of an allergen or sensitivity.  Spreading out the reintroduction of foods gives you a clear sense of how certain foods impact your physical, mental and emotional health. 

Having removed processed & refined foods and included seasonal whole foods and healthy fats you will likely notice that your ‘need’ for the sweet taste has diminished. One of the coolest things about the Cleanse is that what we once thought we 'had to have' - coffee, chocolates, alcohol, etc - are no longer on our radar. Or, much less so than before the elimination. Move gently into the reintroduction phase. Allow for the unexpected.  

Breakfast:

Decaffeinated drinks and fruit juices are not recommended as they tend to spike blood sugar levels. Opt instead for hot water with lemon. In the winter adding a spoonful of coconut oil to this will nourish you deeply. Try herbal teas (green and red roiboos, stinging nettles, oat straw, chamomile, mint, fresh ginger or fresh turmeric tea) without sweeteners. Even honey and natural sweeteners will spike glycemic levels. Home made nut milks (depending on the season warm or room temperature) with a dash cinnamon, or turmeric, ginger, fresh vanilla bean.

Eat a breakfast that includes protein every day.  Good sources of breakfast protein are: happy, local eggs (as you reintroduce eggs, notice how your body responds), sausage, bacon, steak, ground grass fed beef, left overs from dinner, and nut butters. Avocados are great at breakfast. All commercial breakfast cereals, pancake mixes, or breads will spike glucose levels and set you up for a blood sugar crash.  

As an alternative to a meat breakfast occasionally enjoy: seasonal fresh fruits with toasted (unsweetened) coconut, sprouted seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, chia, flax), and a handful of crispy nuts *(see recipe in maintenance hand out).  

Snacks:

Balance carbs, fats, and proteins. Accompany fruit or vegetable snacks with crispy nuts, nut butter, meat, avocado, or slices of raw cheese (if you choose to reintroduce dairy).

Lunch and Dinner:

While it is important to eat your veggies, take care not to leave out a organic, pasture-raised meat (protein & fat) component of your meal.  Be mindful of vegetables that are high-glycemic (grown below ground) as even they can spike blood sugar levels when eaten alone. Please continue to share new discoveries and recipes on the Seasonal Renewal Facebook Page.

How you proceed after the Cleanse is entirely individual. We hope, however, that the positive shifts in mood, energy and sleep during the first 2 weeks inspire you to continue eating in a manner that fortifies & enlivens your whole being.  

May you be healthy & happy... alway

Learn more about the Seasonal Cleanse here

 

  

 

 

The NADA Protocol

The NADA protocol is a systemic auricular acupuncture treatment that I love offering in community and professional settings.  The intent of this entry is to share the specific benefits and details of this treatment.

The NADA treatment is designed to deeply relax the nervous system, nourish & soothe the heart-mind, and support the body's ability to detoxify physically & emotionally.  When receiving the NADA protocol you will receive 5 pins in each ear. You can sit comfortably in a chair or recline on the floor. Once the pins are in place you will rest quietly for 30-45 minutes while your body receives the treatment. 

Below is a list of the specific benefits of each point:

Point One:

This point is associated with the Earth element and the season of Late Summer. It embodies thoughtfulness and the ability to give not only to others, though also to tend to oneself. It supports the ability to digest not only physical nutrients in terms of food, though also the ability to assimilate one’s life experiences on mental and emotional levels. It signifies balance and a home where one can feel nurtured and thrive. 

Balances the sympathetic nervous system (calms the fight-or-flight response)
Relaxes the internal organs
Calms the spirit

Point Two:

This point is associated with the Fire element and the season of Summer. It embodies partnership and the ability to manifest one’s full potential in all areas of existence. 

Alleviates pain
Calms the mind
Relieves anxiety, depression, insomnia and restlessness
Can be helpful in reducing hypertension
Supports the ability to connect to one’s own spirit and to connect with others

 

Point Three:

This point is associated with the Water element and the season of Winter. It embodies the ability to sit with the unknown and invoke deep listening so one can proceed with courage even amidst fear. This point supports one’s innate power and will. 

Supports hormonal functions
Supports urinary functions
Relieves fear
Supports receptive listening

 

Point Four:

This point is associated with the Wood element and the season of Spring. It supports the ability to plan effectively and embodies the qualities of flexibility and clarity of vision – enabling one to perceive a wide range of possibilities in the midst of challenging situations. This point engenders creativity.

Supports physiological and hormonal functions
Relieves muscle cramps
Aids clear thinking
Supports creativity
Relieves frustration, anger and depression
Supports one’s sense of life direction

 

Point Five:

This point is associated with the Metal element and the season of Fall. It supports one’s ability to connect to that which inspires and aids in the ability to let go of that which no longer serves – just as the trees allow their leaves to fall in order to prepare for a new cycle of seasons. 

Supports one’s sense of self-respect
Regulates pores
Aids in the processes of grieving and letting go
Supports inspiration and connection to a higher power

 

Acu Detox information courtesy of NADA. 
For additional information please visit: www.acudetox.com

Community Acupuncture at Gallery 788 April, 2015

Community Acupuncture at Gallery 788 April, 2015

 

Summer Renewal: A Holistic Cleanse

Summer Renewal: A Holistic Cleanse is designed to empower and educate people of the myriad benefits of eating a whole foods, locally sourced diet rich in vegetables, lean proteins, and healthy fats. This cleanse is rooted in the ancient wisdom of 5 Element Theory, paleolithic principles, gluten-free living and eating seasonally.

You will learn how to balance yourself in the Season of Summer; which foods are inflammatory; what constitutes healthy fat; how to create meals that balance blood sugar levels and give consistent energy; how to relate to your cravings with compassion & tenacity; how to nourish yourself in ways unrelated to food; and how to supplant old patterns with new generative habits.

Upon registration you will receive: meal plans, a shopping list (including local resources for where to source meats, fish, vegetables) and the over-arching Summer Renewal Cleanse guidelines. The Cleanse also includes Acupuncture Detoxification Treatments & Yoga Nidra to support you in this time of change.

Schedule:

Wednesday, the 17th, 6:30-8:30pm: Welcome Circle, Cleanse Overview, & NADA treatment

Wednesday, the 24th, 6:30 - 8:00pm : Semi-private Check-ins, NADA treatment

Wednesday, the 1st of July, 6:30 - 8:30pm : Closing Potluck, Maintenance Overview, & NADA treatment

An integral part of making sustained change is community support and accountability.  With this in mind we will meet as a group 3 times throughout the 2 week period. We will come together as a group to share ideas, insights, recipes & support in person and
via a secret Facebook page. To honor the spirit of Summer we will meander the local Hampden Farmer's Market, feeding our senses, hearts and minds as we go. We conclude our Cleanse with a shared potluck.

Sarah and I are available to guide you every step of the way. We are a committed to creating a community that is focused on making positive changes. This Cleanse is an invitation to live your life with more awareness and integrity.

In every spiritual tradition there are periods of ritual fasting. These ritual fasts, often rooted in religion, are designed to allow the body to rest, to rid itself of impurities and to heal. They were also an opportunity to foster a deeper connection to the Divine, within and without. Long before the stratification of our culture and the birth of religion humans were naturally subjected to seasons of scarcity. Whether we come to it from a desire to heal, a desire to purify our mind and emotions or, simply, we come to it from a deep knowing that we could feel more vital if we better understood how to nourish ourselves, ritual fasts are built into our DNA.

We hope you will join us, Martha & Sarah 

Intentional Design

"...creating home and work environments that are in alignment with the healing forces of nature, thus creating spaces that naturally support and nurture the individuals that occupy them." - Nancy Santopietro author of Feng Shui and Health

 Intentional Design is based on the ancient wisdom that our well-being is directly influenced by our environment. Simply put, one's home will either enhance or detract from one's vitality. Intentional Design differs from interior design in that it is rooted in the timeless wisdom of Classical 5 Element Cosmology and the Daoist Art of Feng Shui. It considers the vibrational frequency and patterns in your home and, thus, in your life.

Using these ancient healing arts I assess the health of your home and create a plan to enhance its resonance & vitality. My gift is to design spaces that are inspired by the poignant restorative beauty of nature; that incorporate a thoughtful organization; and invoke a spacious tranquility.  Home sweet home can be just that, a font of joy, abundance, inspiration, restoration, & creativity.  

Feng Shui is predicated on the knowledge that each space in your environment reflects the subconscious and, most illness begins in the subconscious mind. As you wander through the following questions hold in mind the metaphor that home reflects the condition of body, psyche and spirit. 

Do the items in your home bring you joy? Do they inspire you? 

What is the interior life of your cupboards? Your refrigerator? Your closets?   

Are their spaces in your home that you do not visit given their condition?

What is 'hiding' in the attic? The basement? The shed?

Do you have plants? What is their health? 

Do you have a space in your home for your creative endeavors? 

What do you look upon as you gaze out each window in your home? 

Is it easy to move about your hallways?

Are your windows functioning well? Your doors? 

I am currently accepting new clients for Intentional Design. The initial consultation and all visits take place in your home.  Please email me with questions and/or to schedule an appointment. 

 

 

 

Open Call for Acupuncture: A Community Offering

As a self-taught artist, acupuncturist and ardent advocate for healing in community I have long envisioned  offering acupuncture in a gallery setting. Acupuncture is potent, holistic and sustainable medicine. It exacts transformation and healing and, it has a profound effect when offered in community. My dream to marry acupuncture and art came to fruition last Thursday at Gallery 788 in Hampden. I am especially grateful to Eduardo Rodriguez for creating a colorful, dynamic, diverse and community oriented space that supports healing, wellness and authentic creative expression.  I am also grateful for the opportunity to co-create this exciting event with my dear friend and colleague, Jeanne Crane, L.Ac.. 

 Open Call for Acupuncture: A Community Offering

Martha Artemis Rogers, L.Ac. & Jeanne Crane, L.Ac.

Thursdays, 5-7pm

Gallery 788   

$25.00

April 30th, May 14th, May 21st, May 28th

 

 

Spring Renewal: A Holistic Cleanse

This cleanse is a portal into a healthier, more nourishing and more sustainable approach to eating and living. It will educate and empower you to take better care of yourself and to be your own best healer. 

Here are two thought provoking interviews with two renowned Doctors, both on the cutting edge of nutrition, health, and the mind/body connection. 

Interview with Dr. Lorein Cordain, Author of the Paleo Diet 

Interview with Dr. David Perlmutter, neurologist, and author of Grain Brain

Dates and times for the Cleanse:

March 20th, 6:00- 8:00pm : Welcome, Introductions, Overview & Acupuncture Treatment

March 23rd & March 30th, 5:30pm - 7:30pm : Semi private sessions with Sarah and Martha. Check In. Receive Acupuncture Treatment.

April 4th, 11:30am - 1:00pm : Savor & Celebrate Potluck Luncheon. Set maintenance goals. 

 

Fire Flies & Farmers Markets

from May 2014

My sunflowers are knee-high. The beets are nearly ready to harvest.The heirloom tomato plants are growing wild and free.  And, last night, I saw fireflies. Summer has arrived!

 HAMPDEN FARMERS MARKET: 

I'm thrilled that we have our very own farmer's market in Hampden. And, I'm super excited to be working for Two Boots Farm . The market is every Saturday from 9:00am until 1:00pm. It is held on the corner of Elm and 36th Streets, near the Wine Market.  Come visit this Saturday. Enjoy the live music; treat yourself to a Belgian waffle; and fill your reusable bags with vivacious local produce. Come visit tomorrow. (I'll also be selling some of my gem & succulent gardens.)

How Acupuncture Helps with Menstrual Cramps: 

 Life without Period Cramps