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mental health

Where’s the negativity coming from?

[google search] how do I block my lawn
Full credit to XKCD, the artist/author Randall Munroe
I was just doing a meditative/spiritual practice about connecting with whatever our version of The Everything (commonly called God, or in this leader’s Sufi practice, Allah). I was getting stuck, because as the exercise was about taking responsibility for what mistakes I have made about a situation that doesn’t sit right, I then pray for Forgiveness from The Everything.

I was stuck, because (1) I’m struggling with my connection to, opinion of, relationship with Divinity and therefore the corollary of (1a) does The Everything have the power to bestow forgiveness? and also stuck on (2) why do I deserve forgiveness?

When you don’t trust that there is love and forgiveness for you and that you deserve it, it can then seem as though everything out there sees the lack of worth that you feel.

Then I calmed myself down, went over to the internet for a little distraction, and saw that the author of XKCD is also feeling inundated with judgement.

Clearly from the alt-text, he’s aware of the desire to just shut down that perception, to avoid it and get even further away. No comment on whether that works or not.

I don’t have a solution to this. I think you can work with a strong sense of your own worth to mitigate that, for an internal locus of control, or belief and trust in a higher being that has the power and inclination to forgive, for an external locus of control.  Maybe starting with behavior modeled by parents and mentors loving and forgiving our mistakes and helping us to acknowledge them safely and empowering us to move forward.  Not that all of us receive that modeling…

think that, but it seems I don’t know that or feel in my core.  Like many of us (evidenced by webcomics), I struggle.


What does this have to do with acupuncture, or even the general practice of medicine?  How do I dare to reveal my struggles with self-worth here in the open?

Firstly, just as I was heartened to see that I’m not alone by reading a webcomic, I want to let you know that you’re not alone.  I don’t –and can’t– understand your full lived situation, but I understand what it is to struggle with guilt, remorse, being cut off from or cutting myself off from loving connection with others, and the actual physical heartache that comes from facing that lack.

But secondly, the lineage of acupuncture I was drawn to (Worsley 5 Element, if you’d like to look it up) isn’t just about relieving back pain or quelling nausea. (It does that too, of course. Acupuncture is powerful.)  This style of acupuncture is about finding how we are vulnerable, and gently and persistently removing blocks to that connection with The Everything, with our worth, with our deserved love.

And oh, my dears, we do deserve love. And we deserve forgiveness when we realize our mistakes.  And we deserve a space where the grass supports us under our feet, and doesn’t echo the blame and shame we feel about our various mistakes.

Though it is difficult to manufacture forgiveness for myself (unless I wronged me), I can be a part of transmitting your deserved forgiveness, and standing as a conduit for your connection to The Everything and with your own sense of peace and safety. We humans can do that for each other.

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Big Medicine

Electra Allenton, ND, MSOM, LAcTwice recently, I’ve been given a gift of someone’s medicine.  It’s not what you’re probably thinking.  In today’s troubles with an opioid epidemic, with ADHD medication sharing or selling on school campuses, and things like that, being given medicine sounds very strange.  I’m not talking about pharmaceutical drugs, though.

I’m talking about plant-based medicine that heals as much through history and meaning as it does through phytochemicals.

I am talking about relationship and communication, fostered through our less intellectualized senses like smell and taste and touch, between humans and humans and between humans and our world.

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Those waters are still troubled, but we’re coasting along.

Electra Allenton, ND, MSOM, LAcDear ones, I’m ready to go!  How about you?

For anyone looking back…back…back through time at this blog post, I want to give you some context.  It is November of 2016.  Last week, Donald J. Trump became our president-elect.  There’s almost no one in the country who hasn’t had an emotional response, whether it’s elation at having the sense of being heard and seen, or fear at what drastic changes will come.  Everyone’s relative sense of safety has shifted for better or worse.  And, our country is remarkably polarized.

My clinic is in Portland, Oregon.  I’ve lived in Portland on and off since 2001, and I’ve lived in quite a few places in the United States and in the world.  I am a white, cis-female, neurotypical human being. But even though I am these things, I want to assure you –whoever is blessing me by reading my post here– that I am doing my best to seek training and experiences so that you are safe in my care.  You’ve maybe looked around my website to get a sense of who I am and what I offer to my patients.  I want to, straightaway, tell you my core values:

I value quality of life.

I value informed autonomy and agency – a.k.a. independence –
within an interdependent society.

I value a strong and resilient sense of self.

I believe these things are the root of healthy self-esteem, healthy relationships and the basis of a secure place in society.

I’m currently starting up my practice, but once it’s rolling smoothly I hope to donate some of my net income (after my professional bills are paid but before I get paid) to charities that will support vulnerable people in our country. There are so many to choose from that I haven’t decided yet, but I think the ACLU reflects my values pretty well.  They are also generous in lending lawyers to other organizations who defend the vulnerable among us.

I look forward to meeting you, and hope I can be a bridge to your becoming whole!

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Beginnings, spanning a bridge over troubled waters.

Dear ones, I have received my acupuncture license from the Oregon Medical Board, and am working on getting malpractice insurance and opening up scheduling at the place I will practice!

I look forward to serving anyone who has been set off-kilter by this election season, who is shaken and unsure of their security or identity in this political climate.

I have been waiting to be involved in my community for more than 6 years; I hoped and trusted that once I was qualified and vetted to serve you, I will be able to bring peace and healing to my patients and my colleagues and my profession and my community, and I am so excited to be opening my practice!

You can find out how to contact me or make appointments through this page.

You can find other updates at my parallel Facebook Page.

If you want to learn more about my medical philosophy, thoughts, and updates, you can follow my blog here, or sign up for my newsletter (when it is set up).