Massage Therapy

Those of you who know me well know I am not a big fan of medications.  If you did not already know that you can refer to my entry about popping pills.

With that said I definitely am an advocate for other therapies.  Fortunately I am quite healthy and rarely need a doctor for any illness or ailment, so I cannot say that I have experienced many of them myself.

Years ago I went to a massage therapist for a minor back injury.  A friend (drunkenly) picked me up and proceeded to carry me down a hallway and tripped on a dog causing him to drop me.  I went down on my knees hard and my back arched.  I didn’t think there was any serious injury, but I did have a mild nagging pain in the middle portion of my back.  I decided to see if massage therapy would help the spot before I ventured to the doctor or an orthopedist.  A few sessions later I no longer had the pain, and I also found the relaxation of a massage to be beneficial for me as well.

As a Wellspan employee I am allotted $500 worth of massages a year through Wellspan Center for Mind/Body Health.  Yes, this is a very luxurious benefit, but I am glad that as a health organization Wellspan recognizes the importance of overall wellness for its employees.

I had my first massage session the end of April and did a second one tonight after work.  Sitting in a cubicle all day answering phones takes its toll on my neck and back as I’m sure many office workers can attest.  The massage not only worked out the stiffness that had developed in my neck, but loosened deeper spots in my back that I had not even realized were so tightened up.  While driving home I also felt this overwhelming calmness.  I typically hate driving on 83 as I feel that is the speed everyone drives on it, but I wasn’t phased even when I had tractor trailers around me.

Many people who have never had a massage assume it’s just completely pleasurable.  It is, but not always in the ways one would expect.  If a massage is done correctly you will actually experience some soreness afterwards, and it’s recommended that you drink a lot of water to help flush out the toxins that are released during the massage.

A lot of people also tend to think massages are a luxury expense.  My first session was 45 minutes in length and only cost $65.55.  I think that’s a small price to pay (and would pay it even if it wasn’t covered for me) for both stress relief and treatment of my minor ailments.  Even if you can only afford to go once every 6 months or even once a year I say you should treat and heal yourself with the experience.

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Relationship Articles

I see so many articles on Facebook that deal with relationships. How to tell if you’re with the right person, ways to improve your relationship, things people have learned from getting divorced, etc. I’ve read a lot of them and they seem to provide wonderful insight on how to “get things right.” These random writers seem to be filled with so much more knowledge than the average person, so much wisdom and experience that if we just follow their recommendations then we too can know this amazing joy.

Only they’re wrong.

There is no “right” way to have a relationship or “rules” to follow. What works for one couple may not work for another couple. I have a friend whose husband allows her to sleep with other men (within their own set rules and boundaries), and it has proven to be a wonderful thing for both their sex life and overall marriage. I know couples who seem to live almost independent of one another, each chasing their own dreams yet somehow using that to unite them more deeply. I view couples who seem obsessed with one another and making sure the world knows it by posting nearly every detail of their romantic lives on social media. Any and all of these things could work well for other couples, or they could bring about an end to the relationships.

I honestly find these “self help” relationship blogs and articles to be detrimental. I have personally stopped reading them. They make people second guess themselves, their partners, and the relationships they have. People begin to think if they can’t check off the “10 ways to know you’ve found your soul mate” then something must be wrong. These descriptions and lists set up false expectations and tell people how a relationship “should be.”

I have had three exclusive relationships in my life. None of them I was seeking at the time, and each of them had their own way of functioning and quirks to them. The way each operated likely did not make sense in some ways to those on the outside. I learned from each one though and each shaped me as a person. Maybe reading more of those articles and following the “advice” given would have kept each from ending. Or maybe each played out and ended the way it did because that is just part of life. And maybe the way to have the best relationship is to follow what works for you and the other person, not what a random stranger tells you on the internet.