Acupuncture changed my life. Before Acupuncture, my anxiety was extremely high. It was to the point where my life was unmanagable. I was having many panic attacks and I wasn’t able to navigate them even while I was going to therapy and taking medication for anxiety. It was difficult for me to calm down my body and my mind because I didn’t know how to do it organically. I wasn’t able to figure out what tools I needed to use in order to tell my mind to chill. I wanted to be cool with what was happening around me, even if it caused me to feel anxious, but it’s not that easy. Anxiety doesn’t care what you’d like to happen, it does whatever it feels like doing without consulting you because anxiety is selfish like that.

The first time I tried acupuncture I was 24. I saw a holistic acupuncture and massage clinic on Henry Street in Brooklyn Heights and I walked in, curious as to what this was all about. My experience with it at that time was not that eventful. I felt more relaxed than usual, but it wasn’t life-changing by any means. Years later, when I was pregnant with my son, I decided to give acupuncture another shot with a new practitioner. This was the first time that I was open to acupuncture helping me because I wanted to have a calm, stress-free labor experience, which I now realize is pretty much a myth. Childbirth is brutal, it hurts and there is a reason that epidural were created. But at the time, I wanted to make sure that my labor went smoothly. I had a lot of anxiety regarding how I would give birth, what would happen, how painful it would be and what to expect. I had a wonderful acupuncturist name Billy practicing on me, who I continue to see 10 years later. Billy was told by a mentor of his that there was a Native American spiritual guide advising him where to put the needles in his clients;  I believe in that hippie-dippy stuff.

Billy is extraordinarily talented and he managed to induce my labor with my son. I was 37 weeks pregnant and Ari was born May 6, 2008. He is now almost 10 years of age and I love him dearly. When I was pregnant with my daughter I also had acupuncture. My active labor with her was so fast that her father and I barely made it to the hospital in time for her to come out. One push and she was out of my vagina and into the world! Acupuncture has been successful in giving the babies and calming my anxiety. When I lay down on the table I am forced to relax because the needles trigger points in my body that tell my mind to calm down. For an anxious person like me, this is such a relief.

Acupuncture is a form of somatic therapy because it’s in your body. It helps people like me who have mental health issues and also managing chronic pain to calm down and feel better. I am grateful that I found this form of therapy so that I could gain some relief and clarity from my anxiety. How about you? Have you ever tried acupuncture? What was your experience?