Breathe in, breathe out, hear the ocean, feel the breeze, listen to the music, picture a future and enjoy the here and now, a beautiful day at the beach.
French doors opened to hear the sound of the surf. Sea breeze flows in with the sound of the surf. Spa music was playing softly in the background. I am very mindful that my friend has requested the gift of a mindful touch experience, and it is the one thing that I can offer after her long six month ordeal.
Mindful touch or mindful massage is about being in the moment for both the massage therapist and client. When a friend requested a massage while we were at the beach together, I am grateful for the opportunity to offer her compassionate touch after her medical ordeal that was life threatening.
Even though the time spent with her is only about 30 minutes, she tells me afterwards that it is transformational, the most relaxed that she has been in months. With tears of gratitude she tells me that she could feel the touch of my hands on her head down to her toes.
My time spent with her is nothing unusual or certifiable in any type of special modality. My sole intent is to feel her relax, hear her breath ease and create a calm heart rhythm that was in sync with the music.
Mindful as a massage therapist I want to empathize with her silently without taking the burden on to myself. I keep seeing pictures in my mind’s eye of everything that she had gone through; many hospital stays, inaccurate diagnoses, repeat blood work and other procedures that would make even the calmest person be overwhelmed and scared about their future. Mindful of her children and grandchildren that I have seen grow up. How they must be affected by their mom’s illness.
My Oncology Massage training has given me the knowledge to modify a massage for each patient. Whether they are a cancer patient in treatment, a cancer survivor or someone else with medical issues, knowing what is safe, effective and research based gives me many modalities to draw from; energy based, light touch, comfort based, Swedish massage, lymphatic massage or manual lymphatic drainage. It is a combination of intuitively placing myself in their shoes to offer them what they need balanced with sound medical care. Each and every time someone tells me my training has given them relief from their illness renews my passion to continue my journey.
We all have healing powers and I realize that I my gift is to be a Patient Advocate and teach people how to access their own powers as self-care techniques. Playing with her head and neck softly, feeling her breath, touching the rest of her body in a patterned way helped her connect her mind and body. Teaching her these mindful tools will continue to help her understand how to relax, incorporating music and meditation. A gift I lovingly give to help her understand her own healing powers. Mindful.
Self care is hard work but so worth it. If I can’t take the time to do it for me and feel the results how can I educate others to do if for themselves. The next morning we wrestled with the rocking chair to position it outside to enhance the sunrise experience. Wanted to take full advantage of the sunrise, knew the rocking would help me sense the flow of the tides, to remember that tides change, life happens, flow with the tides, persevere in life. What came into my head was the country song, Rock Me Momma. As I sat there I changed the words to reflect my emotions
Rock me sunrise as the sun comes up
Rock me sunrise as the tide rolls in
Hey sunrise rock me
Rock me sunrise as my minds so full
Rock me sunrise as my heartstrings pull
Hey sunrise rock me…rock me