Chaos, controlled.

A large open space filled with bodies seemingly levitating off the ground.
Its warm, almost a little humid and the light is soothingly dim. A low grade humming permeates through the room, flecked with mysterious, yet comforting music lulls people to sleep. Everyone’s movements are purposeful, gently entering and leaving the room abiding by unsaid rule of whispering and treading lightly. This is the atmosphere that naturally unfolds day in and day out at our office. Like magic it materializes as the room fills, then dissolves as the room empties for the day, just like fog hitting the sunrise.

As a practitioner, I’m navigating this hub of coming and going. Greeting, making eye contact, flitting from chair to chair, fluffing blankets, unpinning, watching the clock. Sometimes the flow is like spreading butter on hot toast, everyone arrives on time, conversations short and pinning is quick. And other times, its like driving on a road fulla potholes. People converge in clumps, conversations lengthy and it feels like everyone needs me all at the same time. Between the starts and stops, I strive to remain calm and composed. But in the back of my mind, I’m hoping no one can notice my sweaty armpits, that I’m wishing I didn’t wear that sweater to work and that my charting is piling up on my desk. I do not control what comes into the office, I am merely the facilitator, inviting the randomness through our door and directing it the best I can.

I am a seabird floating on top of the raging Pacific.

So I ride that collective controlled chaos, gently directing the flow as the room rearranges itself hour to hour. It is a lovely, inviting and human chaos that is manifested by the energy of each individual that sets foot in the room. It fills the space with a palpable calmness and honesty of strangers sleeping next to one another. Its a really beautiful thing, something that many of us don’t engage in often enough. Community Acupuncture is a controlled chaos, as people (and their health) are inherently unpredictable. Spending time, together, resting, free of hand-held electronic devices and enjoying each others company in sweet silence. It brings us back to a sense of connectedness, in the presence of something larger than ourselves. Bodies floating into dreamland, pain and suffering melt away and time stops, just for a moment.

~Christina Chan, R.Ac.


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