Community Qi: inside the treatment room and outside.

Two years ago, when I told my patients of my plans to convert the practice to a CAP, they surprised me that month by scheduling more visits than ever, at the old price.It only lasted a month, but told me that they were expressing their trust in me, once they realized that I really cared about them getting well.

Fast-forward two years, and I’m now telling them that I’m moving to a new location, just a mile away.I found a place for almost the same price, but this will give us a little more space, our own bathroom, and free parking.They also know that my lungs took a big hit from the recent wildfires, and that I’m in healing mode, so when I posted the announcement about the move, they were not surprised when I also posted a signup list for those who wanted to help out.

The move entails a huge expenditure, in both labor and cash.The main unit is already freshly painted with white paint.But because we’re also renovating an old, unused bathroom and storage room, we are cleaning and painting.Buying low-VOC paints and supplies, scrubbing walls and floors, windows and blinds and dusty vents was not something I thought we could tackle by ourselves.

The first day I posted the announcement, the signup sheet was almost filled!

The first weekend saw three greatvolunteers show up.One patient cleaned like the devil for five hours!Another volunteer was a complete surprise to the project.He started out as a Craigslist find, as a hired truck to transport our office partitions.He ended up so interested in our project that he donated hours of his skills to helping us to set up and stabilize our reception room walls.

A third volunteer was a very frail patient who used to be a professional painter in a previous lifetime.Not only did he bring a drop cloth and painting tools, he fetched our paint for us at the hardware store and donated a gallon of paint to the project.His expert advice on painting techniques was invaluable, as he probably saved us hours of time and cleanup.Even though we thought we knew how to paint, he surprised us with little-known tips on how to apply the paint, how to set up for painting, how to save on paint, estimate need for paint, etc. etc.

This weekend we have some new volunteers scheduled, for painting and odd jobs.One donated dyeing materials so we can dye some gauze that we’ll be hanging, to drop the ceiling and absorb sound.Another will be ironing the finished cloth before we put it up.I’m picking up fabric scraps and towel donations from Freecycle tomorrow morning.A fan, cotton rags, and various other useful items were donated by other patients.

Another is a professional artist who is helping us with banner designs and signage.There is more going on, and we’ve only just started, but I wanted to share this with you, that my heart is warmed by these individuals expressing their trust and investment in the clinic that they recognize as a part of their healing.Wow, this is what a community clinic feels like!

Now I’m going to try to post my photos for you so you can see the new clinic space.Yes, it’s upstairs.But there’s an upper parking lot that leads to a walkway that goes downhill to the second level of this building.

Downstairs is a great sushi restaurant and next to me, on either side, are a massage therapist and a fine arts studio sharedby three artists.The door faces east, and the windows and the glass door catch the morning sun.

Author: lumiel

I earned a B.A. in Hotel/Restaurant Admin, but soon realized that I wanted to do something more meaningful.  Became interested in nutrition and education when pregnant with my first child. Interest in health led me to becoming a foot reflexologist, which led to a massage practice and suddenly discovering the love of my life: Chinese medicine! Practicing for 18 years, Hawaiian/Californian, acu-educated PCOM San Diego/OCOM Portland. Started my CAP in <a href="" target="_blank">San Rafael</a>, Marin County, July 4, 2006, even while earning my doctorate at OCOM.  This didn't seem to make sense, but it was my way of comparing the old way of practicing acupuncture to a simpler, truer expression of what I had learned in school.  I love it. And I love being a part of this grand movement to change the world by being true to our conscience. Reopened all over again when I moved to a place where no one had ever heard of me. 3 months open so far, and just beginning to meet expenses. I have no doubt this will succeed and I will be hiring by next year.

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  1. facing east

    Good stuff happens! My heart is warmed by your story Lumiel. Funny how it works out….we just sort of plod along…doing nothing special…just watering our gardens of good intentions with our daily actions….and then one day…blossoms everywhere. Congratulations on the move and many successes inner and outer in the future.


    All true religions seek to gain access to that level of consciousness which is not ego-bound.</

  2. It also warms my heart to

    It also warms my heart to read this, I’m not surprised at all that your patients are lining up to help you.  Your good heart comes through in your posts, you must positively sparkle and glow in person.  I wish you the best in your new space.

  3. Thanks for your kind words, Linda.

    It’s astounding, how much work this move is taking.  Today three volunteers came to sew, clean, and dye.  they worked over six hours!  I felt like I was running Lumiel’s Sweatshop, honestly!

    But it has occurred to me that this could happen to every one of you, once you get your patient base established.  The patient who has come to clean (and man, does she clean!!!) over and over exclaims how grateful she is that she can now sleep peaceful nights, because of the acupuncture.  I’m only experiencing this because I’m moving, and I’ve asked for volunteers for a few hours on the weekend.  I didn’t realize what an army these volunteers could be.  Your patients  would do the same for you, if the occasion called for it.