Replenishing the Tools in Your Toolbox

If you are like me, you may be super-high functioning in certain areas (writing, helping people, being a loving and creative mom) and practically disabled in others (keeping your house clean, changing a fuse, asking for what you need).

Growing up in a family that struggled with issues of alcoholism, codependency, divorce, mental illness, middle-class insecurities and owning-class entitlements didn’t give me every tool I needed for life. My parents and stepparents did an awesome job of working with the tools they were given to the best of their abilities, and I have a close, loving, mutually respectful relationship with all four of them.

However, each of them (like pretty much all of us) were given only a partial tool box to start with.

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Phoebe and the Wolf

s5000206.JPGSometimes working with an M.D. (Medical Dog) can be a bit tricky in unanticipated ways. Phoebe is a quiet dog, unusually quiet for a small dog who is only 18 months old.

My friend Beth Rettig who is a massage therapist, had given me all her favorite music to play for clients, and I have been working my way through them, trying them out one at a time.

I put a CD on I hadn’t tried before. It started with a nice waterfall sound, and some tropical birds, then went into a long meditative flute and drum thing. As the client relaxed, I puttered around the office, and Phoebe, the Medical Dog, went into her usual meditative mode, curled up in my chair. Her little black nose tucked under her big fluffy tail, like an arctic fox, dreaming of little arctic mice.

The client relaxing on my acupuncture table was wiggling his big toe in time to the music, but slowly he relaxed and fell sound asleep as the needles did their magic.

In the background of the music, breaking through the drums, came a long slow howl of a wolf. Phoebe leapt into action, barking wildly, apparently thinking that a wolf had crept in during the lull and was hiding under my desk. My client, who has a strong startle reflex, let out a yelp of his own.

I put my hands on him to help him calm down, and apologized, explaining that I had never heard the tape before. Then I had to do the same for Phoebe. Then we all had a good laugh.

I guess I’ll be previewing all the rest of the tapes before I play them.

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