Dear new music teachers

Dear new music teachers…

It’s your first job as an elementary music teacher. We’re a few weeks into school and you think you’re living the dream. Now don’t get me wrong—teaching is what you have always wanted to do, but you’re too busy riding the high of this experience that you’re overlooking that your life is a hot mess. And you need long term strategies to survive this life.

I know you’re busy. We’re all busy. It started as music majors in college. We practiced before our 8 a.m. classes when our friends slept until noon. We overloaded our schedules with 1 credit classes, classes deemed only as 1 credit so that we could fit everything into four years. Theory. Aural skills. Music History. Oh boy, was that one a treat. We spent our nights in rehearsal. Large ensemble rehearsals. Chamber ensembles. Jam sessions. We didn’t sleep.

Just because you have the shiny prize at the end doesn’t mean all the work gets to stop. You’re just starting. And there are things you need to know. Things you need to do. Even though you think you don’t have time.

  1. Join an ensemble. Repeat after me. JOIN. AN. ENSEMBLE. When you’re trying to fall asleep and can’t stop thinking about that parent’s email or an outburst from a student you need to remember why you’re doing this. It doesn’t take long for the memories of your globally touring college ensemble to fade. And when it does, you’re in trouble. JOIN AN ENSEMBLE. Ta ta ti ti ta can only sustain you for a little while. And though I love my ta-ta-ti-ti-ta, it’s not the music I crave to make. JOIN AN ENSEMBLE.
  2. Read “Classroom Management for the Art, Music & P.E. Teachers.” You think you have a plan now, but it’s the honeymoon phase. These kids are on their best behavior. Just wait until January. February. March. April. That long long stretch of indoor recess and no breaks. The author, Michael Linsin, is a former P.E. teacher turned administrator. He gets that classroom management of a “special” class can’t and shouldn’t follow the classroom management that goes on in other rooms. YOU NEED TO IMPLEMENT THIS BOOK. It will save your vocal chords. It will save your life.
  3. Make connections. With students. With staff. With parents. Learn names right now, scratch that. You should already know the names. Take 5 minutes at the end of each day to email parents for good behavior. Congratulate their child’s success. What we do in the music room is not the same anywhere else. We make music. We make magic. And we need everyone else to see it to!
  4. Teach your students how to read music. I’m talking time signatures, bar lines, treble clef line and space notes, eighth notes through sixteenth notes. Every good boy does fine. FACE. Teach them and then teach them again. It’s hard to pass on all this beautiful music through the generations if they don’t appreciate the hard work it takes to be a musician.
  5. Tell stories. Don’t just teach your students the words. I know there are a lot of them. We give so many concerts a year that it’s draining. Each grade needs to know 6 songs. Memorize 6 songs. Know complex Orff orchestrations for 6 songs. It’s so easy to fall into the pattern of, “Echo after me. I sing a line and you sing it back” Don’t do that. Please, don’t do that. Don’t teach words. Tell stories.

You may now resume another 10 hours of lesson planning! And if you’ve made it this far, please send me a cupcake or donut or really big bag of candy!

 

How can I help

I, generic white person, am not anti-police. I was not anti-police on Sept. 11, 2001 when the world was falling apart. I was not anti-police when they came to my rescue after a car accident. I was not anti-police when they helped save my city from what could have been an even more horrific mass shooting.

But I, white person, also know that in saying I am not anti-police, my white privilege lights up so bright you can see it all the way from Timbuktu. I know that I will never be shot while unarmed, hands up in the air, because I was born on the lighter side of the ombre paint swatch. So light I’m more Norwegian by the day. I will never know what it feels like to be pursued as a suspect simply because of a few measly genes. I will never be so blatantly disrespected and attacked, arrested and jailed for outrageous reasons, my skin color used to make me feel ashamed. I will never know the feeling of wishing I could slip out of my skin and tuck it under my pillow each night so I can sleep in peace knowing I am safe from the racism, fear, and hatred surrounding our nation.

I, white person, am not anti-police. But I am anti-hate. I am anti-fear. Especially when they intersect with those in authority. When those in charge can end someones life because their white privilege makes them see the worst in anyone who doesn’t look like them. And because of centuries of white privilege, and decades of the media targeting our black brothers and sisters to paint a scary picture, we’ve been stuck in a horrifying chapter of American History. We, EVERY WHITE PERSON, created this problem. Yes. EVERY. WHITE. PERSON. Even me. Even you. Even that nice lady at the bakery that gives you an extra cupcake on the house. EVERY WHITE PERSON. We created this. We killed precious, innocent souls.

Trayvon Martin. Mike Brown. Sandra Bland. Alton Sterling. Eric Garner. Terrence Crutcher. Countless others whose stories and names have been lost. We can no longer cover up these bullet holes. I don’t want my mini musicians, my best friends, my community members, to become the next hashtag blowing up the internet.

So how can I help? I’m sick of  praying that things will get better. I’m sick of hoping that #BlackLivesMatter will transform from a nice and shiny hashtag into a beautiful reality that ALL people acknowledge.  How can I use my white privilege as a voice to help those we’ve stopped listening to?

#PitchWars Mentee Bio

People of the internet — welcome! (and sorry for the lack of gifs!)

For anyone older than 11 my name is Kasey, but for my 500+ mini musicians I go by Miss Dallman. I am an elementary music teacher in Southeastern Wisconsin, which means that from September through June I get paid to make music — play, sing, dance, and create —with over 500 of my favorite musicians. It also means that on my tombstone they will write, DEATH BY RECORDER.

Every other waking minute away from school is spent raising my mischievous little boy rescue dog named Fitz. He has many talents, including modeling elegant ties (see shameless pictures below), applying to go on ABC’s The Bachelorette, and jumping on my laptop to stop me from writing.

You want me as your mentee because….

  1. I joined Girl Scouts because I thought that was the only way I could get the cookies.
  2. I taught my dog yoga and zumba. Okay, okay, mostly yoga.
  3. I sometimes burst out into song at Target because I forget life isn’t a musical. Sorry aisle 7!

 

About my submission

Despite his dark skin color, high school junior Marc Amazi just wants to blend in. It’s been years since an accident, one he caused, killed his younger cousin. And the hushed voices and judgmental stares have yet to go away. He just needs to make it to graduation and then he’ll be on the next train out of town. That is, until he befriends Anna Mason. Arguably the most stunning creature in the universe. Captain of the varsity basketball team. And the only one who doesn’t fault him for his past.

Marc’s almost out of the dreaded friend zone. Almost. But then Oct. 17 happens. Anna shows up at Marc’s house disoriented and confused, only to die in his arms. Immediately Marc is targeted as a suspect. And when her death is ruled an overdose and pills are found planted at the scene, he’s the one who goes down for delivering the narcotics that killed Anna.

As the justice system brands Marc by the color of his skin, the town doesn’t just label him a friend in mourning. They label him a murderer. A social media group is created to attack Marc. He’s all but ready to give up and join Anna on the doll train that leads to the stars. But in the midst of Marc’s trial, Anna’s younger sister goes missing. Marc might have a real shot at finding her, but to do so he will have to battle the demons of Anna’s death and a childhood trauma he thought he buried long ago.

Complete at 60,000 words, THE DOLL TRAIN is a contemporary YA manuscript told through Marc’s point of view in chapters that alternate from “before Anna died” to “after Anna died”. The all too real consequences of cyber bullying are woven into the story by interspersing pieces of the other characters’ social media interactions in between Marc’s chapters.

 

About PitchWars

Pitch Wars is an annual contest held by Brenda Drake in which unagented, unpublished authors with finished manuscripts are mentored by agented and/or published authors.

To learn more about PitchWars visit Brenda Drake’s website.

To read more contestant bios and add yours to the list visit Lana Pattinson’s website.

To see more pictures of my dog, follow me on twitter at @kaseydallman.

 

 

 

Sunday Night Blues tried to kill me

It was a Sunday morning during my senior year of college. In that awful winter state where the kids at school are starting to go stir crazy, trapped in the long stretch between winter break and spring break. I know, because I was a student teacher at the time. In the most wonderful placement in the world with the most talented, respectful, and awesome students. But even so early in my career, I was starting to feel the Sunday night blues. Not only that, but the Sunday morning blues. Sunday night blues

I remember putting my contacts in. Straightening my hair. Putting on makeup. The mundane morning routine that signaled another day of vigorously searching for jobs, typing up lesson plans, and filling out the mandated student teaching reflections before having to start another week.

It was a boring, Sunday morning, until it wasn’t anymore. Until I half-jokingly called out to my best friend (and former roomie), “I don’t want to do life today.”

Not in a depressed, crank up the music way. But in the Sunday-night(morning)-blues way.  In the I’m-tired-of-this-same-routine way. In the why-isn’t-there-one-more-day-in-the-weekend way. Not one minute later, I went to swallow three very large pills, and two of them got lodged in my throat.

Now, prior to this choking incident I was a pretty good dry pill swallower. It comes with the territory of being 1/2 of the “Walking Wounded” club. These specific pills were ones I had been taking since my gall bladder became emancipated. I had dry swallowed them dozens, if not hundreds, of times before.

This time, they refused to go down. No water, coughing, or aggressive swallowing could make them budge. My airway wasn’t restricted, but breathing and talking made the pills vibrate. As if they were on the verge of blocking my lungs. I don’t want to do life today. 

My standard, text-book Sunday morning, turned into a circus. My poor roommate, dragged into the mess, had to drive me to the ER where we waited hours and hours as the doctors tried to locate the pills. On one of their attempts to clear my throat, I began gagging, temporarily got the wind knocked out of me, and the doctors became concerned that I might have aspirated the pills into my lungs.

Sunday-Night-BluesSunday morning turned to Sunday afternoon, as I got prepped to undergo a bronchoscopy. By the time I woke up from the procedure, it was night. A whole day of relaxation wasted. Dreading Monday even more because my battery didn’t have the time to recharge.

There’s this overused saying. “Negativity breeds negativity. Positivity breeds positivity.” It loses all meaning because it’s one we’ve heard an infinite amount of times. Basically as annoying as the whole “glass half-empty or half-full” lecture. But maybe there is some truth to that.

I recently underwent clinical hypnotherapy to help lessen the symptoms of gastroparesis. Part of hypnotherapy is being open to the process, so before I could even begin treatment to target the actual pain, I had to go through a long course of intro sessions.

In hopefully not too confusing of terms….here is a breakdown of these sessions….

Our subconscious is awake at all times, even when our conscious is sleeping. It’s why we can sleep through a storm, but a small cry from the room next door can startle us and jolt us out of bed. That little bugger never sleeps, and is always taking in information from it’s surroundings. For those suffering with chronic pain, before the hypnotherapist can treat the physical pain, they have to retrain the subconscious. Why? Because the subconscious grows so accustomed to the pain and the way we constantly define our lives in terms of the perceived pain, that it only adds to the problem.

Before my course of hypnosis, on any given week day most of the time I would wake up and my first thought of the day would be, “I hope the pain doesn’t flare up today.” Or, “I hope I don’t have an attack at school today.” Or, “I hope I don’t have to try to find a sub at the last minute.” Or, “What will happen if I get sick while I’m teaching?” EVEN BEFORE MY EYES WERE OPEN. Little thoughts like this, as harmless as they appear, help contribute to the subconscious thinking that the pain is in control. That the pain defines you.

In the same way, negative thoughts, day in and day out, set your subconscious up to view life negatively. To turn every waking minute into the next round of Sunday night blues. Negative thought patterns drain the body, drain your energy, and wreak havoc on the whole system.

So maybe my quick words of I don’t want to do life today  were the final push my subconscious needed before it went rogue. Or maybe it had nothing to do with it at all. Since that wasted day my esophagus has been dilated and I no longer dry swallow pills. Or, at least those pills. And even better after 100 hypnotherapy sessions my stomach is walking on sunshine. (Some days cautiously tip-toeing!)

Now the only thing that needs curing are these pesky Sunday Night Blues (sometimes starting as early as Friday night…)

 

Fitz applied for The Bachelorette

Fitz has been itching to go on a new adventure, so he’s auditioned to date America’s next Bachelorette. Below is his filled out application. (Yes, this is the real deal, copy and pasted)  #FitzForPresident #FitzOnTheBachelorette #GetItTrending

 Name: I think it’s Fitz, sometimes Fitzgerald, but Mom also yells out “No Biting,” a lot…1888717_10205333822257121_8406413533594608625_n

Do you have a nickname? Baby cat, Fitzaroonie, Gerry, My love, Fitzo, Sassy, Naughty…

What is the next big city near you and how far is it: Milwaukee. A short sniff walk away

How did you hear about our search: Mom forces me to watch The Bachelor with her every Monday. She even puts my thunder shirt on so that I am calm and don’t get into trouble.

Occupation: Trouble Maker (That’s legit right? Like, this season someones job is being a twin so…..)

Annual salary: Currently mooching off of Mom. I plan to do the same with my future wife, and she better make a lot because I have a few medical issues (grain and chicken allergy, arthritis)

Birthdate: Somewhere around Aug. 5, 2014

Weight: 16 lbs

Age: 18 months

 Hair Color: Blue/Grey/White

Eye Color:Black

What is your highest level of education? Petco Positive Dog Training Advanced Adult II

Where did you grow up? I was abandoned in Racine, Wis. and was found cold and scared. After Mom adopted me I moved to Oak Creek. Sometimes I also get to go to Green Bay to visit Grandma and Grandpa.

Do you have siblings? No, but Mom wants to get me a baby sister named Olivia Pope.

Have you ever been arrested, charged or convicted of a crime of any type? I have been charged daily with stealing Mom’s laundry out of the laundry basket, breaking into the garbage can, and destroying furniture. I don’t plan on changing these actions because then I wouldn’t be the same Fitz.

12510382_10205501093758804_6011578121132857962_nHave you ever been a performer, participant or contestant on television, radio or in film? Yes. I am a popular star on Mom’s facebook pictures and videos.

Do you drink alcoholic beverages? No, but I’ve tried to steal Aunt Larissa’s wine…

Have you ever been married? No, I find it too hard to only kiss one human.

Do you have any children? Neutered

Please describe your ideal mate in terms of physical attraction and in terms of personality attraction. Someone tiny whose size doesn’t intimidate me. Must not steal my squeaky toys and must be a fan of wrestling.

How many serious relationships have you been in? Two, both with beautiful goldendoodles in my petco playgroup. I still see both girls every week, but if I get picked as a contestant I’ll obviously break up with them. I also have a serious crush on Olivia Benson from Law and Order SVU but she doesn’t know it.

What are your hobbies? Getting into mischief, running laps around the living room, 12359961_10205284778191050_7193339752701408315_nchewing everything, playing fetch.

What is the unique talent of which you are most proud? I can balance a treat on my paw until Mom tells me I can eat it.Mom also says I’m also a heartbreaker, whatever that means.

List the 3 adjectives that best describe you: Sassy, Spunky, Sweet

What accomplishment are you most proud of? I learned how to be calm and respectful with my brilliant in home trainer. I no longer compulsively bite my friends and family, and channel all that nervous energy into following the rules. I can even heel off leash, come when called, and know sit, stay, down, wait, leave it, touch, roll over, up, off, find it.

Why would you be a great husband?  I love snuggling at night and giving kisses. Also, I’m really cute and have lots of energy to give.

Why would you like to be on the show? I had a rough start in life and thought that I was unlovable. I was abandoned on the streets and found sick and starving. After finding my forever home, I now know that I am lovable and that I have lots of love to give away. As long as you scratch my back, rub my tummy, and play tug, I’ll accept any roses the Bachelorette sends my way.

Stop Praying. Start Doing.

Well kids, it’s happened. The below picture is one example out of 355 this year alone of what our children think humanity is….

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When I was growing up (which not to age myself, but 10ish years ago give or take a few) here’s what I thought humanity was…

  1. Donating money earned from playing piano at events to the local humane society.
  2. Adopting a family for the holidays and giving them all our Christmas presents.
  3. Getting stomach aches in the best way possible (Yes, there are more stomach aches than just those pesky gallbladder attacks!! Stomach aches caused by ridiculous bouts of laughing with family and friends, obvi!)
  4. Bawling while singing silent night and lifting up your candle on “Love’s pure light,”  with 6,000 of your closet friends. (Just kidding, this was only 1 year ago, but Carthage’s annual Christmas Fest is this weekend so I’ve got that on the brain!)

(I think parts and people of America might have forgotten what humanity is, so just in case I’m gonna leave this breathtaking video below so you can cry with me at the 4:10 mark and remember what it feels like to be wrapped around something special…https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpEHADsUP2Y)

Through all this horrific violence, I keep  reminding myself that lightning isn’t supposed to strike the same place twice, so my students and I should be safe, right? I live and teach in a small suburban city right outside Milwaukee with dedicated teachers, strong leaders, and beautiful people. But America doesn’t know my home like I do. They know it as the backdrop for the Sikh Temple shooting that took six precious lives.

Since that horrific day in 2012 the number of people whose name has been added to the list of mass shooting victims is astronomical. Which begs the question, how many lives does a shooting have to take before our lawmakers wake up and enact change. How many lives? Apparently 20 innocent children was not enough. Nine devoted and inspired college students was not enough.  Twelve people who thought they were just going to watch a movie was not enough. Sorry for the saltiness, but are we really going to keep ignoring this?

Early this year a group of fourth graders confessed to me that they hated going to school because of the risk of bombs or shooters or violence. You guys, fourth grade. Like 9-10 years old. And in comforting the students, I lied to them, because I can’t guarantee that this sickening violence isn’t going to plague our town again.  Because we live in a world, in a country, where school shootings and mass shootings become a brutal commonplace, as if we are living in the same dystopian world as the Hunger Games.

Every year when police come and train us in defending against active shooters and god forbid performing trauma care for potential victims,  I get a pit in my stomach as they use the language, “when a school shooting happens here.” Not, “if a school shooting happens here.”

When a school shooting happens, what are you going to do? When a school shooting happens how will you evacuate the building?  When a school shooting happens we know you will do everything you can to protect these children…When a school shooting happens we know through history that not everyone will survive, but it won’t be your fault because we know that you would do anything to save these children you love so much…..When a school shooting happens, the victims and survivors don’t just need your thoughts and prayers because it’s too late for that. When a school shooting happens laws need to change. Guns need to become more regulated. Policies need to go in place to protect our innocent and precious children.

Is this the world we want our children growing up in? A world where mass shootings happen weekly? My bad, a world where mass shootings happen daily? (Apologies for the passive aggressiveness …I swear I’m a nice person!)  A world where we must take written and performance tests to legally drive a car but can purchase a gun without batting an eye? A world where our children, the future leaders of this free world, are becoming desensitized to these horrific acts?

Let’s change this. #StopPraying #StartDoing

Shelter dogs are the best dogs…

For years I had been stalking various humane society websites searching for the perfect dog. So it was not a big shocker when after a day at work I specifically drove the long drive to the Racine Humane Society to see the 13 month Lhasa Apso mix named Scruffy. I had seen a video of him playing with toys on their website, and you guys, that face just got me. Like, seriously, he is forever a puppy.

But then I entered the dog room, which for starters was loud. Dogs were barking and growling, and oh my goodness if I had to live there 24/7 like they did I would go insane. As I looked into each cage to see if I could find my Scruffy, the reactions from the dogs were the same. Tense posture. Loud barks. Threatening stares. I mean, I get it. Visiting shelters can be a bit intimidating. It’s so much easier to take home a squirmy, beautiful puppy that doesn’t come with any baggage.

After weaving around the circle of cages, I found my Scruffy. We did not have a good first interaction. He was huddled over his bed, growling and snapping.  And outside his cage a sign read “WARNING: food guarding, resource guarding, leash biter.”

So, doing what most people in a shelter do, I walked away from Scruffy’s cage and kept walking until I found a dog that didn’t growl or bark as I walked by. There was one. A skittish, little dachshund. But as fate would have it, minutes before I arrived another person had their eyes set on the little girl.

Originally coming to the shelter for Scruffy, I then started asking the adoption counselor more about Scruffy’s behaviors. Which led to me taking the little nugget outside to get to know each other. And that face just had me. Combined with the way he tottered around when chasing toys, I just couldn’t get him out of my head. Even though he was mouthing my hands almost the whole time I was in the play space. I know, I know, that should have been a bad sign.

As I talked more with the counselor, I found out that Scruffy had been at the shelter for an abnor11850721_310703369053569_3056885170983084635_omally long time. And his history broke my heart. The poor guy was severely underweight and matted when he was brought in. (The picture of the condition he was in when found makes me physically sick.) After being shaved, a painful process when the fur is matted, he also had to be on antibiotics for a respiratory infection.

The little guy came from such a traumatic past. And it was nauseating to think of the obvious neglect and potential abuse he had suffered. Could you blame the poor nugget for his saltiness?

His heart wrenching past and once again that face, (it always comes back to his adorable head tilt) had me.

Scruffy became mine on Sept. 2, 2015. Being a stray, I felt it not to confusing to rename him. Scruffy became Fitz. And it was good. For like the first hour or two. Until it wasn’t.

He was only 10 lbs, but that little guy was menace when I brought him home. It was pretty obvious that he had no proper socialization as a puppy and his behavior was consistent with a pup that was taken from his mother too soon. High anxiety. Forceful nipping not responsive to basic corrections of yelping. Powerful teeth that didn’t know their own strength. For weeks I had nasty looking bruises all up my arms, legs, hands, feet, stomach, hips. Basically anywhere, because his unpredictable lunging would always end with him biting down on any bit of skin, covered or clothed.

Screen Shot 2015-10-01 at 10.31.28 PMNot willing to give up on him, I signed him up for puppy classes at my local dog store, which came with a bonus of puppy playtime and the socialization he desperately needed. But it wasn’t enough. And while he was an angel out in public, inside the walls of my home the behavior would escalate and escalate.

Enter Suburban K9. The in-home training group, based out of Chicago, Milwaukee, and Madison, is basically The Dog Whisperer x 1000. Within minutes of the trainer walking with Fitz, his ears were back, his tail was down, and he was relaxed. No more leash biting. No more leash pulling. Which made for a more relaxed dog back in the home. And the techniques I practiced with the trainer stopped his biting and impulsiveness and helped me earn back the leadership. He finally had something to do that required all his brain power.

Fitz is basically a rockstar now. And while we’re both still learning, every night I go to bed so thankful to have him in my life. Every morning he’s the reason I get up at an ungodly hour. He’s the thing that keeps me excited about work and the mini musicians, knowing that I get to shortly return home to him.

Some shelter dogs aren’t going to be obedient, respectful dogs. Most of the time they were either strays or were surrendered because their behavior became too much for their previous family. So they might need work. Lots of work.

But I’m just going to leave some pictures of Fitzgerald below to show just how worth it these little shelter dogs are! This little heartbreaker leaves people in puddles wherever he goes. I could just stare at that face for hours. Mama loves you to pieces, my little Fitz!

Introducing: Fitz(gerald)

Favorite past times: Jumping on Mama’s computer keys when she’s trying to write, running through the leaves, and Petco puppy playtime.

Favorite food: Sweet Potatoes, Grain Free Blue Buffalo Turkey

Favorite commands:  Leave it

Favorite toys: Human fingers, mesh football, box spring liner

And we’re back for round two…

Goodbye summer vacation! School has been in session for a bit now, and it’s 1,000x easier knowing just what to expect, what to focus all that energy on, etc., etc., etc. A few weeks ago someone asked if I was planning on doing anything different now coming back as a second year teacher.

Of course I laughed and said, “EVERYTHING!” New classroom management system. New first day of school lessons. New lesson pacing. Right down to a bubbly and brighter classroom.

Enjoy this tour of my classroom. (I confess, the pics were taken before the kids came back so my instruments were still kind of a hot mess at this point!)

Bad Blood — And Not The Taylor Swift Kind

My acupuncturist told me today that I have bad blood. Cue the Taylor Swift music. But seriously, it’s not that kind of bad blood. I promise.

Now, I know a little more than the average person about what blood bad could mean. Family members of mine have von Willebrand’s disease, where blood from cuts or surgical wounds or anything external has a hard time stopping, leading to anemia and blood transfusions. And because of that, I have also had the honor of being involved with the Hemophilia Outreach Centre for years.

But this bad blood has nothing to do that either. Basically, it means that my blood (and maybe yours) isn’t getting the nourishment it needs. Maybe because you’re like me and have to eat lots of processed foods or simple carbs that can get digested easily, so you don’t get that proper nourishment. Or maybe because you just haven’t been exposed to how sensitive our bodies are when the blood is bad. Which in turn means that it isn’t circulating as well. It isn’t getting to areas that need healing. So you start to go through cycles of long sickness, with no relief.

And this is what I love about acupuncture. It goes right to the cause of the problem, instead of just treating symptoms as they pop up. We need our Qi (pronounced like “chee,” and meaning internal blood energy) to actively be reaching all of us. And when the Qi can’t do that so many things start going wrong. Things that millions of people have experienced.

Dizziness (Every time I stand up. Super inconvenient for music dance parties with the mini musicians)

Mild Anxiety (Only on Bachelor Monday’s. Stop saying To Be Continued and show us the Rose Ceremony!! #TeamBenH #TeamBenZ #AshleySForPresident)

Difficulty falling asleep (Can I get an amen?!)

Paleness (Those who have received acupuncture treatment know just what it means when the practitioner needs to check your tongue one more time!)

Weak nails (Ahh! I thought it was just from painting my nails too much!)

Hair loss (Yep, still have that mysterious bald patch from ’14)

Low energy (Yawning from that first ring of my alarm clock until night)

Blurred vision (Accompanied with said standing or dance parties)

Dry eyes, skin, and hair (Like, my one-a-day contacts irritate my eyes after only a few hours)

Numbness

Women: Light or absent periods

So maybe you’re seeing a trend. Maybe you’re seeing that you have a lot of these symptoms listed above. Or that you too are forever frustrated with the lack of Bachelor Rose Ceremonies. Three things can be causing your bad blood.

1.) Excessive bleeding. Like in the case of people with von Willebrands.

2.) Poor digestive function, and not absorbing nutrients. (Check)

3.) Poor diet, low in nutrition. (Wait, what? Did you say gastroparesis?!)

While I believe 168% in acupuncture and the healing proprieties of moving the Qi, for a lot of us, it can also start right with our diets. So maybe you don’t have hundreds of dollars to invest in getting poked by needles every week. But you can start eating the way our bodies need to be fed.

Think dark green, purple, and red plants. Spinach. Seaweed. Dark fruits like Chinese wolf berries, dried apricots, grapes, raspberries, blackberries, and black strap molasses. (Which according to one of my treaters, one tablespoon of this stuff has the same amount of iron as a steak.) Organic meat, eggs, and lightly cooked vegetables.

I know, I know! All you gastroparesis people (or people with troubling digestion in general) are getting salty going, “It will literally take me days to digest that food.” It all comes down to what our individual stomach muscles (ha, or lack thereof) can digest. For me, that includes sweet potatoes, eggs, steamed veggies, and maybe grapes on a good day! And in the mean time, there are bunches upon bunches of chinese herbal supplements that can be customized for your individual situation, which an herbalist or acupuncturist can help you out with.

So the next time you hear good ole Tay singing about some Bad Blood (or right now, if I’ve gotten it stuck in your head), challenge yourself to nourish your body. Band-aids to cover up your symptoms aren’t going to treat those underlying bullet holes.  Maybe you’ll even jump on the oriental band wagon and get some needles poked in you to manually move the Qi and get a boost in healing. And since Tay said it best, I’m just gonna leave this right here…

Hey did you think we’d be fine
Still got scars on my back from your knife
So don’t think it’s in the past
These kind of wounds they last and they last

#Qi #Acupuncture #OrientalHealing #AshleySForBachelorette