Human Pincushion, Moi?

Yesterday was my first acupunture appointment. I obediently (obediently? To whom? Perhaps Just the voices in my head?) wandered off to the rather classy building that the clinic was located in. And to think that I thought it was just a book shop. There’s a whole other world there that I didn’t know about, including a barista training school with a rather tempting smell of coffee emanating from it.

Anyway, I went into the reception area and announced myself, and sat down on the white sofas to wait. It smelt really nice in there, like a spa smells, of lovely, fragrant massage oils. The practitioner (?) called me through, and proceeded to take a rather detailed medical history, in which she asked me everything from exactly how large the adhesions were (I don’t know! I don’t think the gynaecologist took her ruler out to measure them…) to whether I got a dry mouth in the evenings (hadn’t noticed, to be honest, I’m usually on the wine by then. I didn’t say that though, I thought it probably wouldn’t go well with the whole acupuncture/healthy living thing).

After deciding that she could help me, I hopped up onto the treatment bench, which was actually really comfortable. She then stuck some needles in my abdomen (bit weird), my hands (cue shriek from me at intense pain. Apparently it means that I’ve been stressed lately. No, really?), my ankles (didn’t really feel that much to be honest) and one right between my eyes (didn’t hurt, but I felt that I had to spend time squinting madly to see if I could see it. I couldn’t, by the way). She covered me with fluffy white towels, and put a heat pack on my lap, which was very comforting. I love hot water bottles and things like that.

She left me relaxing, and came back every so often to twiddle the needles. I didn’t really expect to feel much, but it was truly odd. At the risk of sounding like a lunatic, I felt that the needles on the left side of my abdomen were connected by some kind of energy force-field. My arms and right leg felt really heavy, and like they were lower than the rest of my body. Very strange. Apparently that’s good, and I’m “very sensitive”… I left the clinic feeling very doped and floaty. It’s lucky that my friend lives nearby as I’m not sure I could have walked all the way back to our apartment.

Of course, like I knew she would, she prescribed me some Chinese herbs. I’ve had some before, given by my husbands uncle, who practises Chinese Medicine in Kuala Lumpur. Then, instead of a small capsule, which is how I normally like to take my medicine, I was presented with a large (and I mean large) soup bowl of what can only be described as watered down, old, haematoma. Yes, I have seen them before, I used to be a doctor. It was dark brown, like old blood, and smelt of mouldy celery. Mr Wombat furnished me with a spoon, which I quickly dispensed with as there was no way I could drink it quickly enough. I managed to down about a third of it before I had to stop for intense fear of seeing it again.

These Chinese herbs are in granule form, much like instant coffee. They look, rather innocently, not unlike hot chocolate when added to water. They taste disgusting. I managed to down last nights dose, on an empty stomach, by gulping it and then stuffing my mouth with chocolate. This morning I made the mistake of taking it after breakfast. I had the chocolate ready, but the herbs got halfway down to my stomach and some of them turned round and ran the other way. It was not pretty. An empty stomach is definitely the way to go. Fingers crossed that it helps…

Reading my last post back, I think that I didn’t say that much about baby wombat. Don’t think this is because I didn’t care. I do, I wanted her more than anything in the world. I’d go through any amount of regurgitating chinese herbs if I could have her back. It’s just too painful to talk about sometimes, even 6 months later.


4 responses to “Human Pincushion, Moi?

  1. You have my sympathy with the Chinese herbs.

    My grandmother had a packet of dried stuff called “Blood Herbs” which looked like oregano and tasted utterly utterly vile. It was to cleanse the blood and make me less reactive to insect bites. One year I reacted so badly to midgie bites that I ended up with wounds half an inch across and quarter of an inch deep for every one (thankfully they didn’t ulcerate). But I still preferred them to the Blood Herbs.

    And then there was the “Head-cold and Throat Mixture” which I concluded worked by simple bullying: it was so vile that anything temporary like a cold simply made its excuses and left. It probably worked for fleas, intestinal fauna and fungal toe infections too.



    • I’m told by the in-laws that the Chinese are firm believers in the fact that if it doesn’t taste absolutely hideous, it’s not doing you any good. Capsules are the way forward, methinks!
      I have also now run out of chocolate, which ensured that this morning’s dose was swiftly followed by me running around the flat saying “eurgh” a lot. To which I got “It’s not that bad! I’ve had worse. Stop complaining!” from Mr Wombat… Bad husband…

  2. You ‘used to be a doctor’?


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