A Public Health Option

Watching a recent Sunday talk show on health reform legislation, I had a sickening feeling (and intuitive pain in my neck) that once again the people will lose to the corporations. Already reaping financial bonanza, even from Medicare, the health insurance companies, exempt from anti-trust laws, and big Pharma will cement their power, making legislative reform and Medicare/health care for all an even more distant reality. The tide of corporate power rises.

Meaningful health insurance and health care reform slip away as deaths from undiagnosed and untreated illnesses increase and bankruptcies from exorbitant medical bills rise. With more bluster and bravado than belief, I e-mailed a friend, a long-time health care activist, “Distressed, but not discouraged.” As I hit “send, ” what we the people can do to crawl out from our victimized state crystallized.

We can call upon our dreams, our Inner Healer. As PDJ readers know, I’ve experienced this paradigm first-hand.

A drawing of wheat blowing in the wind (Field of Grains) in a dream led to a vegetarian cooking class. That was 20-plus years ago. I still binge on M & M’s on occasion and insist friends lock up their chocolates, but the blue print for healthy eating is firmly in place.

Dreams and Good Health, my story of calling upon the guiding and transformational power of dreams in the face of a potential health crisis, first appeared in print in 1991. Reproduced here in Featured Dream, it chronicles self-care and the companion spiritual journey rooted in the laws of metaphysical science.

While in warrior pose during a recent yoga class (honestly), I recalled a dream leading me to care with a world class herbalist and acupuncturist. Two years ago, exhausted from bearing witness to illness in my family and sickened from sloshing around in the political sludge of the 9/11 Commission, I was grateful for the guidance.

What would jump start burned out adrenals and fix fuzzy sluggish energy, I asked my dreams one night. A beautiful Chinese silk cord, knotted like an elegant kimono clasp, appeared at my neck. The throat chakra perhaps? I scanned the listings in the telephone book for Chinese medicine. Several calls led to a clinic/school of acupuncture, where apex-quality care at community rates is dispensed.

With renewed energy, I amped up my (writing) voice, weakened by diffuse projects and responsibilities. I’ve focused with Zen-like concentration on the book I’ve been drafting in the wake of 9/11 and told friends sloppy communication is unacceptable. A stop sign signaled when the time was right to complete the Yin/energy treatment. Once again, dreams guided me to ameliorate the symptoms and correct the underlying cause.

Recently, considering a referral for a second opinion about a chronic health condition, during a nap I remembered another stop dream, this one a red light on the route to that doctor’s office. Listening to the dream guidance, I chose a different alternative.

A marvelous feature of dream treatment is how it mirrors the operative Western, Eastern, or energetic medicine modality. On the morning I needed to decide about an appointment with a new holistic provider, I dreamt of a tan van in the driveway of a suburban home. Children, one dressed in  a 1950′s stripped shirt, were ousted from the passenger side window. At my appointment with the practitioner, he talked about the emphasis my parents’ generation put on perfection and protection. My dream signaled, first, this healer and modality were the ones to pursue. Second, my dream described the underlying dynamics of my physical problem and how to move forward.

We need Medicare for all (with payment and other modifications), but the real health care reform we crave is an expansion of the lexicon of doctors, care, and “medicine” from traditional to holistic, from  to those whose foundation is the mind/body/spirit nexus.

In the meantime, which could be a long time, and regardless of when true legislative health reform happens, remember intuitive, self- care is a public option available to everyone anytime. Regardless of what happens legislatively, we can kindle the Healer within.

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