I entered the Elements Acupuncture office in Dubuque, Iowa, this morning and Joel Thielen, L.Ac., Dipl. AC, was literally floating on air! He pointed at me and said, “You!” He was so thrilled that you had mentioned his name at the end of your November 3, 2011, show! He was just bubbling! I had never seen that aspect of his personality before! I had not listened to that show yet, so I listened this evening.
I call him “Doc” to show respect to his knowledge and his ability. He has been in the Dubuque area for five years and I know it has been difficult for him to start and build an acupuncture practice in this area. This is because acupuncture is seen as “new-age” and still not trusted – although, those of us that it has helped are slowly getting the word out to others.
A little more on what acupuncture has done for me. I’m older, 63. I was a student at Wartburg Theological Seminary here in Dubuque and in February this year “Doc” came to speak at a wellness class we took. As he is speaking about the benefits of acupuncture, all of my friends are whispering under their breath to me that I need to go see him. So, the next day, a Wednesday, to follow the instructions of my friends, I called his office and made an appointment. My life will never be the same.
My first visit, as we are sitting in his office for a consultation, I can’t take my eyes off the mannequin that had the diagram of all the acupuncture points painted on it. I was terrified that he was going to put needles in me at all of those points at the same time – I hated needles – we have since laughed together about this notion. He now clarifies this in his lectures.
Just a couple of weeks earlier, I had gone to the ER thinking I had a detached retina in my left eye. Thank goodness, it was just a large floater. I told “Doc,” that I was taking Stratera for my ADHD. He looked up the side effects and eye issues were a huge problem with this medicine. It had only been tested for like five weeks. I had been on it for close to five years. I quit taking it – cold turkey.
I was on depression medicine. I had been on many in the eight years since my husband’s suicide, but the last one was a generic Welbutrin. I was taking 450 mg every day. Over the next few weeks of treatment, I slowly gave up taking this. I would give up 150 mg at a time. By graduation, mid-May, I was off all depression medicine.
I would have anxiety – even panic attacks – I have not had to take Lorazapam for anxiety or panic in several months. I still have them in the cupboard but they are put up and to the back for emergency use only.
I had excess heat. I never wore a winter coat – it was always in my back seat – in case I needed it – but I seldom wore it. My friends would never ask me if I was cold. I kept my thermostat at 62 degrees in the winter. That is cold. My friends would freeze when they came over – I didn’t understand! Now this winter, I’m keeping it at 67 and a couple of nights have cranked it up to 68. I’m already wearing my winter coat. A couple of days I have even worn an undershirt under my sweater. I have also started having “Doc” put the heat lamp on my feet during treatments.
I picked at myself. I hated this. I had three spots on my chin, some on the side of my face, and several on my head in my hair that never healed. I was always picking at them. They literally burned. I used Castor oil on my head. In treatments “Doc” would “surround the dragon” and surround the spots on my chin with needles. I also used a salve and Yin wash. The ones in my hair are totally healed, there is one on my chin and one on the side of my face that still bothers a bit.
I had an unknown, I’ll use the word parasite, and took ParaStat for three months. I had traveled all over the world on various mission trips and not always lived/eaten in the best of circumstances. In fact, even once fell in a sewage/drainage ditch.
I have come to realize that I am addicted to sugar and try to stay within the diet you suggested for yeast.
I am slowly losing weight – but more than that – I feel so much better! Since August 10th, I’ve lost about 15 pounds. I have a total of probably a 100 to a 120 pounds to lose! “Doc” and I haven’t really worked on weight loss because of all the other issues that need to be dealt with first. The weight will come off as i feel better and move more.
I am in the process of reading “Trouble Afoot – Tracking Down the Causes and Cures of Parkinson’s Disease” from Parkinson’s Recovery Project Web page. My mother died from congestive heart failure and had Parkinson’s Disease. I find this research fascinating. I’ve shared with him that the tendency to disassociate from ones pain is the hereditary/or learned behavior that might cause Parkinson’s to be hereditary.
I told “Doc” about the foot injuries at ST-43 or 42 that Dr. Hadlock had talked about. He says I have a scar in that area of my left foot. He is now refining my treatments and working on my issues of disassociation. In all of my counseling, this has also been an issue because of my history of abuse. He wants me to start taking Tai Chi classes and has given me some exercises to increase the awareness of my own body. At times, from my elbows out and my knees down, my hands and feet do not feel connected to the rest of me. At times, I catch myself doing the “old person shuffle” and quickly change the way I’m walking.
This summer, I was up for approval to be a pastor in my church. The bishop and candidacy committee of my home synod “denied” me. This means that I will never be a pastor in my church. There reasons were that I did not express myself well theologically in my interview. Well, because of all the abuse in my past, I’m very perceptive to my environment, I did not feel safe in that interview so would not/could not give my best answers. I know the only reason I was able to handle this decision with grace was because of the way my “body/life” has changed because of acupuncture! “Doc,” his wife, and staff, have been very supportive! I work for them a few hours every week to “pay” for my treatments. I do marketing calls for him and his practice. They have also encouraged me and said that I wouldn’t have gotten this far if God didn’t have a place for me in ministry. For just a moment, I thought about going to acupuncture school, but didn’t want to do four more years of school! Two masters are enough! 🙂
I have applied and am starting the process of becoming a deaconess in the church. I’ll “do” ministry in another avenue!
I have been working part-time as a housekeeper/janitor in a local casino. I have just been hired full-time and start Thursday – same job – just full-time. Thanks to “Doc’s” help, I am able to keep up with people many years younger than me. At the end of our work day, I don’t hurt any more than any of the rest of them! In fact, for my age, I probably hurt a lot less.
“Doc” enjoys your broadcasts and often makes comments about Dr. N. always uses this treatment, or Dr. N. suggested trying this treatment for…
I just had to say thank you and tell you how much acupuncture has changed my life. Thanks for your program and thanks for all the help you offer for those of us who just want to be as healthy as possible! Thank you for mentioning Joel’s name and making his week. I cannot tell you how much that meant to him! Thank you for informing us about the truth concerning the state of healthcare.
Letters like this are what keep us going! Thank you for sharing your story and for letting us know how well you are doing. We are so excited by the transformation in your health. Please share as the next chapter unfolds. We are so honored to be a part of your life and to have you in ours.
– Dr. John Nieters, L.Ac. DAOM