Saturday, February 4, 2012

Healing Touches From Friends

“If you can make it through January, you can make it through anything.”
These words from my dear friend, who was quoting something her mother used to say, echoed in my mind throughout the long month of January after I suffered a fall down the basement stairs on the second day of the new year.  

I had such high hopes for January this year.  I was thinking of taking a class since I need some credits to renew my teaching certificate.  I was determined to spend much time at the computer writing.  I wanted to start my memoir.  On the first day of 2012, little did I know that after my head and neck injury,  I would spend nearly the entire month of January sitting quietly with my eyes closed through much of the first two weeks.  

I am happy to report that I made it through January! 
On the last day of January, which was also my youngest son's birthday, I celebrated 
Getting a Massage
Getting a manicure and pedicure! 

I want you to meet my two friends who have provided a healing touch to me for so long.  
I love these two ladies. 

Meet Monica 
Monica Suarez
Masseuse Extraordinaire
I have been going to Monica for massages for years.  She looks way too young to have been providing a healing touch to my life as long as she has, but I think I have been going to her for at least eight years.  Monica is truly a gifted masseuse.  She understands the body medically, and she seems to know exactly where I need work on my tight, knotted muscles.  She knows my problem areas, and she deals with them with great skill.  

Not only does she have healing hands, she has a heart and an attitude toward life that is healing and affirmative.  She is wise beyond her years.  She is all about family, tradition, health, and love.  She is the youngest child in a large family.  She honors her mother, and the memory of her father, her siblings, and her heritage.  As a way of passing on her love of her culture and heritage, she is teaching young girls, including her daughter, how to be folklorico dancers.  

Image from the internet
showing folklorico dancers
Monica is also a wonderful wife and mother.  Her job allows her to set her hours so that she can work around her children's schedule.  We share stories on family, gardening, and life in general.

Monica has seen me through some pretty rough patches in my life and in my health.  When my dizzy spells were at there worst, pre-head injury, this past summer, I nearly passed out on her table.  She knew just what to do.  

I was scheduled for a massage on January 3rd, so I went to see her even though I had just been injured the day before.  Wisely, we decided against the massage, but I was able to see the chiropractor where she works that day.  He has been such a good resource and practitioner for me also.  He has worked a lot with patients with head injuries, so between him and Monica, I know I am in good hands when I go in for treatment.

Truly, with my long standing problems with sciatica, lower back problems, and since  my first huge flare-up of major pain from stenosis in my neck a year ago, I don't know how I would continue to function without Monica.   Especially, in the past month, she has been invaluable in my journey toward health and healing.  If you live in Pueblo, and you need a good massage, call Monica!  

Love you, Monica.  Thanks for your healing touch in my life.

A girl is having a great day when she has a massage in the morning and a pedicure and manicure in the afternoon.  As I said earlier, I celebrated making it through January by visiting two of my favorite people.  You just met Monica.  

Meet Kerri
Kerri Bell
Head to Toe

Kerri Bell has also been a very important person in my life for a very long time.  Oh how I look forward to spending time with Kerri while she does my nails. I think we bonded in a special way the very first time we met years ago.  My husband found her for me.  I was looking for someone to give me a pedicure for the prom (he was a high school principal).  He told me of the mother of one of his favorite students, and the rest is just history.  Kerri has been doing my nails ever since.

Kerri and her friend Judy just reached a milestone when they opened their own salon together a few months ago.  I'm so happy for them.  The name of the salon is Head to Toe.  If you are in Pueblo, it is on Pueblo Boulevard right next door to Mi Ranchito.  They have created a warm, welcoming, soothing place to go to have your nails and/or your hair done.

Hair stylist
Head to Toe

Kerri and I have both shared some hard times together.  She has always been there for me.  I sometimes tell her that she is better than any therapist out there because while she does my nails, she also listens.  We have shared many a laugh, many tears, and have encouraged each other through the rough times in life.  If you want to know all the DRAMA in my life, you could ask Kerri what it is, but she wouldn't tell you.  She's loyal like that.  She listens, but she doesn't tell others.  Maybe that is one reason I love her so much.

Some may not care about getting a manicure, or a pedicure, but I love to have both.  When looking for a manicurist, I insist that I go to a place that clean, like crazy clean, and managed by professional people who take more time being caring and clean than in making money by pushing through as many clients as they can in a day.  This is just a basic in my book.  If I can also enjoy the atmosphere, the other stylists, the other clients, and my own manicurist at the same time, then I am really happy.  While Judy has never done my hair, I have come to know her over the years and look forward to seeing her and chatting with her as Kerri does my nails.

Kerri and I have shared some pretty funny times together.  I sometimes bring her tuna fish sandwiches and we have lunch while I soak my feet.  One time last winter we had a terrible snow storm and the roads were sheer ice because the temperatures were hovering around -3 F during the day, but I had an appointment for a pedicure and manicure that day, and I wasn't going to miss it.  

I walked into the shop in my UGG boots.  I walked out in sandals.  Kerri had already taken my keys, turned on my car to heat it up, and then she helped me to the car so I wouldn't slip and fall.  I was not about to mess up my pedicure by putting on my boots.  Mike, the owner of the shop she was in at time, said, "Your clients are nuts."   Nuts, maybe, but I had no time to let my nails dry, I had to drive across town to my real therapist.  Now, when I walked in her office in sandals, carrying my UGG boots, well that is the topic for another post.  

Love you, Kerri!  Thanks for commiserating with me during the difficult times, crying with me during my grief, being there for me when I need a friend who understands, laughing at my stories, and sharing stories of your beautiful girls and your wonderful new granddaughter with me.  Your life has blessed mine.  You are a very special friend who has always given me your healing touch.


Mage said...

My husband grew up in Trinidad when he wasn't overseas. :)

RYN Scanning photos: I use an old HP scanner that sits flat on the desk and makes great amounts of noise. I would check with Consumer Reports and see what they have to say. Mine works fine but it's slow and noisy. :)

By the way, keeping your nails up is part of keeping yourself healthy. :)

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

It's wonderful that you have these good supportive people in your life. And I love the Uggs/sandals story! I hope February brings you further healing and even some fun.

Mare said...

Well, I'm with you on half of this. My preferred therapy is my standard appointment for a one hour massage. It helps me deal with life, arthritis, caregiving, etc. It is certainly better than a pain pill!! And I have been going to the same 'healer of sorts' for about 9 years. Given the statis of my hands and feet [RA}, I don't draw any added attention to them than necessary.
I would drive thru snow and ice for my massage appointment, though!

Barb said...

Hi Sally, Glad January is behind you and you're on the mend! You deserve to be pampered. I also have some lovely people who make me feel better body and spirit. Thank goodness for people with the "healing touch!"

DJan said...

You are definitely on the way UP, and having made it through a pretty awful January, from the way it sounds. What wonderful people you have in your life. You are definitely blessed. :-)

Jean said...

Your post today makes me yearn for a good Chinese foot massage (which also attends to the legs, the arms, the back, etc.) when my husband worked in China 2005-2006 and I'd visit him for a few weeks at a time, I used to get weekly massages for around $6. Ninety minutes of pure bliss. Of course I couldn't carry on a conversation with the masseuse, though, which was unfortunate.

So glad you're feeling better. January must have seemed never-ending, at times.

Linda Myers said...

Very good to hear you're getting out for your special, caring treats.

And now it's February!

Thisisme. said...

What a lovely post and I am so glad that you have these wonderful people in your life, to make you feel better, and to listen to you. They are blessings indeed my friend. I was a Massage Therapist for ten years, but I had to give it up when I was 57 because I had two operations on my back. I used to love the work.

Terra said...

I enjoyed this peek in to the caring gals in your life. I just know you give back to them too. Sometimes just listening, laughing and maybe shedding a few tears together is very therapeutic.
That must have been tough to spend two weeks resting with your eyes mostly closed. I love to read!

Kleine Motte said...

You are smart to have a support group who can help you through those tougher than usual times. I used to have support but have kind of given up and become a bit of a recluse and am finding it harder to get out. Sorry to learn about your fall . I dread falling because of my eyes.

Rita said...

So sorry to hear about your fall. The best laid plans, eh? My year started out like that, too--with a deep cut finger on Christmas Day--and threw my "plans" off schedule. We must have been meant to sit around for a couple weeks instead. ;)

What wonderful people--friends--in your life!! I am so glad you have them. May the rest of the year proceed without care. :):)

Jeanie said...

It is so good to hear that you are feeling better and that you have so much wonderful support along the way. I'm so glad you have these "value added" people in your life. It makes me want to drive to Pueblo for a massage.

Arkansas Patti said...

You have found some wonderful people to make your life much more bearable. How lucky you are to have found them. Even when February brings you better health, I hope you keep them in your life.
Be much better soon.

rosaria said...

Yes, yes, yes, take all the time you need, get all the help you need, and your body will reward you with energy and joyful attitude. Glad you made it through January. Now, have you looked at taking those classes you need on line?

Betsy from Tennessee said...

That is neat, Sally... To feature those special people who pamper you --in your life is GREAT... Sometimes those people don't get enough praise from others... I think that is neat that you did it...
AND--pampering yourself after the January you have been through is important.. Glad you did it.

LC said...

So happy you have that left that difficult January behind and are victoriously sharing about some of the healing angels who are helping you through extremely hard times. Continuing to pray.

Jackie said...

Patty - I do hope that Monica and Kerri will read this blog. What wonderful people they are! I am so glad that you have special friends that will listen. Listening is so important and a gift that a lot of people don't have. I am thankful that you have them in your life. What blessings they are!!

Sandi said...

After the miserable January start that you had, Sally, I'm so glad to read this post. You sound so happy and content, and well cared for. What a cheerful post! You are blessed to have these special people in your life.

Here's to a fabulous February!

Larri @ Seams Inspired said...

I'd be in there every week, if I had these wonderful people nearby! You are truly blessed. Thanks for sharing your friends. Happy Sunday! ☺

Chatty Crone said...

I have to be honest I am glad January is over too - I agree. Love massages. I am glad you feel better. sandie

Dee Ready said...

Dear Sally,
It's so good to know that you are surrounded by people who care for you. Monica and Kerri sound as if they are not only extremely gifts at what they do but also gifted with the rare ability to listen well. To really hear what you have shared with them.

And they must trust you so much because they have share with you. True friendship.


Jim said...

"Found' you over at Dee's! Massage helped me through my head injury as well.
Great to meet you, fellow teacher.

I Wonder Wye said...

For some reason my comment was erased! Yikes! Again: I am so glad your health is improving. My motto 'This too, shall pass..."

We totally agree on the importance and pampering strength of bodywork and a wonderful pedi/mani. No matter how hard things are I always, always feel better...and my nail tech, Mary, is cut from the same cloth as your friend...blessings...

Maggie May said...

Glad January is under the belt.
Now we have to face February. Things are not easy when you are not well. I understand perfectly.
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Friko said...

That's wonderful. We need to trust the people we see; when we are at our most vulnerable people like your Monica and your Kerry are worth their weight in gold.

I have two people like that too and I feel safe and well-cared for with them.

Grandmother said...

I love how women care for women and that you honored your care- givers in this post. I'm glad your January has passed and pray for better days ahead for you. You deserve them!

Joanne said...

Awww what sweet women ! I am so glad that you have people like that in your life that can pamper you. Ya need that once in a while!
Blessings, Joanne

Kay said...

You're so lucky that you've found such great professionals to help you maintain your health and happiness. I've never had a professional massage and wondered what that would be like. Your Monica sounds like a healing angel.

Jeanie said...

I am so glad you are back on blog. I missed you sorely and wasn't sure from you email when you would start again.

I want to thank Kerri and Monica for all they are doing for you, my friend. We need our healers of body and soul and they seem to be doing the trick! Three cheers!

fiftyodd said...

Your post has inspired me to get a few back massages - messed up my lower back three weeks ago, carrying boxes of tiles with my husband, out of the car and up the stairs! Can't believe it's not better yet. Went to the physio once and she suggested I wanted her to walk on water. Am in the UK now, visiting my dad, but will start seeing to my back when I get home.