The Journey of Our 2024 Boncho Ambassador: Lauren Reiners

The Journey of Our 2024 Boncho Ambassador: Lauren Reiners

Why I decided to study TCM.
I'm a third-year student at the Sydney Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). My choice to pursue TCM stems from a lifelong passion for holistic healing methods. Traditional Western medicine often didn't quite address my needs, leading to ineffective treatments and sometimes severe side effects. For instance, when facing cystic acne, I was hesitant to resort to Roaccutane due to its potential side effects. I resorted to Naturopaths and Homeopaths to help me (this was 30 years ago, I hadn’t heard of Chinese medicine).
During my second pregnancy, I encountered another challenge when my baby was larger than average, prompting doctors to recommend induction five days prior to the due date. Reluctant to undergo a caesarean section, I sought alternative solutions. Upon the advice of my midwife, I decided to explore acupuncture, despite initial apprehension about needles. Starting from the 36th week of pregnancy, I attended acupuncture sessions regularly, with my final visit just the day before the scheduled induction.
Remarkably, during my last session, I began experiencing contractions while lying on the acupuncture table. The following day, I successfully delivered my baby naturally, without any medical interventions, despite the baby weighing a healthy 10 pounds. The birth proceeded smoothly, devoid of any tears or bruising, leaving both myself and my newborn in good health. I contribute this to acupuncture as not only did he assist with labour induction, but also calming the Shen.

How I plan to spread acupuncture and herbal medicine throughout the world so that more people could benefit from it

For the past 28 years, I've dedicated my career to social work counselling, specialising in trauma, mental health, and domestic violence. Through my extensive experience, I've found talk therapy to be effective, but I've also recognized the need to address trauma held within the body. This realization led me to explore additional therapeutic modalities such as hypnotherapy, tapping, and breathwork. However, I still felt there was something missing.

Recalling the effectiveness of acupuncture from my own personal experience, I delved into the realm of Chinese medicine to see how it could benefit my clients. My journey led me to discover the insights shared in CT Holman's textbook, which resonated deeply with me. Coupled with my firsthand experience of acupuncture's efficacy in inducing labor, I became convinced of the potential of TCM in addressing mental health and trauma.

To be able to share my message with the world I would love to use the following methods:

Education and Advocacy: Utilize social media channels, including platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube, to share educational content about the benefits of acupuncture and herbal medicine. This content will include informative posts, videos, and live sessions discussing TCM principles, treatment modalities, and case studies illustrating successful outcomes. I have enrolled in an online course through “TheWhichCovern”, so that I can learn how to post on Instagram and Tik Tok in a way that engages audiences.

Professional Training and Collaboration: Collaborate with mental health professionals, holistic practitioners (like Yoga, breathwork), and TCM experts to develop workshops that integrate TCM into existing therapeutic practices. By working with existing professionals and educating them on the benefits of TCM not only on mental health and trauma, but also women’s health, traumatology etc, this helps to broaden our reach around TCM education, and also ways to collaborate and work with other professionals in the community.

Community Outreach and Events: Organize community events, seminars, and workshops focused on TCM, targeting diverse populations and underserved communities. These events will provide hands-on experiences, demonstrations, and discussions about the practical applications of acupuncture and herbal medicine for mental health and trauma recovery. My son is involved with martial arts, so this is another avenue to bring TCM into traumatology (injuries and sore muscles/joints).

Global Networking and Partnerships: This might be me dreaming a little bit, but ideally it would be great to build partnerships with international organizations, universities, and healthcare institutions to promote TCM research, education, and implementation on a global scale. Collaborate with TCM practitioners from different cultural backgrounds to adapt and integrate traditional healing practices into diverse healthcare settings worldwide.

By implementing these strategies, I aim to promote the widespread adoption of acupuncture and herbal medicine as integral components of holistic healthcare, empowering individuals, and communities worldwide to achieve optimal well-being and resilience.

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