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Why Chinese Medicine as a career?

Most people have an exciting story as to how they found Chinese Medicine. They were sick and the only thing that helped was acupuncture and Chinese herbs. Or, they had a bad accident and acupuncture and cupping was the cure. My story doesn't have that ah-ha moment.

I was an East Asian Studies Major at Colgate University. During my four years of undergrad I spent a summer studying in Japan and a semester studying at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in London. I loved all things Asian; the culture, the people, the language, the simplicity (zen), the medicine.

After graduation, I moved to New York City with some girlfriends and worked in finance which at the time was what I thought I was supposed to do.  I spent three years with US Trust as a Financial Officer training to be a Certified Financial Planner.  However, I started to notice that for instance when my colleagues were drinking their coffee or reading the Wall Street Journal for stock tips, I was scouring the newspaper for articles and updates on health and fitness. This was of course before the internet! I had always been a huge proponent of health and fitness. So, I started to recognize the signs of what I really wanted to focus on for my career and began to explore options.

I had a quick transition between banking and Chinese Medicine. I moved out west to Sun Valley, Idaho to just kick back and hike, learn to mountain bike, and practice yoga in the mountains. After a year of fun, it was clear that it was time to go back to school in the health and wellness world. Coupled with my background in Asian studies, acupuncture seemed to be the perfect fit. So, I uprooted myself, moved to Boulder, Colorado to study Chinese Medicine at the Southwest Acupuncture College.

I graduated over 15 years ago and have built a thriving practice in a farming community south of Sun Valley. The basic assumption I made when I decided to leave New York and my Finance career turned out to be true – I love what I do, and rarely describe how I spend my days as ‘work’.

The person who spoke at my graduation ceremony from Southwest Acupuncture College made a remark I’ll always remember. He said it takes 25 years of practicing this ancient form of medicine to even start the journey of fully understanding this medicine and all of it's brilliance and beauty.  This is a reminder that it is important to always be learning, and that is inspiring to me. Based on this, my goal is to continue to hone my craft and learn more about this fascinating alternative medicine that in my experience can truly help people in need.

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