I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the milestone we have hit this year as a practice, and remark on its significance to me personally. I have a natural inclination to keep my cards close to my chest, but I have come to realize that in my current role, to share a little of my own trajectory can sometimes serve as a source of inspiration.
To put it bluntly, I come out of a difficult, unhealthy family background. My parents had a bitter divorce when I was six, and my siblings and I suffered from extensive psychological abuse as small children. My father voluntarily ceased to be part of my life from the time I was eleven. From that time on, I grew up amid financial instability, substance abuse, and increasingly, the mental and physical illness of my family members. Eventually, those closest to me were all in significant distress and either self-medicating or on medication. The wave of un-wellness threatened to pull me under, too.
The key thread right now is that of looking back on how far I’ve come. I don’t identify myself by my traumas and struggles, but rather, by the ways I’ve overcome them. Though I take nothing for granted, I can in this moment say with confidence that at age 43, I’m the healthiest and fittest I’ve been in my life, and the most emotionally centered. I’ve financed myself through graduate-level education, I’ve grown a small business that supports my own livelihood and those of several employees, and last year, I was able to buy and renovate a dream space for the practice. These would all be fine accomplishments no matter what, but I feel proud given the circumstances I emerged from.
No doubt, I’ve had many lucky breaks and many privileges, some of them stories for another time. One of the key privileges I will name has been the support of this community. I feel immensely grateful, a little tearful, to bring it up. This goes out to all of you, from those first “legacy” patients who came over ten years ago to my first Doylestown office (Broad Street, anyone?), to those who braved the pandemic to continue receiving care, to those who mustered the trust to come out for a first treatment just last week. And everyone in between!
I’ll also name one of the lucky breaks—the day I got a call from a guy named Paolo, who was trying to find an unpaid acupuncture internship. Some of you already know the story… Paolo ended up working at my side the entire three years he was in graduate school, and then came on as an acupuncturist at Bridge. This summer marks ten years of our working together! After so many years, Paolo remains my brother, my accomplice, and for all of his unique qualities, my teacher. Without a doubt he has made the spirit of Bridge what it is today, and I’m so grateful.
There are many others for me to thank. My partner Eric of nearly fifteen years, my incredible acupuncture teachers and mentors, our awesome support staff members, the contractors who helped rebuild our amazing space, and now, the talented new acupuncturists we added during our expansion, Misook Lee and Brian Yang. How lucky I feel to have the support of these people in my life, and to have come this far.
I see our mission here at Bridge Acupuncture as helping others overcome their perceived limitations. This can mean helping someone find new hope in healing from a difficult, perhaps "incurable" situation. This could also mean helping someone find a path to changing their supposed genetic destiny (whether physical, psychological or spiritual).
We all have the power to transform ourselves, to heal, to change our karma. It’s amazing what we can do when our true nature is allowed to thrive.
With much love and appreciation,
Grace Rollins, MS, LAc
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.