Alternative Healing Abounds
Apr 30, 2012 08:00AM
● By Joanne Flynn Black
Those of us who are health-conscious have many options available to us. A growing number of traditional medical practitioners are now embracing the benefits of alternative healing as a complement to traditional medicine. In our own area, we’re fortunate that a major teaching hospital, Morristown Medical Center, offers an integrated approach to the treatment of cancer while an alternative healing arts cooperative in Mendham offers a wealth of holistic healing modalities.
Atlantic Health’s Integrative Medicine
“Healing comes in all levels including self-promotion of wellness,” says Jean Marie Rosone, who’s the coordinator of integrative oncology at Morristown Medical Center’s Carol G. Simon Cancer Center. The Simon Center employs more than 60 healing practitioners who use Reiki, massage, and healing touch therapies to treat patients diagnosed with cancer. “These methods are incredibly empowering; they give people a sense of control,” says Rosone. “Instead of feeling helpless, patients tell me they feel peacefulness and relaxation when they are given a greater sense of control.”
Terrance Welsh, M.D. from NJ Pain Consultants, also sees the benefits of complementing traditional and holistic therapies. “In medicine, everything we prescribe we determine by looking at the risks versus the benefits,” says Welsh. “Although there are few controlled studies to document the benefits of these healing modalities, the risks are low, yet the benefits could be substantial.”
Finding Holistic Health at the Room Above
“We don’t tell people to throw out their medicine,” says Maureen Mahoney, with the Room Above, a healing cooperative based in Brookside, part of Mendham Township. Instead, the cooperative’s practitioners focus on complementary alternative healing therapies that include healing touch, Reiki, Tibetan healing bowls, shamanic healing, feng shui, life coaching and integrative therapeutic massage.
The Room Above’s six partners— Gina Bruno, Kathy Kane, Maureen Mahoney, Ellen Mooney, Susan Novick and Michelle Zanoni—joined forces a year ago to create a sacred space whose mantra is Rejuvenate. Transform. Thrive. Community. Joy. Those terms greet you as you walk up the steps to The Room Above’s studio, beckoning with a promise of what clients can find inside.
Mahoney’s areas of focus are healing touch and Tibetan healing bowls, which bring energy fields into healthy vibrations, and open and balance the flow of energy. Her clients range from those who need help coping with stress to those undergoing chemotherapy.
Gina Bruno offers shamanic healing, the ancient tradition of energy medicine. As Bruno explains, “An energy field surrounds the body and holds within it a record of emotional, physical and spiritual history. When imprints are (cleared) the history (can be rewritten/rewired), leading to transformational changes.” Bruno believes that we all have the innate ability to tap into our inner resources, but not all of us realize it. The benefits Bruno sees in her clients from her sessions with them include better focus, an optimistic outlook, increased energy, and the ability to be in touch with a part of themselves that they may have forgotten about—or never knew existed.
Ellen Mooney focuses on Reiki and intuitive healing therapy at the Room Above. Mooney begins her sessions by making clients feel comfortable and relaxed—providing them with a safe space. “I do an energetic scan of their body and connect with their heart. Throughout my session I have feelings of empathy and compassion.” Through her work, she is able to remove blockages and create balance through the meridians. As Mooney relates, “I help people help themselves. They are able to let go of what is no longer needed . . . to be the truth of who they are and to receive what they need. My clients feel peaceful and have the ability to focus and are more empowered to enhance their health.”
Michelle Zanoni, a feng shui consultant, believes that in addition to healing ourselves, it’s important make our living spaces as healthy and balanced as possible. “Both have a profound effect on each other. One is not separate from the other,” says Zanoni. “Feng shui quite literally addresses our living spaces and helps restore, reset, and reorganize them, supporting who we are and where we want to go next.” Zanoni’s clients usually feel a sense of relief and excitement after a consultation because there is a new energetic beginning, a clean slate to move forward effortlessly. “Change is not always easy; feng shui gives my clients permission to change. I am there to support and guide them physically, emotionally and spiritually.”
Susan Novick specializes in integrative therapeutic massage. “I use my intuitive empathic nature to guide me through the process,” says Novick, who has felt its benefits firsthand: Immediately after getting her first therapeutic massage, she decided that she wanted to learn it to help others. “I get positive feedback from my clients. Just a little shift in how one sits at a desk or how one bends and lifts can make a plethora of difference in their quality of life.” Novick also feels that proper nutrition, exercise and stress reduction go a long way toward ensuring a healthful life. She suggests starting with massage to feel the benefits rather quickly: “From there, slowly start incorporating small changes. Gradually you'll branch out to other areas that nourish the body, mind and soul.”
Kathy Kane provides life coaching at the Room Above, with a special focus on unearthing each client’s creative spirit “through accessing creativity as an attitude.” She helps clients realize their creative abilities by having them give themselves permission to create things that are “less than perfect.” As an example, in her writing workshops, she encourages participants to write from the gut—and just see what comes out. In a recent program she led for Dress for Success, a nonprofit organization, she helped clients tap into their “Audacity” muse—getting them to a place within themselves where they felt emboldened, finding both courage and focus.
The Room Above also provides a professional venue for Leigh LaMura and Colleen McSpirit to welcome clients. LaMura uses the Tuning Fork technique, based on ancient healing frequencies, to help her clients gain clearer focus of their life’s path and direction. “It is as if the negative energy & debris is cleared away, making room for new possibilities,” says LaMura. McSpirit offers crystal bowl meditation, which helps balance emotions, enhance relaxation and boost the immune system along with creating healing where needed. Crystal bowl meditations are a gentle way to relieve stress: The calming tones and vibrations of the bowl help to balance chakras, creating a better flow of energy in the body.
With the services offered by Morristown Medical Center and those available through the Room Above, we can call upon a host of traditional and holistic healers right in our own backyard.
For more information on wellness programs at Atlantic Health's Morristown Medical Center, call Jean Marie Rosone at 973-713-4774; NJ Pain Consultants, call Terrance Welsh, M.D., at 908-971-6824; The Room Above and its practitioners, email [email protected] or call 973-531-7692.
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