Lifestyle: Spotlights

Nurturing Bliss

By Sophie Overton - July 21, 2017

Reiki Master and Teacher Terri-Marie – Sag Harbor

Within a minute of my head being softly cradled in Terri-Marie’s (T-M) hands a reservoir of tears welled in my eyes, one sliding down a cheek. How to describe the feeling that had overcome me? This might sound weird, but let’s just say that I felt a rush of love and gratitude coming from somewhere not necessarily on this plane.

Okay, even if you don’t believe in presences communicating from beyond the veil, there is nothing quite like the deep relaxation you get from the nurturing touch of Reiki, an energy system that originated in Japan. While in acupuncture it is needles that are a conduit between a universal energy and the patient, in Reiki it is hands that channel the energy.

The increasingly popular system is used to relieve stress and activate healing by treating the whole being: body, emotions, mind and spirit. According to the International Center for Reiki Training, “A treatment feels like a wonderful glowing radiance that flows through and around you.” I’ll second that.

T-M, who practices in Sag Harbor and New York, often uses the procedure to do her “angel readings.” Yes, you read that right. Though it sounds woo-woo, I can attest that her readings (at least the one she gave me) are highly valuable. M-T says that she channels a lot from the other side, but doesn’t share that info unless her client wants it. Otherwise she will simply relate what’s going on in the body.

“Your people wanted you here,” she announces when the session is over. “A very strong feminine energy is worried about you.” My grandmother, no doubt. After telling me about the concerns, M-T says, “She wants you to know that you are supremely loved and are not alone.” Talk about tears flowing. My “guides” go on to tell me that I’m “playing small. The universe needs you.” It seems that I’m meant to help “heal many generations of feminine suppression.” I’m onboard.


Hamptons Thai Yoga Massage – Amagansett

Whereas Reiki is gently passive and spiritual, my Thai massage session was active and intensely physical.

Gilles Baudin, a handsome Frenchman, leads me into a small room where layers of bedding are spread on the floor – first an organic “Thai mat” filled with kapok, a cotton-like fluff, next a BioMat, filled with crushed tourmaline and amethyst gemstones to conduct far infrared rays and negative ions. The mat, which heats up to 152 degrees Fahrenheit, is used in hospitals to combat cancer, according to Baudin. “The heat is very healing and goes deep,” he says. “Cancer cells can’t exist at that temperature.”

The top layer is a print sarong and surrounding it are a cluster of colorful pillows. Along with the New Age flute music I am transported back to my hippie boyfriend’s bedroom.

Imagine being pulled and stretched and twisted into poses beyond any you have experienced in yoga. In fact, Thai massage, which was developed some 2,500 years ago by an Ayurvedic physician, “shares the same roots as yoga,” says Baudin.

Unlike traditional massage, the Thai practitioner uses not just hands, but his own body as leverage: elbows, knees, forearms, shoulders and feet to create traction. “It creates space in the joints,” he says. “Creating mobility in the hips gives the upper body ease.” He also applies pressures to chakras.

“It’s choreography,” he says. “Like a dance.” Baudin was a ski instructor in Aspen when he discovered the technique on a biking trip in Thailand. “I never went back to skiing.” Most of his business is in-home where he treats clients such as fashion designer Norma Kamali.

I flop blissfully around like a rag doll, as he alternates walking on my back and gently rocking my head. While there are moments of discomfort, this is the deepest, most thorough massage I’ve ever had. When it’s over I feel as if every sinew in my body has been caressed.

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