I spent the summer solstice, 21 June 2014, giving reflexology to a wonderful group of women who have a loved one with a career limiting /ending injury or illness attributable to service in the forces since 2001.
Help for Heroes Band of Brothers and Band of Sisters offer a listening ear, emotional support, and fellowship to our heroes and their families. Band of Brothers offer support for the wounded, and Band of Sisters offer support for the families.
I was privileged to be invited to participate in a pamper weekend for Help for Heroes Band of Sisters members on a respite break at the new Phoenix House Recovery Centre in Catterick Garrison. Members enjoyed a well-deserved time out, with the opportunity to bond, form new friendships and have a break from pressures at home. Meeting other women in the same situation can make a huge difference: realising that they are not alone can be a huge relief.
Therapies on offer were full body massage, Indian head massage and reflexology. Reflexology proved hugely popular and my slots filled up the fastest! Every client of the day relaxed deeply into their treatments, closing their eyes and snuggling under the blanket, while I sensitively worked away at their feet. Before beginning the day, I checked that none of the ladies were allergic or hypersensitive to anything, and then I put a drop of balancing geranium and a drop of calming lavender into a small bowl of hot water and allowed it to diffuse through my therapy room. With the lights dimmed and my Relaxator chair at the ready, comfort and luxury awaited the Band of Sisters members! Afterwards I gave them each some Neal’s Yard sample sachets to take away so they could give themselves a mini-facial.
Alongside the complementary therapies on offer, the members could also participate in other interesting activities such as cup cake decorating, jewellery making, NIA and pilates, or just choose to relax and unwind as they wished.
The summer solstice is a highly spiritual time for some, described in many ancient texts as the time of enlightenment: the return of the individual into the divine source. It feels apt that I was called to give my therapy to these women on this particular day; the act of healing is not just about one individual giving to another, but on a more spiritual level it is also the becoming of one: joining, energy and flow.
 NIA – Neuromuscular Integrative Action. A blend of yoga, martial arts, and dance, is one of the latest trends in mind-body fitness fusion.
Jackie Marsden MAR is a qualified reflexologist and independent consultant (Team Leader) for Neal’s Yard Remedies Organic. Jackie leads and mentors a growing team of consultants (many of whom are therapists integrating organic products into their existing businesses) via the NYRO social selling channel, holding regular team meetings, one-to-one coaching via phone and facetime, and a closed facebook group. All views are my own.