Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Joy of Sox

The Joy of Sox

The days are getting longer, temperatures are beginning to climb, the snow is melting, the birds are singing and Red Sox Nation turns their eyes south - to Florida. There is a big red circle around April 1st on everyone's calendar. No not because it's April Fool's Day and you want to remember it! No it's opening day for the Boston Red Sox - the old home town team as they play the Texas Rangers. On April 8th, there is going to be a lot of red flu going around as it's opening day in Fenway Park against the evil empire New York Yankees. (Okay if I am going to be true to myself, I can't call them the Evil Empire. I grew up in the Bronx near Yankee Stadium and cherish my memories of Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle). {As an aside, when you read Rick's book, you'll learn all about why chanting Yankees Suck does not necessarily lead to a positive outcome for the Sox}.

So what does all of this have to do with anything in my life? The author of The Joy of Sox, soon to be an Oscar winning documentary, is a friend of mine. Rick Leskowitz, MD and I trained at the VA many years ago. He was a psychiatry resident and I was a social work intern. In 2005, Rick wrote an op ed piece for the Boston Globe "Can Weird Science Save the Red Sox". My eye and heart caught it and I was so ecstatic to read about a psychiatrist writing about the power of prayer and doing research in an attempt to validate outcomes. I kept asking our continuing ed committee at the VA to have him as a speaker but it didn't happen.

In 2007, I was contacted by a polio survivor who was desperately seeking help for her condition. I thought of referring her to an integrative medicine team in her home state. I email'ed Rick, we reconnected and the rest as they say is motion picture history. We met for lunch and felt as though we had just seen each other although 25 years had passed since we were at 17 Court Street, the then VA clinic. We talked about The Secret, healing, energy medicine, manifesting, creating and the paths we each were on which were a lifetime away from the VA clinic. By chance, Rick is also the chief of integrative medicine at Spaulding Rehab Hospital - yes the very same place I took the steps on my healing journey.

We stay in contact by email, through his JoS newsletter and however and whenever Spirit moves us to connect. The series of synchronicities happening in our paths could fill many blog posts but I'll focus for now on Rick's book. My copy is so dog eared that as I was reading I couldn't remember where I left off or if I had dog eared a page to go back and review it. Rick weaves science, energy medicine, the power of love, joy, laughter and embracing our inner child with the championship seasons of the Boston Red Sox. As he writes about the process of his creating the documentary with his cousin, the creative process itself is revealed and commented on. Rick's voice is warm, humorous, delightfully self revealing, tongue in cheek at times but with a very serious message to deliver.

The metaphor of baseball and sports is a metaphor for life itself. Rick points out that what it takes to succeed on the field is also what it takes to succeed off the field. My heart leaps with joy to realize that something I have practiced for years - prayer and most recently my healing journey is being studied in the field of energy medicine. I felt such a sense of joy, hope and possibility as I read this amazing book and go back and review different parts to continue to grow and transform.

Rick also talked about the Boston Marathon in the Joy of Sox book. He cheers on runners for the Boston Marathon in his same spot in Wellesley. Although he had already left by the time Team McManus got to where he would be, I could still feel his presence knowing that he was cheering me on even though his physical presence was not there. This and more is what you can experience when you delve into the Joy of Sox and the wonderful world of weird science.

From the back cover:
"What happens when a Harvard psychiatrist mixes his interest in holistic energy medicine with his love for the Boston Red Sox? You get The Joy of Sox, a humorous blend of science and spirituality that expalins the latest research breakthroughs into the nature of the human mind by showing how these discoveries apply to the All-American sport of baseball. ... He also shows how you can harness these invisible forces to become a more effective fan for your favorite team and how to use the power of intention to create more happiness in your own life."

God bless, be well and live like you were dyin'
From my heart to yours with love,

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