I Believe

In 1985, I became a student at the University of Virginia. What I didn’t know before I arrived was that seemingly everyone on Grounds was listening to—and consumed by—R.E.M. Nothing associates you to a time and place or person like music, and in the fall of 1986, it seemed like R.E.M.’s “Lifes Rich Pageant” was playing in my head constantly. That may explain my second–year grades. One of my favorite songs from that album (for younger readers: this is an album) is called “I Believe.” When I was young and full of grace and spirited—a rattlesnake. When I was young and fever fell My spirit, I will not tell You're on your honor not to tell   I believe in coyotes and time as an abstract Explain the change, the difference between What you want and what you need, there's the key, Your adventure for today, what do you do Between the horns of the day?   I believe my shirt is wearing thin And change is what I believe in Recent events in my life (in and out of the massage world) have caused me to reflect on what I believe. I have always believed what my mother had told me—“Things happen for a reason.” I’m starting to realize though that sometimes things just happen. I believe the changes afoot in the massage education world (and in postsecondary education in general) are healthy, and will result in stronger programs and more viable careers for massage therapists, even if things are a bit bumpy along the way. I believe Thomas Jefferson was right: “I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more I have of it.” I believe there are more than two sides to the massage profession. “Health care” and “relaxation” are just two of many paths, and in some cases they aren’t different. I believe life isn’t fair, or unfair—it just is. I believe there is no true definition of “full-time” and “part-time” in massage and bodywork. And those who attempt to marginalize practitioners as “part-time” are missing the point. I believe dogs love you, but cats can only like. I believe the greatest challenge to our profession recently—and perhaps in the future—is from within. I believe a good sandwich on the right bread can be a religious experience. I believe regulation and professional development are different, and I would like to help several state boards and American Massage Therapy Association chapters understand this. And as Bono said, “I believe in love.” Follow Les on Twitter at twitter.com/abmp_les.
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