Those who have been in my company know that I *should* really be catching up on sleep, but I shot out of bed this morning, compelled to get these thoughts and feelings out of my head and into writing.
In the past few months I have experienced the sobering and spirit-crushing reality of what is ultimately valued by our modern society. It was a disheartening, but telling reminder of why our society is so ill and it saddens me to see something I have poured my heart and soul into reduced to a dollar figure. And that ultimately the only thing that speaks the loudest is whether it is profitable, taxable and the highest bidder takes all.
It has been a distant goal for myself to one day own the property that my clinic rests upon. To pay a mortgage instead of rent and the dream of truly being my own boss. That goal came much sooner than expected when 3 weeks ago, the property owner abruptly decided to sell. Heart-stopping and sheer panic – I am catapulted into the frightening and confusing world of real estate. Appraisal, contracts, counter-offers, taxes, lawyers, listings, buyer-seller, my head was spinning. In the end after many late nights and financial gymnastics, we settled on the lowest affordable price. And I have the deepest gratitude and respect to Eric and Jennie Chan, my blessed parents, this wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for their tireless and determined efforts to help me finance this venture. I am the luckiest girl in the world and I love you both.
I have recently succumbed to such cold realities and as I write this, I am shaking and tears are rolling down my face. For the past 2 years, I have devoted myself to my community and poured all of myself into this little practice. It may not be worth as much as a potential condo development (because Victoria has a condo shortage…) and I certainly can’t take it to the bank. As a young entrepreneur, despite all of my struggles, hiding the fact that I am constantly freaking out inside and have spent many sleepless nights worrying about whether Community Acupuncture will fly in this town; when it comes down to it, I am really not worth much on paper and neither is Heart & Hands.
But when I see the clinic room filled with sleeping tired, peaceful souls, the countless thanks we get, “Y’know if it wasn’t for your rates, I wouldn’t be getting the treatment I am”, and the happy faces coming and going, this is so very priceless. You can’t put that into a bank account or turn it into stocks. Money will never fill that void in your heart or heal those scars inflicted by an unlucky life. I may only be 31 (17 of those battling with lupus) and my annual net income would never be approved for a line of credit (yet), but if its one thing I’ve learned, you can’t buy community. A healthy community only grows when there is connection, mind-body-spirit and solidarity. I may be young, but I am wise enough to have learned this.
So, let it be known, HEART & HANDS IS NOT FOR SALE. The community needs more health care, not another fucking condo development!!!
And now I am asking, if you believe in transforming community health, into community wealth, we need your help. We intend on hosting a silent auction in November and we need YOU! We would love to create a bounty of community-based auction items and we need to muster enough promotional power to make this event a success. I want to raise enough funds to pay back at least a small portion of our down payment and relieve the financial strain on my family.
If you believe in community, contact me, firstname.lastname@example.org
~Christina Chan, R.Ac. (Acupunk, kung fu freedom fighter & soon-to-be property owner)
“The art of peace does not rely on weapons or brute force to succeed; instead we put ourselves in tune with the universe, maintain peace in our own realms, nurture life, and prevent death and destruction. The true meaning of the term samurai is one who serves and adheres to the power of love ”
- Morihei Ueshiba