This week I was lucky enough to meet up with Bernette Regan while she was over visiting her family in the UK. Bernette lives in the wilds of Indiana and pops over from the US to the UK whenever she gets the chance.
There are so many remarkable things about Bernette as the list is endless. In my view she’s kind, perceptive, strong willed, gentle and beautifully zany too.
I feel very lucky to call her a friend. Many years ago, we discovered we had more of a shared past than we had realised!
Bernette was known to me as Bernie and I’m getting used to calling her Bernette and get that Bernie may be mistaken for a guys name so it’s easier for her as Bernette. When we’d been talking about our earlier years in reflexology, she spoken about having read an article that had fascinated her about the subject of reflexology. She’d been inspired to go off and find a college where she had trained. It turned out that she’d seen the newspaper article whilst living in the UK and had trained at a UK college.
Bernette and I met in the US when I was teaching about Gentle Touch Reflexology (GTR) and she attended my course. One of the greatest things about talked about GTR is that not only is it super effective it’s also utterly delightful to do. Several of the people who were on the course had come from all over the US and some had done so because their training required them to use and apply quite a bit of pressure and that was causing them discomfort or pain. Learning GTR was a way for them to keep their existing client base whilst learning an additional skill that’s soothing and relaxing to both give and receive.
I was showing the group how I’ve a slightly miss shaped wrist after a very serious fall in the early 1990s. My right wrist was so badly broken that (although realigned and in plaster cast at the time) it has left me with two different looking wrists! I told the group that although I was very firmly told by the consultant that I’d have arthritis, numbness and lack of sensation in my hand…that in fact it’s just fine. Everyone in the group knew that they’d watched me demonstrate GTR with no issues however, if you look closely you can see that my right wrist is seated just off centre. Luckily, I have full sensation, dexterity and flexibility in both my hands and even though I’ve been practising reflexology for such a long time, I have no thickening around my thumb joint, discomfort or restriction on the length of time I can work. My thumb, hand and wrist are now fine.
Bernie asked how long ago I had broken my wrist and I explained that I knew the answer to that as it was just weeks after I was interviewed by the Daily Mail and the result of the article talked about working gently with reflexology and telling people how to get in touch. I’d received over 5500 enquiries and I had tried to help everyone!
Question…How do you stop a reflexologist who is working too hard?
Answer… Take her hand away! When I broke my wrist so badly, I couldn’t work for a few weeks!
Bernie was talking about how she’d seen an article about reflexology at about that time!
So, there we were in Ohio USA talking about a UK newspaper article that had been published roughly 25 years before. It wasn’t long before Bernie worked out that the very same article when I had been interviewed had been the one that had prompted her to enquire about training and here, we are in 2018 and working together again and meeting up on her trip to the UK!
So, you never know who sees what, what difference it makes and what else happens as the result of one small action.
My small action was to talk to a journalist who had stood on stage at a Complementary Therapy conference and say we never get any proof! I was so nervous but having just been in some clinical trials, I had to speak out.
The result was that Jane Alexander (journalist) rang me to ask questions, came to Loughborough, printed the huge piece in the daily mail, Bernette saw it and the rest (as they say) is history!
I’m glad I spoke that day…I nearly didn’t as I was too nervous!
Thanks for a great meet up Bernette.
I’m so pleased that you do so much for people in your neighbourhood, reflexology community and the Reflexology Association of America. Reflexology is all the better because of all you bring to it.