Every step I take towards health, is one step closer to being able to ride horses again.
Another piece of the puzzle has dropped into place after a visit with another chiropractor. What I thought was a pulled muscle in my back, which intermittently causes me quite a bit of pain, is actually swollen muscles at the point where the chiropractor suspects I sustained a broken rib.
During the visit, as she touched tight points in the muscle groups, she asked me how much pain I felt on a scale of 1-10. She touched three different points of different levels of pain. I told her 0 (awareness), 3, 6. She went back over the points and said, “Usually, this is a 3. this is a 6, and this is a 9.”
Then she moved to another spot on my back, and asked if that hurt. “Sure.” I said. All of the sudden it became clear how I could confuse a broken bone with a pulled muscle. This means I have some retraining to do when it comes to giving more importance to the signals my body is giving me regarding pain. Even if something doesn’t feel “that bad,” if it hurts about a 6 for me, I probably need to have it examined.
I need to be more willing to give my body a rest, and not be dismissive when awareness comes to part of my body. If something gets to a 3, I need to stop what I’m doing and give my body a rest. Hopefully, I can avoid getting up to a 6. This is based on an assumption that even though what I perceive is only discomfort, my body is responding physiologically on the typical pain scale.
No wonder my body is in crisis mode. Every time I start to feel “a little bit better,” I go out and try to catch up and over exert my body. That’s because my body is sending me pain signals from 3-6 (stop and rest), but I’m perceiving them as 0-3 (minor discomfort). Once I’m in the throws of catching up, I send my body into a 9 (really OW!), but I”m feeling it as time to stop and rest (3-6).
Being in the Moment; Letting Go of Goal-Driven Behavior
The biggest asset to healing at this point, in order not to send my body back into crisis, and allow healing to occur is going to the ability to let go of Goal-Driven Behavior and relax in the moment.
I’m laughing now, because goals help keep me motivated. I like to achieve. Being in the moment is fine, as long as that moment is taking me someplace I want to be – the future, the goal. This is going to be very difficult. This has been extremely difficult.
Waiting, and patience, and learning what I can do to get better so I can go out and achieve something, this is a serious hardship for me. This is not a goal that I think I can work toward, oh, and working at being in the moment, is not going to get me into the moment. I know, I’ve tried.
“I’ll get into the moment as fast as I can so that I can X totally in the moment, yeah. And go!”
If I am totally in the moment, then I begin to be aware of how much everything hurts. The past year and half has been the most physically painful year of my life. It has also been one of the most emotionally distressing times in my life.
“There is no do, only sit and take some walks.”
“There is no do, only be.”
“There is no goal, only small tasks.”
This situation has been challenging to my regularly scheduled gratitude sessions:
“I’m grateful I can sit here uselessly and do nothing.”
“I’m grateful I can walk around in circles for no reason.”
“I’m grateful I have a PS3.”
So, I had to change my perception about how I live, so as not to get smote by lightening for False Gratitude and Pettiness.
I have had to learn to be grateful for very tiny blessings, and not to be blind to the big ones due to being focused on what I want, rather than what is.
I am grateful for:
- an awesome working computer with dsl
- a lovely new office space for being able to write and create
- an alarm clock with radio and adjustable snooze button
- alternative indie radio station
- Pandora Radio
- the musical artist P!nk
- my dog, Freyja
- the new groomer who is familiar with Bouviers
- a dog with a long coat that is now growing out
- great chiropractors who are helping me heal
- my family
Well, as you can see, in that amount of detail I can go on for quite a while, especially covering my friends, my health, the house, Findlay, slippers and a cup of tea.
Relearning Neural Pathways
In addition to the stress response to the suspected formerly broken rib, I had three frozen vertebrae, and 2 or 3 others which had been displaced. I also have been moving using an incorrect firing method to operate my legs. This means I have to do exercises which will retrain the neural pathways to activate the muscles for the task in the correct order, using the actual muscles for the job.
My upper back has been trying to operate my legs. So, I have to train my body to use some hip actuators to do that. This is something that could go way back to when I was little and wore braces on my legs to correct turned-in toes.
Regardless, I have work to do, and goals to meet, while being relaxed in the present. And I’m sure that with gratitude and a positive attitude combined with determination and focus, that I will make progress toward body awareness, overall health, and relaxation.
( And maybe get some “work” done, too.)