SORT of carpal tunnel
I haven’t meant to let the update go this long, but expect it to continue through the week, as it’s The Week Of Way Too Many Appointments. I mean, I have a lot normally, but this week really takes the cake. Yesterday was workout, chiropractor, talk therapy, massage therapy. Today was neurologist. Tomorrow is workout, physical therapist, chiro. Thursday is regular doctor and reiki. Friday is massage therapy and chiro.
The interesting thing about seeing so many therapists is that you find out just how little anyone knows, or perhaps more accurately, how everyone who sees you will be CONVINCED, utterly CONVINCED they know exactly what is wrong with you, and everyone will have a different idea. I’ve decided they’re all right and all wrong at the same time; I think it’s not as simple as any of them want to make it, and it’s not as completely THEIR thing as any of them want to make it, but that listening to each one of them carefully and making my own decisions will eventually get me somewhere pretty good. All I can say is god help anybody who gets this condition who isn’t a highly critical thinker. You have to double check and scrutinize everything they say, and then to boot you have to remind them, frequently, of your actual condition–like, when the massage therapist says, "to stretch out that muscle, roll backwards over a yoga ball," you have to remind her that, uh, that would stretch a hell of a lot of ligaments, yes?
My only real complaint at the moment is that this really requires me to trust my instincts, and I’m finding myself very reluctant to do this. I don’t feel qualified to make these kind of judgments, and to be honest, I don’t want to. There are many things I want to learn about and consider in life, but my ligaments are really not one of them. I want to read and watch and write and travel and study; I don’t have any desire to or see value in gaining an intimate knowledge of my internal structure. To be honest, I resent a great deal that this is my only road.
When I was trying to decided if I wanted a reiki appointment, Deb (my therapist) asked me how comfortable I was grounding. "You’re really in your body a lot, with all you’re doing," she pointed out. "How does that feel?" I realized, as soon as she aske this, that I actually really, really hate being in my body. I resent being grounded. Doesn’t that seem a bit insane? But it’s true. I’ve never been wild about my body, finding it ugly, cumbersome, and limiting. On the occasions I’ve tried to make it work a bit better, I’ve always been foiled. Even when someone points out to me all the potentially or theoretically wonderful things about a human body, I can’t really bring myself to care. I just want it to work. I don’t want to think about it. I absolutely don’t want to be my body. I do everything I can to escape it, usually through my mind. And really, for thirty-five years this has worked pretty well. I’m pretty sure, though, that this strategy isn’t ever going to work again.
So clearly, if I’m going to get better, I have to overcome this. Nobody is going to be able to understand my body completely but me, so if I want to stop hurting, I have to learn to understand my body, and then I have to act on it. I wonder if the way for this to work, though, would be to make sure the connection goes both ways. I’ll listen to my body, but it has to listen to my mind, to see what it wants. And then the nebulous me in the middle of the two is going to have to adjudicate. This will also mean, I’ve already started to discover, that I have to find and heal the hurting parts in my mind–or maybe those are in the nebulous bit? Not sure.
Talk therapy yesterday centered around something that I need to explain in a separate, longer post at another time, but suffice it to say it resulted in unearthing something very simple but very, very old that I didn’t have any idea at all was still really upsetting me. Essentially, yesterday I mourned with my ten year-old self over the loss of the most sacred, important thing she knew, the loss of which made her feel completely, permanently unsafe. It’s such a simple thing, but it’s more powerful than many other hurts, some very, very serious and dark. There was a little girl living in my heart who had no mother, no father, and someone had destroyed her home. Do you know, she’d never mourned? Isn’t that odd? I remember crying, and I remember being upset when we lost the farm, when everyone changed, forever, but I don’t remember keening, or even saying goodbye. I just remember numbness and shock, and my mother crying, and my father fading away, and it was like the world was dead, but I just kept going. For decades. And yet, as soon as I realized she was still there, lost and alone, it was astonishingly easy to walk through her woods and hiding places with her, weeping that they were razed, feeling the pain with her, and then, as if it were nothing at all, buildling them back up, house and all. I put her mother and father inside, static and unchanging, just as children wish their parents to be, and then I moved the whole business into my meditation landscape. It’s safe now. It’s completely protected, forever, and so is she. And of course, so am I.
I feel a bit today like I am still hating my body, but I feel grounded, for maybe the first time since I was ten, in my heart. It’s fragile and strange, and a little sad in a strange sort of way, but it’s amazingly settling. As an adult, I can see that the pain and loss is what made me change and grow, but it was unstable because there was no root, no day when things actually were okay. People have asked me many times when the happiest day/time of my life was, and I never know what to say, so I say, "now." I realized yesterday that this isn’t true. The happiest days were when I was about seven, teased mercilessly at school, but free at home, wandering hills and valleys and holding my dad’s hand as we walked through our farm. I really, really was happy then, in a way I have never been since. I’m laughing, because if you’ve done any beta reading for me–hello, can you say CATAL? But I was happy. It was so good. And it’s like I can’t let myself think of it, because it was so good, that to remember is so much pain. I was in my version of paradise, and then it wasn’t just taken away, but destroyed, end to end. Well, yes, I think perhaps that might make one reluctant to ever even consider being truly happy ever again.
I think getting square with my body is going to be much like digging up that old, old pain. My happiest times have always been inside my head, in a landscape richer and more interesting than anything my body provides or takes me to. The people there don’t hurt me, either, and they don’t contradict each other, though they do make me suss them out and decipher riddles. But if I can shut the door on real, pure happiness because I don’t want the pain of loss again, I can only imagine what I’ve shut the door on my body to. And, really, at the same time we lost the farm, I lost my body, too–it grew too fast, developed too fast, and things began to hurt, to look wrong, and to not support me the way they used to. When I was little, I loved to swim and run and climb, and my body was my friend, except when I was too tall to get into kid rides. And, wouldn’t you know it, that was about when the story writing got very serious. Hmm.
Not yet sure how all of this squares, or how to proceed, but I will say, it’s all very interesting. I think I’m going to need to visit the little me on her safe, protected farm again, maybe cry some more, maybe climb the old honeysuckle rock again just because I can, maybe explore the old cabin and homestead house because you can’t get cut on rusty nails in a dreamscape. I might find body answers there, and I might not. But it might improve my instinct, or at least ease a little stress so I’m clearer-headed. What I’m missing right now is a sense of what is happening and where I am, and where I am headed. I can’t see a better way to ground myself, body or otherwise, than going back to the place when things were, in a way they’ve never been before or since, really and truly okay.