The Importance of Slowing Down
This past week was really rough. I have no idea why. Maybe the transition. Maybe putting our move out in public. Maybe the move becoming real. Or maybe it was the fact that I had my period. I don’t know. All I know is it was a hard one. I fell into old habits and mindsets and even when I would get out of those patterns I would find myself crying uncontrollably for no reason at all. I feel that it is important for me to share this because I always want to be honest about what my healing path looks like. It is not perfect nor easy. It is often a struggle. But that is life. Real and true.
When I get my period I am unable to move much. I have touched briefly on the issue I am dealing with in healing my pelvis and back. I’m not really sure I have an understanding of how to write about it in a way that relays the issue so much, but I am going to try. I have what is called laxity of the pelvis otherwise known as pelvis instability. What this means is my joints and ligaments are hypermobile, i.e. crazy flexible. My body, in attempt to hold on for dear life in that area, gets a bit spazzy and I spend the majority of my time with a crooked pelvis. This on top of a degenerative disc in my lumbar spine and the other issues it has created from knee pain to pinched nerves in my shoulder leads me to be in some form of pain 100% of the time.
Due to the hormones that are released when one gets their period, during my cycle I am even more hypermobile and more prone to throwing my pelvis out. I have to be extra careful to ensure I don’t end up bedridden for six days, which sometimes means not moving at all. The whole thing is not fun and very frustrating and even scary, but it has really forced me into learning how to communicate with my body in new ways-- which after lots of time dealing with this I do consider a plus.
Despite my newly found appreciation for my new relationship with my body, I have spent a lot of time angry about this issue, honestly I often times still am. Who could blame me? I have done so much work, spent so much energy and time going from being a stagnant person who barely leaves the bed to being an active person who pushes herself to do more and be more.
From ages 13-21 I was on a myriad of psychiatric meds. Everything from Lithium to Lexapro. At a certain point I was taking about 8-10 pills a day. When I started losing weight and most importantly when I started moving my body, my bipolar and depressive symptoms started to wain and I decided to stop my medication. In the past when I had stopped taking my meds it would send me into a complete spiral that sometimes ended in suicide attempts and hospital stays. I didn’t have a tool to replace the chemicals the medicine was giving me. Exercise became my tool. Movement became my tool. And this time when I went off my meds I was more than okay. This by no means is a recommendation that people stop taking their medications. Some people really really do need it. But if you do feel like it is something that maybe you no longer need, please speak to a professional about it before doing anything. Always have support when it comes to messing around with mental health.
You can understand why after spending 21 years morbidly obese, stagnant, and in turn suicidal, it seemed highly unfair that I would be put in a position where I couldn’t move again. Didn’t the Universe know that this was how I was able to function? Why why why was it taking away my medicine? Like all things that seem unfair there was a huge lesson to learn here. One that I am still learning and still trying to remember to be grateful for.
This lesson works directly in line with my post about impatience. I needed to slow it down. Stop trying to force healing and instead actually listen to what my body needed. Build strength from a more mindful softer place.
I have a tendency to push through things. I call it “bulling”. I push push push to try and make something happen as quickly as possible. This was something I learned--like so many things-- as a necessity in saving my own life. I couldn’t slow down when I decided living was important to me. I had to keep going and I had to keep pushing. It was the only way--at the time-- that I was going to make it out alive. Literally.
Bulling through no longer serves me and I hear that loud and clear. It also just doesn’t work when it comes to healing my body both physically and emotionally. I am now being forced to face the repercussions of my past actions of attempting to speed through my healing process. Of pushing my body too far, of not listening to it, of not giving it the time it needed to heal after a massive surgery ten years ago. I’m dealing with it all now, and yes, I can’t change the past, and yes, I am learning so much about myself through this process, but god do I wish I had just slowed down a decade ago.
It wasn’t my path. My path was this. I accept that and take it and have faith in where I am at healing wise today. I am learning more about my body. More about my relationship with food. More about how to heal in a way that is sustainable and lasting. I know that this only makes me a stronger individual and healer. I know that because of this I have more tools to share with my clients than I would have had this just been an easy road. With all of that said, some days it is just fucking hard. Some days I am just over it.
I miss yoga. I miss hiking. I miss dancing without fear. I miss going for walks without having to worry about whether an incline is going to be too much for my body. I miss Pilates group classes and going for a run. I miss it all and I wish so much that I hadn’t taken my body for granted for so many years.
As of now I am grateful for all of the new paths to healing I am learning or diving deeper into. From journaling to a daily breath practice, to meditation, to my physical therapy exercises, to healing my relationship with food through mindful intuitive eating. All of these things make me a stronger better person and during the moments where I am stuck on the couch I strive to remember that more and enjoy being a human cat bed while getting real into some amazingly shitty teenager show on Netflix.
If there is anything that I hope anyone reading this can take away from this post it’s to slow it down. There is no rush. You will get to where you want to be and it will be better and longer lasting if you take your time and really listen.
For more guidance around how to slow down or any other issue you may be dealing with email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and set up a free health consultation. Sending you so much love and support always <3