It’s in my head

pill

It’s been a little over a month since my orthopedic surgery (you can read about that here). I am off crutch, have a little limp and some stiffness but overall am healing quite well. My chiropractor gave me some pelvic and sacral support today and before I left her office, she said it should help with the limping.

But walking around, I noticed I was still hobbling. So I stopped, took a moment and made an effort to walk without the hobble. And, what do you know, my body was able to stabilize pretty well without shifting my weight entirely to one side. It’s definitely not as easy or as comfortable, but doable and probably much better for my overall structure in the long run.

I’ve been walking without a limp for over 40 years and within a month of post-op healing, my body has acclimated to this way of walking even after it was useful. It struck me that it doesn’t take much for patterns to become habits to become part of how we navigate the world. That’s not to say that my limp is a bad thing and truthfully, I still have a ways to go before I am 100% limp free, but I definitely do not need to offload my entire left side anymore. It’s just going to take some effort to get there.

That moment made me wonder what else I might be holding onto because it’s familiar or easy. What else feels like a warm blanket to my brain but is not serving my best interest? Whatever it is, I’m optimistic that with some effort I can move through it.

From Eastern vs. Western to Eastern and Western

sage

Prior to my 2011 diagnosis, I spent considerable time futzing with doctors who said I was fine and steered me away from the mammogram. The first visit was in 2005 to my OBGYN, who felt the pea sized mass I was worried about. He told me I was too young to have breast cancer and I was fine (I was 33 at the time).

I’d like to say all of this is his fault because my life would probably be different had I caught everything that early. But the truth is I walked around afraid of Western medicine for a long time. I looked for healers and doctors who also shied away from traditional modalities or who supported my intentional blindness to what was to come.

Even so, from most of those practitioners (minus the lousy OBGYN), I learned how to connect to my body in a different way. Through Ayurveda, I learned how to eat for the seasons, and for my body type. From Chiropractic, I was able to tap into certain muscle groups and improve my gait. My workout regimen got better. Actually I embarked on a workout regimen at all. Acupuncture helped with stress management.

So while I walked into this journey late for the party and terrified of traditional medicine, I did have the sense that my body and I were a team. Something I might not have felt in 2005. This doesn’t mean I’m happy it took an extra 6 years to get diagnosed. Or that there aren’t times when I want to give up, drop this body because of the pain. But it does mean that I now know the difference between diagnostics and support. It also means that I am conscientiously throwing everything at this disease with the hope that something will work. Stay tuned for the results…