As I shared in the last blog, I’ve been carrying this injury around for many months. As a dancer, I suppose you get used to just picking yourself up and moving onto the next thing. That’s exactly what I’ve done. That’s not to say that we don’t respect our bodies and take care of them, we do. Our minds are strong and our determination and discipline is solid. It’s also in my nature to not wallow and to just get on with things.
I have a tendency to approach life from many different angles. It’s not always useful and most times, people react like I’m living on another planet, but it works for me. I love looking at my life from a deep place of introspection and reflection and then, as I come out of that space, I’m able to integrate the lessons even more so I can move into a new space. And then I usually start all over again. There’s always some hill to climb 🙂
The energy is palpable and vibrant when I come out the other side. I feel like I can take on the world! Life is pulsing through my veins and there is this super-charged electricity in the air. I am feeling this abundant energy right now as I sit here to share the next section of my blog. Life is beautiful and fascinating and all I can say is.. I feel grateful to be here and to be able to communicate something of my journey with you!!
I spoke in the previous blog of the wonderful energies that had come into my life to help me cope with this injury. I was first led to a Shiatsu practitioner who lives not too far from where I am. I’d never explored Shiatsu before. I was able to walk to her which was helpful, as I do love a good walk. Her treatments were very calming for me and her advice and gentleness was exactly what I needed. I had two sessions with her.
The second session shifted my energy so much that when I came back to the house and sat in my room, I couldn’t sit in it anymore. As I sat quietly on the edge of my bed, I was overwhelmed by a feeling that I had to escape past this confined space I found myself in. I knew I had to act on it immediately. With the help of the kind lads in the house, and my careful planning, we moved the entire room around so there was nothing familiar about the space anymore. I felt myself lifting with every change we were making. My energy had shifted hugely and my environment needed to do the same to support this change.
This room has never felt better and I am a lot more productive as a result. I can’t describe the urgency of the need to shift the room around. It felt like I couldn’t wait a minute longer. The restlessness I felt was quite overwhelming and fascinating.
A few weeks went by and still, no change. The pain was extreme and debilitating and I felt exhausted with it. Looking back, I wish I’d been a bit more proactive. Perhaps I should have moved a little quicker towards another plan to help my body along. I felt fragile with the pain. Too fragile to make big movements, but that was probably not the right approach to have. My body needed movement. “Movement is life”, as they say.
I was guided by a close friend to get in touch with a Craniosacral Therapist in Australia who does distance healing. I’ve had great experiences with Cranio in the past, so I took her advice. Into my life came this loving, gentle and extremely powerful healer who at the drop of a hat, checks in with me to make sure that I’m coping. Often times, she’ll text me to say that she did another session on me. She offers this space up so generously and her insights have really been quite liberating for me. Both these energies are so special.
She was the first person to tell me that my body is carrying enormous shock and trauma and that although my core energy is incredibly strong, I’m not coping physically with all the changes that have taken place in my life. We broke it down. A move to London, a breast cancer diagnosis involving three surgeries and chemotherapy, which breaks down the immune system, and a career shift out of musical theatre into coaching.
We spoke about how I’ve always moved and expressed myself as a dancer my whole life. Dancing brought me joy. I was devoted to being a dancer. Over the last two years with this illness, it’s been difficult for me to sometimes even do a yoga class. I’ve also shifted my focus into writing and coaching which requires me to sit still and work at my desk for hours on end. All this adds up to the fact that my world is vastly different now.
We addressed the fact that I pick up the pieces and keep going in life which sometimes doesn’t serve me, as I actually don’t realise that I need time to recover. We spoke at length about the surgeries, particularly the mastectomy and the impact it has made on my body. I will possibly elaborate in a future blog, but it’s a very tender subject.
The area where the surgery took place is in need of some attention and healing, was her feedback to me. Hands on attention would have been a good idea after surgery, just some gentle massaging into the muscles. She said that the rib cage and the intercostal muscles haven’t recovered and ideally, should have had assistance from a Physiotherapist. The muscles and nerves are in shock and my body is imploding as a result. When you’re going through chemotherapy there are a number of ways that you can receive help here in London. I think physio is on the list, but I never thought about it after the surgeries.
I feel this information is important to share as sometimes conversations around recovery don’t really cover all the areas that perhaps they should. I had no idea that I was carrying any shock or trauma. I’m generally positive and upbeat so most days it would be hard to tell if I was carrying anything. I try not to stay too long in places where the energy is stuck, although I don’t always succeed at it. This is a great lesson for me.
This awareness really gave me the opportunity to stop what I was doing and to rest. The amount of typing and writing I was doing every day was definitely not conducive to allowing my body to heal. I’m generally quite hard on myself. I have to have accomplished something fairly big at the end of my day. Usually it’s a long list of things. I had to really listen in and absorb the message she was giving me to slow everything down completely. I had to engage my thoughts and emotions to let go of the need to achieve anything, and to just let my body heal. I was able to adjust enough to feel better.
This healing is still very much a part of my reality, despite the time I took out to rest. My body clearly has more to teach me, so I’ve surrendered to it and continue to work through the pain. I have more incredible insights to share when I introduce the next healer to you, who I am currently working with. We are making progress and I’m encouraged and inspired by what I’m learning about myself and the support I have.
Thanks for reading and supporting Safe Spaces!