30 Sept – Undivided Attention

Make a commitment to give yourself an hour of undivided self-attention this week, and tell us how you’re going to use that time.

I’ve actually been doing this quite regularly… And no, not like that! Get your mind out of the gutter, people.
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Jan 14: Determination

Marge Piercy said: “A strong woman is a woman determined to do something others are determined not be done.” Tell us about a time when you did what couldn’t be done.

This is also partly in relation to a post I, literally, just finished writing, where I talk about experiencing strength, and for me, it was my rehab journey from my spinal injury.

This one is about determination, but it’s also related to my spinal injury.

So, the day after I injured myself, I wake up in bed unable to move my legs.

After I calm down from my completely hysterical outburst, I make some calls, and end up having my physio literally drop everything and make a housecall. She did some manipulation of my back and everything was okay again, and then said that I’d need to visit her a few times a week for the next couple of weeks.

I went and had x-rays, and MRI’s and tried all different types of therapies, and the final outcome was that I’d never dance again, and if I ever pushed myself too hard, the worst case scenario was that I would end up in a wheelchair before I’m 25.

So, after I get home and cry uncontrollably for a couple of hours because life, as I know, is now over, and all I can envision is that I’ll be the cranky person with no friends in a wheelchair, hating life and feeling miserable every single day constantly thinking about how I can kill myself.

…then I came to my senses and realised that feeling like that is kinda fucked up, and I need to change that.

I knew it was going to be a long road to recovery. I knew that it wasn’t something that was going to happen overnight. I knew that this was going to take some time, and a couple of therapists that I’d seen had said that it would take between 1 – 2 years, and I started thinking that that was acceptable. Whatever the recovery process was, it was going to slow and painful and frustrating.

I didn’t have a choice, I had to accept that.

For the first 8 – 10months I couldn’t actually do anything. I think that was the most frustrating part. Having come from a life where I was dancing, literally every single day, to go from that to absolutely nothing was a real struggle. I watched a lot of movies, and spent a lot of time in bed, and found myself in full-time work.

Then I moved and found a local gym, and that’s what really made me kick myself in the bum and force myself to actually do something to make myself better and begin the recovery process.

Jan 10: Acupressure

Have you ever tried acupressure to treat a problem? What was your experience with it?

Usually whenever I go and have a massage I look something like this

Provided I’m not moaning and groaning… or worse, snoring. I love massage. I can’t get enough of it. My ideal holiday is to somewhere like Bali or Thailand when I can get two massages per day, every day, for about 2 weeks, on the beach. That is my idea of absolute heaven.

I do love a bit of acupressure and sports massage. Given that I work two jobs, I’m always feeling stressed and tense, and my body is full of tight muscles, acupressure really helps a lot to relieve some of that tension and work out some of the knots. Generally I carry my tension in my neck and my lower back, and there are some trigger points and pressure points that my physio will find and just go to town on.

There’s one particular point in my neck… I can never remember what it’s called, but I just know that when he finds it, he literally squeezes it with his thumb and his index finger. It’s one of the most painful and uncomfortable moments – it’s just pain shooting right up the nerve endings into my brain… but it slowly subsides, and the tension goes away.

That’s the one thing I don’t like about acupressure, is that for me, I know it’s going to hurt. A lot. But I know that I can tolerate the pain and discomfort for the end result.

There’s actually a massage place that’s opened up at the end of our street. I noticed it last night when I was walking home, and I’m thinking that I might go and check it out – see what they have to offer and whether or not it’s worth going back again.