Saturday, January 9, 2010

Yes, I've been more than half-crazed


I am feeling better. I spent the last two days in my pajamas, not because I am depressed (I'm not), but to remind myself that "I'm resting." I've been reading books by Dr. Andrew Weil, spinning wool, getting good quality sleep, meditating, eating good food, taking new supplements, and doing yoga. It feels good to feel better, but it feels equally good to feel empowered, and to be less scared.

Why my pain scares me so much after a lifetime of chronic pain is something I do not entirely understand.

I do understand this: underlying my physical pain is deep emotional pain. They are inextricably bound together. There is no doubt in my mind that upticks in emotional stress cause flare-ups of illness. Flare-ups of pain cause more emotional distress. It's a vicious circle.

But the thing is, it's a vicious circle/cycle that can be broken. I've not been taking care of myself properly, even though I think I have been. I've been pissed off at the world and sick and tired of taking care of myself. I wanted western medicine to fix me. I wanted someone else to take care of things. I wanted to give up. I tried to give up.

And, I actually did give up, but in a way that I didn't expect, and it turned out to be a healing moment. I was in the hospital ER for almost an entire day on Thursday. They didn't know what to do with me. At first, they thought I was a medical admit, but it wasn't an emergency, so they called the crisis team. It took seven hours for a crisis worker to see me. During the hours I laid in a bare cell, even though I was exhausted, I couldn't sleep. I had a book, but I didn't feel like reading. So, I meditated. I got up and stretched. I lay back down, did yogic breathing, and I started to feel better.

When the crisis worker got to me, after nearly eight hours, I talked quietly for a while. He thought perhaps I'd feel better in a "crisis bed", away from home, where I'd get more support in my environment. I waited another two hours, during which time I started to weep. I don't remember the last time I wept like that. It felt good. I wasn't afraid to cry. The crisis worker came back and asked me if I was okay. I thought this was the stupidest question I'd ever heard, but I didn't get angry at him. What's the guy supposed to say? I looked up at him and said, "Yes. I'm okay. I need to cry." He sat down next to me. I started to yell, and I was cursing. He told me that I could get arrested if I acted out. Really? I told him that I need to be angry, that I needed to let it out. He closed the door, and sat back down. I ranted for twenty minutes. I wept, cursed, yelled, and he just sat there. When I was done, he said, "You are not crazy."

Whoever this man was, I thank him. Having a calm and silent witness who allowed me to rage without repercussions was a gift.

It also opened my eyes to all the suppressed rage I had inside of me. I knew it was there. I said that my resolution for 2010 was not to repress myself, so I had some intuition of what was really ailing me. This is not to say I'm not sick. I am. But, I'm making myself sicker but not allowing myself to feel the full range of feelings. Suppressing my "negative" emotions is becoming life-threatening. I must stop.

No, this doesn't mean I'm going to yell at people. I must work this out in a healthy way. I'm not sure what to do. I will find out.

Yes, I've been crazy. I've been "acting out" all over this blog. I've been all over the map. I've been screaming into this weird world of virtual reality for help. I've been screaming for help from doctors, who are not trained in treating the full body. I've forgotten my own body's wisdom, and the fact that I have much knowledge of wellness through yoga and meditation. I've been a baby - I didn't want to do it for myself any more. I wanted someone else to make everything okay.

It's okay to want help. It's okay to seek help. But to seek help from those that can't help, well, that's nuts.

So, I'm nursing myself back to some semblance of health. In only two days, I feel a lot better. Empowerment helps. So does everything I know - good diet, meditation, yoga, seeking knowledge, seeking change, not giving up.

I thank you all for bearing with me. As always, I hope my insanity and my mistakes can help others, not by my lecturing, but by speaking my truth. That's another thing, in my personal life, I haven't been speaking the truth fully.

Y'know, many years ago I wondered why I have a father who is perfectly healthy and in no pain at such an old age. He fits the models of many long-lived healthy people. What did he do right? He always blamed others for everything. He never internalized his pain. I don't want to be like him, oh no, but it does say a lot. For one thing, everyone around him has always been sick. Some people are toxic to others, and some people are toxic to themselves. I dearly hope that I'm not the former, but I hope to stop being the latter.

May you all feel good!

Photo note: I was going to post a "good photograph" of some recent handspun, but this pic is a great glimpse into my last few days. Note the water bottle at the bottom of the pic - it's filled with four kinds of detox tea. That stuff rocks!

I'm not so sure about the yarn, though. I don't particularly like the super thick and thin beehive thang, but it's construction fascinates me.

Here's another skein, made with the same "ingredients", which I prefer:

7 comments:

Jim said...

stress causes pain.
pain begets pain.
depression is contagious.

jmcleod76 said...

May you feel good, too, my dear. I'm sorry to hear you had such an intense day on Thursday, but I'm glad the it seems to have done you some good. Be good to yourself.

BitterGrace said...

I only know you virtually, but I think you show great courage. I am so glad you are finding your way to the root of your pain. My favorite mantra during bad times comes from Starhawk--"Where there is fear, there is power." I suspect you may find a lot of power hidden behind your pain.

Lindsey said...

I hear you, I get it, I throw armfuls of light and love your way. And I actually really like the yarn.

Julie H. Rose said...

Thanks, again, all.

No "sorry" is necessary, Jaime - I'm very glad I had that experience. It woke me up to some things I needed to see more clearly.

And yes, Maria, I seem to have gone from feeling powerless and overwhelmed to feeling empowered (why can't I just say "powerful"? Ah, not quite yet).

Julie H. Rose said...

Oh, thank you, Lindsey. Do you knit? I'll be giving it away!

TMC said...

I haven't been taking very good care of myself, either. We shouldn't do that to ourselves.

I'm glad you're feeling better somehow, though.

The purple is GORGEOUS!