Dealing with Back Pain: Part 3 – THE END
After many months and after approaching my back from many different angles, I am finally pretty much pain free. YAY! My back pain has ebbed and flowed throughout my life but I never had such a bad bout of it as the last few years. Moving past a chronic condition is quite challenging so I feel some sense of pride with my accomplishments. Looking back here is what I learned from it all.
There was a moment when I thought that I could hand off my imbalances, aches and pains to another person to be fixed. I know this really isn’t true but I’d seen so many people who were “fixed” by chiropractic, or acupuncture or whatever the new body-work sensation might be. After seeing a few of these “specialists” myself I remembered that I cannot put my quest for health in the hands of anyone else. Actually, my husband reminded me (That’s why I keep him around). I did get support from several people who guided me toward stability but ultimately I was the one who figured out what I needed to kick out the pain.
The quest for healing was about me and finding out what works for me alone. What I figured out is that I’m best off with a regular movement practice- go figure! So, I joined a gym. Every other day I head over to do my 30 minutes of cycling, hand weights and mat work. I’m still working out at Mind & Motion but I find that actually going somewhere else (away from my workplace) is a breath of fresh air. A consistent exercise practice has given my body rapid and significant change. I’m up on my feet doing everyday activities without hesitation. I’m moving around easily at the pilates studio and am feeling strong! The gym and specifically the stationary bike has kicked in that lower feedback loop and gotten me out of my head (thank god!).
I also had to change my mindset (when there’s a motion, there is also a mind). I really had to face myself.. and face my fears. My back pain was so tied up with my anxiety. I’m not sure what came first (the chicken or the egg). Did I have anxiety about my back pain (was it going to go out, how would it go… where would it go?) or did my anxiety cause my back pain? Whatever is was (or is) treating my anxiety helped my back relax. Regular therapy and Deepok Chopra’s “The Soul of Healing” (you can download it from iTunes) helped me relax and let go of certain outcomes. It helped me to stop obsessing (something I’m telling clients all the time, of course) and helped me to realize that I’m safe.
Investigating the issues of dis-ease and healing with medical and alternative practitioners is key. But then take it in, see what makes sense to you. Become a part of the process. Approach your health from all angles. It may take a combination of therapies or a change of mindset. It may take a nutritional shift or meditative practice. Trust your doctor but also trust your insights and intuition. You will be the answer.