I did. It was me. My husband, Brian and I were riding an A.T.V. through a river to find our Christmas tree. I found myself pinned between a rock (a big one) and a hard place. A doctor told me I was lucky I practiced yoga, he was of the opinion my flexibility saved my life. I won’t get into the details of what images of my neck revealed. I’m sharing what images don’t reveal. A professional told me it would take approximately 10 months to straighten my right arm, due to the contusions on my elbow, (I don’t think he noticed my eyes rolling like “yeah, right.”) and my neck could take much longer to heal. (Major eye rolling.) (It took exactly 10 months to extend my arm.)
Enter physical therapists, massage therapists, a trusted chiropractor and time. I realized that I had good days, but I couldn’t remember having good months, or good weeks. Managing the chronic pain in my neck was exhausting. I practiced and taught yoga (Here’s a dirty secret – I’d feel great on my mat, but often would be in pain a day or one week later), I ate healthy (most of the time, I like cookies, I mean I like cookies so much “Cookie Monster” was one of my nicknames as a kid). So, I expected my neck to heal fast. It did not.
Somewhere along the way I went from having an active lifestyle to not so much. Have you ever been fed up? One day, one of the few good neck days, Triston, my son, bear hugged me from behind, my neck barely moved, and WHAM! It was like a car had hit me. That was it. I wanted to be able to receive a bear hug from my Bear (Triston’s nickname) without having a physical set back. I didn’t want to continue living with chronic pain, which led to sleepless nights, tingling in my arms, migraines, stiffness in my shoulder and wrist, irritability and an overwhelming sense of sadness. According to the National Institute of Health, one in three Americans suffers from chronic pain. I no longer wanted to be associated with that statistic. I knew I had to continue to think outside the box. I had to go out on a limb.
In 2016 I did three things, four really, that changed my life. I purchased the MELT ® Method Super Bundle (that is a story I’ll share another day) and MELTed. A lot. I started seeing an acupuncturist; sessions included acupuncture, cupping and massage. (People on the pool deck would notice Michael Phelps and I had something in common.) And I started my third yoga teacher training (again, another day). Oh, and I refused to give up hope.
I have good months! Weeks and months go by of pain-free living. Triston is in high school, he is a wrestler and a waterpolo player, and he plays rough. I’m grateful that I can play rough and even survive a Bear’s hug. I’m sure I can be a pain in the neck. Just ask Brian. But I’m grateful that my neck is no longer in chronic pain. If you’re curious about yoga or the MELT ® Method go out on a limb. What have you done to help reduce your chronic pain?
Welcome to my Blog and to Two Trees Yoga. See you on a mat. Raquel Otis
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