Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Figuring some things out

I went back to my acupuncture/Chinese medicine doctor last Thursday. As I suspected, I felt better immediately. He knows me very well and treats very holistically, taking both Western and Eastern medicine principles into account -- he treats the whole me -- mind, body and spirit. He is a great teacher in my life...not to mention a partial psychiatrist, therapist, physical therapist, general practitioner, yoga teacher, etc. I am lucky to have him.

The insights and treatment he gave me got me started in figuring this whole anxiety/physical symptom thing out. He agrees there is probably something not healed right in my right wrist that gives me pain when I practice yoga. For that, he is sending me for an MRI. In the meantime, he is treating me for the pain...and offers me good suggestions as to how to mitigate the pain while practicing my yoga. The pains in my left arm and chest are probably stress/anxiety that I'm holding in my body. The acupuncture treatment he gave me last week started to release some of what I've been holding in my body.

I went back today for my next treatment and, while on the table, some real revelations started to crystallize for me.

I told him about my yoga experience last night...again, I came home crying afterwards. SO frustrated that the class is NOT giving me what I need and am craving. "And what is that?" he asked. "Peace." That slid out of my mouth easily. And that's what is missing. The yoga classes are so "ashtanga" -- one breath per pose, no time to really get into the pose and get the benefit. It sucks. And I go looking for something that I am not getting...always hopeful, always disappointed. No wonder I end up crying.

I also told him that I think I am actually stressed about work -- I'm trying to do all of my work in 9/10 of the time when we are going away skiing for 3-day weekends every two weeks. I appreciate my firm being so nice in letting me take this time and I am hyper-aware of not making them regret it...because I have more time off that I want to take to come!

I'm also stressed about my "life" work -- I'm trying to do all of it in 11/14 of the time. That's a lot.

Finally, it occurs to me that I have had "doom" feelings before when my hormones were out of balance...they weren't like this horrible anxiety I've had lately, but I am really wondering if it is related. I had blood drawn yesterday for my appointment with my gyne next week...I'll meet with acupuncture Doctor after that.

So Doctor says to me that it is clear that I have got a lot of "yang" (male, active, stressy) energy in my life and what I need (desperately) is "yin" (female, nurturing, relaxed). My yoga class is super-yang and that's why I am hating it and it's making me cry. Even my skiing is very yang. I need something else right now to BALANCE me out. He mentioned that a day in bed just relaxing might not be such a bad idea...but we Westerners have a hard time doing that. I know I do.

With that, he inserted the needles (the ones for the "sad" area in my left shoulder, my hurt right hand and top of my head -- wisdom area -- were particularly active today) and left me for my 25 or so minutes to percolate and meditate. It's a quiet room, warm massage table with heating pads and lamp, fountain and soft music running. I have been very emotional there lately so it takes me a minute to calm my mind and ponder while the needles do their work.

What Doctor said to me rang VERY true. I have gotten signs of this need for balance a lot lately...most recently at our Ostara (pagan spring equinox thing) that we went to at our "church of the backyard" on Sunday. We hunted for Ostara eggs and the token inside was something for each of us to mediate on. I instantly loved mine (these were not chosen for us individually by the people who set it up...it was luck...or I like to think it was the Universe sending me a message). It is a ceramic bead with a moon and sun on it. The moon (which I always relate more to than the sun) is in front of the sun and has a happy face on one side and a sad/perplexed face on the other. When you look CLOSELY, you can hardly tell which brushstrokes of the brush are different on the two faces...interesting. Balance between the two sides. The moon is also a symbol of the feminine (sun is masculine)...thus, the yin is in front of the yang on my bead. I didn't relate this to my current situation until this morning.

In addition, in our Ostara ceremony, one of the participants was talking about bunnies...bunny ears in particular. She was saying that she was wondering what made the Mad Hatter mad...and she thought it was his ears. But was it because he was trying with his big ears to hear things he couldn't? Or because he heard things with his big ears that he didn't want to? Hmmmm...there's a nugget in there that I need to hear (word-use intended).

All of this is very resonant for me. I left my treatment feeling very very happy. (It's later in the day now and the yang-stress of the day has really gotten to me...but I was feeling good THEN.) I will meditate more on all this. And I will keep working to get what I need to feel better.

(And, yes, we are going skiing this weekend! I do love it and this weekend will be the first one we've had this year that is just DB and me...so ROMANTIC ski weekend...even better!) :-)


Vickie said...

What you are describing is exactly why I left my yoga north studio. I went in wanting one thing and it was always different. Even the set up of the room really bothered me. And I just heard that studio is closing at the end of the month. And I thought about going back for their last week, but then thought - all the things that bothered me will still be there. So what is the point in going back for a week that bothers me? where is the sense in that?

I totally relate to trying to stay EVEN. And it does relate to yoga - counter pose to every pose - balance.

Anonymous said...

It sounds as though your doctor does indeed know you well, and knew the right questions to ask you. I know you've loved your yoga class but it's obviously not the right place for you, at least not right now.

I hope that now that your eyes and heart are open to what has been not working for you, you will be able to see and accept what will bring the balance and peace that you seek.


Alicia said...

Hope you are having fun/romance skiing this weekend.

Wow, your doctor sounds great - I have always wanted to try acupuncture - maybe one day soon.

Loved all the ways the universe was talking to you. Sometimes we just have to stop and look/see and hear.

Vickie said...

fun weekend?

sharla said...

Yep, sometimes the answers we are looking for come out in ways that have no explanation.

Are there any other yoga studios close by that you could try?

Cindy...154 said...

I love this post. So glad you wrote about it. I have always been a moon girl, myself. And I have yang out the wazoo in my life this week. But I did take a day last weekend and did nothing but lay around watching movies. I began the day with a fire in the fireplace and an old movie and just went with the cozy, do nothing kind of day. It had been so long since I had that kind of day. There was much to ponder in this post. I loved your token, too. It sounds like you are doing much to take care of yourself and you will reap the benefits eventually. I want to read this post a couple more times. Very thought provoking...