I have to tell you, when I was first introduced to Somatic Movements, I didn’t get it. I wasn’t ready or maybe I should say my ego wasn’t ready for exploring such slow, small, gentle movements. Surely I could do faster and more complex movements than this? Well, the answer is that yes, I could, however I didn’t realize how much I was compensating in order to do those movements. It was no wonder that I didn’t feel comfortable taking part in a traditional yoga class. I began to explore answering the questions:
- What’s moving that should be?
- What’s moving that shouldn’t be?
- What isn’t moving that should be?
I am so glad that I was given another opportunity to explore Somatic Movements becoming more deeply aware of sensing and feeling inside myself. I’m grateful to have my family, teachers, students and colleagues supporting me as I’ve learned more and more about these slow, gentle practices to support my own wellness and the wellness of others. I don’t know where I’d be physically or emotionally without them. One does not preclude the other. When my body is feeling great I feel better emotionally, however, when I’m experiencing pain then I don’t feel well emotionally either – sleep is harder due to discomfort, movement is harder, and it is also hard to accept when I have less freedom to choose what I’d like to do when I am limited by discomfort or pain.
I had a spinal fusion when I was 16. I found out I had a grade 4 spondilolisthesis after being in a car accident. What does this mean? Well, my lowest lumbar vertebra slipped forward greater than 75% on my sacrum. I had experienced sciatic pain and low back pain from about age 12. The car accident ended up being a blessing as it revealed this obstacle to health and wellbeing. Surgery was the only option to stabilize my spine. In 1982 that meant six weeks of bedrest after surgery. At age 16 I did not realize how much this affected me emotionally as well. I had been a very active teenager – softball, volleyball, basketball – they were my life and then I could no longer participate.
I wish I knew about Clinical Somatic Education and Somatic Movement then.[Read more…] about The Gifts of Freedom in Your Movement