Back in January, I noticed a lump on my collarbone accompanied by some mild pain in my shoulder. My doctor ordered x-rays, and everything was fine. Still, the pain did not go away. So, she recommended that I see a physical therapist who has since diagnosed a repetitive injury that caused my collarbone to protrude forward. It turns out that those winter months of wielding a pair of loppers clearing honeysuckle for the nuttery caused me damage as well. Like I said, the pain was mild. I could live with it right? But, I didn't want to cause any further damage to my shoulder that would ultimately limit the use of my arm.
So as my physical therapist cradled my arm in hers gently moving it side-to-side, feeling the joint, and determining the muscle loss, I realize how I have compensated for the pain--how I have twisted my shoulder forward, limited its use, how it wakes me up in pain every night, and how I've accepted this until now as a manageable state. This contortion has happened over mere months, and I suspect it will take as long if not longer to heal and retrain my body.
Anyway, this experience has been a revelation in making me wonder what other areas both physical and emotional that I am pushing aside and ignoring. How else am I twisting and contorting away from the pain only to cause more? All of this rehab has left me feeling both empowered to encounter the wounds and longing for physical comforts as a means to recuperate. I want to swaddle myself in funny movies, hand-sewing, coffee on the patio, a cozy blanket, homemade bread, a nap, my cats. . . you get the idea. I can't explain it, but I'm sensing it is time to heal--to stop the wound circus that is happening in our world, the constant assaults, the buried pain. It's seems impossible to make change--be change--if not operating out of some sort of wholeness. I guess a wounded shoulder is a good a place to start as any. . .
Anyone else feeling this way?
Anna Lentz, artist and writer, blogs about making a creative life connected with nature at Spring Bird.