Yesterday I experienced my first one-on-one Feldenkrais® session with gifted practitioner, Julie Francis. The pain in my hip had become overwhelming. I’d seen the doctors and done physical therapy. I sensed the need for care more in keeping with how I am crafting my life. Rather than continuing to compartmentalize the issue I addressed the pain as an integrated voice of a guide.
Julie witnessed what I could no longer feel happening in my body. I had lost some specific connections to sensation. I had become an emotional as well as physical rubber band wound too many times around a straw. In the enormous tension I was creating unconsciously (and consciously I later discovered) I had lost my bones and electrified my energy output. Very simply, I was (and continue to be in varying degrees as I heal) out of balance.
After the precise, amazingly gentle and remarkably humane treatment that acknowledged not only my physical injury but the emotional injury as well, I walked through the room in a different body. I was in my body in a completely new way. There was still pain, but it was no longer attached so tightly; no longer wrapped around my bones and joints like a boa constrictor squeezing the breath out of me.
I taught 3 Nia classes yesterday; one before my session and 2 following. Unlike every other 3-class Monday, I never felt exhausted. I didn’t feel as though I was expending more energy than I could afford. Chatting with other Nia teachers after class, pain returned. I responded out of habit by pressing my right foot into the ground. The pain increased and I recognized the tension. I took a suggestion Julie had made earlier. Instead of continuing to pour my attention and energy into the pain, I pressed my left foot into the ground. The pain immediately quieted and the tension unwound.
Today I’m spending the day moving in a softer body. A friend and movement therapist remarked this morning how my energy felt more balanced… softer. I like this. Softer and more fluid. Not just through movement I design to look soft and fluid often feeling less than comfortable. Finally true ease.
Softer. Not a word frequently used in fitness. Not a word often used in a positive or complimentary context.
Soft. Generally considered synonymous with weak.
This healing has been on its way for some time. Even with only a glimmer of understanding on my part, the seeds of balance Have been germinating. My body has been telling me; in its wisdom, that the heart of this matter has been, in fact, my heart.
Finally, moving grief. No talking was necessary. It was the right invitation and my body began to release what I’ve been holding for a long, long time.
This is only the beginning; a first step. First step onto a fresh path. Yet another fresh path.