Monday, July 27, 2015
My Running Chronicles: You have a strong and healthy leg there! - Believing is Seeing
By all appearances on an MRI last December, it was time to hang up my running shoes. But all the seeds I planted 8+ years ago when I left my award winning social work career at the VA to heal my life started to blossom. The Universe first sent me Dr. Ryan, a healer who practices chiropractic medicine and then Jeff Spratt, Principal, Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC.
I decided that I was going to grow a new gastroc muscle and completely heal the effects from paralytic polio and violence.
I had reconstructive leg surgery oh over 20 years ago now and they used a long metal plate and screws to put the leg back together again. A year later I told my wonderful orthopedic surgeon that I did not want the metal in me any longer and needed to have it removed. He had told me that after a year we could consider that option...So I have the hardware removed and am partial weight bearing on crutches for 6 weeks while the bone filled in where the holes were for the screws. I didn't have to think about it. I totally trusted my body's ability to heal and grow new bone. My surgeon knew it would happen. I believed it would happen and so it did. Our bodies know exactly what to do to heal when we step aside and trust and believe in the process.
This is one of my favorite quotes from Dr. Joe Dispenza, author of "You Are the Placebo" and one of the teachers in "What the bleep do we know..."
Dr. Ryan prescribed gastroc strengthening exercises for me. At first, my left leg could not lift up onto my toes to strengthen my gastroc muscle because it had atrophied from the polio virus. But while I did the exercises, I imagined myself going up and down with ease as I could on my right leg. During meditations, I visualized the growth of my gastroc muscle. Dr. Ryan had used kinesiotaping to stimulate the growth of the gastroc muscle and Jeff and I partnered during my treatment sessions to nourish the growth of this new muscle.
Little by little, I was able to feel the gastroc muscle fire up and do a calf raise.
And then something amazing happened last week after my cycle of marathon training was completed on Wednesday.
My left calf muscle was SORE! Yes!
I was ecstatic to tell Jeff before our treatment that he needed to work on my left calf because it was sore. We also had the "usual suspects" to work on and Jeff allows Spirit to guide him to what needs to be attended to during the treatment.
As Jeff worked on my left leg he said, "You have a strong and healthy leg there!"
I told him to just imagine what it was like - like Tiny Tim or Forrest Gump.
"Run Forrest Run" he said channeling Jenny from that scene in the movie:
I got emotional as I told him I'd watch that scene over and over and over again to visualize what it would be like to run as I still sat in a leg brace and was using a wheelchair at times for mobility back in 2007 but had already written the poem, "Running the Race."
Two weeks ago, as Jeff used craniosacral techniques to continue to help me heal the neurological effects of polio and violence and to create a new neural net, I said, "It's draining." Jeff said, "It's losing its strength." This last week I could feel a clearing in my energy.
As the past loses strength, I gain strength growing, transforming, evolving mind, body and Spirit.
Saturday's training run was my longest mileage since last October when I ran the Tufts 10K. It was perfect running conditions. We decided to do our two neighborhood reservoir run. We passed many friends and neighbors, one of whom is our age and our kids went to school together said, "You guys are making us look bad. Stop it." I did run a little faster with a little more swagger as we passed by.
Tom and I chatted about nothing and about everything. I love these times together when we unplug and take in the beauty of nature while training for our half marathon in Bermuda on January 17th, 2016. Tom and I make sure to pause and notice the ripples in the water, the ducks and the geese; the cloud formations and express our gratitude for being alive, for being together for almost 40 years, for how well our 28 year old twins are doing now and for the gift of running. We reflected on the blessing of us now being in sync with each other going the distance instead of Tom training to go long and me either not running or running shorter distances. We took 26 seconds/mile off of last week's run and added another .5 miles to our distance.
Tom was in awe today of my stride. As we ran over a little bridge that only allows for one person to go at a time he told me he could see my gastroc muscle on my left leg. He affirmed what Jeff told me on Thursday and what I knew to be true even before I had any physical evidence to support my claim, "You have a strong and healthy leg there!"
I had to believe it before I could see it.
My books are available through Amazon.
I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.
In Journey Well, the journey continues in the wake of my nephew's suicide on 3/4/11 and the events of 4/15/13. Through my journey of healing and transformation, we learn that no matter what life circumstances happen to us, we can always find a way to journey well.
***NOW AVAILABLE*** "Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems,"