Saturday, January 30, 2016
Run for the Hills and Healing Trauma
I find all of this quite miraculous. Two weeks after crossing the finish line of the Bermuda Half Marathon, I'm running 4 miles on a hilly course. My body is resilient and recovered from the 6 months of training and running 13.1 miles on 1/17/16.
After previous endurance events or even after shorter distance races, my body could not recover. The chronic pain and fatigue would return and truth be told I was beginning to wonder if I would ever get traction on my healing journey.
As I write this I am smiling from ear to ear feeling deeply grateful that the Universe delivered me to Ryan J. Means, Doctor of Chiropractic Medicine who directed me to the work of Dr. Joe Dispenza and then to the massage table of Jeffrey Spratt, MT, pioneer of the Spratt Method of Muscular Therapy and Owner and Principal of Spratt Muscular Therapies, LLC.
So what's different this time?
During a recent meditation I reflected on all the twists and turns and detours I took on this healing odyssey. When I arrived at Boston University in September of 1971, one month after my father's suicide, the Resident Assistant at 700 Commonwealth Avenue sent me to the counseling center when I couldn't stop crying shortly after arriving to my dorm room. Of course it didn't exactly help that my roommate from Long Island had already decorated my side of the room with plastic flowers on my bulletin board and told me we would just have to do something about my hair and nails. I had individual counseling and was then referred to group counseling. The group therapist decided that I needed a specialized group for survivors of childhood incest. And so began what seemed like an endless line of talking therapists. There was bioenergetics, psychodrama, Gestalt therapy...and there was a wonderful social worker I met while in graduate school who was an angel in my life supporting me during my early years of motherhood.
Life got really busy and I focused on career, work and home until my mind, body and soul cried out for healing and my life came to a screeching halt with crippling symptoms of difficulty swallowing, breathing, limping, numbness and tingling, pain and fatigue; anxiety and depression. The diagnosis of post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromsucular disease in December of 2006 was my wake up call.
During these past 9 years I experienced energy healing, yoga teacher training, KMI Structural Integration, Zero Balancing and perhaps the greatest therapy for me was running as I sought out paths for healing.
None of those modalities and none of the therapists I met were dedicated to helping me heal. They were curious about this polio survivor and survivor of childhood domestic violence; intrigued by how my body expressed the trauma and both drawn to my fiery determination and Spirit and ill equipped to hold the space for me that I needed to heal.
Jeffrey set the intention after my first treatment with him last April that he wanted me to run unencumbered. He set an intention to help me heal the tremors and to heal all that went before. It took 7 months of working together before I would allow myself to let my guard down and to allow the trauma to surface; to allow myself to completely trust Jeffrey and to surrender yet feel incredibly empowered on his table.
Little by little and layer by layer we heal all that went before.
During Thursday's treatment with him, I found myself recounting with him different moments of the trauma of my childhood. He held a compassionate presence while allowing the power of his method of positive touch to heal. I'd never shared with anyone those particular gruesome details of the horror and my reaction to them but I knew it was time to no longer hold them in my mind or body. I then fast forwarded my story to 9 years ago and the pieces all began to fit together of the symptoms that manifested in my body under the guise of "post polio syndrome" and the tragic traumatic events of my childhood. Jeffrey's warm hands rhythmically working to clear out congestion and bring about healing relief, balance and harmony to me mind, body and soul helped me to continue to tune to the vibration of the Universe rather than the vibration of violence and terror. "It's time to reclaim all of this," Jeffrey said to me as he worked.
After sharing those memories, I could feel the physical pain manifest in my body. Jeffrey literally touched the pain and facilitated healing as my body and heart did what it needed to do when I was a little girl but could not do at the time. Peter A. Levine calls this completing the action to be able to heal the trauma and restore the body to goodness.
I read Dr. Levine's book a few years ago and now, partnering with Jeffrey, I am able to heal the trauma and restore my mind, body and soul to goodness.
How amazing that after 9 years of being on a healing odyssey I now have steady traction on my journey to health and wellness. While it is me doing the work and being brave enough to allow the past to surface and heal, I am incredibly blessed and deeply grateful to Jeffrey who brings healing hands, a compassionate heart and strength to listen to whatever I need to share through words, through my body and through emotions. I am so excited that we are going to change the way trauma is treated and bring hope and inspiration to so many who have suffered and struggled with the effects of trauma. He also gives a phenomenal runner's flush and knows exactly what rhythm and pace of the work I need each week. He allows the Divine to work through him to join with my powerful intention to heal; and through my healing journey we will bless the lives of so many.
And today, on a glorious end of January day in New England with moderate temperatures, sunshine and dry ground, I was able to run for the hills; run unencumbered with joy soaking up the energy of those training for Boston and passing some of my runner friends out on the course.
What a blessing to run for the hills as I heal the trauma and restore goodness to my life reclaiming my life and reclaiming my advantage!