And then, I was in a car wreck, two days later, on May 22nd, and my back was pretty messed up.
I didn't let it faze me. I kept teaching my classes, kept doing my thing. I added in a chiropractor into the mix. I'd never gone to a chiropractor and was pretty skeptical --but as often happens in my blessed life, I found the exact right person with the exact right technique--something called Active Release Therapy which went a long way to healing my neck, even though my lower back was still talking to me. Sternly.
And then I fell down in my driveway.
I didn't let it faze me. I kept... doing... my thing,
Until, you know, the Universe decided that since I hadn't received the message I was supposed to receive when it was bouncing me off of things, it was going to up the ante.
Something gave way in my lower back last week.
I could not teach my classes. I could not do my thing.
But get this: I am not letting it faze me!
Recently, as part of my ongoing research into all things nutritional, I read this article. In it, it said,
Laboratory mice were dropped into tall, cylindrical columns of water in what is known as a forced-swim test, which measures over six minutes how long the mice swim before they realize that they can neither touch the bottom nor climb out, and instead collapse into a forlorn float. Researchers use the amount of time a mouse floats as a way to measure what they call ‘‘behavioral despair.’’
I started thinking about that.
[Also, as an aside, can we not stop animal testing? If you want to recreate "behavioral despair," I can think of a zillion ways to create it using humans. Have subjects stand in the endless line at Torchy's Tacos after many unsuccessful attempts to call in a to-go order. Exactly how long will a person with low blood-sugar stand in line behind the couple who define PDA before throwing up his/her hands and leaving? That happened to me recently and seriously, the guy in front of me was rubbing his girlfriend's ear like she was a Labrador --and that was just the start of their antics. BUT I DIGRESS. (Poor mice.)]
For me, ever since the Pain Years, whenever I've had some sort of physical setback --usually injury, although sometimes the FULF flares up --I have gone directly into PANIC MODE. It's a weird kind of PTSD --the one that says if I stop moving forward, I will lose the ability to do so. Like there's some finite amount of pain-free days I have and if I stop to heal or rest, I will be back on the couch again. See you in three years.
So, what I think happens is that I swim and swim harder, and eventually, I find a way to climb out of the cylinder or I get lifted out. I never do reach "behavioral despair." Because I've been there --heck, I LIVED there for a long time. And nothing is as bad as that.
So, that's the good news.
The bad news is the panicking part --the EXISTENTIAL Despair. I go there after about, oh, five minutes.
Except for this time. This time, I just decided not to do that. Even though I can't do the physical practice of yoga right now, I can focus on the other seven limbs. And I received instruction from Sri Dharma Mittra himself to concentrate on my meditation and pranayama --because stress is a bigger killer than low back pain.
I'm focusing on that for the next while until my back is healed. I'm working on the whole practice, including eating an anti-inflammatory diet. And I'm trusting the Universe to handle all of the other fears that I have about losing my practice or my business.
This is all new ground for me, and is perhaps a much better test than the "Float Test." I'll keep you posted.