Embodied healing

26 Jul

After leaving a damaging relationship in my 20s, I learned that healing takes time and needs space to both take you over and dissipate. The crying still comes in waves, but they are smaller waves. More like weeping than sobbing. A feeling of sadness and regret lingers now that I’ve moved past the anxiety and intense grief.

One of the hardest parts about this process so far is the constant feeling of being a patient and a subject, rather than an autonomous and powerful person. IVF forces you to put a lot of faith in doctors, scientists, alternative health care practitioners and other so-called experts. Sometimes they give you contradictory advice. I got a lot of ambiguous information about how much I was allowed to exercise throughout this process. I erred on the side of caution and it made me miserable. I sunk into a low-level depression as I became more and more sedentary. I stopped trusting my ability to judge my own limits. I trusted doctors instead of listening to my body.

The real mourning process began for me last week, much before a blood test confirmed the worst. I knew that the somewhat ambiguous cramps I was experiencing had moved into menstrual territory. I could feel when my hormones shifted. I knew that everything wasn’t okay. My sense of dread and panic was palpable and it was prescient.

I went to the gym for the first time in weeks last night and it was a revelation. I certainly felt like I was out of shape when I was running on the treadmill — like jogging through gelatin. But it felt good to lift heavy weights and challenge my body to do something productive, rather than just lying there, monitoring symptoms and fearing the worst.

I need to reclaim my body as beautiful, strong, physically capable and valuable. I have spent too long hating it for what it isn’t doing for me. If the journey toward parenthood is going to be a long one, I need to transform my relationship with my body into a functional partnership. We’ve been in conflict for too long and it’s cramping my style.

One Response to “Embodied healing”

  1. Hazel Ramona July 26, 2011 at 7:49 am #

    You are amazing.
    This post totally sounds like the woman I have gotten to know and admire as a friend.
    x o

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