Women! Land in Your Body

DISCLOSURE: This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure for more info. 

If what has been happening to me over the last four or five years can be considered an awakening, I guess that’s when it started – I mean really started – four or five years ago. More likely it’s been happening my whole life, but I can’t say I’ve been more awake and aware of the world in any time in my life before now.

 As a young woman, I didn’t plan or care much for the future. I worked restaurant and bar jobs that gave me cash in my pocket instantly. I spent it on food, decent clothes, and having fun with my friends. When I think about the things that were important to me, I look back and see that I was asleep.

MEMORIES

 I see memories of nights out at the bar, where most of the patrons got high on ecstasy. Thus, they did not want to drink anything except water or the occasional juice. And so the bar managers would disable the cold taps in the (sometimes co-ed) bathrooms so they could sell more bottles of water.

Photo by Michael Discenza on Unsplash

Those bathrooms… a party in themselves. Men, women, men dressed as women and vice versa, milling about and waiting for their friends… a fairly overweight but beautiful opera signer demonstrating to us her voice. We could hear her beautifully over the electronic music booming through the walls and down the hall to the main part of the club.

 “Sniff-sniff girls!” shouts a drag queen perched on the sink. 

 So when did the real awakening begin? 

Not long after, I suppose.

THE BEGINNING?

Ill health started in 2003 and started subtly and slowly, and another hit of it came in 2006 and 2007. But I’d say it would have to be what I call my major crash in 2014.

I’d begun some new protocols to get better and I thought it would be a quick fix, so after I began to feel better, I tried to go on with life like I had been. I wasn’t partying anymore, except with the occasional night out, but I tried to lead the lifestyle I’d been leading, the type most of us busy little Earthling bees do – busy. 

And it didn’t work.

I suffered at my job, I felt pain like I never had before, it was beginning to be hard to walk even 20 or 30 meters. I then wondered if a wheelchair was my next step before death. 

Photo by Michael Discenza on Unsplash

Some days, I’d lie in bed and wonder, “If I died here, would my roommate find me right away? Would she look for me or think to open my door when she couldn’t find me? I’d hate for her to find me dead in my bed. It’s not a thing I’d like one of my best friends to see.”

THE AWAKENING

It would have to be in the months that followed. 

My mother came to town, we moved in together, and she took care of me. At least she was my mother, and a nurse too, so she was used to taking care of sick people and seeing them die. 

This was a better situation, I thought, more right. After all, we were together when I came into this world; it seemed right that we’d be together at the end. 

And we were when she passed away two years later.

What caught my attention in those days? What shifted me from being a person who was wrapped up in life, in work, in competition, a mentality of lack (not saying I’m perfect today), and programmed to push and go and do more?

EVERY WOMAN’S BOOK

Women's Bodies Women's Wisdom Book

I don’t know how the book caught my attention but I’d had the book electronically for a while. Once I’d realized how impactful this book was on me, I decided to buy the paperback. It was Women’s, Bodies Women’s Wisdom by Christiane Northrup, MD (the above is an affiliate link).

I was interested in it because one of my most prominent symptoms was menstrual pain. The type of pain I felt during each period was excruciating! I’d felt overwhelming, intense pain only once before, post abdominal surgery. This pain was second in line and I’d been getting it for three days a month, every month for seven years up to that point in 2014 (ask me how I cleared these symptoms!). 

I read various sections of the book, chapters on the uterus and uterine fibroids, the ovaries, the vagina, and the clitoral system – how complex just that little system is! Where was a book like this in elementary and junior high school sex education? 

What I liked a lot about what Dr. Northrup describes is not simply what the bodily system is and the ailments that a woman might experience in it, but also the personal stories of patients and how they recovered. What is unique about the recovery stories is that there is an emotional connection to most, if not all of them. This caught my attention, so I decided to read the book’s introduction, a part I’d skipped before.

THE BODY & EMOTIONS

In the intro, I found even more profound stories about how women cured or significantly sped up the healing of their ovarian cysts, uterine fibroids, and breast cancer by facing painful memories and emotions from the past (of course, they continued medical therapy in conjunction with this). For some women, that meant confronting the reality of sexual or emotional abuse that they’d experienced as children or young women.

I began bookmarking places in the book that described exercises that a patient did that led to her health and added a little note that said, “Try it!” So, I tried some of them.

For example, one exercise is done by a woman whose ALS symptoms decreased by speaking to herself in the mirror, or doing “mirror work.” She chose one part of her body every day and spoke loving words to it. She did this every day for 15 minutes. In addition to this, she journaled about it and how she felt during the process. Gradually, she got stronger and her symptoms dramatically improved. 

I decided I’d try this. The first body part I chose was my nose due to the cyst on it that just wouldn’t go away no matter what I did. 

Photo by Septian simon on Unsplash

I stood in front of the mirror and spoke to my nose. I said things like, “I love you,” You’re beautiful,” and “I appreciate you.” At that time, standing for 15 minutes was too hard, so I started with five. 

After about 10 days, my cyst began to shrink! I didn’t disappear altogether but it noticeably changed, so I decided to try it out on other parts of my body while lying in bed.

I spoke to my gut, I spoke to my hands, my reproductive organs (sometimes collectively, sometimes separately), and other parts of my body and face. 

EVENTUALLY, AN INTERESTING THING STARTED TO HAPPEN…

I was catching my reflection in inconspicuous objects. 

One was a silver camping mug that I was drinking from. Another, the bathroom sink faucet, and another the glass in front of the speedometer of my car.

Was I noticing myself more? For sure I was putting more conscious attention on myself lately, but what was the significance of catching my reflection where I’d never noticed it before?

This time spent in my bedroom, speaking to my body and taking time with it was really about slowing down and reconnection with my physical (and spiritual) self. 

Those words slowing down and reconnecting are used so much nowadays because there is a need for doing so. However, until that time, until my next step was either death or a wheelchair, I didn’t understand what they meant. 

I took a very close step towards death for life to get my attention and pay attention and land in my body.


RESOURCES

Women's Bodies Women's Wisdom Book

Women’s, Bodies Women’s Wisdom by Christiane Northrup, MD (affiliate link to AbeBooks)

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