Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Operating Table to Dancing on the Table!
I have had rheumatoid arthritis for 33 years and have had 9 surgeries plus a "heart attack" which was, I'm sure, triggered by stress. The angiogram revealed that my arteries were clear. The cardiologist told me that my results were "non-specific."
One of the things I notice as I continue to practise these techniques is that despite stuff going on, and there is STUFF, my health is getting better.
Imagine, you're on the gurney waiting to be wheeled in to the operating room for fore-foot reconstructive surgery and the surgeon tells you, "Your Atlantoaxial Instability is much worse. Without surgery, you could be blind, have a stroke or die. You need to get this looked after!"
Of course, that created a bit of panic. I immediately began to use a technique to balance my nervous system. Surgery is stressful enough and I wanted every advantage to ensure a successful outcome.
The anaesthetist asked what I was doing, as he noticed a change in me. I give him credit for being curious enough to ask and to talk about what I was doing with his resident.
I mentioned that I wanted an advantage when I went into surgery. Putting myself into a coherent state by doing techniques that improve my heart rate variability would definitely give me one.
In fairness to the surgeon, I can only assume that his thinking was that my surgery would be made more difficult because of this new development.
Life has a way of throwing stuff at us - job loss, illness, breakdowns, etc. I've learned that the more I can balance my nervous system, the better I feel emotionally, mentally and physically.
I've pretty much tried everything from A to Y in my attempts to improve my health. (Didn't do Zen.) I could get a treatment and walk out the door and turn around and go right back in for more.
Improving the way I handle stress has changed my life like nothing else has. I realised that wherever I went, there I was. In other words, those nagging, looping, worry thoughts would quickly come back and with them, my "internal pharmacy" would get to work - after all, it's programmed to deal with stress. And, that worrying was screaming, "STRESS....prepare for attack!"
My typical pattern would be: worry, worry, worry, frustration, more frustration and then anger.I didn't sleep well either, as a result of all this stress. That didn't help.
The techniques increase resilience. When things happen, you are better positioned to handle them and at the least, prevent further damage caused by the stress process.
What a difference this has made for me. I almost feel as if I could get up on the table and dance!
What is a good way to start your own change of heart?
"A" is for appreciation. Activate a deep sense of gratitude for the people, places and things in your life.
Image courtesy of Gabriella Fabbri.