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Runaway is coming home!

During the stomach surgery at three-weeks-old, I ran from my body as far and fast as I could to the edges of my extremities. I hid out in the tips of my fingers and toes. I strained to live in my fingernails and toenails. I barely inhabited myself. Anything could knock me over because I was absent from my core. My core was an angry throbbing monster attacking me. My core was sheer pain. Anywhere but there was my motto.  Trouble is, after I recovered from the surgery, I wasn’t helped to understand that it was safe to re-inhabit my core. My middle hardened into a plate of steel.

Last week, in my one-on-one bodywork session with Juerg, my Middendorf Breath teacher, we worked on releasing the tension in my diaphragm, a part of my body I’ve written about in my last two posts. (“. . . a muscular membrane . . . separating the thoracic and abdominal cavities and functioning in respiration” – American Heritage Dictionary, 4th ed.) It separates the lung cavity from the digestive organs. He told me that the diaphragm attaches to the back all along the lumbar spine. No wonder I’ve had pain in my lower back over the years.

The most awesome moment was when I was lying on my back, and Juerg  pushed against the lowest points on my scapulae (shoulder blades). My diaphragm naturally expanded in breath, but simultaneously, my molars touched. I realized that I was beginning to brox or grit my teeth, an unconscious behavior I’ve engaged in for as long as I can remember. (I have grit my teeth so badly over the years that all my fillings loosened.) Now I see why I do it. I’m gritting down, trying to keep my diaphragm away from my stomach to avoid pain. Trouble is, the surgery was 58 years ago, and I don’t need to protect myself from pain anymore! But my body hasn’t known this. My diaphragm has lived in fear. No more. It’s thawing out. And the hard plate at the center of my body is softening. I’m melting. I’m coming alive.

0 Responses to Runaway is coming home!

  1. This is so intriguing, especially because, as I follow your blog, I realize that the aftermath of infant surgery may be similar to other infant trauma. I’m beginning to work on accessing my core through centering, grounding and breathing exercises. The book, “Stress & Pain Release Guide,” by Gina Giacomini is quite helpful. Not only do we hold in trauma from infancy, but other traumatic events throughout our young lives that are stored in our body. I will be interested in seeing how pain is released as you “thaw.” This work is so helpful to others through the sharing of experiences and the ways each person has worked on healing. I’m also wondering if you have any experience with Body Talk or other methods of connecting pain with emotional experience. Thank you for this blog and opening up awareness of infant trauma.

  2. This is so intriguing, especially because, as I follow your blog, I realize that the aftermath of infant surgery may be similar to other infant trauma. I’m beginning to work on accessing my core through centering, grounding and breathing exercises. The book, “Stress & Pain Release Guide,” by Gina Giacomini is quite helpful. Not only do we hold in trauma from infancy, but other traumatic events throughout our young lives that are stored in our body. I will be interested in seeing how pain is released as you “thaw.” This work is so helpful to others through the sharing of experiences and the ways each person has worked on healing. I’m also wondering if you have any experience with Body Talk or other methods of connecting pain with emotional experience. Thank you for this blog and opening up awareness of infant trauma.

  3. Yes, infant surgery is infant trauma and is like all other infant trauma. I don’t have any experience with Body Talk, but the Middendorf Breath Work has been key in my thawing. I’m allowing my natural breath and letting go of old breathing patterns that I learned in fear. I’m becoming bigger and taking up more space. Thanks for commenting and sharing the name of the book that’s helping you so much. I’m so glad that you’re beginning to “access your core.” Sounds like much growth is happening.

  4. Yes, infant surgery is infant trauma and is like all other infant trauma. I don’t have any experience with Body Talk, but the Middendorf Breath Work has been key in my thawing. I’m allowing my natural breath and letting go of old breathing patterns that I learned in fear. I’m becoming bigger and taking up more space. Thanks for commenting and sharing the name of the book that’s helping you so much. I’m so glad that you’re beginning to “access your core.” Sounds like much growth is happening.

  5. I feel safe by saying that your new releasing experience is going to be a fun one. As the middle softens we become more relaxed. Our bodies become quiet on the inside as we let go of some of our tension. Our middles are such sensitive areas, all of our emotions are born there before extending into action. Have fun with your new release. Experience being a passenger in a car and going down a steep hill. Feel and embrace those new butterflies that sometimes float in our middle section. Enjoy!

  6. I feel safe by saying that your new releasing experience is going to be a fun one. As the middle softens we become more relaxed. Our bodies become quiet on the inside as we let go of some of our tension. Our middles are such sensitive areas, all of our emotions are born there before extending into action. Have fun with your new release. Experience being a passenger in a car and going down a steep hill. Feel and embrace those new butterflies that sometimes float in our middle section. Enjoy!

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