100 Days of Healing – Day 19

I hurt everywhere. My muscles, my joints, the fibers in between that I don’t know enough to name… it all hurts.

I know that the body stores trauma in connective tissue. I had body work done shortly before I started therapy. It was nearly unbearably painful, and I cried for the first few sessions. Nearly three years later (ok wow it’s been a minute) I’m thinking I need to have that done again. After processing so much trauma, I’m feeling like it’s trapped in my body and needs to be released. Even an injured finger joint that doesn’t normally hurt feels swollen and hurts. And I feel like I’ve reached max fat – I feel so puffy and tense and painful that I almost don’t recognize myself.

It’s discouraging to experience this after I’ve been working so hard, but maybe it’s necessary?

A New Reason to Practice Yoga

As I listened to Chapter 3 of Healing from Trauma: A Survivor’s Guide I noticed I was experiencing some of the trauma symptoms the narrator was describing. I was tensing up, getting a headache and tightening inward, as if to curl into a ball and protect myself. I was aware I was doing this (mindfulness practice seems to be showing some results!) and unclenched my jaw and rolled my shoulders a bit.

I’ve noticed also during yoga, which I’m practicing more regularly again, that I don’t have a lot of flexibility in my shoulders. There are positions that are really challenging for me, like making a bridge with my fingers pointed toward my feet or clasping my hands behind my back and straightening my arms. I didn’t remember that being the case previously, but a lot of times I blame weight gain for my yoga practice challenges.

Oh…wait…trauma response…tight shoulders…

I’m not sure if it’s more freeing or discouraging to realize that my lack of flexibility and range of motion is due more to trauma than my fat rolls, but it does provide a path forward, and a solution – more yoga!

Yeah, I’m Pretty Tired of the Stress Weight

I was about to say “tired of being fat” when I self – corrected. I’m not fat, so I don’t need to make that statement. I have gained a couple dozen pounds in the last year, not a single one of which benefits me. My cortisol production is ridiculous, so losing weight is challenging right now, to say the least. Plus the anxiety/depression symptom I’m most likely to exhibit is desperate need for carbs and fat.

My crazy likes to be fed, y’all.

And while I’m not particularly feeding it, I’m not starving it either. Or making it exercise enough. Or giving it a long enough break to see some recovery.

But it looks like my family is coming around, and it looks like very shortly I’ll get that break.

Run for 15 Minutes

My brother gave me Jabra Elite ear buds for Christmas to replace the ear buds that came with my phone. I had ruined them by getting caught in a couple of thunderstorms last summer, and he went above and beyond on the gift. They’re great.

They pair with an app, which I finally downloaded today. As I look at ways to mindfully improve my health, I’m going to have to put in some cardio. I haven’t done that since my car wreck. It was just too much for my brain to handle high intensity exercise.

Now, however, I’m at a point in recovery that I can start pushing myself to make some physical health gains, and I’m doing it with some limitations on what and where I can do it since I’m caring for my Grandma 4-5 days a week.

Do what you can, where you can though! So I downloaded the app, and it told me to run for 15 minutes to check my VO2. Haha, I don’t run, and I’m certainly not able to run for 15 minutes! What a joke! Do only people who are already fit own these? I don’t get a runner’s high, and I hate running.

I did it though. I stayed focused on my breathing, made reasonable goals along the way, went back to my breathing to try to keep a rhythm, and toward the end checked the time a few times.

My health level is poor.

No kidding. That’s why I’m doing this.

Less Sugar, More Pissed

I have the new phone, the new laptop is here and I’m still rigging my way around the challenges of staying with my grandma.

I unintentionally slowed my roll on mindless stress eating this week. I mean I know I cut way back on sugar and gluten, and I mostly quit snacking, but I don’t know that it was with some big diet intention.

I sit around a lot in a dark apartment, and this crisis wasn’t going to make me gain weight too, is all.

My PTSD brain likes sugar. So. Much. Sugar, carbs and fat are my drug of choice since I don’t smoke and rarely drink, and right now my brain is pissed that it’s not getting what it wants.

Y’all. I didn’t even get any food at Chick-Fil-A when I stopped by for my free bottle of water.

My brain is so pissed.

I had the idea that I could only did this when I was in a low stress time and could really delve into food and fitness changes. Once again I’m surprising myself with what I can do with mindfulness.

And a new makeup bag to fit all of my new makeup…