Friday, October 3, 2008


My daughter found a magazine ad that starts:

Greetings from Menopauseland!
What a wild ride so far! Smooth, beautifully paved stretches of road followed by some nasty bumps and potholes, and back to smooth all over again....

That ad came to mind yesterday when I realized I was again on a stretch of road with nasty bumps and potholes. I appreciate the smooth stretches, although they never last long enough. It takes me a week or so to realize I'm back in pothole territory - sleeplessness and night sweats for more than a few nights in a row indicate the terrain has changed.

I had a reprieve on smooth road before and during my trip south. A break in the routine always helps, and travelling to a different place for a week is the best remedy. Then I got home and needed a few days to get back into the routine here. Consciously, I felt good about the trip; subconsciously, I now know I have been working some things out. I was home for a short time when the sleeplessness, night sweats, and hot flashes started again. I kept hoping it was just a blip, but it's been almost two weeks.

Being on this stretch of road came to light yesterday during my appointment for massage therapy. We always start my monthly appointment by talking about what's been going on for me and how my body is doing. Yesterday I shared stories about my trip, time with family, and my interview.

The woman I see for massage therapy is amazing. She has extensive training in a variety of areas and a sense about the connection between people's bodies and their lives. She has known me for almost ten years and is always right on about what is going on with my body.

We talked yesterday about my journey to where I lived as a child and how I am trying to help my mom with her transition. We talked about how the changes we make in ourselves affect the people around us and the energy it takes to be a channel for change. She wondered out loud if my body is ridding itself of "old stuff" with the heat it's emitting. I agreed. I reminded myself that this is a process that will take a long time, even though I have been here many times before and think I am ready to move on.

We talked about fear, how humans still feel fear even though it's often not needed for survival, and how we can overcome the fear by acknowledging it's there and going forward anyway. I thought about how unsure of myself I was during the interview, and then I gave myself credit for doing it anyway. I will never know what's possible if I don't give myself a chance to find out.

I talked about a place in me that I can't get to, that feels like it holds things I need to know. Years ago a counselor likened therapy to peeling an onion, one layer at a time. I get flashes of self-knowledge, and I pay attention because each is a piece of the puzzle. Massage therapy helps me body process the changes I'm going through and makes me aware of the connections between how my body feels and what I know. The combination helps me "be" who I am.

Massage yesterday focused on my abdomen, hips, and legs. The abdominal area "holds" family, security, beginnings. My right hip was a bit off, which was making my neck hurt. The muscles in my legs have been tight the last few months, and they loosen up more easily with each treatment; my legs ground me and help me move forward. I felt better afterward - I always do.

Yesterday afternoon I was the most relaxed I've been in two weeks. I spent time at my daughter's house while my car was at the garage for a new oil pan. I walked two miles and kept moving throughout the afternoon. I was able to get two projects finished.

While my body was busy I was able to think more clearly about Wednesday's interview. Later I revisited the job description that had me so excited about the position. The questions I was asked focused on just one aspect of the job, while the ad lists meeting with established groups of stakeholders around the state and working with schools to develop a protocol for identifying students who would benefit from available services. I took a deep breath. Last night I emailed the woman I met with to thank her for the opportunity to interview for the job and acknowledged that it will be an exciting 18 months for the person who gets the job. When I told my son, he said it sounds as if I'd like to have the job. I think he's right.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The mind body connection is amazing. Even the things you push down or aren't even aware of get "worked out" whether you want them to or not.

Between massage therapy and yoga, I am more aware of myself than I have ever been.