Touch

I’m currently in physical therapy.  An old back injury has reared its ugly head, and I am seeking help.  And slowly, my back is healing.  But something else is happening…I am re-discovering the healing power of touch.

 

I miss it, I realize.  The sensation of touch.  The feel of another’s hands on my skin.  I miss it all the time; but I wasn’t aware of how much, or how valuable it truly is.  I’m not talking about romantic or sexual touch, though that can be healing as well.  Just simple, direct, healing touch.

 

The massaging of my abdomen (to break up the underlying scar tissue).  The hands on my lower thighs while tractioning my spine.  The fingers applying pressure to my hamstrings to release the tension.  The moments when my legs are cradled by someone else’s arm with the statement of “I’ve got you, you can let go.”  Gentle movements; soft-spoken encouragement.  For no other purpose than to heal my body.  

 

The result is healing not only my back, but also my spirit.  By being cared for.  Feeling connected; supported.  Knowing that for 40 minutes twice a week, the sole focus is to heal and help only me.  Retraining connections long broken.  Restoring my faith in my own body.

 

I can heal; I will be whole.  In so many more ways than just one.

Absent

I have been absent.

From the page.  From myself.  From my need to express, unload, release, and expound.  It is difficult, raising a child with behavior issues.  I know, those of you who can relate, already know this.  I also know it is helpful to get the words and feelings and fears OUT of my head and heart.  And yet, I have not.

I have been absent.

My body and brain are starting to revolt.  Lack of expression (i.e. repressing the frustrating moments) is making me irritable more often.  Lack of exercise (repressing the stress and not releasing it physically) is making my body weak and toxic.  I know this.  But at the end of long, exhausting days, I find I just want to cocoon.  It is not the best choice.

I have been absent.

But not where my child is concerned.  Not where her future and schooling and medical intervention and aftercare is concerned.  I have labored over every detail, every choice, every future plan trying to make sure that we’re on the right path.  Worrying that I may make a mis-step, where she is concerned.  Being brave enough to let her fly, but always waiting to catch her when the bottom falls out.  I have NOT been absent from her.  But the strain of being on-point 24/7 for her and all that entails has been catching up with me lately.  And I am starting to realize that it’s because it’s unrealistic to be everything for her, and to her, and about her, and be everything else I’m supposed to be, simultaneously.  And doing all of that, while being absent from myself, makes me a worse version of me, and a less effective mother.

I have been absent.  I will try to be less so.