Monday, May 10, 2010


I woke up several times during the dark hours Sat morning feeling yucky with waves of nausea washing over me, stomach churning, salivary glands secreting, beads of sweat breaking out over my forehead and body, jaw clenching to keep myself from vomiting. Don't you hate throwing up? I do, uugh!

From the tip of my tailbone to my atlas/axis, my back felt like every vertebrae was subluxed causing discomfort from my muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissue down to the finest fibres of my body. Oddly, the only thing that didn't hurt was my head and hair. I had all the symptoms of a migraine without the head pain — weird. Since I tend to migraines this was a medical wonder and a small consolation.

I did what I usually do with migraines, I meditated on the pain and went into it. This often helps diffuse it to some degree. I tried various positions: lay on my back in a restorative yoga pose with my chest and head elevated which gives space to the abdominal organs and helps to settle them; then lay on my stomach turning my head and changing my arm positions every 20 breaths or so. The latter is my Mom's remedy for a "tummy" ache which I think has some merit from a meridian point of view as the stomach meridian runs through the front of the body, down the quads and over the top of the ankles and feet (the pressure on the front of the body and warmth is soothing). These efforts did indeed help everything to settle somewhat; enough that I could go deeper.

And what did I find? Everytime a thought or worry came into my head — wham! My stomach would turn. Even the mere inkling that my mind was veering in that general direction was enough to trigger it. When I settled my attention on neutral things, as when I focused on the breath and body position, or, better still combine this with images of a warm, golden, desert plain or a blank canvas it would level out and I'd feel a degree of warmth and calm.

Once I made the connection I tested my theory and sure enough it was so. Every thought brought that churning sensation, most especially these: OMG I'm having a heart attack (Not, or 2 of my clients and 1 friend had had one over the past few weeks too.) and OMG I'm having a stroke. (Can you smile - check, raise both arms - check, speak a sentence - check. Not.)

The nausea persisted the rest of the day and into Sunday as a low laying sour stomach feeling. Within about 48 hours, aided to no small degree by hanging like a bat from my yoga ropes, doing meridian stretches and laying on my back with balls under my skull and glutes it had gone.

Normally I hate being sick with a passion but this time it was different. I had a great weekend! I spent most Saturday sleeping (which I haven't done since... well I can't remember when) drifting in and out of dreams and occasionally rousing myself enough to munch on crackers (the ones "Mooching" Maya hadn't licked) or sip tea or ginger ale which Rod had brought up to my bedside. I'd allow no thoughts of: past, future, things to do or not do, judgements, plans or the like to cross my mind.

I stayed in my PJ's the whole day! And when I got up at 5 p.m. I dove into The Book of Negroes by Lawrence Hill which was so beautifully written and engaged me so completely that I couldn't put it down til I'd read the last word on Sunday night.

It was as if my mind had reached a point of overload; the only remedy was to give it a rest. The ideal would be to go away, live on a mountain top and just be. So that's what I did, minus going away and living on a mountain top. No phones were answered; e-mails checked or errands done. I let the busy-ness of life drop away once I'd convinced myself that surely the world and everyone in it would get along just fine without my input for 48 hours.

I let cares dissolve into meditation, unloaded my mind through dreams and when my mind had settled enough, I gave it permission to focus on words someone else had written on a page rather than be scattered by those swirling around in my head; I allowed it to become entranced by the author's finely crafted story line rather than be tossed by the gazillion random fretful, fearful, busy ones that normally bubble up in my overwrought mind.

I read without a highlighter in hand, bending any pages or making notes in the margins, which was tremendously freeing (I usually read non-fiction books and articles related to work and am constantly entering info into my brain).

I'd forgotten what a treat it is to be able to just read for the pure pleasure of it.

Late Sunday night Rod was surfing the net in search of a dining room table. He was cruising Amish furniture websites as we're looking for a dining room table to go with some stuff we already have. On one website was a picture of a church and a statement that said they kept Sunday sacred and would be back tomorrow. Not only do they take the day off, they even give their website a day of rest!

It was a synchronistic reminder for me to question how important is the s**t that goes on in my mind or the stuff that I do in the scheme of things that I can't give it a day of rest now and again.

Next time it won't be because I feel like crap, it'll just be because.

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