My weekend can be captured on this diagram:
On Friday night, I did something quite silly (in hindsight) involving a book and bathtub–the next day, I had an ache in my upper back when I woke up. It was something easy to ignore at first, until walking home from breakfast: I was crossing the middle road at a T-junction when my entire back seemed to seize and I was immobilised by pain. “Coincidentally,” the pain was centered where my shoulders crossed my spine. There was no movement I could make that didn’t send sharp pain up/down my spine, neck and shoulders. It was especially bad when putting weight on my right heel, the kind of pain that brought to mind the thought “this feels like the pain before paralysis”. It was bad.
The normally-five-minute walk home took eternity, with me shuffling through the tiniest steps, with weight on my left leg. I could manage to speed up when walking near masses of tall plants–could even see them lending and looping their energy through me to help with the pain. (I love those plants!) I was bereft when I was further away from them, but I did get home in the end, where with help, I did everything I could to think of to do on my own–warm compresses with essential oils picked by intuition–lavender for pain management, pine and petitgrain. (They turned out to be the perfect choices, if you look them up!) With the EO, things got better to the point I could move a bit more and with less pain and less shock on every move I made. Next, I gravitated to those “heating” herbal Chinese oils, applying them to the muscles with help), then put myself into a meditative state. Again, I got better, enough for me to climb the stairs, where I went again into meditation in my preferred space, asked questions about what was going on, got a few answers, and generally calmed and waited till a neighbourhood chiropractor would open for his Saturday afternoon shift.
Quite a bundle of synchronicities and intuitive hits came with this experience; in a way, the pain made my world shrink so that I focused only on images/instructions on how to help myself. There was no space for suffering or self-pity or anxiety, just “what is this about? what can I learn? what do I do?” When there was nothing to do but rest, I had “background music” in my head that was hilarious when I paid attention to it. This was the song that had been playing the entire morning:
Was I really bent? Was I falling apart? Was I being put back together? I had met up with a new friend on Friday evening, who had even put it to me I was in the process of integration, something my Thursday night dream had been pointing towards. Well, my Friday night dream (before waking up with the backache) had been even more telling: I was waiting with my mother in a banquet hall for my guests to arrive at an “un-marriage party”. (The name was from the dream.) One wall was mirrored, and I checked myself out, not recognising at all the sight of myself in a detailed and slinky white and silver gown–something I wouldn’t dare to wear in real life–it was “too beautiful” and required more body-confidence that I consciously possess. I was shocked and awed by my own appearance, then remembered that my mother was with me and wouldn’t approve of the dress–the plunging peekaboo neckline was taboo, not only with her but with some of my friends, even though I looked fabulous and my cleavage was behind (see-through) silk . So (sadly), I hid myself and the dress beneath a hideous red furry mantle that I drew around my neck and shoulders. It was oversized, big, and crude compared to the fine cut and detailing of the gown beneath–a cover-up that makes me want to cry at the recollection. It was more like a short cape, covering the entirety of my body to my knees, but gathered around my neck.) Worrying about what others think of me was making me hide–it’s been one of the main stories of my life. In the dream, I told myself I would take it off “later”, something I also do a lot of in real life.
Where the red mantle was tightest around me in the dream was also the center of my excruciating pain yesterday. In symbolism/dreamspeak, red is energy, sometimes warmth or anger, or preoccupation with base anxieties (like survival and physical safety/nourishment). The red cover-up in the dream was oversized, clashing, and fuzzy with long red tufts of fur, “animal” (I think confirming the survival “base” aspect of it), and the raggedy fuzz hints at anxieties and scattered energy. Why was I hiding? I was afraid of judgment and jealousy, and hiding the white and silver underneath–colours of purity and spiritual pursuit. Silly but true. But I was also given to know, during my meditive Q&A, that this was a karmic issue coming up for resolution. Better out than in, eh?
With this knowledge, I went to the chiropractor, who was possibly the best one any person could ask for–kind, effective, quick and very modest–a Bodhisattva in disguise, I’m convinced. (Contact me if you want his details. He’s in eastern Singapore.) My wait wasn’t long, and then it was to face my first alignment work in my life–he “cracked” my spine twice and neck once. It was a lot of trust to put in another’s hands, and while I had a bit of fleeting anxiety, I had no fear, and afterward was completely amazed at how much mobility he’d restored, how much the pain was reduced. To be frank, with my reduced physical senses yesterday due to pain… I missed some things he’d said while treating me, but that my father (my ride, who’d been in the office with me) conveyed to me later: I truly had been “bent”; the chiropractor had mentioned one of my legs was longer than the other. At home, studying myself in the mirror after the treatment, I was amazed at the difference in posture in my neck and shoulders–they were straighter, level, and free of the long-term hunch at the base of my neck I’d remembered since forever.
I wanted to measure my height again (still do) because I’m convinced my head has never been this straight up–I’m literally holding it higher now. However, my muscles are still tender. I suspect some of them may even be in new alignments/positions they’ve never been in and it’s something I have to get used to. (My Q&A meditation said this would resolve in 2 days… we’ll see. I’m definitely to take it easy.)
Anyway, Matchbox 20 could stop playing in my head after that. Messages from three cards drawn conveyed “freedom”, “leave past behind” and “relax”. Very pertinent… I’m trying to follow. I’m also interested to see how life may change after this–I have nothing but the conviction this process to become “unbent” was necessary (despite the silly bathtub thing I did) because it unexpectedly resolved an even older posture issue I’d didn’t even think was fixable.