Pain Relief: Soothing the Nervous System

Yesterday was a really nice day, until what I call ‘The Claw of Pain’ gripped my back and my head. My entire upper back, neck and head spasmed, seized, and stayed there. I see the pain as a black claw gripping my muscles into frozen hardened pain, even breathing is painful, sneezing nearly impossible. I barely slept, and what sleep I did get was fitful and painful. My arms started to go numb and my fingers were tingly. All  my joints were tender and painful, I kept feeling painful electric tingling down my legs and arms, and my belly was swollen. I suppose blood can’t flow if all the muscles in the back/neck are constricted, all my nerves were flaring up in alarm. I don’t know why. 

The claw held me in its grip the whole night, by mid-morning I was completely drained, I stayed home today although I had things to do and meetings to go to. By noon, I was reading some blogs and got to what saved my day, a moon salutation, a gentle yoga sequence designed to calm the body and nervous system (moon salutation A, moon salutation B)

I tried both of them about 10 times, taking it very slowly and easily (about 20 minutes overall). The first few were very difficult, and painful, but the gentle controlled breathing coordinated with opening and closing of the back soon soothed my jagged nerves. A calm wave of relaxing heat started circling my body.  After that I relaxed my back over a yoga block, just simple passive stretches. By the end I almost cried with relief, the claw retreated, as usual I didn’t realise how bad the pain was until it retreated.

Then I ate, and was exhausted, fell into a deep healing sleep. Some stiffness came back, but at my usual level, not ‘the claw’. To think that a few months ago, ‘the claw’ was just my usual way of being, how did I let it get to this? I don’t know what this pain is, doctors just send me away, and I ignore my body and push it although it hurts.

Things are looking up, I think this week I’ll take it easy with the yoga and limit myself to the moon salutations. The deep controlled breathing really really really calms the nervous system. The movement helps the lungs to expand in order to be able to breathe. I can’t explain it, I just felt it today, it was beautiful. I’m sharing since it maybe helps others out there who suffer pain like this.

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