After my first Thai Massage a few weeks ago, I had this euphoric feeling that I didn’t want to ever end. This time, it’s been a little bit different. I don’t know that I would say I feel “euphoric,” but rather I feel more “complete.”
Last night I slept for a straight 6 hours and 45 minutes. I didn’t even stir when my husband got up to leave for work. I woke up feeling rested and calm. No nightmares. No anxiety.
Today, I went to my typical restorative yoga class (taught by my therapist), followed by a vinyasa class led by the teacher who did my massage. I love restorative yoga, and I use it to process through trauma memories, as well as to relax my mind and body from the constant anxiety. Today was probably the very first time I did not have any trauma memories or sensations arise. My mind felt clear and I was able to truly relax in every pose. Typically I can relax in a couple of them, but I don’t think I’ve ever been able to get to that place of relaxation for all of the poses. Today, I felt free from the anxiety and trauma.
The Vinyasa class was similar to the one we did on Friday. It was challenging. I have an old injury in my left knee, which makes some things more difficult. Today was the very first time that I was able to go from a 3 legged down dog with my left leg lifted to a Warrior pose, left leg in front, without a huge struggle. I normally can only get my left foot about 2/3 of the way to my hands. Then there are these awkward adjustments that I have to make or I just drop to my right knee and come up through a lunge. Today was different though. My left foot made it almost all the way to where I needed it to go! Whatever happened to my left hip in Thai Massage yesterday was incredible! I’ve been trying to get my left leg to go further forward for almost a year and never really made any progress. However, today I effortlessly got my foot almost to where I wanted it to be!
In vinyasa today, we did end up getting into frog pose. I enjoy the stretch of this pose, but not the actual pose. I’ve had a super invasive assist in prone frog before, so I typically take it on my back with my feet against the wall. As soon as I got into it, I could feel the room starting to shift. I am not going to have a flashback today! I counted my breath and the slats on the ceiling. I went through my five senses. I worked hard! I stayed present, despite the overwhelming fear of trauma flashbacks and sensations radiating through my body. When I did this pose in teacher training on Friday, I did not stay present; I found myself in a flashback before I could prevent it. Today, I prevented it 😊 And shortly after, class came to an end. The teacher spoke about how we are never alone; we always have support. For a moment, I was taken back to yesterday’s Thai Massage when I was so afraid of being alone. I smiled, pushed the tears down, and felt gratitude for all of the support that I have. Today, I am not alone.
One of the things that stands out to me today is how “crisp” everything in the world seems. The colors, sounds, smells…. it’s like my five senses have been dulled prior to today. I spent about an hour just sitting outside, listening to the leaves rustle in the breeze and the birds chirp, and watching the beauty that surrounded me. In that moment, I found myself celebrating life: my own, yes, but also the life of everything around me. This is what normal feels like.
I am filled with so much gratitude today. My whole body is calm. I feel “whole” or “complete.” I feel at peace with my past and my present. I am safe. And, I finally feel like my younger self is safe… a feeling I have spent most of my life searching for. Part of me wonders how long this feeling will last, but, for the most part, I am working on just savoring where I am in this moment: free