"Show me where on the diagram; describe the pain and when you feel it."
"To tell you the truth it's been going on for a while, it's acute today. But I've been feeling crooked for a couple of months. I think I've even had you work my left side the last couple."
He had me sit and started poking around the area of pain. He hit a trigger spot.
"What do you suppose that is?"
"It's got to be my Mom. It just gets harder and harder."
He asked question after question while he countered with his thumbs the tension build-up at a line of spots just under my shoulder blade, each tightness triggering tears and deeper sharing of indelible words, an image of the 7 year old version of myself still resenting old hurt. Through imagining he had me love and support my angry little girl and feel compassion for a mother I see trapped in a coccoon. He revealed to me the old tapes that keep me from playing the mature adult I mean to play. He helped me unstick my painful shoulder, AND my interactions with my mother. I wondered if the stuckness had anything to do with a dry spell in my writing.
"Stuck"for me is when I stop making progress in an area I am trying to change. Being stuck in one area of our lives can set us up to be stuck in other areas. Plus, most of the things that make us stuck are emotionally charged, often unresolved things from the past. Our unconcious is so busy working to fortify the effects of the past it hardly has time to work on the present. If we are aware, we can even pinpoint its physical sign, hyperventilating, anxiety, sadness, etc. If we are smart, we'll get some help to break up the jam. That's when I first went to see Tom--my stuckness expert and psychologist.
It seems when I experience one lesson, it's usually followed close by a couple more of the same theme. As a matter of fact, one of our friends expressed her stuckness via email too recently to be coincidence. She had been trying to work on some long-term health issues. In the course of the written exchange, she mentioned that she hadn't slept for years. She was working on it. I applauded her insight. I supported her delaying more big life changes until she gets unstuck from her sleeplessness. It's difficult to find clarity about just about everything when you're Z-deprived.
Fast forward to Memorial Day weekend and a reunion of women working on creating the lives they want. Z is a lifelong learner in her 40s, very successful in her career. Her career is not her passion. She's searching for that. Her story includes a long-standing resentment toward her family, struggle to let go of hard feelings and an unexplainable angst. D works hard on finding her mission (she's zeroing in on her talents and passions), but struggles to breathe most of the time due to a tightness in her chest and tears just beind her eyes. I wondered out loud if it was possible they needed to unstick themselves before their next big burst of progress. I'm confident each will find a way to unlock their stuckness . . . in their own time.