Apr 17, 2012

Breaking down my walls

April 17, 2012

I have Enya playing loud and I'm writing out into the universe, not knowing who hears, but feeling the need to write and take my mind off things.

We are weaning Tyler off of his binky. He has chewed through all of his and I am unwilling to replace them, as it is time to allow him to grow up and become a big boy.

A binky... you wouldn't think such a small thing could bring so much comfort and yet it has thrown off his entire routine and sleep cycles. As I sit and listen to him cry, I cry myself. I know that this skill he is learning to soothe himself is important and no one but he can do it. But as a Mom I want to do something more.

It is hard to allow our children to struggle and grow up. I am not good at it and I am only not even 2 years into it.

I've had a lot of growing up to do lately. For 10 years or so now I have struggled with headaches. They at first were something new and not worry some. After years of struggling emotionally and physically it began to take over my life. Soon I lost my identity in many ways.

If you could imagine I've been to a ton of doctors. Before Ryan and I were married they were testing me for a tumor or cancer because they found something in my neck. I had to wait every 6 months to make sure I was free from anything major. I've been in and out of dentist/jaw doctors, physical therapist and had testing done up the wazoo. Each doctor seemed to take responsibility for the headaches, leaving me a victim and powerless. It was nice at first to not take responsibility for them and leave them to a doctor to fix. But after a while I had a list of "problems" medically and I felt out of control, unable to ever take them away myself. It seems like the more doctors I went to, the more I was restricted from my own life. After a while I became out of touch with what I loved because I was told to stay away from this or that. Soon, out of fear I built lots of walls around myself, pushing away, and becoming "untouchable".

I found a new doctor that was recommended. I was hesitant as another doctor would just tell me one more thing I should do. Upon meeting this Dr. Eli he was different. He didn't own me. He didn't believe me. In some ways he laughed at me and thought I was ridiculous. He listened and then basically discredited everything I said. Surprisingly, it felt good. I loved that another doctor didn't take control of me, leaving me out of control of my life. That was the first time I had felt like I could start taking back control of me. To hear from a doctor that the doctors I’ve seen have been wrong or had only part of the story felt fresh, new, and empowering.

He has started to help me take down those walls I have built, making me question myself from the inside out. He is also helping me physically to figure out what is going on (Basically my tongue is trusting and jaw is clenching, causing a ton of tension in my jaw/head/neck, causing headaches. These problems are exacerbated with stress). Any speech therapists out there could really explain to you what is going on physically with me. Any chronic pain psychologist out there could explain to you what is going on with me internally.

But wow, doing that has been SO hard. I have been out of touch with me. I've been concentrating on the walls I been building- preventing me from being aware of the things I should be. I never realized that becoming self-aware could be so challenging, frustrating, embarrassing, awe inspiring, and clarity given.

There are answers to my headaches, but they are simple in the medical world, but hard to accomplish in my inner world. I am re-training habits, learning which thoughts to correct and which to nurture, physically training muscles (mouth/jaw) to relax into neutral positions. It seems like every thought or action I pursue I have to take two steps back to take one step forward.

But, as hard as my internal struggle has been it will be the most rewarding, self-completing, long lasting work I can do for myself. It will be character building and develop me into the girl that I dream of. Not only physically will I not struggle like I do, but internally the storm will not rage and there will be peace.

Tyler is playing in his crib. We gave him two stuffed animals for him to cuddle with to replace his binky. He is awake, but he is quite. As I watch him in the video monitor I can see him lay down, get up and look for his binky, play with his animals, rub his blankets, roll from one side, to the next, but he stays quite.

He is trying. We really talked up him giving up his binky’s and had him throw them away. He even went down stairs a second time to search in the trash can for them before bed time. He saw they were gone and said “all gone”. We know that he understands. He is trying so hard to calm himself and re-train his little mind that life is okay and that he can fall asleep.

I too am trying. I am growing up and learning to calm myself by re-learning, breaking down walls, and building confidence in myself that I am okay and that my life doesn’t have to be filled with headaches.

I am so proud of my little boy. He is growing up and as hard as it may be for him and me, I want him to be independent, responsible, and okay. I know that as I keep trying and give myself time, soon the effects of chronic pain will subside from my mind and I will be okay and calm.

May my storm soon find rest.


Hillary said...

Sounds like you are learning so much and that is the goal of this life. Way to go! I am proud of you! :)

Redefined Possibilities said...

Glad you have made this discovery. Good luck in retraining your tongue and jaw. It is hard work - but you can do it!