Here’s what I’m learning at physical therapy: If you don’t tell the therapist where it hurts, she can’t do what needs to be done to help you heal.
When another patient at PT yesterday said, “Um, that muscle isn’t happy,” I realized how reticent most of us are to say, “Ouch! That hurts!” I’m getting better at it. A few of my lines from yesterday’s dry needling session… “Ouch! That hurts.” “Ugh! That felt like a lightning bolt traveling down my leg.” (That line was delivered with a firm kick that nearly caught my therapist in the jaw. Oops.) “Okay. That feels like a hot rod being run through my leg!” And then, of course, there’s the sharp intake of breath and the low moan. Those are particularly effective when delivered in quick succession. 🙂
So much of our culture is about avoiding pain, or masking it–with achievement, consumption, entertainment, addiction, sleep. Facebook. We work so hard at avoiding pain….all the while, it’s naming our pain and dealing with it that, as my physical therapist says, “promotes healing.”
So, weird as it sounds, today I am grateful for pain. Pain shows us where healing needs to happen….and then works hard to put itself out of business.