I feel like I should keep writing these even though they seem somewhat boring. Progress is slow, and I work hard for it in ways people don't see. But it's happening, and it feels like something I wish I'd documented more when I was more severe.
Last month I wrote about a breakthrough regarding my abdomen. The very gentle manipulation techniques my DO taught me caused immense relief and softening of my abdomen that I'd never previously experienced. It affected things on a pretty deep level. I was passing undigested food, had lost all sense of appetite, and had to constantly lay down because my core couldn't sustain holding me upright.
Well now I'm reporting where that's at 5 weeks later.
Significantly improved appetite
The passing undigested food only lasted a day or two. My appetite gradually returned over the course of a couple weeks....and then it kept getting better. The past couple weeks I have been eating a large breakfast every morning, something I haven't been able to do in well over a decade. My previous norm was often waking up slightly nauseous if I even think about food. Sometimes I could force myself to eat a snack, that was it.
Now every morning I'm eating 2 eggs, 2 slices of toast, a cup of hot herbal tea, and occasionally some fruit too like a banana.
Not only that, but I'm eating more food the rest of the day than I did previously. For example, even when I eat a full dinner, I still need pretty close to a full meal as a "bedtime snack".
My body couldn't seem to handle this much food before. Now it craves it. Very similar to how I started craving exercise the second my body could handle it. It's almost like our bodies know what we need or something!
The core weakness has also disappeared. It feels about back to baseline for now.
Difficulty maintaining it
Whenever a structural shift happens, it can always shift back. This is what happens when I'm under significant stress, or work long hours. My abdomen "locks up" again, and it can take several days of efforts to release it.
I tend to need at least half an hour in the morning and half an hour in the evening to work on it every day to maintain this current state -- more than that if it's locked down. The technique requires a fair bit of physical energy to hover my hands over my abdomen without resting my elbows, and also mental focus. It's freakin' difficult. Whenever I want to give up, I remember how severe my abdominal symptoms have been and decide to press on a little longer.
The rest of the body is involved, too.
It was about a week after I wrote about my abdominal breakthrough that I realized my ribcage felt unusually tight. Like a giant hand had my ribcage enclosed in a fist that was preventing me from breathing deeply. Turns out I could breathe just as much as before, but with my abdomen releasing, my body realized it should be capable of breathing deeper. It was pissed that it couldn't.
So I began doing the same technique I was using on my abdomen, on my chest, too.
The relief has been incredible. It's also linked to emotional stuff, often resulting in crying.
My pelvis is also involved now, too. Working on either my pelvis or my ribcage now tends to result in more releases happening in my abdomen, things that didn't release with direct work.
I think this is what my DO means when he says everything is connected, and every part of the body affects every other part.
Slowly moving forward.
This treatment is boring. When people ask me how I got out of a mostly bedridden state, and I say cranial osteopathy and a lot of meditative work and lifestyle changes, their eyes glaze over and they lose interest so fast.
I get it. It's not something you can try as easily as a supplement. It's messy to navigate, it's a lot of work and it's incredibly invasive to your lifestyle and perspective of self.
But it is moving my health forward.
In the past 5 (ish) months I have started using my hiking poles less and less, after about 6 (?) years of being unable to go anywhere without them.
My crashes look like needing to lay down a lot, not temporary paralysis or being bedridden.
My body is healing. How far this will take me, I don't know, but I'm eager to find out.
Progress update 10/9/2017
Blog entry posted by Dainty, Oct 9, 2017.
About the Author
Dainty became ill as a teenager and spent 7 years mostly bedridden from ME/CFS, life-threatening MCS reactions, extreme food allergies/sensitivities, cognitive impairment, fibromyalgia, episodes of temporary paralysis and various unexplained emergencies. The past 5 years she has experienced profound improvement from various treatment approaches. With homelessness and PTSD presenting as significant obstacles, she continues to pursue healing full time and find incorrigible opportunities to enjoy life.