On November 13, 2015 I celebrated 20 years of living with Cervical Dystonia. Yes, I said ‘celebrate’.
Since then I have had a full range of emotions associated with my CD. Along this everlasting journey I have always been mindful as to what the Universe is asking my Soul to remember about who I seek to become.
Long before I developed CD, I recall feeling as though my body and soul were separate – meaning that I did not feel as though ‘I lived in my body”. I was aware of my daily functioning (breathing, eating, etc.) however my purpose for ‘being’ was wrapped up in the daily grind of what I thought I wanted out of life (career, family, etc.). I walked around feeling invisible physically, hoping no one would see me, or just notice me when I chose to be emotionally or mentally present. It was as if I was blindly moving through the motion of life with no connection to a physical or spiritual reality.
I was in limbo between the Light of God releasing me from His spirit to physical incarnation that would offer me the majesty of his greatness. It is only through physical being that the Soul is able to fully manifest our desires and intentions.
On that November day
I crashed my car into other vehicles that were coming at me as they were confusingly turned about on a wet paved road in a construction zone. As I was approaching the speed limit there was nowhere for me to move to get out of harm’s way. I felt as though my car was moving in slow motion as I slammed on the brakes, just then an angelic vision of my father appeared and all I could hear was his voice saying “daughter, your life will never be the same”. I walked away from the scene unharmed, yet still dazed by my father’s image.
Within days of that accident my head began to turn to the right violently and uncontrollably. My neck muscles were in severe spasm, it felt as though I had a bag of puppies jumping around in a thousand directions. I felt possessed as if some outer force gained entry into my being coercing my body to twist and turn and move in ways that were not humanly comfortable.
As the months progressed I found that the twisting of my head and neck made it impossible for me to trust eating solid food in fear of swallowing difficulties. I often had to lie on the floor to eat because it was the only way I could attempt to get my neck and body straight. With the pulling it was challenging to balance myself, walking into walls and falling off of sidewalk became the norm – I felt like a drunken sailor, only now the spirit consumed was my own.
Dressing myself, showering, even brushing my teeth was a struggle when I couldn’t hold my head still long enough to make the right mechanical movement to do these simple tasks. My neck and shoulders muscles were at war with each other, the constant moving and twisting of my upper body was endless and painful. I would twist myself right out of a chair while sitting – maybe not much a problem unless that seat was the toilet.
I soon thought of myself as physically hideous, I began to isolate and withdraw due to the shame and embarrassment of the involuntary movement.
I now wanted out of my body!!
It was on that day, November 13, 1995 I was offered a gift from God to reconnect – to connect my spirit with my body and to fully incarnate into Being – I was being offered the ‘gift’ of learning to become Whole.
This leads me to the 20 things that I am most thankful:
- CD has taught me the ‘art of mindfulness’ in a chaotic world.
- CD has shown that by bringing my awareness to my breath and focusing on the Now it has helped to ease my emotions allowing me to relax my body and neck muscles.
- CD has encouraged me to focus on my health by eating a proper diet, exercising to relax my body/neck muscles and resting when necessary.
- Although attending to my health is a time-consuming process, I am thankful as I look and feel decades younger.
- I realize that I do not have to be superwoman, eliminating the anxiety and an unrealistic sense of self-worth.
- I have learned who my true friends are – I love them even more when they say “I don’t see your dystonia” even though I may be a twisted mess.
- I am thankful for my new friends with CD who live all over the globe – they truly ‘get’ what I am going through.
- CD has shown me and taught me the art of compassion which led to my 1st
- CD has taught me how to utilize my time more wisely. I remember the early days of dystonia when I had to choose between going to the store to buy groceries or preparing a meal as my body did not have the stamina to endure two simple tasks in one day.
- I am thankful when I am able to sit still and ‘be still’ if only for a moment.
- I am thankful I feel that I do not have to conform to society or what the media is projecting to feel good about myself. I am able to create my own values and beliefs. All I want from life is stillness.
- I am grateful that CD has led to a career path of helping others.
- CD has shown me how not to get hung up on the small issues of life and to focus on the larger picture.
- CD has led me to a deeper understanding of my spirituality and purpose for Being.
- CD has given me a greater appreciation for nature by being able to sit back and truly reflect upon how we are all part of Nature and all part of God’s plan.
- CD has shown me how truly strong I am emotionally. If I am able to endure the physical harshness of a movement disorder and still want to continue to be a vibrant, full of life individual, I know I can survive anything that ‘life’ throws my way.
- As a single person, I am thankful that I have learned to be resourceful to financially support myself when working a 9-5 job isn’t always possible.
- I have learned that true healing comes from within and that it is my responsibility to heal and nourish my own body. Doctors may aid in my recovery, however true healing is a result of taking responsibility for my own being, guiding my emotions and taking a pro-active approach to recovery by doing the research and the necessary work needed to fully heal.
- Having CD has allowed me to access my deeper feelings which has made me a better writer and communicator.
- I am thankful that CD has shown me that by living in ‘this’ moment is where I am able to express all of my love for self and the beauty of life that surrounds me. I just have to open my heart and trust God that ALL of life’s circumstances serves as a ‘gift’.
Life blesses my every day when I open my heart to the endless stream of love pouring in from the Heavens.
Please reach out to me by email at LMFuriate@gmail.com to further discuss.