I have thought so many times: “I can do it alone. I can do it all”. And, even though it is good that we are self-sufficient and independent. We are not almighty. It’s really not needed and it would be so boring too.
A couple of days ago, I had an experience that made me see all of that even clearer. While I was living in Panama, I was one day training at the gym, I made a wrong move and got stuck. I thought it would pass quickly, but I could barely walk for two weeks. Looking backwards, I had already had that same experience several times, always while training alone. The first time was around four years ago, while I was doing dead weight (I swore I would never do it again or I would learn to do it properly, although I haven’t yet). The second was a couple of years ago, while doing some silly moves. On both occasions, it lasted just a couple of days, but, this time, it lasted much longer…
I took some anti inflammatory meds, had massages done, applied creams…but it didn’t evolve too favorably. When my time in Panama was coming to an end, after 3 months, the intense pain had subsided, but a constant puncture remained on the top part of my right thigh, and I was only capable of walking for around 20 minutes. I returned to Spain and it seemed that things had gotten better, but, even though here the streets are plainer and it seems easier to walk, I would only walk for 20 minutes without pain.
Later on, the global pandemic with Covid-19 hit (no one saw that coming!) and after some weeks, we were allowed to go outside to do some sports. It was then that nothing had improved: the pain was too intense and after walking for 50 minutes, I was dragging my leg. I know something was wrong. I kept on resisting the urge to get external help. My fears fired up: maybe it has to do something with my Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis. I thought: probably I’m getting worse, maybe the illness is moving forward. For weeks, my fears sky rocketed. I’m going to get sick. I won’t be able to walk or do sports. A wheelchair even crossed my mind. But, out of “coincidence” (I don’t believe things just coincide) a friend recommended a trusted physiotherapist.
During the visit, he could clearly see that the problem wasn’t coming from the right side, but that it was a reflex from the left one. My psoas and pyramidal were affected, due to my ischium and calf muscles being shortened. How could have told me that? How could I have known? No matter how much I searched online, massaged the area of pain, the issue wasn’t coming from there and only expert eyes could see it clearly. We did several sessions, I did some stretches and it all began improving.
This experience, that might seem insignificant to some, is something that I see so many times in the people that I help with their recovery from Multiple Sclerosis and other autoimmune diseases. Normally, everything is blamed on the diagnosis or the illness. And, when you are in the office of a traditional doctor, any symptoms that you have will be connected to it. Doctors do it and so do we. Without thinking deeper, and acknowledging that so much of our discomfort can come from repetitive movements and ways of acting and thinking that are not really in our best interest. This is way having a holistic approach is vital.
I feel it’s really good that we commit to improving our health, to becoming our best version. And that we give it our all. But, often, we can’t do it alone. We need different guides. Friends, emotional or spiritual support, a physiotherapist, a doctor, a health coach, a personal trainer, and osteopath…just to mention some that come to mind who have helped me greatly in my own healing journey.
In allopathic medicine, it seems that we can’t talk about healing chronic illnesses. It seems that it is something that “you’ll always have” and the focus lies in taking a pill every day. I believe that traditional medicine represents about 10% of the global and holistic approach that we can treat our health with. A pill alone doesn’t heal. We have to see what “calf muscle” has brought us to the current situation and, to do it, there will always be professionals that have a wider vision on how to help us reach our goals.
It is my biggest wish that we empower ourselves and are able to embrace an improved version of ourselves, that becomes what we’ve always wanted and believed we can be.