22 February 2015

The Seat of Grief

Just after Thanksgiving 2014, when it became more apparent that my mom might not be making a speedy recovery, when it became more apparent that she might actually not make any sort of recovery, when I realized she might actually die at some point in the very near future {which I was still considering a few months, not a few days}...I looked up "grief", because I had quite a bit of time to google things while I waited for the next allowable visitation within the Critical Care Unit.

I wasn't thinking, "great, how do I do this "grieving thing" properly?"; altho I do try to get things right in some ways and be prepared, which is why I've gotten to be so good with research and know an amazing amount of completely trivial stuffs.  I was thinking more about the fact that her life was changing and that even though she was not the sort of person who overly lamented much of anything; I did realize that one aspect that is often ignored in a changing situation is the grief you can hold for the loss of the dreams, assumptions, and goals that you once held for possible futures.

What I mean is that sort of vague feeling that people can have, when they realize that contrary to their childish beliefs that they could accomplish anything and be anyone, those options are not quite as broad in range as they had once thought.  Midlife crises are often about the grieving for dreams that will never be, even if you had not really wanted to be that astronaut who undergoes cryogenic suspension so that you can come to millions of light years away, you might grieve the letting go of that unrealistic dream you once had had.  So I knew that you can grieve for all sorts of things, including possible futures.

Or impossible futures.

So I looked up "grief" because I thought that mom's life is changing, and she will accept those changes, of course; but how can I help her to make the adjustments and accept the limitations even better.  That's what my thoughts were at that time.

Here's what happens when you google "grief", most of the articles and references focus on helping you through grieving the loss of someone you love.  Your spouse, a child, a parent.  That makes total sense, of course.

But not really what I thought I was looking for.  Apparently, I thought wrong.  Turns out, that was exactly what I was looking for.

The one big thing that stuck out to me, in the review of  "grief", was that lots of folks who are grief~stricken are very tense and they carry their grief, in a very physical way.  They develops aches and pains and often will seek medical assistance for discomfort that had not been present before.

"Wow," I thought, "good to know."

So I was not surprised at all, when I began to get achy over the past few months.  I didn't panic.  I didn't jump to the conclusion that I had flu.

One day tho, I realized, my ass hurts.  Not my entire ass, just the same place that had been problematic a few years ago.  A very deep pain in the right ass cheek.  And immediately, once I paid attention to it, the pain bloomed.

Several years ago, as I was getting out of my car at my mom's, deep in my right ass, a cramp seized so hard that it took my breath away and tears sprang to my eyes instantaneously.  I limped in severe pain and mom stood on her front deck, laughing her ass off at the rather humorous picture I presented, yelling at me, "walk it off, just walk it off".

I was laughing even as I cried in pain.

Turns out, I ended up in physical therapy, for a pain in the ass.  Most likely it was my piriformis, which is a muscle that is linked with sciatica.  Everyone knows that pain in the ass.

It is not an easy place to reach yourself.  And it is an awkward thing to ask of others, "would you rub my ass?  just get in there, really hard, and deep".  Misunderstandings arise and you can lose a few friends that way.

a few days ago, I finally had enough; so I contacted a massage therapist and made an appointment.  When describing the pain and location, after having explained that I was tense in general and that my mother had died in December and that I suspected that part of the reason that I was tense and achy was related to that; the massage therapist told me something that made complete sense to me.

Apparently, the seat of grief is in the complex layering of muscles in the pelvic and hip region.  Your center of gravity is there, and when you lose someone, your entire world is rocked.  So it makes sense that the seat of grief is found within your sit~upon.  It may seem less than polite to think that the loss of your loved one is directly related to that locale.  But I know that mom would be laughing her ass off about being a literal pain in mine.

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