Poised between two worlds — a personal experience

September 15, 2012

Alternative Therapies, Pain, Yoga

So I say, “No, thanks. I’ll pass,” as I step over to the natural world and the path not medicated.

by Felicia Blasdel — 

I  stand, awkwardly straddling two worlds. In one world there is public approval — high-tech gadgets galore and a vast array of feel-good manufactured ingestibles. Everything is outside oneself and if anything attacks, “It is not my fault.” A potion is prescribed to battle the “out there.” But I believe everything for me is within. If all is not right, it is certainly a call for self-responsibility and to look inward. Medicines are found in nature, and the body is their partner.

Pondering these two worlds, I sat in pain in the patient waiting room of a doctor’s office. All instincts told me to bolt. But this was a doctor I knew personally. He would treat me well. A few days earlier, I had injured my shoulder doing a side arm balance in yoga. Yes, yoga. In my defense, it was “yoga flow”: a somewhat energized form of yoga, and it was 5:30 a.m.

The diagnosis was a shoulder sprain, or perhaps even a micro-tear. The recommendations were the usual: resting the shoulder, heat and ice. “Just to make sure, let’s x-ray the area. And, oh, by the way, while we’re in there, let’s x-ray the chest. We catch quite a bit of things with those chest x-rays,” declared the doctor. I felt totally defiant and stood firm, agreeing only to the shoulder x-ray. This was the only area currently in pain. Next came the medicines — the muscle relaxants and prescriptions for pain and the anti-inflammatory pills. At least nothing was broken or fractured.

Over the next few days, I dealt with the pain as well as possible, using over-the-counter ibuprofen, three pills to be exact, at the worst possible moments. My neighbors, God bless them, are networking chiropractors, and I was at their office three times that week. I applied all kinds of natural rubs and ointments, walked around with an ice pad, and regularly put little homeopathic pills under my tongue and took supplements.

After one very healing chiropractic session, I came home and was relaxing in my recliner. My sister-in-law, who is working on a clinical in physical therapy, checked in on me and inquired whether I was taking my drugs. When I replied that I was taking the natural route, she informed me that it would be best to take the muscle relaxants. It would allow greater movement in that area; otherwise, my body would get stiff and possibly seize. Again, I stood firm.

“I still hurt,” I mentioned at my next chiropractic session and was told that my body’s pain was trying to tell me something. The goal should not always be toward greater movement, but to be gentle and allow healing. That made sense.

By week two, the shoulder was recovering nicely, minus the drugs. It became a valuable time for introspection and renewal. And to think I missed all those side-effects! These are just a few mentioned on the muscle relaxant package: nausea, vomiting, gastrointestinal upset, drowsiness, dizziness, headache, and nervousness or irritability. Other adverse reactions are: hypersensitivity reaction, characterized by a light rash with or without pruritus; leucopenia; hemolytic anemia; and jaundice (language taken from the unopened sample packet).

I don’t even know the possible side-effects of the pain and anti-inflammatory pills, except for the “don’t operate a moving vehicle” warning. So I say, “No, thanks. I’ll pass,” as I step over to the natural world and the path not medicated.


Felicia Blasdel is a small business owner, living and working in Ahwatukee, Ariz., who recently started a women’s inspirational networking group. 480-241-7589,  fblasdel@qwest.net or www.womeninspiritnetwork.com.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 26, Number 5, October/November 2007.

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