Update on the shoulder – it’s actually my neck. More specifically a nerve in my neck.
So how did I come to know this? It surely wasn’t the doctors! NOPE, I went to the doctors twice, saw 2 different doctors. BOTH of them made me do arm movements to see the mobility of my shoulder. They both know I do yoga because it’s in my records and they both asked me…. but they judged my mobility based on what a “normal” person should be able to do and of course I could do all of it!!! SO… my shoulder’s looking pretty damned mobile and according to the doctors I’m absolutely fine!
Next, they kept asking WHERE the pain was and because I felt it all underneath my scapula and near my spine in the same region but like a phantom it disappeared when they touched any of it and I told them that sometimes it shot pain down my arm, they both concluded that it was muscular.
Guess what that means? It means, nothing to do, you simply just sit around and wait for it to heal. That’s it. Take a few painkillers if the pain bothers you but that’s it… even if it’s taken 4 weeks (when they said it should take 2 weeks for muscular pain to heal) and the level of pain is EXACTLY the same (mind-numbing levels) which means no healing has taken place at all in those 4 weeks, it’s definitely muscular and you just gotta sit it out.
To be honest I think dealing with the doctors and their conclusions made the pain worse because I was so frustrated that they refused to help me with my pain. One of them actually said “what do you want me to do?” I wanted to scream “YOU’RE THE BLOODY DOCTOR!!! YOU SHOULD KNOW!” Alas, the truth is, other than prescribing pain killers, they didn’t actually know.
SO a couple of yogis spoke to me after a class one day, 4 weeks into my pain, I think a few days after my 2nd doctor’s visit. I spoke with them separately, told them what I was experiencing and BOTH of them said “Are you sure it’s not your neck?” Both of them had some weird thing happen to their shoulder / arm where they actually felt pain in their wrist or shoulder and pins and needles down the arm and BOTH of them found out through either MRI or physio that it was their necks!! When they treated and strengthened the neck, all arm, shoulder, wrist pains disappeared.
So you know what we did after that? Tony stopped massaging my shoulder and started massaging my neck each night and low and behold, the pain in my shoulder went from every day at 12 out of 10… down to only every other day and the pain level at 2!!!!! THANK YOU YOGINIs!!!
Last time I posted, I said, if you ever have pain you’re worried about, instead of worrying, just go to a doctor… Let me take that back!! If you ever have pain you’re worried about, go ask an experienced yogi. ie one who has practiced yoga regularly for longer than 3 years, preferably more. Chances are, they’ve experienced it themselves OR they know someone who can help.
Neither of those yoginis were teachers either. They were both students who have practiced yoga for over 5 years each! So there you go. Pain levels down without painkillers and within a few hours after talking to them.
This is my perception of what doctors think of yogis…
Notice how far away he stands from the yogi as if he’s going to catch a disease by touching him and yes, my doctors do look at me as if I’m mental.
I suppose I’m not helping my cause when I say things like “Well, you said it would take 2 weeks because it’s muscular. If it was muscular I would normally heal in 3 days, 10 days if it’s severe but I’ve now been in pain for 4 weeks so it must be something else.” I say things like this to be helpful but they always look at me as if I’m telling them how to do their job.
What doctors (and others who think we’re all just tree hugging , wheatgrass drinking, hippies), need to understand is that the body is ever miraculous. It is self preserving and self healing. Practicing yoga just aids the body to do what it does, more efficiently.
So a yogi isn’t any different from any other human, they simply have found a technology to help the body perform the miracles it already knows how to do, quickly and without the drugs and they witness the miracles happen every day in themselves and in others.
So… when the body isn’t healing within normal timeframes, then a yogi will know that it is more than likely something other than what they initially thought. They won’t just give it more time, they’ll look at other things as well. Damn it, I even changed my pillow! Anyway, that’s my 2 cents worth.
I’m still waiting on my ultrasound for my shoulder btw. I finally got an appointment but it’s not until the end of this month.
Meanwhile, I have actually had an acupuncture session (which relieved the pain instantaneously for 3 days before it came back) and have been lathering on arnica oil and arnica ointment every morning and night since, which has meant that although I feel a bit of ache at say level 1 in pain, in the morning, it’s pretty much non existent during the day.
The person who did the acupuncture on me has practiced yoga for over 5 years, she suspected it was a nerve so she shoved a needle in my hand… and voila, both neck and shoulder were fine.
The person who recommended the arnica, also a yogi of over 30 years, suspected it was an inflamed nerve and suggested I rub arnica (natural anti-inflammatory) all over the neck area to reduce inflammation so I did.
And there you have it. Pain level is now down to 0 to 0.5 within 1.5 weeks of 4 different yogis helping me out. 2 to point out it’s my neck, not my shoulder and 2 to point out it was a nerve and having ways of sorting it out other than sitting, waiting and taking pain killers.
Of course I also have to mention the loving patience of each and every teacher letting me take it super easy in all of my classes. This is the easiest I’ve taken my classes ever!
I am just happy and grateful that I’m practically pain free again and chances are that I’ll be completely healed before I get to my ultrasound, so they will find absolutely nothing wrong with me. Typical. I bet the doctors will conclude that I healed because it was muscular and the appropriate time (2 months by the time of the ultrasound) has passed to heal!
I know for sure it was the help I got because the pain reduced dramatically and immediately. It wasn’t the time that stopped the pain, it was the correct diagnosis of the cause of my pain that helped.
I also love that yogis always look for natural ways to help the body heal before resorting to drugs. Don’t get me wrong, I understood that painkillers were to help stop inflammation but I knew if I couldn’t feel the pain that was supposed to be there stopping me from doing certain things, I’d more than likely do those things and aggravate the situation.
So my conclusion is that for aches and pains, you don’t need a doctor, you simply need yoga and a community of loving, caring, thoughtful, knowledgeable yogis.