I wasn’t sure if I’d every get to the place of being truly, truly grateful for my Achilles tendon injury. I had found appreciation in it- last year I wrote about how it taught me joy in slowing down and being grateful for what I could do. Yet I was only part way there. I wasn’t even close to how I feel now. I still had more pain to go through. Another summer of hobbling around in the mountains, more PT exercises and therapies like shockwave and PRP (both painful). On top of that, there was more heartbreak, more shadow work, and more emotional work that I had to experience.
In hindsight, cursed and blessed hindsight, all the pain was really one and the same, pointing toward what needed healing.
Now, I’d probably be a little silly to say it is all in hindsight. Even so, I’d be blind not to say that there is a breaking free.
When I decided to move into a yurt for six months, I mostly knew what I was doing. I wanted to heal, to repair the frayed ends of my nerves, the breaks in my heart, and the cracks in my soul. I just didn’t know to what degree, or even to what degree was possible.
What I realize now is that in the past two and a half months, I’ve essentially put myself in a self-growth and spiritual masterclass.
Upon rising, I’ve consistently done a Gabriel Bernstein meditation or exercises. Five mornings a week, I’ve been on my bike trainer listening to a new podcast, including Rich Roll, The School of Greatness (Lewis Howe), On Purpose (Jay Shetty), Deja Blu, Highest Self (Sahara Rose), Impact the World (Lee Harris), Pretty Intense (Danica Patrick), and Almost 30 (Krista Williams and Lindsey Simcik) and so many more. Then, maybe I’ll listen to another podcast while doing my foam rolling and mobility or strength work. I’ve spent more time reading and less time watching Netflix. I’ve practiced, and sometimes simply attempted, to shut my phone off to journal, channel my guides and higher self, and practice meditation.
I have a deeper connection with my unlimited being (or, spiritual self), than I ever would have had I not had the injury. I think my ego’s reigns would still be strong, judging my worth by comparison, be it race times or how far I could push my body in what it could do.
Unconsciously, I was tired of the fight to prove my worth and control the narrative. My body told me that long before my conscious mind would. The body will always tell you what your unconscious mind believes.
Of course, I know I’m not fully “there” yet, but I’m learning, and beginning to embody, unconditional self love and true joy.
I’m grateful that the healing journey has been slow too. If it wasn’t, I never would have reached out to a wonderful Reiki therapist who is now on my “healing team.” I’m also starting with a new psychotherapist who met everything on my checklist: EMDR, somatic awareness, and spiritual coaching. I also know I don’t see all of the interplays yet, but am excited to see how the journey unfolds.
I do know that I will, at times, fall out of gratitude, for, if anything, forgetting seems to be a large part of the human experience.
Yet, I have this experience and this practice to come back to now. I have a gratitude and love that runs deeper than my fears.
3 Replies to “Finding Gratitude in Pain: Can I really, like really, really, be grateful for my injury?”
So good. I’ll have to check out some of the podcasts you mention as Rich is the only one I currently listen to. Tim Ferriss is also outstanding if you get a chance to check him out. What is EMDR? Thanks again for sharing your story. The world needs more “deep souls” like yours guiding it.
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EMDR- Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing. Basically, a therapist helps a client identify a trigger, the memories, thoughts, and cognitions associated with it, and uses bilateral stimulation to help them re-process the memory to bring them back into harmony with themselves. It can be really powerful!
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