My Scars Have a Story
I want to share a story about a journey I’ve taken with my body over the last 20 years. It started with a gallbladder removal surgery when I was 17, a surgery that, it turns out, was unnecessary. But that’s a story for another time. The point is the surgery happened, I healed and recovered, and didn’t think much more about it. That is, until 2 years ago.
The surgery was laparoscopic, which means they used a bunch of little incisions to insert cameras and tools rather than one big scar that would have wrapped around almost half my torso. So I have a line of almost a dozen little scars that follow the line of my right ribcage from the bottom of my breast bone to my back, one in my belly button, and one on my right hip.
Truly, after I felt recovered from the surgery I didn’t really give it any more thought. For years it didn’t really cross my mind at all. After a few years I began having pain in my back, in my ribcage, increased tension and knots in my right shoulder, and pain in my left hip. I didn’t relate them to anything – not to each other, and certainly not to the surgery that was now ancient history.
But it seemed like the more time that passed and the more I worked on strengthening my body, the worse the symptoms became. They seemed to come from nowhere. I could find no cause for them, and neither could my movement teachers. And no matter how much I stretched, strengthened, or rolled out the trouble spots, they would stubbornly remain. I was becoming increasingly frustrated. It felt like I was doing all the right things for my body, but getting all the wrong results. I was trying to work smart. I was being mindful. I began to think perhaps these were unsolvable problems.
And then I started studying NKT.
Like Pilates, NKT is all about returning the body to balance, but it can really get under the hood, so to speak, to determine where the imbalance lies. Often times it’s in the musculature, but sometimes it’s not. The day I learned about scar tissue and how it can affect the functioning of your entire structure my relationship with my body changed. Suddenly I had a tool to determine if my scars (little though they may be) were having adverse affects on my body and how I used it. And it turned out they did. Dramatically. The first time a NKT practitioner performed a scar release for me it felt like my whole body was unwinding from a spiral I didn’t know I was holding! All of the above-mentioned trouble spots were in fact places where I was compensating because of the impediment of my scar tissue. The invisible scar tissue was forcing my body into movement patterns that were eventually causing me pain. And after all the frustration and fruitless labor, for the solution to be so subtle, painless, and immediate was like a small miracle.
Scars can come from all kinds of things, not just surgery. And there is no time limit to how long they can impact you. That cut you had stitched up as a kid could, in fact, be affecting your movement patterns today. Strange, but true.
I’m still working on it, but there’s progress, finally. And I want to share this information in case you are also struggling with patterns and pain that just don’t seem to go away. Sometimes our body needs a little help, and being able to see beneath the surface is a powerful resource. If you think your scars may be impacting your movement, I encourage you to come try some NKT. We may find some surprising things!