Headaches and your breath rhythm.

“When I say I’m writhing, I am not making myself move, my breath is moving me, in response to my nervous system, in response to the pain”

My experience with headaches has been ever changing, I can give myself a real cracker if I abruptly cut out coffee, I’ve had what appear to be hormone related coinciding with my period, hangovers, general stress and tension… some quite severe, some lasting for a few days.

A few weeks back I had a headache, it was the most intense pain I, can recall since my ovarian cyst (+5cm diameter) burst in my early 20’s.

When it comes to pain killers, I stopped taking them in my late 20’s, because I wanted to know what was going on, and if it was ‘serious’, how would I know if I couldn’t feel it? Since then, I have only taken aspirin a handful of times when I needed to work. Memorably, after I injured my elbow I needed them (single self employed, I need to eat), so I took them to get me through the day, but only after I had explored my range of motion during 2 massages, and I knew what my limits were. Injured or not, this is what needs respecting.

When I got this headache, I had the luxury of being able to lie down. However, I have been able to experience relief whilst upright and going about my required tasks. It is the familiarity of how your thoughtless breath moves or pulses your body. You may not make it through as quickly as if you were lying down, but you will make it through better than if you diminished the pain by doing or taking anything. 

The Little Death

After I got up off the floor, and stepped outside, it was like I was reborn, and I have heard a few times recently “The Little Death” as a reference to orgasm, psilocybin use… and this feels like a good name for what I had been through.

The timeline

About 7am the headache kicked in, and gradually got worse as the morning went on, and at lunchtime I decided to go and lie down, in my studio, in the neutral rest position.

A quick video on setting yourself up in the neutral rest position.

Immediately I was aware of the tension in my back line, pulling the back of my skull down, shortening the neck, and the pain was all over the top of my skull, explosive.

I set myself up in the neutral rest position, with a softly rolled towel under my head. I must have fallen asleep, and I think I woke nearly 2 hours later. I released myself from the neutral rest position and gave into the waves of sensation (pain). 

I recall twisting up and flattening out, like a snake writhing in pain. I was on my stomach, curling up onto my side, my breath getting shorter and faster, the rhythm stimulating the undulation in my spine… and then this passed, the breath began to slow, the undulations less intense, and I would be as still as we can be… I was still aware of my breath moving my whole body.

My nose was becoming increasingly blocked, and my eyes felt thick and gluggy.

As I observed, and allowed my breath to move me, I would feel myself calm, settle and then set off again as the pain built and the breath became faster.

I decided I needed help, and I had the bliss of  people to call on, so I did. I requested a teapot with some weeds in, plantain and something, my neti pot with warm salt water, and a spit bowl… and this is why I chose these.

First, my instinct was doing the talking… I was pretty out of it at this stage as you can hear in my voice recording attached to the end of the podcast.

Second, I had mucous moving into my sinus cavities, and the top of the back of my throat.

Third, I needed some soothing warmth to settle my tummy. I was feeling quite queasy, almost seasick from riding the writhing wave my body had been.

One of my dogs had also been bought in as part of my first aid treatment. And she was perfect!

So, I gradually made my way up to gargle some of the salt water, and attempt to run the neti pot through my sinuses. Being open and honest… I spat and blew snot into my spit bowl.

I had some tea, and crashed back to the floor, the sinuses had been quite blocked, and by very gently blowing my nose and clearing my throat, I had made space for more mucous to come through, which meant another wave of sensation began to undulate my being.

Where was the mucous coming from… well, above the throat and nasal passages we have soft tissue underneath the brain, so here is my experience, based on what I know of how the body functions.

Lets go back to the Ovarian Cysts in my early 20’s. And let us talk about it in simple terms, no technical names, no details only science & academia can use!

When I had my first laparoscopy around 1999, second around 2003, they informed me (and had photos) that I had things called adhesions, they look like a spiderweb connecting the organs and the abdominal wall. They are not meant to be there. This was at the same time that my eggs were not being released completely from the ovary, resulting in ballooning/blistering before bursting, which was part of the strong pain I had always experienced mid cycle and around menstruation.

In my early 30’s I had been exploring my body in motion for a few years, and I was able to feel the hardness around my lower abdomen, subconscious muscle tension locked on around my pelvis. The why’s I will get too, but the result was like holding a sponge under running water, but not pulsing your grip, circulation was lacking, and there was not the fluid moving around the organs that there should have been, the tissues were all being held too close together, and without the movement, had ended up growing together… just like when you dress an open wound with something painfully non-stick. The skin starts to grow into the dressing. And, just like with shoes that are too tight, my ovaries were blistering, due to friction, and a lack of space caused by fluids squeezed out of around the organs, thanks to the subconsciously tight lower abdominal muscles. (a contributor to this tension is keeping our legs together).

This situation also creates limited nutrient delivery and poor waste removal from the area, limited nervous system pathway communication, poor lymphatic movement, it also decreased circulation into my legs and feet… so I had really unpleasant periods, swelling in feet, less than easily enjoyable sexual experiences, poor choices in sexual partners, painful sex, constant urinary tract infection (UTI), and as one partner put it, who was with me through the early stages of releasing subconscious muscle tension, and a few years into it, we eventually had sex that “didn’t feel angry, it normally feels like we are fighting”… nicely put, and he was right.

So, fast forward a few years and I met a woman who had a digestive system disorder where she was bleeding between the layers of her digestive tract walls… why? So, with what I had to go on with my ovary adventure, and my body awareness, what was happening with her?

I knew her, I spent time with her, had a little background and was able to observe from a place of feeling what she was doing… call that what you will. But, her nervous system was locked in the stress response, and she did a lot of “core strengthening” to keep her strong. She walked like a rectangle, there was very limited movement in any of her joints, and what she achieved was through force.

So, when she ate certain foods, that nourished her digestive system, and required the rhythmic pulsing that moves the food through the body, I will guess that, because she was so rigid through her abdominal area, the muscles outside of her organs were not providing space for the organs to move, and as the organs began to move with certain foods, the inside walls ended up shearing away from the outer organ walls. She was fine if she didn’t eat foods that required her gut to move (a big reason why I will not remove anything from my food intake).

Which gets me back to my headache. 

Here is what I believe was happening. With the freedom of movement in my spine, as my breath undulated me about the floor, I was releasing some deep tension, a layer of tension that I was probably born with, and this undulation pumped the fluid that moves through the spinal cord and around the brain. Like putting water in a tomato paste jar and shaking it, this movement was encouraging my brain to move away from the skull. And, as we know from the adhesions, and the capacity of our body to grow into wound dressings, I felt that my brain was possibly tearing some of these connections that shouldn’t have been there. 

For all we are told about how delicate the brain is, that may sound a little serious… and yes, that thought was kind of freaking me out, which is why I put my voice recorder on, in case I didn’t make it through “The Little Death”. (I am ok with death, who knows what that actually means)

So, come on this adventure with me… When we have subconscious muscle tension anywhere in our body, it pulls our skeleton out of alignment, and reduces space in our joints, and between our bones, the skull is not immune to this pressure, and the tension stops our soft pallet pulsing.

Our soft pallet should be moved by our breath, rhythmically squeezing and releasing our brain. If our skeleton is our of alignment, our soft pallet is under pressure, and will be holding our brain a little still within our skull. The muscle tensions also cause a kinking in the spinal cord where the top of the spine connects with the brain cavity, as well as limiting the spinal undulation of our breath from pulsing our cerebral fluids up and down our spine, and around our brain cavity…

The cerebral fluids are not being moved by our breath, and just like a dammed river, silt builds up.

So, I think what I was experiencing was an incredibly deep layer of tension, the reason being that I have spent years releasing control, allowing my body to be moved by my breath, which provided me the safety to release tensions, unravelling as I found them, I had got deep enough and into a place of internal safety that allowed me to release a tension that let the cerebral fluid start moving… and that meant, any of the stuck areas of my grey matter to the skull, well, it was time for them to completely separate.

So, the action of separation is the same as the action of nourishing the area to remove the damaged cells and debris and nourish healthy cellular reproduction. It is allowing my breath to move freely.

Why am I not seeking medical help? Because my path in life is to explore this level of faith in our innate intelligence.

I had an image in my mind of a brain scan, those ones from people who abuse alcohol and drugs, and how the outside of the brain is dark (dead brain cells), and the colourful living parts are small and in the middle… well, I figured it wouldn’t matter if it was tearing away where the dark stuff was. All of our cells will grow back given the correct internal environment, which is provided in the same way as mentioned above, allowing my breath to move freely.

I was really in this situation, so I knew that I needed the circulation to be the best it could possibly be, to bring nutrients to the brain, and remove the waste products, which is what I believe the mucous coming into my nose and throat to be.

The cerebral fluids have to detox through the soft pallet, the bony spinal column and the skull do not allow this level of circulation, so it was my nose, throat and eyes… the nasal cavity and upper throat, and I was gently (self-respect) coughing, spitting and blowing these fluids into a bowl as I stayed close to the floor.

So, when I was able to get up, and leave the studio, I went and had a light, rich in animal fat beef mince soup/stew, a very small portion for lunch, oh and a warm bath with some fresh herbs in it. I walked gently and the pain was pretty much gone, except for that bruising feeling you may recognise after a decent headache…

I slept really badly that night, so uncomfortable… and the next day still felt bruised… and how I moved showed my habitual self-respect for what I have in the present, I was not annoyed that I hadn’t slept well, I was not concerned that I was moving slowly, and the second night I slept a bit better.

Why was this so intense, because for so long, this tension has been active in me, these tissues have been without proper circulation, and this is the pins and needles principle which tells us that returning circulation feels this way, it explains pain if you are on the journey of expansion through physical release.

Over my years of feeling myself in motion I have become comfortable being unconditionally present.

As I have been learning what it is to let go of control of my breath, I have been remembering the speed of nature, which takes the time it takes, I have discovered the freedom of being my own unique expression of the universe.

As I have learnt to feel, and respect my range of motion, to accept what I can feel in this moment is exactly what I need to feel to hear the messages that will give me an opportunity to refine how I am moving in the safest way for my physical-emotional-mental-spiritual health.

As I have settled into this unconditional love for myself, I have accepted that my expression will be empowered by my energy-in-motion (emotions), as my whole being responds to situations from a place of being compassion (self-compassion) and really settling into compassion as a sliding scale for whatever the situation needs… anything from a slap in the face to a hug to walking away to jumping in to fight… whatever is needed I am energised for, I express and I own as my power.

I no longer plan an acceptable expression.

I no longer silence my honest expression.

All of me is welcome in my universe, everything is energy and I have become comfortable riding those waves. And as I have become comfortable, the waves have become calmer, the initial storm of hearing my honest expression soothed with the welcoming arms of unconditional acceptance.

There is no separation, all aspects of our being as important, as integral as all aspects of our being human.

Universal principles, the underlying functional motion of the universe, this is the lesson that I found.

Our consciousness focused and created a pinpoint, an egg that began growing, expanding like the solar system, with certain restrictions, creating certain vibrations that attract louder messages to us, giving us opportunity to release into a more stable state, to really take responsibility for the part we play here.

And, as I felt the tension release my brain, clarity came in, another layer of knowing we are the perfect design, we are innate intelligence… and we have chosen the physical human experience to feel, to physically feel.

Dynamically integrated, our physical being is the interface between cosmos and earth energies. Our physical being is the expression of our spiritual-emotional-mental aspects, and our physical being gives vibration to our spiritual-emotional-mental aspects.

How we move ourselves, how our breath moves us holds all the messages we need to access universal knowing, to be our unique expression, our integral part of the innate intelligence of the universe.

The Space of Emptiness is time spent in physical safety, allowing your breath to move you in respect of any limiting tensions that exist… and as you accept what you can feel, accept that your breath can not move certain parts of you, your nervous system recognises safety, it remembers that it knows best for your highest good, and it can start to release the subconscious muscle tension that is creating limits to how your breath moves you, and your breath can begin to move more of you.

This happens at the correct speed for you. The physical release of subconscious muscle tension softens the edges of memories, you become your safe space for remembering, or for living without triggers… I’m a believer that we do no need to remember or relive to process. When we are feeling our limits, respecting what we feel, we are simultaneously moving without putting pressure on our memories whilst we are creating space for their energy to rise and fall without interrupting us.

My headache was the release of what I was born with, the release of tensions that gathered at my time of conception to create me as an egg, holding the vibration of lessons that I needed to learn, that my parents needed to learn… and each time we denied our part in it, each time we gave our responsibility to an outside expert, or muffled our lessons with any form of medication, we layered a new tension on top of what existed at my time of conception.

So, as my journey into feeling my being has gone on, I have released tensions that I have chosen to create, regardless of whether I was told to do things a certain way, or I denied an emotional expression, or acted on scientific advice for health… I am at a place where I am now releasing ancestral energies, genetic memories, past lives. I am in a place safe enough to let these energies rise up, and accept the expansion of my innate intelligence as a knowing that is grounded in universal principle.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: