“You can’t make grass grow faster by pulling on it.” I don’t remember where I first heard this saying, but it’s become one of my favorites related to healing.
It seems we all want to heal on our own terms. We naturally want and expect our body to feel better, the pain to go away, when we want and expect it to. And quite often it does. Give it a few days or a couple weeks, and the pain gradually gets better. But what about when it doesn’t?
The tendency is to get frustrated with the body. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say things like “I wish my stupid back would just get better”.
This can be especially true when you’ve tried a lot of things to fix your problem, and continue to have pain.
I understand and can relate to this frustration. Pain is exhausting, takes away from your quality of life, and can make day to day living a real struggle.
But the problem with frustration like this is that it can create an adversarial relationship between you and your body, which actually can inhibit the healing process, and get in the way of recovery.
This may sound like bad news. But it isn’t. In fact, if you’ve experienced this before … your body just not getting better despite everything you’ve done to fix it, or a new problem occurring, or the old one coming back … then it can actually be viewed as very good news. Because it means that there’s another way to approach this.
The truth is that the human body, like all of nature, has its own design, its own pacing, its own processes, its own “agenda”. There are things you can do that support this, but you can’t bend it to your will. It might appear that you can, for a time, but then the problem may return, or a new problem may arise.
I have learned over the years that when you align with your body, instead of trying to force it to do what you want, then more possibilities for healing exist.
But let me back up for a minute. What is this “you” I’m talking about, as in “you can’t make your body do what you want.” Aren’t “you” and “your body” one and the same?
It seems that many people have a split between their mind and their body, and they tend to over identify with the mind. So “you” becomes your mind, your thoughts, desires, beliefs, etc., and the body is something separate from it. So if “you” want your pain to go away but it’s not, despite all the things you’re doing, then there can be a tendency to blame the body, because it’s not doing what “you” want.
But the truth is your body is not to blame. In fact, your body is always doing the best it can. I know it may not seem that way, especially when you’re suffering so much from something going on with your body. But your body is innocent, and is just expressing something that’s going on somewhere within you.
The cause may be purely physical (such as an old injury that your body is no longer able to compensate for, or a chemical or energetic imbalance within your body), or have an emotional component to it (maybe an unresolved emotional pattern that is expressing itself through your body), or a combination of these or other things. The specifics are unique to the person experiencing the symptoms.
Because we are complex, multidimensional beings. Our physiology alone is extremely complex. Add to that the other aspects we all have … emotional, intellectual, social, spiritual. And when you recognize that all of these aspects are interconnected and interdependent, you can see how complicated we truly are.
Keeping that in mind, it’s no wonder that things don’t always unfold the way we want or expect them to. Medicine has a lot to offer, but even it is limited in its ability to know what is going on, why, and what to do to “fix” the problem. The root of the problem may be coming from a place that medicine has little knowledge of. And many times, this attempt to find a physical “answer” to the “problem” of your pain creates more and more frustration as the answer isn’t found.
If this sounds familiar to you, see if you can take a step back. See if you can try to approach your pain from a different angle, and take a “bigger picture” look at it. Try holding the pain with compassion as much as possible, and see if you can open to how it might be related to all the other aspects of yourself.
I find that when people are able to do this … open to the body and become curious about it rather than frustrated with and angry at it … then often the pain starts to soften as well.
By working with the body as an ally in the healing journey, rather than as an adversary getting in the way of your life, then you open up to greater possibilities of experiencing the natural unfolding of your healing process.
This process, and the expression of it through your body’s symptoms, has its own timing, its own wisdom, its own knowledge. It often doesn’t go as quickly as we’d like. But it can lead to deep healing an every level, and true pain relief.
I wish for you the healing that comes with watching your personal process unfold.