No More Exaggerating

January 11, 2016

I think I’m really good at maintaining my lumbar curve…

TOO good.

I feel a little paranoid about putting my pelvis into any degree of pelvic posterior tilt, honestly.  Therefore, I think my standing and walking posture both still have room for improvement.

Sometimes it seems like my posture is not natural, because I’m exaggerating my lumbar curve too much.  If I stand in front of a mirror to check out my side view, I can see the difference when I exaggerate vs when I keep a nice, non-forced lumbar curve vs when I enter into the territory of (posterior) pelvic tilting (I go there verrrrry briefly).

One of my dominant prolapse symptoms lately is a mild feeling of “pulling.”  Sometimes I think I adopt the more forced lumbar curve position because I’m trying to lessen that sensation.  However, for some reason my instincts are telling me that I’m going to see more progress if I settle into a slightly less fully-anteriorly-tilted pelvic posture.

I really think I need to improve my standing posture and improve my walking posture.  It’s going to take focus because I’ve developed strong new habits in the past few months since I found the Whole Woman approach.

I’m looking forward to moving away from the extreme position.  I need to not fear backing off from “max curve” just a little bit.  I need to trust!

I don’t know why I think this, but I feel in my gut that I’m onto something.  I can’t fully explain it, but I’m getting a peaceful feeling (Peaceful, Easy Feeling…ahh…The Eagles!)  This subtle adjustment that I’m starting to make shall further MOLD my pelvic organs into their proper alignment.

I am healed.

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In the Kitchen

November 14, 2015

Lately I’ve been focusing quite a bit on the Whole Woman (WW) postural cue of “lift your chest.”  It’s definitely a key one, and I can almost feel a lifting sensation surrounding my urethra while I lift my chest.  It’s pretty amazing, really.

Tonight I was standing at the kitchen sink.  I was working with my hands in a bowl of water, loosening arils away from the pomegranate membrane.  Naturally, looking down isn’t part of the WW posture.  Looking forward and tucking the chin IS part of it!

However– in life we do have to look downward a lot, right?

Looking down at the fruit while I broke up pieces of *albedo did NOT stop me from still doing as many components of the WW posture as I possibly could.  With a simple, conscious effort, I found that it was pretty easy to keep my chest lifted while also looking down.

Every bit helps, that’s for sure!  It’s all about staying mindful, and doing the best you can do with the task at hand.  I feel at peace knowing that I’m doing so much, to help myself.

I am healed.

*Albedo is the white, fleshy substance directly under the skin of a pomegranate.  There’s your new vocabulary word for the day (at least it was mine!).

Tighten the X-Axis

November 6, 2015

As I focus daily on maintaining Whole Woman posture as much as I possibly can, I find myself thinking about this one very key postural cue:

Tighten the X-Axis!

This specific component of pelvic organ support is discussed in at least 2 chapters of the book, “Saving The Whole Woman,” by Christine Ann Kent.  I do recommend that book for prolapse management as well as for prevention!  All women benefit from this postural approach.

In the book, there are two great diagrams that really helped me visualize how powerfully therapeutic it is to “Tighten the X-axis.”  Those diagrams are on page 27 (Fig. 2-38, external urethral sphincter) and page 83 (Fig. 7-2, pelvic geometry).

Note that it was my perineal body that was cut during my midline episiotomy during childbirth.  Therefore, healing my perineal body is an important part of my recovery.  It’s important that I facilitate the optimum function of those fibers.  I do that simply by maintaining proper posture.  How easy is that?!

From the book, here are some facts about the perineal body.  Note that I’ve added the bold for my own emphasis as I visualize my anatomy working as it should:

“Between vagina and anus, this pyramid-shaped fibromuscular structure connects across the pelvic outlet to either side of the ischiopubic rami by way of the deep transverse perineal muscle.”

“The perineal body is indirectly attached to the tailbone by the external anal sphincter, which is attached at its other end to the coccyx.”

“The perineal body serves as an anchor for soft tissue structures of the perineum, yet its fibrous core also provides distensibility necessary to rebound against intra-abdominal pressure.”

“The deep transverse perineal muscle wraps around the distal portion of the urethra, envelops the vaginal opening, and then fans out laterally to form a muscular triangle across the anterior half of the pelvic outlet.”

(sacrum) “nutation causes the ischial tuberosities to move away from one another laterally”

“As the sit bones move apart, the urogenital diaphragm tightens across the middle, elevating and stabilizing the urethra within its muscular framework.”

I swear that I can feel the positive effects of “tightening my x-axis.”  Indeed, I can feel my sit bones moving apart.  I can feel a gentle lifting and (not unpleasant) pulling sensation…which must be my urethra being elevated and stabilized.

I feel at peace because I understand that my body’s anatomy was designed right.  And– although I had a difficult childbirth and a cut perineal body– I also know that my body’s mission is to heal itself.

My job is simply to do what I can to facilitate that innate healing.  Fortunately, that’s an easy task.  All it comes down to is posture, breathing, a healthy diet, and a positive attitude.

I am healed.

Evening Adjustments

10-24-15

adjustment
noun ad·just·ment \ə-ˈjəs(t)-mənt\
: a small change that improves something or makes it work better

I think I’ve mentioned before that evening is the time of day when I’m likely to have my “worst” prolapse symptoms.  I put that word in quotes because these days nothing is feeling that bad, but I’m just saying that it gets relatively worse at that time.

It must be due to end-of-day fatigue and the cumulative effect of various moves that I make throughout the day in sub-optimal form.  Let’s face it:  it’s impossible to maintain perfect Whole Woman posture during every single daily activity.

But– every evening, I have the opportunity to give myself an “adjustment.”  For many months now, I’ve been in the habit of taking my showers at about 7 PM.  My husband plays with our son after dinner while I disappear for ~30 minutes.

In the shower, I do some jiggling.  I learned about this on the Whole Woman forum.  While standing, I bend forward with butt out, tailbone up with my hands propped on my legs, right above my knees.  I allow my belly to hang down, completely flaccid.  This brings my pelvic organs into their optimal positions.

I jiggle in this position and I’m still trying to figure out how best to coordinate my breath during the jiggling.  Should I jiggle after an out breath?  Should I try to breathe in and out while jiggling?  I’m experimenting to see what works the best.

After my shower, I then dry off and go lie down on my bed for maybe 10-15 minutes.  I position myself on my back with hips propped up a little.

That’s it.  That’s my evening adjustment.

I do find that this “small change” definitely improves my prolapse symptoms, which gives me a nice, positive “oomph” to get me through ’til bedtime.  Truthfully, on days when I did feel a LOT worse than I do now, I’d spend that post-shower “rest time” doing a “healing, breathing meditation.”

I should keep doing that now.  It was wonderful.

I certainly don’t miss those (fortunately few) days when I felt discouraged enough that I needed to cry for a while in my bed!  Yet, somehow I always gained a degree of peace and hope from a good cry.

I try to adjust my attitude when I adjust my pelvic organs.

I am healed.

Relax…Then Relax More

10-17-15

Yesterday I made a very interesting discovery while checking myself with a mirror.

First, let me back up for a second to mention a couple things.  There was a time a few months ago when I was “checking” the status of my prolapses internally (by inserting a finger in my vagina) every day, in the shower.  I’d also check myself visually with a mirror (while standing up) at least once, if not more than once, per day.

After a while, I decided that I needed to stop that habit.  The main reason was that time after time of checking revealed that, NO, nothing was actually falling out!  After a while, I was fairly confident that I’d collected enough “data” (matching up my symptoms with how “bulgy” the area was internally.)

So– I did stop the daily habit of internal checks (I now do them maybe once per week), but I still find myself pulling out the mirror daily.  I need to break myself of that habit next.

HOWEVER…yesterday I made an important discovery with the mirror…

I was bending over with butt out (tailbone up) after my shower, mirror in hand, looking.  I thought my belly was completely relaxed.  “Things” looked just about the same as they always look (so why do I keep looking?  Haha!)  There were the “usual” 3 little tissue “bubbles” which don’t extend down as far as the opening.  Enough said.

Next, I somehow perceived a subtle tone in my abdomen, although my belly was hanging down and I thought it was relaxed.  Apparently I wasn’t completely relaxed!

The A-HA moment came when I REALLY relaxed that muscle to fully flaccid and I saw the top bubble very obviously retract inside so that it was not seen anymore.  Like a turtle’s head pulling back into its shell!  It was super cool to watch.

It was at that moment that I realized that even when I think I have a nicely relaxed belly, I need to do a secondary “relaxation check.”  As I’ve now increased my awareness to this, I do find that I often still have more tension to release.

The MORE I relax my belly…the MORE I visualize in my mind (without needing to visualize in my mirror!) that the little turtle head is staying safely tucked WAY inside of me.  That’s a peaceful thought!  (Sorry turtle– I don’t want to see your face!)

I am healed.