Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Trauma - muscle spasms/twitches

The last few sessions I have been having Craniosacral Therapy rather than Somatic Experiencing® or SE® work. T (Therapist) wanted to do some more 'hands-on' work with me before then getting back into SE® work, or perhaps doing CST and then SE in the one session. T has said this is important to help facilitate the work. So far hands-on work has been difficult for me as it has been clear that at times my body has been too "freaked-out" to cope with it. In fact, earlier on, T tried to approach me closely and touch my foot - but it was much-too much for me. The fact he is now doing hands-on work is a huge step forward. Over the past two sessions T just wanted to be able to tune into my body in terms of the tidal waves that the body produces and to get a sense of them. T said that the tides were very slow. On the second session  T managed to do some abdominal work which had a profound affect on my tummy - having had another admission to hospital for severe symptoms relating to my 'Functional Bowel Disorder.' I left feeling as though the contents of my abdomen had gone, and although I experienced extreme fatigue for two days following the session, my digestion did improve.

So two weeks later, here I was for another session that started of with CST work, but fairly swiftly mutated into SE®. The difference? T was working on the left side of my body, (much more traumatised) than my right side. Early into the work I started twitching - with movement particularly coming from L4/5 in my spine like someone had poked me from the back All these twitching movements were familiar as they had begun in 2009 during physiotherapy work. For an example read:

After this had been going on for some time, T moved hands to one behind my shoulder, one behind my neck. The 'twitches' increased in intensity and in other parts of my upper left quadrant. T then removed both hands to see whether the intensity of the twitches would reduce. Although they did somewhat reduce, we continued to talk about them, how I had managed to 'be-friend' them over time. I said that I had no idea about how or why they had appeared, but that I had seen a neurologist, had an MRI and the neurologist had said it was a functional movement disorder, common in those with EDS.

T decided to move to my right-hand side because he felt it might be safer. Not long after I said that I really needed to use the bathroom, which I did. I thought it must be nearly the end of the session, but T continued to work with me.  I climbed back on to the couch, but after a few minutes T suggested that I go and sit down. I went to stand for a while and then said I felt 'completely like jelly' and as if 'I had no bones.' I had no point of reference to stabilise myself and felt a little overwhelmed. T then suggested I started to do some jogging like movements - just rising and transferring weight. I started to do this and to use my arms, and then it hit me. I had never been able to run properly - as an adult or a child. This meant I would have never been able to escape movement. T said that this was absolutely critical and so important. It meant that rather than be able to take flight from a dangerous situation, I only had the option of freezing, thus limiting my choices. I started to get upset, briefly, but the upset disappeared and I made my way to sit down.

T asked me what I could feel. I said I could feel my thighs. We focused some more on what else I could feel and what felt OK in my body. Although we didn't get to all points of the body, we covered enough parts that I was put back together again. The muscular twitches were still going on, but in minor capacity. I said to T, "I am going to have to use all of my skills for the rest of the day," which T agreed with. I left the session feeling a little wobbly to say the least, but that I would be able to cope with intermittent twitches, which I did.

There were no further repercussions of the session until 2 days later where I felt like I had been hit by a bus and as if I had lifted about 15 children. I felt very sore and achey and massively fatigued and then felt very nauseous, although I wasn't physically sick. The rest of the day involved having more sleep and taking some painkillers. By the day after I was in a better space again. I wait to see what we do next session, but it is abundantly clear that these 'twitches' are trauma-related, that we aren't yet sure what the trauma is about, and that the left side is the "problem" or most traumatised side.

For more examples of my 'twitches' see