My writing inspiration likes to show up in those liminal hours of dawn and then a morning river swim fills in the gap. As my week progresses I will see glimpses of the same theme pop up here and there. Sometimes it's in a podcast, a book, a conversation with a friend or in classes I teach. I am so grateful to play my part in this co-creative process. The role I willingly accepted is that of synthesizer, sharing the finished product as your Saturday morning newsletter.
This week unfolded a bit differently. If you have been plugged into what’s been happening in our collective energy field no doubt your week was as wonky as mine. We’ve had quite the astrological ride leading through Mercury’s entering its preshadow on the 26th and today’s new moon eclipse.
Last weekend I arrived home from Maine filled with inspiration for my Gemmo Village. Monday morning I began some notes on the theme of fate vs. destiny. The words flowed and my friend the river offered her support. Then came Tuesday morning when I was visited by an old, not so welcome friend. My fingers, wrist, elbow and shoulder joint of my right side were acutely inflamed. It was what Alaine Duncan refers to in her book, The Tao of Trauma, a high-tone sympathetic state.
A high-tone state is a term she uses for a neurological dump of stored energy that pours into the muscles and joints to support a fight or flight response. The state according to Duncan, “leaves us prone to musculoskeletal and emotional constriction and rigidity.” I embodied that definition to a ‘t’. Not only was I physically constricted, but it flowed into to my emotional state as well.
Whether I attempted to convey the words swirling in my head by pen or keyboard, the pain would stop me in my tracks.
Having past experience with this state, I have learned that addressing the inflammation directly isn’t helpful. Until I offer my nervous system the necessary cues of safety to shift out of fight or flight, my pain still remains. I am so grateful to have learned and avoid the trap of what can become excruciating physical therapy, chiropractic releases, or supplements that never reach the root of the problem. Only when the Autonomic Nervous System receives the cues of safety it needs will it drop the state of protection and relief is experienced.
If you happen to be new here you might want to tune into this episode on the states of protection that I recorded last year with colleagues Maegan Lemp and Cameron Scott.
So here I am, stuck in this state of intense pain and the very tool that helps me process and regulate—writing—was physically impossible. I spent most of Wednesday and Thursday vacillating from a state of sympathetic fight to dorsal depletion. It was then the idea of the trickster archetype came to me in a dream.
The trickster loves to show up to weave doubt just as one takes determined steps forward toward destiny. The trickster’s role is to test. Are you made of what it takes to meet your destiny or are you fated for failure?
Perfect. Now it all begins to come together. Developmental trauma creates within habitual patterns of flight or flight. Even when we learn this logically, our cells are still wired for this pattern. In my case it was likely a subconscious thought that triggered my protection shortly after I publicly shared my dream for a future Gemmo Village. And when that old chronic pain arrived unannounced, of course it made me question my capabilities. So here I am again reminded of that narrow strip of middle ground. The often hidden path between giving up my power or forcing something with my will.
I’m thrilled by this lesson in using my trickster archetype to elicit positive growth. Certainly it would have been more welcome with less pain, but it would not have been so profound. Note to self: I can surrender to what is AND keep my power and sovereignty.
Here again I am reminded of what I know without a shadow of doubt:
Our physical body IS our best teacher. It is our ally here while walking this physical world to lead us to incarnate fully and become our highest self.
Let’s explore this further together,