photo by Jäger on Unsplash

photo by Jäger on Unsplash

early, one cold winter morning, i timidly stepped into the hospital room. i slipped out of my clothes & slowly put on the too-familiar, airy hospital attire. as i lay down on the gurney, tears flooded my eyes. i let them go, warming my cheeks & dampening my gown.

my mind could not stop my body from remembering. 

the body tells stories. our muscles hold memories. 

6 months earlier i had spent the summer in & out of the hospital, always adorned in the ass bearing gown. with each visit, a new memory was being stored in my cells.

the first, when my large intestine was removed & an ostomy placed upon my abdomen. next, being cpr’d & ECMO’d back to life from a pulmonary embolism. moving on to a machine breathing for me until my lungs understood their function. (as i lay intubated one night, it took the lab tech 17 pokes to get any veins willing to make their presence known. he was kind & gentle, but veins do not care about stuff like that).

by the time my lungs figured out their role, the doctors needed to slow down a bleed in my brain, followed by killing the septic shock invading my bloodstream. the visits ended with a second blood clot exactly where the first had formed.

each of these visits consisted of beeps, pokes, IV’s, medicines, blinking lights, doctors, residents, medical students, nurses, CNA’s, visitors, pain, nausea, ice chips, fear, exhaustion, confusion, blood draws, ostomy changes, measuring input & output, tears, coloring, what ifs, what abouts, dreaming & wondering.

every single minute of every single day for 2 months.

“sometimes memories sneak out of my eyes & roll down my cheeks” ~ author unknown

which brings me back to that winter morning 6 months later. as i lay on the plastic hospital sheets, an ugly cry emerged from deep within me. not because i was scared. i cried because i remembered. every single cell in my body recalled what it had endured.

i needed to allow the memories to come up, so i could let them go.

at the time, i did not have the words to explain what was happening. i felt foolish & probably traumatized my nurse that day.

21 years later, i am able to look back with admiration, for my body’s intelligence in helping me heal (& with gratitude for my nurse).

our memories & emotions live as energy within our bodies.

i’ve learned to listen to my body

& honor it’s messages.

there can be powerful healing

in the remembering.

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  1. Mary Lou Schwab says:

    Oh, How vivid the "Memories!!!" They helped you SURVIVE however painful Love you always, Mom

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  1. Mary Lou Schwab says:

    Oh, How vivid the "Memories!!!" They helped you SURVIVE however painful Love you always, Mom