“A Pain in the Neck”

No, seriously, i have a pain in my neck – it started on Wednesday, and i’ve spent two days in fairly frantic “make it stop, make it stop,” mode.

It is better.  Ice and heat, ibuprofen, aleve, and even a massage therapist have made it “better.”   It’s still stiff and sore and i don’t like it.

Working on the computer seems to make it worse, so i’m minimizing my time here.

Then i ran across this quote this morning:

“Pain is not wrong. Reacting to pain as wrong initiates the trance of unworthiness. The moment we believe something is wrong, our world shrinks and we lose ourselves in the effort to combat the pain.”
― Tara BrachRadical Acceptance: Embracing Your Life With the Heart of a Buddha

That made me think.  Does the frantic-ness of my desire to make the pain go away actually intensify it?

Of course it does.

And it’s not an unbearable pain.  It’s not a toothache, or childbirth.  It’s not a broken leg or arm that requires medical attention.  It’s just some kind of swelling, probably, a pinched nerve, some such thing.  Yes, if it persists i can go to a doctor or a chiropractor, but my experience with neck and shoulder pain is that it is more often about a need for me to relax and let go of something.

In Wherever You Go, There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life,  Jon Kabat Zinn says:

“To let go means to give up coercing, resisting, or struggling, in exchange for something more powerful and wholesome which comes out of allowing things to be as they are without getting caught up in your attraction to or rejection of them, in the intrinsic stickiness of wanting, of liking and disliking.”

He says:

“Just watch this moment, without trying to change it at all. What is happening? What do you feel? What do you see? What do you hear?”

And:

“Mindfulness practice means that we commit fully in each moment to be present; inviting ourselves to interface with this moment in full awareness, with the intention to embody as best we can an orientation of calmness, mindfulness, and equanimity right here and right now.” 

So that’s my goal today.  Letting go of the idea that my neck ISN’T SUPPOSED TO HURT!!  Letting go of my frustration that i’m going away for a romantic kinky weekend and a sore neck is TERRIBLE, AWFUL, HORRIBLE and JUST WRONG!!

It will be fine.  i’ll keep doing the things that help, but i’ll let go of the idea that this SHOULDN’T BE HAPPENING TO ME!!

It is what it is…

and maybe i’ll feel more of this:

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12 thoughts on ““A Pain in the Neck”

  1. vanillamom

    Neck pain hurts…that said…I LOVE the quotes you posted here. Is Jon K. Zinn related to Howard Zinn? (I keep forgetting the “i” in the middle there!). Being mindful can be hard–life has so many distractions, so many NO’s…so many WANTS…and letting go is NOT easy. It’s neat how you were “led” to discover those quotes just when you needed them most. 🙂

    Enjoy your weekend. I’ll send whammies to you!

    nilla

    Reply
    1. sofia Post author

      Thanks, ‘Nilla, i’m glad you enjoyed the quotes! The weekend was great and i’m sure the whammies helped. i don’t know if Jon Kabot Zinn is related to Howard Zinn or not, but could be – they’re both pretty amazing!

      Reply
  2. monkey

    I am sorry your neck hurts. That happens to my shoulders, and yes it’s always related to some mental challenge for me. Thank you for this. I needed to read it, and… i sooo needed to listen to Bob Marley! Perfect way to start my morning.

    Reply
  3. delfonte

    Sympathies, neck pain throws out whole body.
    I have a trapped nerve in my neck, it flairs up when I’m stressed and tired. Indian head massage helps, new pillow with extra support and walking. Other than that it clears up just as abruptly as it appears.
    Hope you can ignore it sucessfully…. Oh a flogging took my mind off it for a while 🙂

    Reply
    1. sofia Post author

      Oh, Delfonte, a “trapped nerve” even sounds painful! That could well be. i was able to ignore it for the most part – and o, yes, the spanking helped immensely! Thanks for commenting!

      Reply
  4. Genuine Risk

    I /needed/ this exact post today. Thank you. I’m confronting spiritual rather than physical pain, but the point is valid in both cases. Thank you beyond words – and I hope the weekend is – perfectly! – what it is, and includes lots of joy.

    Reply
    1. sofia Post author

      Hi, Genuine Risk,

      Thank you for commenting and for letting me know that this spoke to you. i’m sorry it’s taken me forever to respond to this, but your comment was a gift for me. Thank you. Hope all is well with you.

      Reply
    1. sofia Post author

      Hey, Sin, Yes, of course it is a silver lining, and maybe more importantly, it makes me glad i blogged it. Thanks for commenting.

      Reply
  5. Wordwytch

    Hope your neck gets better soon! Interesting thoughts too. I’ve ‘overused’ my right arm, so I can sympathize. I could stop doing what is making my arm hurt, or I can just work through it. I’m working through it for the most part.

    Reply

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