Recovery – a part of my art journey


No fantastic new photo here today, but
one that is very meaningful.  These are my feet.  For the first time since I was 14 years old I can turnout easily with no pain to almost 90 degrees.  I was in a number of car wrecks growing up, one of which put me in the hospital.  By the time I fell in love with dance I was already destined for back pain and issues but fought it every day causing more issues in my ignorance of how to deal with the ones I had.  My back got weaker and weaker and my hips tighter.  Muscle strains and pulls were too common and I had a new ankle injury almost every month and even broke my foot.  Eventually I could hardly dance. It took 45 minutes before my body would loosen up to really move in class and performance lacked endurance and quality.  The more I struggled the more I pulled back from the dance world, taking fewer and fewer classes, turning down offers from schools and socializing less.  I turned to academics and began to teach, eventually pursuing undergrad studies both Bible and Elementary Education, and it was in school that I met and married my wonderful husband who had a lot of work ahead of him.


It was while I continued to try to teach our first year of marriage that my back problems became acute.  He had to carry me up and down the stairs of our second floor apartment. Sometimes I couldn’t get in or out of the car without help, or even get dressed.  My muscles were frozen through my back and legs and massage relieving pain but not fixing the problem.  A physical therapist diagnosed me with myofascial pain syndrome.  He was partially right, and I wish now that I had been living in a place that had more experience treating dance injuries.  The reason the fascia in my legs was aggravated and inflamed was because I had almost blown a disc in my lower back.  We didn’t find that out for almost two more years.

God is so gracious.  I was so close to breaking my back completely and with the help of a good friend a team of support, which my husband spearheaded, I began to recover!  I could bend again, pick up my children. I even started cooking again!  Dancing took longer but I held on 🙂  I was last year that I really started to move again and to gradually rebuild my body, but my technique had suffered terribly and the weak muscles which had begun my problems as a teenager were still underdeveloped or inactive.  I kept on dancing but I’ve been depressed and thinking I would never really be able to perform at peak level again. And then, just two weeks ago I started reading and studying work by a dance physiotherapist in Australia who helped me understand what I’ve been doing wrong, which muscles NOT to use, which muscles needed my help! and today I had my first breakthrough 🙂  image

Easy, pain free turnout!!!

For the first time in years I really feel like someday soon I’ll be able to create and perform all of the pieces I’ve created in my journals, to see those God given stories come to life.  And I feel like that feeling isn’t going to go away this time.