"Birds make great sky-circles
of their freedom.
How do they learn it?
They fall, and falling,
they are given wings."

-Rumi (translated by Coleman Barks)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


My life is currently in a series of transitions. I'm transitioning from suburban life to city life, from a familiar home to a new apartment. I'm transitioning from an employee to a student. Most importantly, I'm transitioning from a patient to a practitioner. Granted this transition will take me three long years, but the process is beginning. The problem with transitions is you cannot simply forget the past.

I'm having some difficulties moving from the patient mindset. This is because I still have pain and frustrations about what exactly is occurring with my body. Sitting through classes is quite difficult at times. It seems like my piriformis muscle refuses to relax, no matter how much I stretch it, stim it, or ice it when I get home from school. I'm looking into pelvic floor therapists in Philadelphia and will hopefully find some time to make improvements.

Don't get me wrong, my pain levels have tremendously decreased from a year ago. The combination of hip and pelvic surgeries, as well as the proceeding physical therapy and the intense prolotherapy injections into trigger points have made the pain much more liveable.

I think today was an especially emotional one because we covered the pelvis and pelvic floor muscles in Anatomy class. On the one hand, I was ecstatic because it's structures and muscles I'm so familiar with, which will give me time to catch up on previous lectures. On the other hand, it was difficult to sit through- mentally and literally. When we talked about the ischial tuberosities, I was more aware of the pressure and pain emanating from my own sit bones. When we talked about the pubic symphysis, I was more aware of the scars covering that area on my body, and the erosion of the bone I'm dealing with. We talked about the obturator internus, which I know too well how that feels to be internally palpated and worked on by a therapist. Finally we spent a great deal in the powerpoint talking about the piriformis and how it is the reference point of the pelvic region. Slide after slide, I stared it down, almost challenging it. This is my great enemy, who I will do everything in my power to finally defeat. I'm determined to learn everything I can so that I am no longer at its mercy. And so that I can effectively treat my own patients one day.

Just a side-note: now that I'm in school, I have less time to answer the personal emails I receive. Please know that I read each and every one, as well as all the comments you leave. You are not alone. And if you ever find yourself in Philadelphia, drop me an email and we can get coffee.


Anonymous said...

Tomorrow is 10 years since suffering VVS/PFD. In January I found a book (&im NOT a gullible person. This is not a self help book) that has given me answers and helped my pain tremendous. This pain is real, physical but can be changed. It works for a myriad of ailment. Dr sarno's mindbody prescription. It's NOT a psychological book. Read how many people had success on amazon. You have nothing to lose. I was cynical too but it took my pain down to a three! I wear jeans! Best of luck :)

Anonymous said...

Hey. I've been dealing with chronic pelvic pain (endometriosis, pelvic floor dysfunction, hernia, and Pelvic Congestion Syndrome) since 2002. I live in the Philly area and see an amazing physical therapist for women's health (and men's pelvic pain) in Doylestown if you ever are in need of one or need to refer anyone to one. http://www.cbptpelvichealth.com/ I had a question about your hip surgery. I had an inguinal hernia that may have caused nerve entrapment and was wondering if you went to a general surgeon for this or an orthopedist. I get nerve block injections but they have not been as effective and was hoping for maybe a more permanent solution. (Unless it will cause more problems) Which often more surgeries cause mo' problems with chronic pelvic pain. I hope you are doing better these days! And appreciate if you had any suggestions. And I totally get the setback thing. I have been a student a Temple university since 2001.