As a child my father would stare through me while I was talking to him. I don’t know what was on his mind but he seemed a thousand miles away most of the time. Like I wasn’t there. I am not putting this on him. There were plenty of other dynamics and experiences in my life which I took on and integrated in a similar manner. Instead of fighting to be heard I silenced myself.
Why? I don’t know.
Coughing, Stress, and Vocal Chords
Fast forward 20 or 30 years to the time after the end of my first marriage. Some of my living environments didn’t have the cleanest air. Allergens, dust, mold no doubt, combined with stress and getting sick I ended up with a chronic cough for over 9 months. Last week, I went to my new doctor for the first time. Instead of telling me to take a decongestant he listened, observed, and asked a lot of questions.
By the time I went to see the doctor meditating was getting to be a chore because of the distracting, uncomfortable sensations in my throat. Even more frustrating was when I went to bed. Being any position but sitting up or on my stomach was an anxiety provoking experience. At times the idea of getting in bed would spark anxiety.
Sleep deprived and unable to go deep into trance states or even really do much energy work I was getting desperate. Within a week of becoming intentional about relaxing my throat and neck the sensations in my throat are at times gone. The chronic throat clearing and cough is also much less severe.
What happened to my vocal chords?
Back when I had that prolonged cough (and no job, medical insurance, or stable home) viscous cycle started. Coughing, clearing my throat, and holding tension in my neck and throat (post-divorce stress!) would irritate my vocal chords. Irritated vocal chords protect themselves with phlegm. The sensation of phlegm would trigger clearing my throat or a cough. Relaxing my throat and neck just made everything feel worse so tension it is! Over time this just became worse and worse. Healing never happened.
Physical Healing & Breathing a Little Easier
The solution was so simple.
What he wanted me to do was focus on relaxing my throat, neck, and jaw. What? Relaxing those muscles just made the swollen sensations I was experiencing worse!
Every time I noticed tension in my neck and throat I relaxed those muscles. Talk about uncomfortable! His advice though made sense. He even got out an anatomy book for me to see the muscles and vocal chords. After a week of intentional throat relaxation I’ve started feeling much better. Feeling good enough to get back to my trance and energetic work on a daily basis. Which reinforces the relaxation. Very nice!
There has been an unexpected benefit. My sinuses are a little bit clearer and I feel less post nasal drip. Yay!!! When I am doing the relaxation I noticed I was relaxing my face as well. My sinuses seem to be opening and I think I can breathe a little easier through my nose as a result. I wonder if the relaxed muscles allow the fluids to go down my throat without clogging my vocal chords?
I don’t know. Just a theory.
Reclaiming My Writing Voice
You probably won’t be terribly surprised to hear there was a parallel non-physical experience.
For years, since about 2001 or 2002, so I have been attempting to write about my personal paranormal and consciousness related experiences. You wouldn’t believe how many websites or blogs I have created. My purchase history of domain names is a record of failures. I really wish I had held onto some of them.
No I never could get myself to write down or even record the audio of my stories and experiences. No matter what I tried. Nothing worked.
What held me back?
Fear and habit. I had become so silent for so much of my life I became fearful to share. Fear of judgement was the biggest thing. The habit of staying silent was a great complement to the fear. Between them silence was guaranteed.
As far as the fear, sharing experiences which I felt were pretty far outside mainstream belief systems was scary. I didn’t want to be judged! Reinforcing these beliefs I was holding were friends who shared similar beliefs. It’s not surprising. People who share common beliefs often find others who share those beliefs.
This is all quite ironic. I am a very good teacher with experience in a variety of areas from teaching Argentine Tango, flight instructing, math and computer tutoring, and other topics. Helping people discover paths within themselves to grow is one of my gifts.
Sharing my stories? Wasn’t happening. Fear was holding me back.
In The No Fear Zone
I still have fear but fear isn’t in charge. Louder than fear is another voice and belief pattern which is getting stronger. This other voice is not afraid of judgement. I believe it is important for me to enjoy what I am doing. Creating and playing is part of that enjoyment.
Everyday, whether I publish or not, I write. I am establishing a habit of writing which is going on a month. There is no reason I have encountered yet to not write. The habit of daily writing is helping me share my stories, experiences, and lessons on this blog.
Where did I find this other voice?
I have started to surround myself with the voices of other people who are positive and encouraging. These people understand and just as importantly have compassion for people going through the process. Let me introduce you to one these fabulous people.
Ryan Biddulph and his blog Blogging From Paradise are a must read. I suggest checking him out even if blogging from paradise isn’t your thing. Ryan shares many lessons about moving through fear. His stories have been very helpful as I find my voice. You can also follow him on Twitter @RyanBiddulph.
The Spiritual Path Perspective
As is typical in my life, the inner reflects the outer, the outer reflects the inner. The spiritual and the physical are often reflections of one another.
Walking my path means being aware of the interplay between different realms of perspective. Reaching the point of not being able to meditate or even sleep and not being able to share stories of my spiritual path are facets of the same gem. The physical healing of my throat and vocal chords happened within weeks of beginning to write and even publish blog articles more frequently.
Now, the specifics may not appear to have anything to do with each other. Did the act of writing actually directly begin the healing of my throat? I don’t believe so at least from the physical world cause and effect perspective.
From the spirit world perspective I have no doubt the physical and the emotional situation has been intended for my growth. The setup was in play a long time ago. Finally, circumstances came together and it was time to learn. Understanding the nature of fear from another angle as well as speaking of things which used to be kept secret in previous eras were lessons for me to gather and grow from in this life.
Self-Awareness and Feelings
There are a few tricks I have learned to be able to get the most growth from these lessons. One of the big ones is to be aware of my internal state. Feeling tensions and emotions physically in our bodies is a huge help in ultimately working through spiritual lessons.
From what I can tell our bodies must hold everything we have gone through i life from birth. I can’t prove it bit my personal experience has been my body doesn’t forget. This doesn’t count the patterns we pick up and hold onto in our brain. Not only do we have a physical feeling in our body but we have those stories and beliefs we repeat in our heads!
At one time this biological level of memory was very helpful in keeping us safe. The only problem is the memories and patterns stay active long after the danger has passed! Being able to watch your feeling and patterns is important to be able to make changes. Mediation and developing the habit of introspection have been core for me. I have also gotten a lot of help from a good therapist!
Being willing to be with our fears without judgement is so important. I was protecting myself so much I refused to do the very thing I needed to do to heal. Ultimately, my block was pushing me away from the path and practice of meditation, energy, and trance work I loved.
The obstacle was the way. What I needed to transition through physically was the temporary discomfort in my throat which allowed healing to begin. At the same time, my growth energetically and spiritually required me to establish new habits and beliefs to transcend fear.