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inspiration of the month - brenda kitchen

Early in 2016, I started a journey to discover why at what I felt was the young age of 45 I was having very serious health issues. A two-level cervical fusion, a left ankle reconstruction, a broken tooth, shingles, pneumonia twice a year, etc. I’d been single and dating for 8 years and was also wondering why relationships seem so easily obtained by basically everyone BUT me. So, in my search for some answers I started asking different medical specialists these questions. I found myself having a psychological assessment. At the end of this assessment, the very abrupt psychologist re-entered the room I was sitting in and announced I had PTSD and that I needed to start therapy 2-3 times per week. There was no explanation as to how they arrived at this diagnosis or description of the therapy, or really any other information. I had little knowledge of PTSD and was very surprised by this diagnosis. And, maybe more importantly, is this the source of my physical and relationship problems? I never returned there. I did some googling both online and at an actual physical library. I read books and educated myself. A common theme among the books for treatment for PTSD is yoga. I did get into see a different psychiatrist and started therapy. I also discussed the issues with my primary care physician and started medication. Then I saw the groupon (or maybe just a coupon?) for a month of unlimited yoga at Burn Within Yoga and decided to give it a try for a month before hockey season started. I went to a beginner’s yoga class and left thinking I actually did most of that! The instructor was so kind and explained everything so well and always gave alternative poses. I went to a hot yoga class. (Probably on the hottest day of 2016.) I left that class feeling like my body had actually changed. I went to an all levels vinyasa class and left feeling like I could really physically get something out of these classes. Next was yoga sculpt which I felt for days! And finally, I went to an urban zen class. I describe urban zen to my friends and family as therapy without words. I often just don’t have the words to explain how and why I’m feeling something. Emotional and physical trauma has affected me in ways I can’t even explain to my trained therapist. I felt trapped on a merry-go-round that I couldn’t stop. My life just kept circling. I kept repeating patterns and not being able to stop. I was also carrying around an unexplainable weight. I had buried feelings so down deep, I didn’t even recognize them anymore. I couldn’t feel anything - good or bad. I would have described myself as “dead inside.” The first feeling I felt in years was at urban zen when reiki was given. I could feel some of the actual feelings coming out. I silently cried in the dark room. It was the best feeling cry I’ve ever had. Thad been so long since I’d felt anything. I appreciate the instructors. I appreciate hearing over and over that I can take my time, there’s no rush to get where I’m going with yoga. There’s no pressure. No judgement. Just healing. I’m sorry I took so many months off while I couldn’t decide to make any type of commitment during the busy hockey season. i’ve decided not to do that any more.

~Brenda Kitchen

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