I saw a new student to our balance class walking in behind her walker. She was bent completely over with arms outstretched in front of her, hands on the walker handles, head and eyes looking directly down towards the floor. I was surprised and curious at how to teach the class and include her.
Sitting down on a chair was an effort for her with turning, twisting and letting go of the walker to sit down all the while talking and totally unaware that we had started the workshop. She began her story before coming through the doorway and didn’t stop for most of the class.
Her story, the one that gave away the secret of her current condition was possibly the first one she shared. One we could all face in some way. She had taken her elderly husband into an overcrowd hospital where they left him in a bed in the hallway. She tended to him herself and when trying to lift him she hurt her back and bent over in pain. From the looks of her posture she never stood back up! Did I forget to mention she is 4 foot 11 inches and a senior!
After many doctors visits with x-rays she heard there was nothing medically wrong. No spine or brain damage and no strokes, etc. In addition to her fear, she now experiences her husbands feelings of frustration at her condition.. She has fallen a few times and lost three teeth.
Some challenges we experienced together with her loss of connection to her own body:
- The first challenge – stop talking long enough to experience the movement patterns and let everyone benefit from the workshop
- The second challenge – to support her sitting posture. Not only was she falling over in standing, she was falling over in sitting.
- The third challenge – remind her to stand up.
- The fourth challenge – re-introduce her to her pelvis.
- The fifth and sixth – to re-introduce her to her legs and feet.
Surprisingly she grew up a dancer and taught it up until that hospital visit you read about above. When she began to listen and follow our guided movement patterns she recognized them as movements she made and taught in her own classes. Now in her frozen state she wasn’t making these movement patterns that were hers for seventy years. Pain and fear had erased them from her posture and memory!.
Read more on what affected her the most and shifted her into paying more attention to learning what she could do verses seeking answers