I had my Christmas massage yesterday which we always try to make special.
But this time it was going to be different because my body's all over pain levels have been extremely high for weeks with all the stress I've been going through and I am aware that my whole body feels very tight.
Normally my body relaxes when Caroline gets in to the massage but yesterday it wouldn't or couldn't.
I was flinching when she tried anything more than just a gentle surface massage, even on my back. So she eventually gave up and just worked on my shoulders and neck instead.
That is the first time in over 3-years of having massage with Caroline that I've not been able to physically cope with the massage. In her words, "there is so much stress in your body and your tissues that you just didn't have it in you for a proper massage today, physically or emotionally".
But the good thing which came from the massage I only realised later in the day.
I realised that just by having the massage I felt human again. I also realised I've not felt human for a long time.
Instead I have felt instead like a cog in the wheel of a vast system which is treating everyone who comes in to contact with it in cruel, nasty, inhumane ways without the means to meet even the most basic human needs through no fault of my own. That has felt really awful and been really disempowering!
So I realised that hey, it's good to feel human again. It's good to be able to feel my body, feel my skin, notice my breathing all over again, almost as if I've never felt any of those things about myself before.
It is something I need to hold on to that there is more to me than all the stress and how that stress has impacted my life, my mind, my emotions and my body.
I am alive, I am human, I have feelings and I have needs.