Round N’ Round We Go

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Round N’ Round We Go

by Nancy M. Turcich, NTS, RPP, RPE

On October 16, 1982, I fell forty feet from a cliff and crushed three vertebrae in my upper back. The fall briefly left me paralyzed from the chest down. While in the hospital, I underwent a four hour surgery to place stainless steel Harrington rods on either side of my spine. Bone was taken from my hip to fuse and stabilize my spine. At the time, I was subjected to everything allopathic medicine had to offer- CAT scans, Physical Therapy, Respiratory Therapy, Drug Therapy, surgery, and a plaster body cast. The medical community succeeded in putting me back together and they reintroduced me to the world of self mobility. Slowly, all the things most people take for granted were once again becoming a part of my daily life. After spending four weeks in the hospital, I was released to continue recovering at home.

I was very fortunate to “recover” quickly, or so it seemed. As time passed, I was able to independently get up and walk although I was far from grace. Over time, my limitations began to manifest themselves and frustration followed. I found myself having to deal with muscle spasms and a nervous system that felt clumsy. For years, I stumbled around thinking I was asking too much for a body that was calm and ran smoothly.

Eventually, my life took a big turn. After getting back on my feet, I decided to help other people to do the same. I enrolled in a pre-Physical Therapy program at NIU to prepare for a career as a Physical Therapist. However, that was not to be.

In 1985, I entered The New Mexico School of Natural Therapeutics in Albuquerque. Prior to my enrollment, I had no knowledge nor awareness of the natural therapy field. The school program began with the exploration of Massage Therapy. Due to nerve damage, I knew my legs and feet were most sensitive and they responded to touch in a big way. Although my body was very spastic, it was accepting positive touch more and more as the program progressed. Natural healing methods truly jump started my inner healing process.

Shiatsu (Japanese Acupressure), Deep Tissue Therapy, Polarity Therapy and Craniosacral Therapy were methods of healing explored within the program. Each and every therapy worked wonders upon my system. Slowly but surely, I was getting in touch with my body, my mind, and my soul. I felt wellness was within my reach; a long awaited process.

During the course of study we were introduced to Bach Flower Remedies®. Dr. Bach delicately removed flowers and plants from the environment and placed them in spring water. After allowing them to sit in nature and absorb its energetic vibration, he used them for healing purposes. These remedies facilitate healing on the mental-emotional level. In class, I chose “Star of Bethlehem” as my remedy due to its potency upon trauma. After considering all that I had been through, it seemed like a good place to start. Per instruction, our remedy was taken for a period of three weeks. At first I felt little change, but by the second week I was becoming despondent. That feeling lasted into the following week and then I felt happiness- happy to be alive. I used this remedy several times with a week or two between doses. Each time I had a similar reaction to the first encounter. Yet, through it all, as I sifted through the emotions I discovered missing pieces of myself. I was finally getting in touch with my emotional self and I was much more confident in my abilities on all levels. The “Star” was guiding me towards the light.

Throughout my time in therapy school I was feeling my body shift, which made it much more comfortable to live and enjoy life. I was amazed at the changes that had occurred simply by human touch. The most dramatic changes happened while receiving Polarity Therapy. Polarity Therapy facilitates the movement of energy throughout the body. This system works directly with the nervous system of the body and therefore, it provides stability and balance to the body. My body drank Polarity Therapy in as if it was nectar from the Gods. Although I didn’t know what Polarity Therapy was nor why it worked, I found it extremely soothing. My body was being stroked, sometimes without direct physical contact. Previously, I felt that my fall had only impacted my physical body. However, going through the Polarity process, I learned how deeply my entire “being” had been affected by my fall and my recovery. The trauma may have started out being physical, but as time passed it became clear how many layers the trauma had touched. Therapy school had shown me what to look for in therapy and what would assist my healing process.

In time, I found a therapist to work with me who specialized in Aromatherapy. Aromatherapy works with essential oils to help the body heal. These oils vibrate at various frequencies which, in turn, affect the body’s frequency, bringing it into harmony. I happened to resonate with the essence of Myrrh. Myrrh eased my pain and calmed my nerves. Once again, energy was at work. As time passed, my body became somewhat addicted to energy work. In 1989, I returned to New Mexico for continuing education classes. I was introduced to yet another healing technique. My instructor had noticed my body’s behavior in a previous workshop and he insisted that I participate in his Unwinding class. I entered the classroom with no preconceived notions nor expectations, which worked in my favor. Unwinding Therapy is a technique which allows a person to enter into old traumas and release them in a safe environment.

The Unwinding process unlocks many hidden emotions that may surface and be released in the session. A person can get into many awkward positions which mirror what occurred at the time of the trauma. Trauma can be on many levels and it is not only reflected on the physical level. My instructor seemed to know what was going to happen in my case and he arranged for me to be the first person on the table. There were groups of two or three people assisting each person on the table. Although my experience began on a table it didn’t end there. One of my classmates held my head and I felt anger quickly surface although I didn’t know what to do with it. As we proceeded, my body heading toward the floor. My therapists gently guided me and once safely on the floor, I curled up in a ball. They continued to assist me as I drew myself into a fetal position. As they held me there, I struggled to be free as I fought to release the trauma. My body temperature rose as a vast amount of energy was dispersed. After emerging from a ball on the ground I moved through various physical positions. Many things transpired in the two hours I was Unwinding, although I can only recall a few select events. When I finally opened my eyes the entire class had gathered around to watch my process in awe. It took some time to come back to reality after that, but it was worth the trip. What exactly happens while a person is Unwinding isn’t always clear. I recall the struggles I felt from within and the contortions my body took while it released. Things that had been hidden in my tissue finally saw the light of day. I discovered within the struggle lay a calm state; an inner peace felt deep in my soul.

Every trauma that we have experienced in our lifetime does not release at once. The body reveals pieces of the puzzle on several levels at different moments in time. Emotionally, I felt as though a floodgate had opened as anger, frustration, sadness and joy pumped through my veins in various stages of the treatment. As I was uplifted and protected while revisiting past events I also felt a great connection to spirit. The next time I went through Unwinding Therapy was at a workshop. Here too, I found myself accessing another level of my trauma. There was a great deal of physical pain, but it was accompanied by euphoria. My body arched just as it had when I landed on the rock in 1982. This time, however, I felt the impact and saw my body bouncing as it hit the boulder. The arching increased as I relived the experience. I could feel the rock spreading over countless areas of my backside causing discomfort throughout my body. It was surreal. I can’t say Unwinding is time travel, but it certainly feels that way. It provided me an opportunity to explore myself and the events that shaped my life for years. Unwinding seems to have its own agenda- overall well-being. I say that because it seems to show itself at the most appropriate time, not my time, but at the moment that works for everyone involved. It seems to have a mind of its own. This shouldn’t be too surprising because we all have Pure Consciousness within every cell. The body has all the wisdom and knowledge needed to provide us with the power to heal. Unwinding allowed me to tap into my inner abilities and discover the answers that I didn’t even know that I possessed. My healing process continues daily. I find people willing to help me negotiate the intricate doorways that lead me to a greater understanding of myself. Round N’ Round I go and where I stop, nobody knows.

For more details about holistic therapy and Nancy’s experience with healing refer to her book “Finding My Way From Paralysis To A Rich, Full Life.”  Reproduction of articles are permitted by Nancy M. Turcich, NTS, RPP, RPE, author and holistic bodyworker, with acknowledgments and credentials included. www.naturalmassagetherapy.com For further information or questions, please contact Nancy @ Natural Massage Therapy at 928-717-1251, nmt1@naturalmassagetherapy.com. All articles are for informational/educational purposes only. This information does not take the place of current treatment plans nor medications prescribed. Always consult your physician to determine the most beneficial course of treatment for your individual needs. Disclaimer: All of the material provided by naturalmassagetherapy.com is for educational purposes only. This information does not replace medication nor present treatment programs. Please consult medical personnel if you are presently under a physicians care, if you are taking medication, or need additional medical care.

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