When Your Greatest Enemy Is You

I can’t move my right arm – which is a problem because as it turns out, having mobility in both arms is very useful. A trip to the doctor confirmed a frozen shoulder they say is a result of an overly ambitious gym routine combined with natural wear and tear on my 44 - year - old body.  Or maybe there is no real reason, no one can tell me for sure.

It appears this occurrence will land me in the physical therapist office 4 hours per week for the next few months. And each visit hurts like hell. I’m talking cussing like a sailor kind of pain, which I try to keep under my breath as not to scare the other patients. I’ve only tried to hit the therapist once or twice during treatment…we all agree, I’m doing very well under the circumstance.

My physical therapist explained that there was nothing technically wrong with my shoulder, in that it could move but my body was preventing it from doing so to protect me from pain. He said if they put me under, they could easily manipulate the shoulder and break up the adhesions around the joint because my body’s defense mechanisms would not be standing in the way. In a way, my body is turning on me.

They call this defense guarding.  

@@The truth is we will do just about anything to avoid pain.@@ 

We block out, we shut down, we repress memories, we stay in bad jobs, and we stay in bad relationships. We lie to ourselves, we lie to others. We tell ourselves things are good when things are crap. Sometimes we don’t even know we’re doing it, which is called denial. Denial is a guarding of the soul and it is a very powerful thing. It’s what we do when we don’t have any way to process the realities of life. So, we deny our needs, we deny our feelings, and we medicate so we don’t have to think about it.

We make choices that perpetuate this way of living; never to face our harsh realities. If you let it, denial will steal your life and take away your happiness.  

She didn’t really mean what she said, I know she loves me. I don’t want to hold her accountable and rock the boat. I’ll just do it better next time so she stops yelling. 

He only hits me after he’s been drinking…If I can just keep the alcohol away things will be ok. Plus, he was really nice last night. 

The problems in our marriage won’t affect the kids. They’ll be fine. I’m sure they hardly notice the fighting - and the distance - between us.

I don’t want to tell anyone how I really feel. It’s better to just keep the peace…who’s in the mood for a brownie?

If you spend your life guarding and living in denial, it will slowly eat away at your soul until there is nothing left.

The situations in your life that are causing you pain will not go away, they only come back again in new and improved packaging until you deal with them.  

@@Nothing changes if nothing changes and the thing that has to change is you.@@ How you handle these situations, determining the things you will tolerate and no longer tolerate in your life. 

Where are you guarding?  Are there areas in your life where you are in denial? The first step is getting honest about reality.

The process is challenging but not impossible – trust me it can be done. I’m living proof.

Here’s to making it great!