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Tag Archives: Sacrum

So.  Session Six.  Let’s just dive right in, shall we?  With the start of Session Six, we are officially past the halfway point in the series, which always makes me nervous as a client, because I feel like there’s so much more to do.  But Session Six is also this lovely session where, for the first time in the series, we (as clients) are facedown, and we get oh-so-much work on the back.  Seeing as back pain (and hip pain and shoulder pain and sciatica, etc.) are so common, it’s a session a lot of people, myself included, look forward to.  The “territory” of Session Six is the back of the body.  More specifically, we work from the bottoms of the feet, up the backs of the legs, through the glutes, to the lower and middle back.  Are you noticing a pattern here?  In Sessions One and Two, we address the top and then the bottom.  In Three and Four, we work the outside and then the inside.  In Five and Six, we focus on the front and then the back.  It’s kinda genius, but it’s another reason why you might not want to start the 10-series if you can’t commit to finishing it.  I wouldn’t want you to have an open and flexible front without a matching back!

Dr. Rolf used to quiz her students about the goals of each session.  She’d ask, “What’s the goal of Session Three?”  And her students would hazard guesses such as “increase anterior-posterior depth” or “balance the body along a plumb line” or “transition the client from sleeve sessions to core sessions.”  And while none of those answers were wrong, none of them were the answer that Dr. Rolf was looking for.  Eventually, her students learned that whenever Dr. Rolf asked, “What’s the goal of Session (fill in the blank)?” the answer she wanted was “free the sacrum,” regardless of which session it was.  Apparently, Dr. Rolf thought freeing the sacrum was important enough to be the primary goal of every single one of the 10-series sessions.  However, in Session Six, we actually spend an entire session working directly to free the sacrum.  So, hooray!

Your sacrum, in case you were wondering, is that awesome bone at the bottom of your spine that’s comprised of five fused vertebrae, shaped in a curved triangle, between your last lumbar vertebra (on top), your coccyx (on bottom), and your two hip bones (on the left and right).  If you’ve ever had a session from me, it’s the bone I’m holding at the very end of every session.  It’s the Latin word for “sacred,” is considered our anatomical center and the keystone of the pelvis, and it’s tied to, in addition to your spine and hips, many muscles like the piriformis, one of your hamstrings, and a few of your pelvic floor muscles.  Your rectum is nestled right up against it.  So, nothing important.  Kidding.  I can see why freeing the sacrum would be so critical.  It seems like a bone you’d definitely want in the right position, and free to move how it needs to move.  The sacrum is held in a ligamentous bed, basically swimming in a sea of ligaments, and if any one of those ligaments is either too short or too long, you might have problems.  It’s a broad, annoying, and painful range of problems, too, from sciatica and constipation, up to headaches and TMJ problems, and down through plantar fasciitis, with many, many crappy options in between.  Freeing the sacrum is no joke.

Unfortunately, the sacrum is a bone (and an area of the body) I’ve found to hold trauma more than most.  I don’t know why.  I just see it a lot.  That time you drunkenly tried to do a high kick and and fell on your bum instead; that snowboarding tumble; that trip down icy stairs…if you injured your sacrum, it tends to give you trouble for 10, 20, or even 30 years, while your broken arm heals in a few months with no after-effects.  I’ve also found the back of the body to be where boundaries are established, maintained, and broken.  I’ve long felt that we give our energy out into the world from the front of the body; be it love, anger, support, or just our opinion.  Where we receive energy from the rest of the world is in the back of the body.  And the back of the body is where we make the decisions, conscious or not, around what we allow in and what we don’t.  I’ve often found with people who had boundaries violated in a big way at a young age, accessing and connecting to the backs of their bodies can be really challenging.  That might have something to do with trauma hanging around so long in the sacrum.  Perhaps.  But still, 20 years?  Come on, body.  Regardless of the reasons, Session Six can be a good one for beginning the process of reestablishing an awareness of that back body and learning where there might be more work to be done in establishing and maintaining healthy boundaries.

I had been looking forward to Session Six because I’m always looking for a little more attention to be paid to my hips and healthy boundaries are something I’ll probably be working on for the rest of my life.  But when it was time for me to get my Session Six, I had kinda broken myself and was very ready for a Rolfing session of any number, and I figured Six was as good as any other.  See, I’d been playing volleyball and I dove for a ball that I probably should have just let go.  I ended up feeling like I had whiplash, like someone had taken hold of my spine and given me a good shake.  From my left hip up to the left side of my head hurt.  I had a headache, rib pain, low back pain, as well as a charming inability to follow conversation.  My brain felt broken and swollen.  So, yeah, I was ready for some bodywork.

Session Six is the session that most people struggle to stay awake through, and I’m no exception.  I definitely drifted in and out of dreamland while receiving the work, but when I stood up afterwards, I felt tall, grounded, and clear-headed.  As per usual, Dave had worked his magic and gotten me all sorted out.  My pain and the headache were completely gone.  My left hip still felt a little off, but after a few days, that also seemed to sort itself out.  In fact, it’s been several months now since I had that Session Six and I haven’t had any problems with that left hip.  And that left hip had been bothering me for 13 years.  See what I mean about that sacrum trauma sticking around much longer than it’s welcome?

One more core session to go (and it’s a doozy!) before we get to the integration sessions!

My dad’s parents were born in the same small town in northern Italy and until the day she died, my nonna would swear at my nonno in that Italian dialect and speak to us grandkids in strongly accented English.  I grew up knowing that “Santa Maria!” was the appropriate way to respond to spilled milk or outrageous prices and that “Ciao, bella bambina!” meant I was about to get my cheeks pinched.  I also grew up hearing “Con chi la ghettu?” quite a bit from not only my grandparents, but my mother, who loves this phrase more than all the others she’s learned over the years married to an Italian.

“Con chi la ghettu” isn’t standard Italian.  It’s all-the-way dialect, so it’s not something I learned in years of Italian classes, nor something I heard studying in Italy, as I wasn’t in that region.  I actually had to call my dad and ask how he thought it might be spelled, since my Italian dictionary has nothing resembling the word “ghettu.”  But the meaning was always apparent in my household: who are you mad at?  Literally, I think it means “with whom do you have it?”  But it was always used to ask the rhetorical question of who was to blame.  Mad that you got a “C” on that paper?  Con chi la ghettu?  Upset that you burned the pancakes?  Con chi la ghettu?  Pissed about the rain today because now you can’t mow the lawn and you knew you should’ve done it yesterday?  Con chi la ghettu?

And when I sat down to write this post, immediately, the phrase “con chi la ghettu” came to mind.  Because here’s the thing (in the words of Danielle LaPorte):

Everything that’s on your plate is there because you said “yes” to it.

Consciously or unconsciously, out-loud or in your head, you agreed to today.  You may have felt you had no choice, but there’s always a choice.  And so, if you’re not thrilled with how things are going, con chi la ghettu?

I was so thoroughly reminded of this on Friday, as I sat in agony on my couch, with every movement bringing more agony.  See, my sacrum was in open revolt.  Sitting hurt; as did standing; as did lying down.  And anything that made any part of my spine move, say like walking, or sneezing, or well, anything, made it hurt worse.  It was a pretty wild way to spend a Friday, let me tell you!

Also, it was my choice.  See, I’ve got this weird hip-popping thing ’cause my right sacro-illiac joint is stuck, since I fell down some icy stairs 8 years ago.  It’s not that big of a deal.  It’s loud and mildly uncomfortable, but on the grand scale, it’s really nothing.  But when I found myself in a yoga class Monday morning with only one other student, and the teacher asked if there was anything we wanted to focus on, I remembered that sticky sacrum joint and I said “I’d like some hip openers, please.”  And open those hips we did.  Which was great at the time.  Tuesday was a little sore; Wednesday, moderately uncomfortable; and Thursday night was awful.  But nothing compared to Friday.  I felt like I’d just fallen down those stairs the day before.  Groaning like an old man with every movement.  Wincing as I sat down.  Shuffling through the house at a snail’s pace.

And I thought to myself, “con chi la ghettu, Theresa?”  I had literally, out-loud, asked to open that hip up.  Unsurprisingly, there was some trauma stored in there.  At the time I fell, I was at a really low point in my life and there was a lot of anger, and shame, and hurt, and loneliness around that slip on the ice, not to mention the postcard-sized bruise on my butt for 3 weeks.  When I asked to open it up, the universe said, “Sure, if that’s what you want.  Have fun with that.”  So I tried to do my best and just be present in the process.  I looked at the anger and shame and hurt and loneliness that I had been feeling and welcomed each emotion, then reminded myself of how far I’ve come.  That heartbreak didn’t end me.  That loneliness didn’t kill me.  That shame was self inflicted and undeserved.  That anger was justified and has since been transformed into love.  And now this pain wasn’t going to end me either.  I could take a day or two to move slowly.  I could get some bodywork for myself.  I could practice energetic clearing on my own traumas.  No biggie.

So now I want to open it up to you.  What’s on your plate right now that you’re not thrilled with?  Can you figure out when you said yes to it?  Or how you continue to say yes to it with your choices every day?  Is that a choice you still want to make?  Ultimately, con chi la ghettu?  Pain isn’t the enemy.  But knowing why you’ve allowed that pain into your life can go a long way towards healing.

As I was walking through the snow last night, I almost slipped and fell a few times on hidden ice.  Which reminded me of a bad fall I took 8 years ago on some icy steps, which resulted in a hip that ‘pops’ very loudly on a fairly regular basis.  Maybe you’ve had the pleasure of hearing it yourself.  And, because I think about these things, I started thinking about the sacrum, which is the topic of today’s blog post!

So, what is a sacrum?  At the bottom of your spine, right after your lumbar vertebrae end, but before your coccyx begins, there are 5 more vertebrae that start fusing together when you’re around 16 years old and end up becoming one bone around the time you turn 26.  That one bone is your sacrum.  Isn’t it cool that your body is still changing at 26?  5 bones become one!  Voilà!  (Your clavicles aren’t fully calcified until you’re about 40!)  But this isn’t the only reason your sacrum is so awesome.  The sacrum is the geometric center of the body, which is pretty important, it turns out.  Also, the sacrum is considered part of the spine AND part of the pelvis.  What?!?  This puppy moves like the spine and moves like the pelvis, which means it’s the only bone in the body to rotate on three (count ‘em, three!) axes.

And while that’s cool and all, why would you care about the sacrum?  Let’s be honest here, you probably won’t care about the sacrum, even after reading this.  But the thing is, what with the sacrum being the geometric center of the body, it really is connected to everything else.  And so when the sacrum isn’t happy and free to move on all three of those axes, you tend to get other problems popping up all over the place.  Also, in a funny twist, it seems to be the injury that people most often forget to mention in my office.  They remember getting their tonsils out and breaking their arm and the bad ankle sprain and the minor concussion.  But that fall on their butt that left them struggling to walk for the next month?  Conveniently slipped their minds.  I’m just as guilty of this, having received almost 30 Rolfing sessions before I remembered my awesome fall down those icy steps.

But if that shoulder, or knee, or neck thing just won’t go away, I’ll probably take a look at your sacrum.  Luckily, I do those fancy scans that will tell me if the problem is in the sacrum, even if you won’t.  There’s even a special energetic tracing pattern just for the sacrum.  That’s how big of a deal the sacrum is.  And if you’ve had a bad fall that’s now affecting your shoulder, or knee, or neck, I’ll probably do that energetic tracing on your sacrum, so there.  If you think this is something you could benefit from, just say the word during your next session and we’ll take care of it.  I’ve got your back.  Literally.  That’s all I’ll say on the sacrum.  For now.

On a completely unrelated note, happy Winter Solstice! And Merry Christmas, and happy whatever it is that you celebrate this time of year!  I hope you’re staying warm and enjoying all the warmth and light (at least inside our homes) of the season!  Thanks for being awesome!  I’m glad you’re a part of my life!

I know you’ve been dying to know what’s on the menu, so without further ado, here you are:

Energy Work Demo Day

A prix fixe tasting menu for those curious about SourcePoint Therapy with Theresa Zordan

Starters
Diamond Points: setting four points around the body to provide an energetic container for the session  
Blockage Scan: a thorough scan of your body’s energy to find the primary blockage to the flow of information

Entrees-Please Choose One   
Rectangle Points: setting and balancing four points relating to the body’s physical energy; great for pain or after chemotherapy, radiation, or any trauma.  
Navel Point: supporting and encouraging the flow of healing heaven energy in the universe and the body      
Sacral Point and Sacral Diamond: supporting and nourishing the vital life force energy within the body; helpful after any bad falls to the tailbone and for TMJ
Guardian Points: acknowledging and invoking the inherent guardian energy at 15 specific points on the body; stimulating the physical and psychic immune system
Extraction: removal of foreign energies from the body
Stick Figure: reestablishing the basic energetic lines around which bones form; good after having any broken bones or surgeries.
Crescent Moon: creating left-right balance as well as grounding.  Goddess energy for those that are lacking.
Trauma Scan: locating blockages specifically related to traumatic events and addressing the largest of these   
Emotional Scan: locating blockages specifically related to the emotional body and addressing the largest of these  
Karmic Scan: locating blockages specifically relating to karma while addressing the primary blockage of these
Chakra Balancing: addressing all 7 major chakras, from crown to root in order to balance, clear, and awaken
Chef’s Choice: the most necessary of the above entrees, based on the chef’s intuition

Desserts
Sacral Hold: supporting and nourishing the vital earth energy within the body; settles and integrates the nervous system
Diamond Points: reestablishing the four diamond points to bring closure to the session

30-minute sessions.  $10 each.

So what’s your fancy?  A karma scan?  Maybe a sacral diamond?  Call me at 303-261-2568 to schedule your 30 minute energy session for just $10.  Looking forward to seeing you there!