Aside from being measured for lymphoedema garments, I haven’t let anybody (aside from my husband and a vascular surgeon) touch my legs for 10 years because of something somebody said.
My personal trainer, massage therapist, and dear friend at the time, used to give me a massage every week. One day after a massage I noticed that he seemed really tired and quite flat, and I asked him if he was ok. This was his reply …
“Your legs have such toxic energy and when I massage them I pick up that energy and it makes me feel physically sick.”
He was a close friend, somebody I respected and trusted. And his words cut like a knife.
Immediately I felt my eyes sting. I made an excuse to leave very quickly, ran to the car, and bawled like a baby for quite some time.
Then I put my big girl pants on, tucked that message in the deep dark recesses of my memory where it has rolled around and without my conscious awareness, resulted in me experiencing some very negative feelings about myself. I’d forgotten all about that day, until today.
Today I had a massage booked for my back, neck, and shoulders with Julie, a lovely massage therapist and during the session she asked if I would like her to massage my legs. I very quickly and firmly said no and when she asked why, the reason and feelings flooded back.
I made a decision right then and there to change my mind and say yes to having my legs massaged.
Because I decided a few years ago that I wanted to embrace every opportunity for healing. It would have been really easy to say that I didn’t have time, or make up some other excuse, but as soon as I realised what was going on I decided to bring that awful memory to the light and give myself an opportunity for some healing after all this time.
Was it easy? Absolutely not!
Did I feel vulnerable? Exposed? Nauseated? 100% yes.
Was it worth it? 100% yes.
That memory has held me back in so many ways. Unwittingly, I’ve treated my legs as though they were toxic, just like my friend said they were. I’ve held ugly feelings about my legs and treated them as though they were foreign to me, poisonous … not just to me, but to others as well. It’s held me back in so many ways! I allowed somebody else’s thoughtless words to not so subtly distort how I felt about myself.
I’m very proud to say that I’m scheduled for another full body massage next week.