After the election, I found myself dizzy, off-center and, constantly buried far down beneath the covers on my bed. I’d suddenly had the air sucked out of my lungs and felt as if I had been separated from my body. It’s been less than a month since the switch, but I was still forgetting to breathe, forgetting to move. Suddenly it hit me, as much as I wanted to dissociate, I could not.
I’m finishing up my masters in social work, working as a facilitator at an adventure therapy program and have training in the mind-body connection—I am not allowed to walk away from this discomfort. So here I am, sitting with it, looking for solutions, connecting with my breath once again. With breath, there is healing. With movement, there is hope. My years of experience and training have proven this time and time again. We all know that it’s not possible to control everything, but it is possible to get outside and go for a walk, to spend time with loved ones, to dance. With this body, I’ve lived so much life. I have given and received so many hugs. I have slept in tents and in my car. I’ve searched frantically for ways to make money so that I could eat that day. I’ve splashed around in the sea. I’ve climbed mountains and trees and water-slides. I’ve kissed my partner and the head of my spunky niece. All of this took movement. All of this took breath. Each moment has passed, weaving memories through my body like yarn onto a loom. I promise I’ll keep on moving forward, moving toward healing myself and those around me. When I grow tired and weak I will simply remember my breath. I’ll remember all of the people before me who’ve suffered greatly and I will remember, during the darkest times, to move my body.
Author: Ali Rutowski
Author Bio: Ali Rutowski is a writer, artist and lover of the outdoors. She briefly lived in Istanbul, which is when she decided to go back to school to be a therapist. She has worked as a construction worker, done therapy at a rehabilitation center for teens with addiction, and currently works as a facilitator at an adventure therapy program. Rutowski has a special interest in using art, horticulture, wilderness, mindfulness techniques and other holistic therapies to heal various mental health struggles.
Link to social media or website: http://instagram.com/allisoncolleen