A Story Of ALS And CST
You may have heard of ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. It is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. ALS causes the gradual weakness and atrophy of muscles and loss of control of voluntary muscles. The nerves controlling speech, swallowing, and limb movements are often affected. At present, a cure does not exist for ALS.
For some time now, my client, DM, has been coping with the progressive deteriorative changes in his body function from ALS. When DM and I started working together, he drove to my office for his treatment. Now I visit him at his home.
This is DM's story on his experience with ALS and how CranioSacral Therapy (CST) has thus far supported him through his processing of the nuances of his condition:
"CST allows me to tune in with my body--to be more aware of what is going on in my body--the fasciculations (I call them my little friends that like to dance and chat during a session); the excessive saliva gathering in my mouth; sore places from muscular cramping; the tiredness; and shifts such as more opening of my chest to breathe.
CST has helped me to manage and improve my ALS symptoms. Early on in my treatment, I noticed reduced inflammation. And when I received work in my mouth on my hard palate, I found that afterwards I felt like I had more space in my mouth for speaking and movement of my tongue. At this stage, my gag reflex is too strong to receive such work in my mouth, so Monica works outside it. I feel like I have more room to breathe, swallow and talk at the same time, at a moment in my progression when each of those activities don't seem to be able to work together anymore.
My color always improves in my face.
When I am having a session, I am able to visualize my old self moving and going about my business without challenges and what that feels like for me emotionally and spiritually to be in that place.
Before receiving CST, I was experiencing a tug of war within myself--of wanting to have this condition removed from me or me removing myself from it--as opposed to acknowledging the changes I could not control.
Since CST, I have a more give and take relationship with ALS and how it expresses itself in my body; there is more space and acceptance of ALS within me. I have a more appreciative and balanced relationship with my body, instead of just take, take, take.
I feel more normal with the my progression with ALS instead of it all feeling like a giant step backwards."