Saturday, 4 June 2011

My pot belly


I have always had a pot belly. By that I mean I have always had a belly that protrudes excessively. As I child I was extremely skinny, compared to my peers. But I always had a sticky out belly.

It would seem that was a marker for what was to come.

Over 20 months ago, I went to see my Doctor about the consistent pain I suffered, deep in my left hip. It kept me awake at night. So I was prescribed sleeping tablets and after some blood and urine tests. He sent me on a wild goose chase, undergoing many tests for kidney cancer! See blog here.

But I still had that deep hip pain. On my first visit I mentioned that  I had done lots of research, and I felt I had piriformis syndrome and/or hip bursitis.


I also mentioned the same thing to my surgeon during one of my many visits to him. He poo hooed it, and said it’s a made up term by Americans. It doesn’t exist. This made my osteopath see red when I told him.


splash_teejay_applied_pilates-1It was weird as Teejay always had to work on my piriformis muscle along with my psoas before I could attempt to work on a Pilates reformer bed.




Paul my physio and Pilates teacher now, always checks me out in class as I struggle with the stretches. He always tells me, my culprit is in my muscles. The pain is coming from my prolapsed disc, but the culprit is my muscles.

I feel I have been sent on a path of discovery in this long year of pain. Something made me check on Pilates reformer bed classes in my area  at 3am, one long January night. The incredibly knowledgeable Teejay was shown to me and I started receiving treatment and Pilates training from him. Then miraculously a new Pilates gym opened nearer to me. Thus lessening the agonising drive.

Who should I be given on my introduction session,but Paul. He is a fully trained physio as well as a fantastic Pilates teacher. I joined his rehab class and he gives me one to one tuition, in a room full of people. I’m not sure if I have mentioned this on here before. But it would seem I have been his most challenging person to date. After a rehab class with me in it, he had to retire to a darken room to recuperate.

IMG_9116-1pseAfter another challenging class I limped out of the class to see a man in white stood in front of me. Something made me stop and wait to talk to him.

He is the osteopath that works out of the centre. I told him about my back problems and history and I agreed to let him try and work his magic on me 3 times. Paul joined us during our talk, which is when I found out about him and the darkened room.

So yesterday was my second session. But miraculously after a long and lengthy first session and only 15 minutes of body work, I slept the two following nights straight through. It was such a joy to wake up and it was time to get up with everyone else.

Yesterday, he confirmed all my initial thoughts that I have probably got piriformis syndrome along with deep psoas muscle problems.


During our consultation I mentioned my weird eating disorder SED. It was like light bulbs going off in his brain. He said I am going to check your diaphragm as it can hold regressed emotional tension. And low and behold I have the tightest diaphragm he has ever felt.

It turns out the diaphragm connects to the psoas muscle at the base of your spine. A tight diaphragm means an incredibly tight psoas .A tight psoas means a tight piriformis. The sciatic nerve is then compressed by that tight muscle. The spanner in the works for me is that because I now have a prolapse disc. The surgeons have just been concentrating on that. But I know my body well, and I could tell that my muscles don’t feel right. It would explain why after only two days my epidural and nerve root injection didn’t work. A lot of the pain is as a result of my deep muscle problems. It would explain why as a child attending ballet for years, I was the only child who couldn’t do any of the deep stretches.


Now, why the pot belly you might ask. Well a tight diaphragm  means you stop deep breathing with your tummy and your stomach muscles slacken.

In my first session I couldn’t breathe using my stomach at all. I breathe just by moving my rib cage only slightly this then impairs the digestion and elimination process. Creating even more problems. Of course this is then compounded by the fact that my digestive tract no longer works properly because of the drugs I have to take for the pain.

So my pot belly was the marker for what was to come. I also have a tilted pelvis to add to the mixture. I would love to say that after my session yesterday I feel amazing. But I don’t . I have just struggled in extreme pain to see who rang our door bell. Luckily, Hubby got to the Jehovah Witness before me. Or I probably would have told him where to stick his pamphlet.

After the session yesterday I felt “ normal”, and pain free. But the short stint in the car on the drive home sent me back to the black hole of pain again.

1 comment:

Scrappi Sandi said...

Wow...what an educational post!! But it must be very gratifying to at least know what the problems are for sure & work towards easing their effects!! LOL at Paul needing to lie down in a darkened room...& just so you don't feel too bad I'd have told that Jehova's witness where to stick his pamphlet & I'm relatively pain free!!! :)


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