I don’t see myself as a rebel; rebels are cool and renegade saying things that leave tremors in a room as they leave. Rebels are people you wish knew you existed but probably don’t; like the Jordan to my Angela, or the Angela to my Brian, in My So-Called-Life; they’re just way out of your league.
And then I reflect on my life and think about some of the choices I’ve made. I know I have rebelled; be them great balls of rebellion (in my tiny world) or smaller rebellions. OK, so I’m not ‘cool’ of course – but not all rebels have to be – I’m learning we come in all shapes and sizes.
As a rule, I hate people telling me what to do (of course, I don’t mind telling others what to do)! There’s something in me that will either overtly do the opposite or question (consistently, relentlessly), or just simply ignore. Occasionally though, I’ll accept it – but there’s a limit before my innate desire to do the opposite kicks in. On reflection, I’ve always been like this. I did it in many aspects of my life growing up, at school and having left, my rebellion has remained intact and I carry it around with me, often hidden and out of view.
They say your stomach is your second brain. During my sickness, it began to reflect how my brain was feeling; unwell. I was in and out of hospital and together with my poorly back, was desperately searching for help. Before discovering the magic of my Podiatrist, I stumbled across a Groupon voucher for a Chiropractor.
He was a long-haired Australian – who, despite displaying the right amount of concern, made three suggestions that forced me to revert back to my default position on being told what to do.
The first suggestion. During the initial assessment, I needed to push against his arm with the back of my leg. I felt I was at rock bottom at this point and my lack of strength simply illustrated this; I just couldn’t push against him. I was weak and felt pretty pathetic. He asked me to remove my nose ring, which I dutifully did. (I had my nose pierced in my second year at University – an act of rebellion or embracing my culture, I’m not sure. (Although I initially had my nose pierced when I was only 3 – on a family-visiting holiday to India, but, on my return, my dad had it removed because he really hated it)).
Unaware of what he was trying to prove – we repeated the same exercise. Now here’s the thing; I had this inexplicable Wonder-Woman strength. I swear, the difference was phenomenal – I’m genuinely not making this up! I was kicking my legs back as if swatting a fly. If somebody else was telling me this, I’m not sure I would have believed them (either). I would have Larry David-ed them with my eyes searching for a truth. But I swear to you, this is the truth!
Watching the YouTube clip above, I would have scoffed assuming it had been a fabrication. I would never have believed it if I hadn’t experienced it. I can’t remember the technical term for it, but essentially when we add something foreign to the body, there can be a reaction to it. For the most part, metal objects will interfere with the electrical activity within our bodies; your body can reject it, or rather, rebel against the object.
So, all I needed to do, was leave it out – simple. But I couldn’t bring myself to! I’d resolved to take it out before my appointments but then feeling guilty about the deception, went in unashamedly sporting it! He (quietly) asked, “Donchoo wanah git bedah?” I did, I do, but I couldn’t remove what I felt was integral to my identity; I’d just get better, I decided! It was another inadvertent rebellion.
The second suggestion was to bring in some of my cat’s fur, having expressed how significant he’d been over some really difficult months. Same scenario – we repeated the exercise with some fur wrapped in cling film, placed on my stomach (with and without my nose ring). And you guessed it – I was Super-Strong without the fur (and piercing). So now all I needed to do was lose my cat! Well, that wasn’t going to happen either – ironically he was my strength, achieving what I’d deemed impossible; a purpose to get out of bed. I rolled my second ball of rebellion into his room as I left.
The final suggestion. Drinking breast milk. In particular colostrum; milk produced within the first few days of giving birth. You read it correctly, he suggested for a poorly tummy, I should give breast milk a whirl! (Formula milk, although a poor substitute for this, would also work). It contains all the essential fat, protein, vitamins and minerals vital for recovery. So, in some warped way, it kind of made sense (I’m cringing as I write this). It instantly made me think of a vegan campaign I’d seen a while back…
But, I couldn’t get over the oddness of it (was it just social conditioning or just too weird)?! Did he just have a fetish for (feedback on the benefits of) breast milk? Was there a room of nutty chiropractors daring each other to suggest it to poorly patients? Was this quackery? Or was this a genuine remedy for a sick belly? (I guess there was some truth to the nose ring (and possibly the fur, although I loathe to admit that))…
I wasn’t sure if this was something that I could pursue or just have to accept as a probable fact. Did I attempt this final suggestion (formula would be easier to source, I guess, just the local Boots, or wherever)..? There’s something in me that will either overtly do the opposite or question (consistently, relentlessly), or just simply ignore. Occasionally though, I’ll accept it – but there’s a limit, before my innate desire to do the opposite kicks in…