My finger slides across his shoulder…lightly…just enough to let him know that I am there and just before he turns and reaches up, me following; each of us dancing to the music in response to each other. Spinning, turning, sliding…the fluidity of the dance…that is what I love.
If I push, I get immediate feedback…a strain, a frustration, a disappointment. I practice letting go and staying attentive, both needed to be in harmony with myself, my partner, the music.
I have been there before, my excitement, my ambition pressing my body forward, pressing for something that it cannot do or is not ready at that moment and then there is a catch, a glitch, an injury. Damn. Again. Feedback. “Live and learn”, I say to myself. Do I? Do I learn? I like to think so, but only when I listen and listen deeply.
Reaching. Clarity. Striving. For what? Choice. Having choice. In the hierarchy of my priorities, reaching is the background. Connections, the foreground. Connections to know what I want, to have a more satisfying response to life, and a greater sense of generosity.
I am leaping! Catch my drift…
We can start with the reach by looking at the architecture of the shoulder girdle. It is fascinating! Just for the fact that it is the connection between the arm and the torso and allows us to get what we want-food, clothes, shelter, love. But as with all of those things, we don’t always get what we want (thank you Rolling Stones) and stuff happens. Things go wrong. And when they do- driving, reaching or hugging can become problematic.
What does it take to have healthy shoulders? Functional shoulders?
Freedom of movement, strength, connection to the rest of the body. When we use our arms, we don’t think, “What joints am I using? What muscles am I using?” We are thinking about what it is that we want, what we are doing, what we are reaching or grasping for. That makes complete sense until we have shoulder pain or we can’t do what we want.
So what’s helpful to know?
- Your shoulder connects your arm to your body. Your arm and body need to “talk” to each other and do so through your shoulder girdle. “Communication.”
- They need to know that they have a unique, special job. “Purpose.”
- Your arms and shoulders cannot do it alone. They work best when in relationship to your whole self. “Humility”.
Does this sound like what relationships need? You bet! So how do things go wrong?
Naivete. Forgetfulness. Neglectfulness. To name a few.
But since this is about the shoulder, we will put everything else to the side. One has to know when enough is enough.
There are 4 moveable joints that make up the shoulder girdle, which allow us to:
- Shrug our shoulders, “Hell if I know.”
- Slouch our shoulders, “The world just got a hell of a lot heavier to bear.”
- Raise our arms in praise, “Hallelujah, finally…..It’s about time.”
- Throw. I don’t have to say much here, you probably have your own stories…
- Eat. My favorite!
The important thing is that our shoulders are damn important and we are better off paying attention to them…how they move, what direction they move, how smooth they feel, how they connect to our center.
To sum it up:
- Pay attention. Your shoulders don’t always want to kiss your ears.
- Go easy. They will last a whole lot longer if you do.
- Use em…or lose em. That’s what they say anyway. And I believe em’!
Please, do whatever you want, but take a page from this page and BE SMART, love your shoulders! They help get you what you want!