Nei Gong Notes, January 31, 2023

Jan 31 2023

Frustrating week. My thumb was still hurting, so I was nervous about doing the arm stretching stuff from the Nei Gong workshop. I asked my TCM doctor about that again, and he said that it was caused by my neck; playing around with my neck, I think he’s right. And that also didn’t make me feel great: what was causing that, what would make it feel better? Also, he told me to switch back to sleeping on my left side; he’d mentioned that before, but I guess I should pay more attention to it.

Anyways, I tried to expand the fascia in my neck, and elongate my neck a bit more; that made my thumb feel better, at least. But then last night my sleep was kind of lousy; part of that might be me being no longer used to sleeping on my left side, but I realized my neck was aching slightly, and in the past my doctor has said that my neck is linked to sleep problems, so I think it’s my neck.

So now my theory is that the stuff that I’ve been doing around neck positioning and lengthening has been stressing something in my neck too much, in a way that’s not healthy. I took some ibuprofen this morning, since that reduces swelling in ways that have helped with my back in the past, and my neck and thumb did feel better after doing that. So, for now, I’ll do that before going for bed, and I’ll stop the active work on my neck; maybe I’ll let it float back but definitely not up. Hopefully that will help; I don’t want to go back to lousy sleep…

Anyways, nothing in particular to report for Nei Gong because of all of that, and I’ll take it easy in the middle of this week, too. (But I’ve got a workshop with Joyce coming up this weekend, so I can’t take it easy then!) Tai Chi class was on Saturday; my last one for a while, I’m going to miss every week in February. My teacher did say he was going to start doing push hands more, which I appreciate. And doing the Lao Jia first form really is feeling more interesting to me now: there’s more stuff going on inside my body, doing Tai Chi is starting to feel kind of like Qi Gong. In general, the inside of my body does feel more alive, I feel stuff moving and settling a lot even when doing basic Nei Gong now; if it weren’t for my neck, I’d actually be actively happy with how things are going, I really am making progress.

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