Archive for January 1st, 2010

Happy New Year, everyone! Here’s hoping that 2010 will be a kinder year. Last year was a very trying one for me.

On my blog entry entitled What is a Body Memory?, a reader posted the following comment:

I have had these ‘fits’ a few times where my body shakes, and it is hard to stop it. it always starts in my right leg, and then my right hand and moves to my body and then my head jerks a few times. I have been working with someone who believes they are body recalls of sexual abuse when I was younger. They only occur when I am talking about my dad. I have no specific memory of sexual abuse, but I know that I do not miss my dad from my life at all. (I haven’t seen him for 5 years). AFterwards I feel really out of my body and rather vulnerable in the world. Sometimes they happen at night. Once or twice it has happened to lesser degree when I have been sexually intimate with a man. And it also happened when I did rebirthing. It happened yesterday when I was in a counselling session with my mum. My mum was denying that dad could ever have done that and my body went into this state again. It really shocked them both. My speech dulls during and after the shaking, It is like I’ve had a stroke and it is really hard to talk properly. I speak really slowly. I want to know if anyone else experiences this?

I am not certain I was abused by my dad, but I am certain that my body is trying to tell me something, and I am certain that I don’t want to see my dad anymore.

I would like to hear of anyone who has experienced similar. I know I am not a nut job. In all other ways I am a relatively normal middle class girl. ~ Leaf

Considering that the body shakes happen in reaction to different triggers, they might very well be body memories. It is also possible that an alter part is being triggered and expressing itself. If so, this is likely the alter part who endured the worst of the trauma. Another possibility is that the body shaking has to do with releasing energy held by your body.

I used to struggle with body shakes, and this happened with regularity throughout my life from when I was in my teens until I was pretty far along in therapy. The body shaking is similar to what you describe. It starts in my thighs and then moves outward until my entire body is shaking. Sometimes my head will shake as well. I had to control my breathing to prevent myself from hyperventilating.

The difference is in the aftermath. For me, I felt really good after one of these episodes. It felt like my body had released a lot of pent-up anxiety. My muscles would relax, and I would actually sleep better afterward.

I posted about this on Isurvive, and one member had an interesting theory. She said that, after a rabbit escapes with its life, it will stop and shake. This is the rabbit’s way of releasing the adrenaline that flooded its body when it was in danger. The shaking is actually a way of bringing the rabbit’s body back into a healthy state again. I have chosen to view my episodes this way. As I said, since working through therapy, I rarely have these episodes any longer.

Photo credit: Lynda Bernhardt

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