The therapist came highly recommended.
CK had been suggesting that Steve go see "Tor" to cure his various ailments and occasional back pains. But Steve would have none of it.
Since my neck (and brain) had been bothering me lately,
I decided to go and check him out myself, all for the sake of science--albeit the alternative kind.
No sane part of me drives 20+ miles to receive unfamiliar "treatment," let alone treatment that is administered behind an unmarked office door located across the hallway from a closed storage rental office.
I arrived 10 minutes early for my appointment.
The parking lot was empty.
The building was open so I went in and up a flight of steps.
I found 2C to be locked.
I felt a bit odd, and had to shake the "Clarice Starling in Silence of The Lambs" feeling off me.
After 10 minutes (my actual appointment time) I called the phone number I had, but I could hear the phone ringing through the locked door.
I thought that perhaps I had the wrong date.
I was not sure how long to wait but I was not about to give up that easily--after all, I drove waaaay out of my radius.
So I waited 10 more minutes.
At the exact second I decided to leave, I got up from sitting on the floor of the deserted hallway, but then suddenly got a call from an unknown cell number. .
It was from "Tor." He said that he was on his way. (!!!?!)
So I waited an additional 10 more minutes.
I heard the office building open and heard him meticulously wiping his shoes on the door mat at the bottom of the steps.
Like an extra 45 seconds of wiping!
(as if he had just come from burying his previous client)
But, I pushed that thought and my mild irritation at his tardiness out of my mind and made the choice to stay completely neutral.
"Tor" (a nondescript man that seemed to be about my age) did not mention that he was late.
He merely apologized for not taping a note to the door to inform me that he would be back.
He said this while he was filing his fingernails. (I felt like I was being punked)
Then he washed his hands and then shook my hand.
N E U T R A L, I remained.
He asked me what was ailing me.
I asked him what the LMT after his name stood for.
After a few more questions, the therapy began.
He asked me to remove my running shoes.
My long sleeved t-shirt, loose linen shorts and my socks stayed on.
The session was mostly Cranio-Sacral therapy, (CST)
with a mixture of Acupressure, Physical Therapy and a peppering of voodoo.
He started with my feet and legs and worked his way up.
It was not a "typical massage" as CST is defined as a gentle form of manual therapy using light touch to release tensions throughout the body.
At first I was a bit freaked out.
Actually, it never fully went away--
While CK had warned me that a treatment took as long as FOUR hours,
she did not warn me that some moves in this type of therapy would involve areas that seemed dangerously close to my tailbone and groin.
The only thing that kept me on the table was the knowledge that CK trusted this guy, not only for herself, but also for her own mother and her son!
But I digress.
Because I was uncomfortable to begin with, I kept my eyes shut while praying, the entire time.
Then I started breathing in through my nose and out through my mouth in order to relax myself.
I wanted CST to work, and I did not want any negative vibes to get in the way.
N E U T R A L
About an hour into it,
just when I was getting into my meditative "Our Father" zone, suddenly my sinuses started swelling for no apparent reason.
I didn't say anything. I just started breathing in and out through my mouth.
After a half hour of mouth breathing, he asked about my sinuses.
I said that I didn't know what happened but that I seemed to be having an allergic reaction to something.
He said that as he was "releasing tension" in my lower body, my head was getting tighter.
(like squeezing a tube of toothpaste from the bottom up but with the cap still on.)
He assured me that once he released the rest of me, my sinuses would open up again.
I sat up and asked for tissues and blew my nose violently.
I tried to open it up myself but got nothing.
So I settled back down to experience the rest of my "releasing."
Breathing through my mouth, I prayed.
I prayed when he pressed near my bladder.
I prayed when he tapped the top of my head (Steve said, "Hello? Anybody home? Think McFly!")
I prayed when he had his hand covering part of my face and in my eye socket.
I prayed when he had his finger IN MY EAR. (not just one time but twice as he did my other ear too.)
I prayed, actually no, I surrendered when he had his hand on my throat.
The entire time, I kept my eyes closed.
I prayed until the next two and a half hours later, my sinuses were open again--and I was apparently all released.
Even if CST can supposedly also help with depression, I never told "Tor" that I had just recovered from a bout of it.
I figured that if it was going to be effective for my neck pain, that it would also work on my mental health.
(Like spraying for mosquitos ends up killing fleas as well.)
I was on the recovery swing by the time I went in for my neck but somehow I have a feeling that "Tor" may have squeezed the last of my depression out of me and stored it in the Storage Facility 20+ miles away.
Would I ever recommend that Steve try CST? Absolutely not.
Was I glad that I went?
Yes, because I think that anytime you step out of your comfort zone--you train your heart to remain open to life.
Would I go for treatment again?
I would, because I think as with anything in life--knowing exactly what to expect next time around would eliminate the Hannibal Lecter quality to the session and promote healing.
Besides, my neck is still sore.