I am at a crossroads with healing my diastasis recti. In May of 2012, my diastasis measured 2-fingers wide at the navel, 1-finger wide about two inches above the navel and 1 finger wide about 3 inches below the navel. As of today, my diastasis measures 2-fingers wide at the navel and 1-finger wide about an inch above and below the navel. I have come a long way in my healing of this abdominal injury. However, now I find myself at a crossroads. My own selfish desires and need to be “perfect” want my diastasis completely healed. I desire to have it fully closed and to have the stomach I remember prior to having kids.
I’m conflicted. I know that my stomach is beautiful, I know that I am beautiful, I know that my stomach birthed me four babies. I know that to most people, I look great. However, when I look at my stomach, I remember what once was. I remember what I looked like when I was in my 20’s. I remember sporting a bikini with great pride and actually having a defined 6-pack. As a striver, I see healing my diastasis as something to strive for…that if I can get mine healed, I have somehow arrived. Arrived at what? I don’t know.
So I’m stuck. I wanted it closed but I know it may never close. I want to look like I once did, but I know that I look amazing now. Conflict.
In talking to someone recently about my struggle in closing my diastasis, they asked if I did plank pose, and I said “yes”. I have known for awhile that planks overwork the rectus abdominal muscles and that anything that overworks the rectus abdominal muscles makes a diastasis worse. I have been practicing planks because I’ve been trying to get back into a regular yoga practice and many classes incorporate some type of plank pose. I’ve also wanted to get better at planks. At one time I could hold a plank for a minute with no problems, now I just quiver. Again, I remember what once was and want it back.
The day she asked me if I was still doing planks, I realized I was at a major crossroads. Did I want full healing? Would I do or not do things to make it happen? Or was I ok with the fact that I may never close my diastasis?
I actually have not found the answer to these questions. However, I have decided to stop doing planks until the October Holy Yoga Immersion Retreat, which is at the end of October. I am giving up planks for 6 weeks as a way of seeing if my diastasis will heal better in that time. At the end of the 6 weeks, if my diastasis is not any smaller, I have made an agreement with myself that I will be ok maybe never having a closed diastasis.
I’m finding that healing involves sacrifice. When Jesus presented healing to people, He often challenged them to sacrifice something. Some did, and for others, the sacrifice was too big to find healing and freedom.
Are you willing to sacrifice plank pose with me for the next 6 weeks? Are you willing to work more diligently on working your transverse abdominal muscles (TVA)?