Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Quietly during the night

I generally wake around five o'clock. Every other day I get up then for a bath before the rest of the household is stirring, and the alternate day I stay peacefully in bed and watch the morning rise.

Yesterday, I woke at a quarter to four. 

Around 2007, a time of considerable struggle for me, after a battery of medical tests I had a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. It doesn't bother me much these days because I keep a strict discipline of life and diet. But if something very stressful crops up, I do get a flare-up.

Recently, after a few turbulent months that have prompted me to make some changes and tighten up my practice, I've come out of a patch of illness and started to feel much better. I've felt peaceful and (for me) relatively energised, with improved stamina and focus. 

So I was surprised when I woke at a quarter to four to notice familiar signs of inflammation in my neck and hands and feet and limbs generally. What could this be? Was it an infection, a cleansing reaction, or what? I hadn't eaten any of the food that could set it off, I'd been very careful. I suppose I got tired preaching at the weekend, but that was two days before. I felt momentarily puzzled, and drifted back into sleep. And when I woke up properly an hour later, I felt fine.

Over breakfast I mentioned this to Hebe and Alice. It turned out they both sometimes experience the same thing. One of them said she occasionally wakes up in the (too) early morning with painful tonsils and a general sense of inflammation in her throat. She knows if she goes back to sleep then when she wakes up properly for the day the problem will have gone. The other one has rumbling auto-immune issues, that make her joints flare up and swell from time to time. She likewise said she sometimes wakes early to find her joints hurting and inflamed, then drifts off to sleep again and finds they are better once morning has come.

We concluded this is part of the body's repair work during sleep, that we had inadvertently surprised by waking before it was done. The toxins of stress or diet, or just part of our rhythm of nutrition and disposal, the healing of wear and tear and investigation of incipient problems — these are dealt with in all our body systems by our inner repair angel, our own personal Rafäel, as  we lie deep in sleep. Waking too early, we can find ourselves walking in on a surgical operation of sorts — "You aren't expected back yet, please go away." So our astral selves clear off again and leave the angel to the patient healing work. And in the morning, "All done! House is ready for you. It's okay to come back in again now."

Does this happen to you?


greta said...

yes, my fellow fibromyalgia sufferer, this happens to me as well. i'll wake up in the middle of the night thinking, 'oh, no! i'm coming down with something!' then i wake up in the morning, perfectly fine. love your explanation. thanks, repairing angels!

Pen Wilcock said...

Well, isn't that interesting! You never know until you put out the question, do you?

Bethany said...

Yes to me too. I have my own "rumbling" autoimmune issues and am so grateful I'm almost always able to sleep as much as I need. I have friends whose lives, schedules, or sleep patterns keep them from that healing rest and I know I'd be so much worse without the regular, deep sleep I get. My rheumatologist says, "Whatever you're doing keep it up!" which gives me permission to take naps guilt-free!

Pen Wilcock said...

Hooray for taking naps! May you be comfortable, may you be well. x

Sandra Ann said...

Woke at 3am this morning have been diagnosed with Glandular Fever, 😒 Have read The Hawk and The Dove, couldn't put the book down and just what the doctor ordered! Just about to start book two ❤️

Pen Wilcock said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed it. You seem to be on a one-thing-leading-to-another treadmill with your health — I'm so sorry.
Here's a prayer for you, from the community of Aidan and Hilda:
"I rise up clothed in strength of Christ
I shall not be imprisoned
I shall not be harmed
I shall not be downtrodden
I shall not be left alone
I shall not be tainted
I shall not be overwhelmed.
I go clothed in Christ's white garments
I go freed to weave Christ's patterns
I go loved to serve Christ's weak ones
I go armed to rout out Christ's foes."

May you be well, may you be healed. I suspect this new illness all tracks back to the candida problem you had. Bone broth heals and seals the gut. Natasha Campbell McBride has a website on the GAPS (Gut And Psychology Syndrome) diet she has worked out, and writes about bone broth. You can get the good stuff here — — and boiling up the bones from an organic chicken, with plenty of herbs, also makes a very good soup base to build you up.
The GAPS website is here:

May Christ watch over you and may all go well with you. xx

Sandra Ann said...

Thank you for the prayer and the info about bone broth and the gaps diet xx

Pen Wilcock said...

It's good — helps. xx

Anonymous said...

Hi Penelope,
I have fibromyalgia as well. I have noticed my night sweats get worse when I am more stressed and eat less well. I can wake up feeling quite damp, even slick with sweat in some areas like around the neck and chest. But, I have decided to interpret these as my body detoxing itself. So that is a good thing. I love the prayer and I will check out the gaps diet.

Pen Wilcock said...

Hiya — there's so much about diet on the internet. Though it's a bit heavy going to plough through all the wodges of type, I'm finding that balancing David Perlmutter, William Davies and Natasha Campbell McBride with the practical and sensible approach of Mark Sisson is seeing off no end of nagging health problems. Abstaining from grain, added sugar and (in my case) dairy, plus adding in bone broth, is doing it for me. Loads of veggies and plenty of omega 3 fats important — I'm not a fan of the "gorge on meat" approach.