I went to the doctor yesterday to get my ankle checked. It turns out that I’ve been more gentle with my ankle than I need to be, since the bone will heal on its own. Isn’t the human body wonderful?
This brought me to think about the Metal element in Traditional Chinese Medicine, and how ideas of structure and support are associated with it. I have a lot of mental and structure now: aluminum crutches and an ankle walker brace. But non-tangibles like ideas and attitudes can also provide structure and support. For example, rules and laws often support a society and community; think about what would happen on the roads if people didn’t know and follow traffic rules. Chaos!
But sometimes too much metal can be a problem, too. So I thought about this in terms of my rigid ideas about my ankle. Because I was so concerned about protected my poor ankle–which has suffered a lot of sprains and discomfort over the years–I was not moving it and using it in a healthy way. It turns out that I can walk on the foot with the security and support of the ankle brace. It supports me.
This is a good lesson for me, because I can get pretty rigid in my rules. It makes me a law-abiding type, but sometimes uptight, too.
So, it’s a good idea to think about what’s enough support? What’s enough structure? And when does it impede growth and wellness?