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The value of guessing: Releasing trauma in an injured elbow

Important Note: This article was written prior to 2010 and is now outdated. Please use my newest advancement, Optimal EFT. It is more efficient, more powerful and clearly explained in my free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™.  Best wishes, Gary

Have you ever had a problem with finding an emotional issue that may be underlying a physical symptom? Try guessing. This is a serious suggestion because within your guesses lie your intuition and guidance. I have often found that guessing opens up new doors wherein EFT can provide its benefits.

Mara Protas, RN had a severe car accident in 1977 which left her with an inflexible right elbow. She couldn't find an emotional driver behind the problem so simply guessed at it. The result was a substantial flexibility improvement. Intuition and guessing can be very important and thus studying this article is likely to help you expand your EFT skills.

Mara Protas, RN, BSN, EFT_CC, EFT-ADV

Dear Gary,

At a recent workshop, I shared the following story with several of the participants and was encouraged to write about it for others to read. I hesitated to do this in the past for a couple of reasons. First of all, while the results were really dramatic and life changing for me, I did not think that it showed a new way of doing things, and secondly, I didn't have complete resolution of the problem.

GC COMMENT: Please note that EFT does not always give COMPLETE resolution on everything. There are many occasions where partial relief is achieved and that is to be welcomed. In my experience, however, it is often fruitful to persist with EFT in such cases. Sometimes a new door is entered and further benefits accrue.

MARA CONTINUES: However, it does illustrate the effectiveness of Stacey Vornbrock's protocol for Range of Motion (ROM, the importance of persistence and dealing with ALL the aspects, and I think most telling for me was the fact that I now have no perceptible emotional intensity when thinking or talking about the car accident in which all this happened. I drive past the site without any reaction, and have no flashbacks.

However, I still had some physical problems with my elbow, which limited me in a number of ways, but I thought of them as minor inconveniences. That changed on Feb 9th when I read Stacey's article. Let me give you some background.

In 1977, when I was 6 months pregnant with my son, I was involved in a pretty bad car accident. I was turning left into the parking lot of my local grocery store, and was hit almost broadside by a drunk driver going 100 miles per hour. The force of the accident was so great that my seatbelt (still buckled) ripped and I was thrown under the front dashboard of the passenger side of the car.

My right humerus was shattered. My arm was at an unusual angle and I could see the bone sticking out above my elbow, but could not move my arm. The car from that point back was crushed in half. Luckily, I was pulled from the car by an off duty sheriff, and he put a tourniquet on my arm to stop the bleeding.

I was taken to the local hospital and subsequently transferred to the hospital where my OB/GYN practiced. During the transfer I started having labor contractions. I had surgery to set the bone and was in mild labor for 4 days. I had nerve damage, and was in a hanging cast from my shoulder to my hand for 8 weeks. I also had radial nerve damage and could not open my hand. The cast came off about 2 weeks before my son was born. Luckily he was healthy and normal in every way.

After about 6 months, the nerve regenerated and I had movement in my hand. However I could not bend my elbow. Nine months after the accident, I still had only 30 degrees of flexion in my elbow, and could not straighten it all the way either. I had another surgery to remove the head of the radius, (the large bone in the forearm) which allowed more movement, and over the next year I regained much more range of motion in my elbow. I learned to compensate for the things I could not do, and used my left arm a lot. When I learned EFT I was able to finally move my arm in a scrubbing motion like washing your car. Over the past 4 years I have used EFT for any issue I could think of to try to get full ROM in my arm.

When I saw Stacey's article, I couldn't wait to try her protocol, but I made myself wait until I got to work, and I had the Director of Physical Therapy measure my elbow flexion with a goniometer. The right arm measured 120 degrees, compared to 140 degrees on the left. I told her I would be back in about 15 minutes to measure it again. She said, "Oh yeah....What are you going to do in 15 minutes that will make a difference?" I said that I didn't know, but I was going to try something. I went into my office and started tapping.

"Even though I have this trauma in every cell of my elbow.... " and then at each point, "this trauma in every cell of my elbow, this trauma in every tissue of my elbow, this trauma in every nerve and so on with every tendon, every muscle, every bone, every fluid, every fascia, every ligament."

Then I did the round for an emotion. I didn't feel any emotional intensity UNTIL I GUESSED at what might be something that I would be upset about. When I said, " Even though HE (the other driver) got off scott free, and I'm still dealing with the aftermath 28 years later." I DID get an intensity... about a 5.

So I did EFT for this anger in every cell of my elbow, every fluid, every tissue etc.. and it came down to 0. I then did a round for the memory of protection in each of those areas. It took less than 10 minutes. I went back and had her measure it again and it was 128 degrees!

I was so excited, that I went home that night and tapped for several other guesses. The next day the physical therapist in my department measured it and it was 130 degrees. I figured that might just be difference in the person measuring. So I went home that night and did EFT for some more issues, again just guesses. I emailed Stacey to thank her and she suggested that I do a round for guilt, even though the accident wasn't my fault. I did and also tapped for anything I could think of that I might have felt at the time. I didn't have any emotional intensity levels on them, but I did it anyway..

The next morning I had the Director of Physical Therapy measure it again and it was 136 degrees. I also have more ROM in lots of other directions. I was on cloud nine for a couple of weeks. I kept finding things I could do that I hadn't been able to do for 28 years...put on a necklace, brush my teeth with my head facing straight ahead, push doors open with my hand in a natural position, turn over in bed without having to pull my arm in under me to push up, hang up clothes in my closet with my right arm.... and the best part was not thinking about my arm every time I went to do something. It is now almost 6 months later and I still have not been able to get the last few degrees. I know in my heart that it is possible and I keep trying. Perhaps I should guess again (smile).

In the meantime, I am so thankful for Stacey Vornbrock's article, for EFT and for my newly acquired mobility.

Mara Protas, RN, BSN, EFT_CC, EFT-ADV


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