There are many days when I consider focal dystonia a gift.
Because of the retraining I am more self-aware, and less grasping. Awareness of my former habit of gripping the flute has allowed me to recognize that I had that controlling, grasping sense in my body and in other aspects of my life as well.
I am a better teacher with dystonia than I was without; I am more aware of my students’ tendencies to overwork and more able to help them find solutions. My Andover Educator training has helped refine my own body map and better allows me to see how tension can affect technique, sound, articulation, and expressive communication.
I have become more able to self-sense, and can notice an internal sense of balance, thereby recognizing chronic tension. This knowledge is affecting my every moment, with and without my instrument in my hands.