Peripheral oedema is the swelling of tissues, usually in the legs and feet, due to the build-up of fluids. So, initially I would be thinking about lymph. Among other things, the lymph fluid is responsible for cleaning up debris such as dead cells and keeping the body clear of waste. Therefore people who are continually picking up after others, or want others to continually pick up after them, could find a problem with lymph and oedema.
Your lymph is constantly picking up what another part of the body has discarded as waste. As soon as the lymph cleans up, it’s time to go back and do it all again. When picking up after others never seems to come to an end, it can become despairing, especially when you are picking up someone’s negative emotions. So, could co-dependence and lymph be closely related? When the volatile residue of another is left for you to absorb or dispose of, and your moment by moment state of mind depends on how that person is acting towards you, a problem with lymph could be an indicator of co-dependence.
Immobility and standing for long periods are the two most common causes of oedema in the legs. Are you someone who puts their feet up and expects others to run after you, or do you exhaust yourself running after, and picking up after others?
Fluid regularly leaks into body tissues from the blood. The lymphatic system drains this fluid (now called lymph) and empties it back into the bloodstream. Oedema occurs when the fluid isn’t removed efficiently. Could oedema in some way be related to boundaries: ineffective boundaries, not respecting boundaries, someone is invading yours, or you are invading those of another?
Lymph also has other roles, which will be discussed in future articles.