Sunday, January 9, 2011

Take 2 Cups of Coffee and Bend Over Slightly; Then Why Doncha Shovel Some Snow?

I do not drink very often.  I have been slightly hungover once.  I remember that it felt very bad to pick up my head.  This morning I woke up at 5am with the worst stiff neck I've ever felt.  I have not had a drop to drink in a long time, so I am not  hungover.  I am not sick, either.  This is not a swollen glands kind of stiff neck.  Or one that I think means I have some horrendous disease.  This is a stiff neck that came from doing something vile with my body. 

Like carry small children on my shoulders.  I did not.

Like walk for hours with a heavy bag slung over one shoulder only.  I did not.

Like work out at the gym and do an excessive amount of things related to shoulder/back muscles.  I did not.

Like sleep with your head pushed down VERY HARD on one side while keeping your shoulder glued to your ear all night.  I must have. 

So, it's either that last one, or maybe it's related to some cleaning I did yesterday.  Like taking down the Christmas tree ornaments.  Very heavy work.  Or paying some bills.  Excruciating.  Or fighting with Citizens bank on the phone and then in person(I won, for this month at least).  Or driving to do some shopping.  Or trying on some pants.  That's probably what did it.

As you can see, I did nothing yesterday that would warrant such a bizarre pain that hanging the phone back up made me wince.  And so did bending over to feed the cat.  As did carrying something that might have weighed 10 pounds in the other hand, not the hand of the side that is so tight.  And simply holding up my very heavy head on top of my neck.

Some would race for the medicine cabinet and pop some ibuprofen or something like that.  I don't love to race for the pain relievers.  Instead, I prefer to mumble to myself about how it hurts and marvel and how something so seemingly unconnected to my neck (my opposite obliques for example) can move and cause such excruciating pain.  And then I like to test it out and see just what moves make it hurt.  So I will know not to  do that move again, of course.  I am not a doctor but I love to play one with myself.  Because I know my body so well, right?  And because I am not totally in love with over the counter medicine.  Or any medicine really.  Not such a fan of herbs, either.  I just want the body to fix itself.

So, I invest in monthly chiropractic adjustments.  I know, for those of you that think chiropractics is the anti-christ, I am totally with you.  I have friends who stand shocked that I think Claritin and Benadryl will destroy your immune system and that taking anything daily must not be normal (including vitamins), but I will allow someone to manhandle me because he has a certificate that says he can.  I confess that each time he adjusts me I say a little prayer that this will not be the day that he paralyzes me and that I will still walk and act like a fully functioning person.  But, I will testify that without these monthly adjustments, I would limp because my hips bother me.  And I have had a foot issue or two.  And I sprained my ankle and a different chiropractor made it better (I went to a different guy for a while and liked him equally well but he said lewd things about women so I stopped going to him)  And a few stiff necks, though nothing like this.  And there was the lower back issue I had for a while.  But they fixed it all.  And it's just one more quirk in the contradictions that make me me. 

And I drink the Kool Aid and believe that yes, Virginia, chiropractics does keep me healthy.  I firmly believe that part of is is purely psychological:  I go for monthly adjustments, thereby keeping my body properly aligned, and therefore stress and other things that cause illness stay away.   And 99% of the time, he makes my pain or what feels like it's weird and will soon become pain go away.  All for $6.56 per visit because my insurance also believes that chiropractics is ok.

I have no doubt that it is mostly psycological.  If we think we are healthy, aren't we most likely to act like we are healthy and take measures to maintain that health?  When we were little, my mother would go to this same guy and he would adjust us.  And we're still kicking, walking around upright, no major crises yet.  The psych aspect first came in when my sister was still wetting the bed and he encouraged my mother to have her put just a drop of mineral ice, which used to be a chiropractor's secret weapon but now is everywhere, just below her belly button every night and this would keep her from wetting the bed.  And it did.  Now really, was a topical menthol ointment responsible for dry sheets?  Did regular adjustments made her bladder and brain connect and keep her from wetting the bed?  Of course not.  He could have achieved the same thing by asking her to put a dab of peanut butter on her left toe.   But the conscious act of applying it every night and the bribery of getting a present from the chiro if she went a certain time without wetting the bed  and the regular visits certainly did.  So, I am willing to let me trick myself if it means less medicines in my body and more illusion of good health.  

That being said, it's Sunday. And though I am on  a first name basis with Dr. Chiro and I babysat his kids for a few years and know where he lives and he said I can call him anytime, I just can't do it on a Sunday.  And I know that it's so tight, he can't really adjust it right now.  All he can do is used that weird trigger thing they have and for that, I can wait.  So, instead of reaching for the Advil, I reach for the caffeine.  With certain types of pain in my body, caffeine is all I need.  I know, it's a drug.  It's available in some herbs (guarana, I know).  How is it different from popping an Advil?  Or Excedrin which actually has caffeine in it?  I don't know.  It's not different, but to my brain, it is.  So I had a cup of tea and a cup of coffee (can you tell?) and I now have far more movement in my neck and when I turn, it's not like someone just whacked me with a 2x4.  I think blogging helped.

But I still don't know how I will put on my boots or shovel the snow.  Because we had snow last night.  Isn't it pretty?  How many pictures do we have to see of snow before we get sick of it?  See my hammock sitting there in the third picture, taunting me?  I usually take it down in October, but somehow I forgot and then when I go to get it, it's wet and I just forget.  And now it's been out in 3 snowstorms.  I love my hammock so much, I wish I could go lay in it and read right now.  I know I could put on my snowpants and coat, but how much fun is that?  If it was directly in the sun, I might think about it.  But it's in the shade.  An excellent place in the summer, but not so warm in the winter.

So, I will tackle some tasks inside and if I'm not screaming in pain, I'll give grocery shopping a whirl. I'll have to put on my boots so I can tromp through the snow.  Don't know how I will do that.  Reaching is a bit of an issue.  I had big cleaning up plans for today.  Maybe not so much cleaning now.  I just never catch up, no matter what I do.

1 comment:

  1. blogging TOTALLY helped. it cures everything from neck pain to herpes...


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