Saturday, March 19, 2016

A Traveling Physical Therapist and Sports Doctor Would Be Nice

It was early Sunday morning when I threw my back out. Not while shoveling, not while carrying too-heavy Christmas boxes to the basement three months too late. Nope. I threw my back out while reaching my arms up to shampoo my hair. Because of the inefficient stream of a water-saving shower head we installed, in order to rinse any suds out since the laughable droplets that come out overhead are zero help, I have to s-c-r-u-b my scalp like someone's punking me from above and adding in more Pantene Revitalize. I had gotten to the third bar of the ABC song when I felt a tiny mouse stitching my shoulder blades together. Our family's effort to conserve water had wrenched my back. I've never googled it, but I don't think saving the environment should result in medical complications.

This was only three weeks after I gave myself a frozen shoulder while trying to build weight-bearing deltoids that are supposed to be saving me from the injuries of daily life.

I don't mind this getting older part, except for this part of it: the resultant inability of my body to keep up with movements that are part of being ambulatory.

Who would think that you would have to pause and mindfully stretch in preparation before bending over to tie a loose shoe lace?

Or how if you have to choose between your favorite sloppy joe mix on a too-high shelf that threatens to pop your shoulder out or the too tomato-y one that is not your favorite but it's right there effortlessly before you on the chest-high shelf, that you would have to go with Mr. Tomato.

Muscle tendon cartilage turning on you is not something your complimentary issue of AARP that arrives years too early in your life ever details for you: “The Road Ahead: What You Can Anticipate  in Mid-Life.” Their pages focus too much on your 401K and not enough on your Latissimus Dorsi.

Life is becoming an extraordinary mission of muscle injury avoidance. But as I sit here icing my left knee because I stood up from the toilet too fast, I think I have an idea—one beyond the obvious hydration-honey-hibiscus tea plan of attack.

I can do this if I have an entourage. If I travel with a physical therapist and a non-sports injury specialist (I just made up that occupation, but it's a good idea) life is do-able. I'm not able to afford payment in the traditional sense of money because I never have any, BUT in the old tribal way of bartering for services, Why not do this? Give me a minute, I'll think of something I'm good at.

I just need to do daily life, I'm not going for 40 marathons in 20 days, just someone to help me come back from the rigors of what was once routine, like bringing in the garbage cans. I'm going to subtly put out a call, see if anyone I know knows someone who might be interested in such a position. Until I hear back, I'll experiment with pacing and speed. Maybe slowing down before reaching up to re-do my pony tail, a few hammer-lifts with Chunky soup cans before attempting to bring in the UPS package from the front steps.

Movement has become a challenge, but I cannot wave the white flag. You can look for me walking around the neighborhood, not chasing any English walking speed records, but moving, one painful knee cap in front of the other. You'll know it's me, wearing my team jacket with the logo, “Sponsored by Tylenol.”

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