The Pain Game

January 27, 2014

I’m in a lot of pain.  

My lower back is vulnerable to spasm in the lumbar region.  The pain ranges from mild discomfort to extraordinary cannot-move agony.  

My back can be good for months and even some years on end or flare up by doing the slightest movement in the wrong condition.  

 

I could feel the most recent outbreak looming before the big spasm. Despite my efforts to prevent it, the spasm debilitated me for three days.  

A recent X-ray did not show any abnormalities, for which I am grateful.  My younger self may have been disappointed that there was no concrete problem to correct, but my wiser current self knows that disk trouble would only complicate.  An MRI is scheduled for next week and if it is anything like the one from my back episode three years ago, it will reveal little if anything.  

 

Apart from physical therapy, my doctor has little to recommend.  I had been doing all of the exercises to strengthen my core and using caution when lifting.  My husband noted that these spasms correspond to emotional anniversaries or upcoming stresses.  With two parents recently gone and the normal stresses of a mother/wife/human – there are ample occasions to celebrate writhing on the floor in agony.  

I am no longer in the extreme pain, but my back still does not feel great. Today my stomach is tightening and a wave of nausea lingers during normal activities that should not cause pain. I could return to the Dr who I once visited with great frequency to target the trigger points.  I am optimistically trying Dr. Sarno’s book which exposes the mind – body connection.  Tension Myositis Syndrome is the physical manifestation of back pain from mental obstacles.  At least I think so. I can report after reading the book which should arrive this week.  It feels so indulgent to take a nap, especially with my cleaning lady and nanny both working as my son takes a nap.  High class problems! Real pain.  

 

Amazon should deliver it tomorrow.  

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The Wrong Number

January 22, 2014

 

Before my first cell phone, a college graduation present, I had at most three telephone numbers.  My private line in college had voicemail where I would record silly greeting each time trying to outdo myself.  The succinct and efficient, “hello….No she’s is not here can I take a message” would catch veteran callers like my parents. 

 

The second number was for my parents’ houses.  My father did not have an answering machine and despite his desire for detailed and delivered messages he did not reciprocate.  He might scribble something resembling a message that would lay by the phone for days without acknowledging the recipient. That left my mom’s house complete with an answering machine and a favorable chance of me receiving information of an actual call.  As a result, family members could destroy more relationship attempts unconsciously than if they had attempted to an actual sabotage.   

 

Unlike today when we can track contacts over Facebook, Linkedin, email and text, I would entertain the idea that someone did indeed could not figure out how to contact me.  Nobody had warned me that he was just not into me. 

 

The benefit of the anonymity meant that it was easier to give false numbers that would not be immediately verified.  I’m sure the equivalent exists now, but as married mom I am not familiar with such brush-offs. 

 

Through poor handwriting, I had discovered that my phone number resembled that of a local hotline.  Dial my number except replace a scrawny “7” a “1” and reach Eddie, or Brenda at the Hamptons Transsexual Hotline. Twenty years ago this was even more taboo making adults and college kids snicker with amusement and so my sister and I discovered our false number.