(Or, you know, Tuesdays, since I didn’t end up writing a post yesterday.)
The short version is, after a fabulous weekend in the Hamptons with Blake, Ashley, and Theodora, I came home pretty stressed out – I had a lot of work to do before the weekend was over. I finally made my Sunday night deadline, and then got to packing up for the week. I was supposed to fly to Dallas first thing on Monday morning, work all week and celebrate my birthday with my Dallas friends and coworkers on Wednesday, then fly to Albany on Thursday night to celebrate with my family there (in my new house!). Saturday afternoon, I’ll be speaking on an Ask the Experts panel at the Boilermaker race expo, then I have a wedding back in Albany on Saturday night, and Sunday morning I was planning to run the Boilermaker and then head back to NYC for a week of staycation.
None of that is happening now.
While innocuously folding dresses to pack in my suitcase, my neck and back started stiffening up. No real surprise there – I had been under a lot of stress, and for some reason, my left trapezius often seems to get tense when that happens. Following my usual protocol, I reached with my right arm to try to massage it a little bit, and since I was home, also dragged out the foam roller. When that didn’t work, I didn’t stress – I was heading to bed soon (9pm on Sunday nights for my early Monday flights, because I am such a party animal), and figured a good night’s sleep would take care of it.
But instead of “a good night’s sleep,” I didn’t get more than an hour total. The tension in my neck/back turned into agonizing pain – to the point where I would literally start crying when I breathed wrong and sent shooting pain through my muscles. I should also note that I have a very high pain tolerance – in 1999, I was in a car accident where I literally broke my back, and didn’t know for a week because I thought it was just mild soreness. I have never experienced pain this bad before, and I knew something was terribly wrong.
After a full day of doctors, therapists, pharmacies, and painkillers, I still don’t know exactly what that “something” is that’s wrong, and even the Percocet that’s making me completely loopy isn’t doing anything for the pain. I’m headed for an MRI tonight (at 9pm, because apparently imaging facilities in New York City never sleep either), but my doctor and physical therapist both suspect a cervical disc prolapse. This typically presents in 30-50 year olds, and is caused more by wear and tear than any specific incident, so me getting it two days before my 28th birthday makes me feel old and worn out. Furthermore, since I’m taking this week off as sick time, I had to cancel my vacation next week. I have the days banked to use, but two weeks in a row is just too long to be away from my client responsibilities; as it is, I feel awful about taking off this week with hardly any notice.
I’ll hopefully be posting a review of some new sneakers later today (which was what my Tuesday post was originally supposed to be). At the moment, though, I’m not in the mood to write about sneakers; I’m miserable not knowing when I can exercise again. Maybe that sounds stupid, but I’ve finally settled some things down that open up my schedule to sign up for fall marathons – and yet, I have no idea if/when I’ll be able to run. When I think about my birthday tomorrow and what would make the day special, it’s going for a run around the city or doing some workout classes to make me feel strong and healthy, and then going out for drinks with all my friends. The injury is keeping me from working out at all, so I’m lying in bed like a worthless blob, and the medicine means I can’t touch a cocktail. I’m going stir crazy in bed, but even the slightest attempt at stirring (like reaching for my cell phone when I get a text) can produce sharp pain that again makes me cry. I am not a happy camper, and while I’m trying hard to cheer up and find ways to be productive without moving, it just isn’t working so far. Even more than I need to find out what’s wrong and start healing my neck, I need an attitude adjustment, STAT.
Maybe y’all have some tips?