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No zoom in Zoom

I hurt my back last week and have been pretty much incapacitated ever since. I don’t know how I did it. There was no heavy lifting, no sudden pain, nothing like that. Just one morning my back hurt, and as the day went on it got worse.

Sitting and lying down are reasonably comfortable, but standing and walking aren’t. And it gets worse as the day goes on. Most of the things I like doing can be done sitting or lying down, so it’s not that bad. But I’m due to go back to work tomorrow and it seems so unreasonable to call in sick after 37 days off work. I just don’t think I can get downtown like this. I haven’t left the house in days. I’m running out of food.

I’ve been getting an unusally good look at my floors as I shuffle gingerly, bent in half, from couch to fridge to computer to bed. I’m not a clean freak, not by any stretch, but I find myself thinking “While I’m down here I should maybe clean that up.”

But then when I try, I realize I’m only halfway down there, and the logistics and effort required to get the rest of the way down there is considerable. I’ve caused myself a few sudden jolts of acute pain by trying to do things like that. Sometimes the slightest twist can cause the sharpest pain.

Anyway. It’s inconvenient and it hurts, but I know it’s not serious. I’ve had it before. It goes away by itself after a few days.

On the bright side, Duncan is happy because I’m much closer to the ground now. He also likes that I’m spending more time reading on the couch. You know how cats are.

Zoom's Ride
Photo Credit: My friend Gilles Seguin, taken in Erieau

20 comments to No zoom in Zoom

  • Oh dear! I am sorry to hear this. It sounds like muscle spasms, especially if you’ve had them before and they go away after a few days. Maybe some Robaxacet (or equivalent) will help? I often use wine as a “muscle relaxant”. Let me know if you are still in pain by tomorrow and I can help you get some groceries (or wine).

  • XUP

    You are not a good reacher-outer. I had no idea you were so incapacitated that you couldn’t even go out for groceries!! You should have said something, I could have fetched you something. We were buzzing around all over the place the last couple of days. Call me or someone if you need help, for pity’s sake. And call in sick and see a doctor…”go away by itself” indeed….

  • deb

    I get them too. Robaxicet Platinum helps. Your back has probably gone into “protective spasm”. It eases up in a few days, but you have to solve the cause. I have been seeing a chiropractor and it is helping.

  • Thanks Julia and XUP. I do have Robaxacet, and have been taking it when necessary. I don’t have any wine. :( I’ll call tomorrow if I need you. thanks!

    XUP, what do you mean we were buzzing about all over the place the last couple of days? I haven’t left the house!
    As for a doctor, I don’t think so…it will just go away by itself. I don’t think a doctor can “fix” it. Anyway, thanks for the offer of help – if I really needed something (other than wine) I would have called, honest!

  • Deb, the difference between yours and mine is that yours is suddenly and intensely painful, right? Mine isn’t like that. It’s uncomfortable, and it can be painful if I move the wrong way, and it’s incapacitating, but it’s more of a nuisance than a medical emergency.

  • XUP

    We – as in me and the daughter and we could have buzzed by your place with misshapen cucumbers or bottles of wine or whatever. I guess you know what you’re doing. I hope it fixes itself soon.

  • XUP – the meaning of your “we” dawned on me several minutes later. I blame it on the mind-numbing effects of the Robaxicet. :) (Thanks again.)

  • Someone with chronic back pain once told me about this exercise that gave me a little relief. Stand in a corner leaning on your forearms which are 90 degrees to your upper arms. Then gently push at the wall with your arms but try to push from your back (gently). Hold this for about 5-10 seconds, release and try again. I’m not sure of the science behind it, but it almost always gives me a bit of relief. Then let XUP or juliar or someone bring over a bottle of wine. I would but I’m half way around the world. I’ll bring one home on Sunday but hopefully you’ll be better by then.

  • Yeah, that always happens to me too with a new lover. You should probably take it easy with that tricky one on page 50 – I think it’s a misprint.
    Try the thing on page 37 – that always helps.

  • I think we played too many Scramble games on Facebook. It’s my fault. I’ll lay off it until you get better.
    Hope you are feeling better soon, Zoom.

  • ahem… GC sleeps over, there’s a backache soon after, and the cat’s acting like he has PTSD. I think there’s still “zoom in Zoom”, just maybe it’s taking longer to recover.

  • Oh gosh, sounds horrible. I hope you feel better soon. Just force yourself not to look at the floors in the meantime.

    Get well soon!

  • Try slowly bending forward in a yoga forward fold, letting your arms just hang and not pushing the move. It may gently stretch out all the back muscles. But if you do it slowly enough, you can stop if it gets intense. Also, do this beside a chair or table, so you can use your arms to help you stand back up again. You don’t want to flex the back muscles, – just stretch them. I suppose you could do this seated too – just slowly tip forward in the chair until your chest is resting on your thighs.

    I get most of my spasms in the upper back, between the shoulder blades so I stretch my arms forward and give myself a hug to stretch those muscles.

  • Alicia

    Zoom, have you thought about seeing a Chiropractor? I know a lot of folks are hesitant to see one, but seriously – my doc in Kanata put me back to work in about 2 weeks after a pretty nasty WSIB back-injury claim (I live downtown and still bus out to see him in Kanata). And unlike several I have visited over my various encounters with back-pain, Dr. Lovsin isn’t the kind of guy who says “Oh my! You must come back 3 times every week for 6 months!” Chiropractors do hands-on manipulation to reallign your back plus recommend exercises/ stretches to help keep your back on track. Plus he has a massage therapist at the clinic to help work on muscle issues.

    Medical Docs aren’t the most skilled at dealing with back pain. Mostly toss you a ‘script for anti-inflammatories and a referral to physio (another option if chiropractors make you squirm). There is a reason why bottom-lined insurance companies in the US prefer to pay for chiropractic treatment for backpain over any other method – proven results. And no, I’m not a chiropractor myself. :-p

    In any case… hope your back is feeling better. Hope work wasn’t too painful.

  • Skylark – I tried that exercise but it didn’t work for me. Maybe I was doing it wrong. Or maybe I should have picked a corner that didn’t have a mannequin in it.

    Andrew – best laugh I’ve had in days, even though it hurts like hell to laugh.

    Aggie – NOOOOOOO!!!! Scramble’s the only thing I’ve got left!!!

    Gabriel – cut it out – it STILL hurts to laugh!

    Melinda – I’ll hobble around with my eyes closed from now on, just so I won’t have to look at my floors.

    Julia – I just tried that stretch while sitting down – it felt good. I’ll keep doing it.

    Alicia – I am going to see a doc tomorrow if I’m not any better. Do you need to be referred to a chiro, or do you just make an appt?

    AND – a very special thank you to Nancy, who just left a bottle of wine tucked inside my front door! How sweet is that??

  • New streetart is out, everyone, courtesy of the Ottawa Department of Public Worx!

    Bank/Second, right beside the Second Cup…

  • Em

    Ugh, I hate back-pain. It’s one of the worst kinds. Maybe the doctor could give you some nice painkillers, at the very least. Especially since you know it’s a temporary thing.
    I hope you feel better soon, Zoom!

  • since I’m down here anyway, …
    yep. I know that back pain’s power. glad you’re starting to come back to normal.

  • Alicia

    Nope – no referral needed. Also, chrio is often covered by insurance (but not OHIP) if you are lucky enough to have such privledges.
    Glad to hear the back pain is turning around though. :-)

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