Okay, I know that title is neither very eye-catching or expected on the day after Thanksgiving, but seriously, I am rather thankful for this torn rotator cuff of mine. And no, before you ask, I am not a big fan of sharp, stabby pains in my shoulder. So why the heck am I thankful for an injury that could lead to surgery or a lifetime of less-than-stellar shoulder performance and strength? Well, mostly because it is a call. A call from my body to me, teaching me or reminding me of so many things.
- I’m not a whipper-snapper anymore.
- Being strong as a middle-aged person is very important.
- Pushing myself through sheer pig-headedness is perhaps a stupid personality trait.
- If it hurts, perhaps you shouldn’t do it. Or stop before it really hurts.
- Now is a good time to sit down and experience a bit of life instead of always preparing for tomorrow.
I injured this shoulder in bits and pieces years ago. It started with packing around Biggest in his car seat, but I’m pretty sure the kicker was putting the Middlest in her car seat, over and over again with a 4 year old tugging at my pants leg. Or handing her a binkie from the driver’s seat. Or a bottle. Or, well you get the picture. So I’ve just been adding a bit of stress and strain to the poor thing for years…as many as I’ve had the moniker “mother” attached to my person. In fact, I call this damn pain, my “mama’s shoulder”.
However, the sharp pain and inability to lift it? That started up in September. And I pretty much ignored it, or dealt with it, or took some advil and iced it. When I should have just found out what was going on inside my shoulder. It took some fussing by my trainer down at the gym coinciding with my required check-up with my doctor to actually get me to make an appointment.
And then she just shook her head at me. “How long ago did you do this?”
More head shaking.
Apparently I am not a model patient.
But then, I already knew that about myself. I hate going to the doctor. Not so much because I hate the driving, waiting, paying, waiting, waiting, et cetera part. Mostly, because it just is so damn inconvenient to interrupt my crazy nutty schedule to drag myself to the doctor. But, it is a good thing I got tired of everybody and their monkey fussing at me about it and went in to see my doctor.
I’m on a conservative treatment schedule and the shoulder is improving. But it still isn’t 100%. And since I really don’t want to require surgical intervention for this thing, I’m doing what the doctor told me – taking care of myself. As best as I can, seeing as it isn’t my best skill, let me tell you.
But I am. And I’m thankful for a non-horrific reminder from my body to slow down, think about what I’m doing, and take better care of myself. The trick is to continue doing that when my shoulder stops talking to me. Perhaps, I shall need one of you to remind me.
And now, here’s a fun little thing to try. Stand up and put on your coat. But put it on your non-dominant arm first. Good luck with that one.