03 October 2011

There are many kinds of injuries, and many ways to get them. Some of the injuries are extensive, some are minor. Some of the methods of injury can be dull, while others are as exciting as a pirate adventure. My injury... was really lame.

A few months ago, I tore my left rotator cuff. Your rotator cuff is the thing that makes it possible for you to do just about everything with your arm. Things like reaching for your wallet, or lifting your coffee cup, or knitting. Hugs are delivered gingerly, and jumping rope is right out.

If you are lucky enough to have health insurance, you can go to a doctor and get lots of good advice about keeping the injured arm mobile while not moving it past the point of pain. If you do not have health insurance, you will do one of two things. You can say, "Holy fire-breathing agony, Batman! That hurts!" and tie your wrist to your thigh in order to prevent any motion whatsoever. If you have a life, though, you'll have to suck it up and move that arm.

Turns out that motion (gently done and with frequents rests) is sometimes good for such injuries. During the first week of my injury, I could lift a coffee cup only if I was facing it dead-on. Knitting was reduced to about six stitches at a time. As weeks went by and I continued to manhandle boxes at work, I noticed that there was a definite improvement. I could reach for things that were a few degrees to one side. I could knit an entire row before taking a break. Most importantly (in Himself's eyes), I could hoist Junior onto the changing table again.

So in conclusion, let me just say that it isn't only major-league athletes that sustain injuries. Even those of us who... eh? My arm? You wanna know how I tore it up? Oh, that's such a boring story, I'm sure you'd rather... Huh? You want to hear the story.


Okay. I'm telling you, though. It's not exciting. It's actually pretty stupid. Did I injure myself when I pulled the Bingo Club from their burning hall? No. Fighting off a pack of wild dogs bent on destruction? No. No, the truth of the matter is... I sneezed.

Yeah, you heard me. I tore my rotator cuff by sneezing.

See, I was at work. Feeling the need to sneeze, and not wanting to bash my face against the surface of my work station, I braced both hands against the edge and turned my face into my sleeve. You know, like the health professionals say to do in order to avoid spreading germs? Yeah, well, the act of sneezing whiplashed my shoulder and tore my rotator cuff, which left me standing like a pained statue for several seconds as my brain registered the fact that all was suddenly horrible in my little world.

There you go. A stupid injury, and proof that germs should go wherever they like. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go do some rehab exercises in the form of lifting a coffee cup. Maybe some cake, too.


Cozy in Texas said...

I stopped by your blog today. Hope you see some improvement.

Molly said...

Excellent rehab exercises! It just proves though, that if you don't have insurance but do have patience, many injuries will heal on their own, given time, and your wallet won't be smarting from those ridiculously exorbitant medical bills! Who knew that sneezing was such a dangerous sport?

Kitten With a Whiplash said...

Ummm, Gesundheit? And I hope your shoulder heals quickly. It's amazing how much we take freedom of movement for granted, util it's compromised. Do take slow and easy as much as you can.

Judy said...

Awww, sorry your hurt yourself. But glad you seem to be on the mend. Just don't over do.