Thursday, October 7, 2010

Maybe I should just stick to paper books

So, vacation. As you can see from the previous post, we had a lovely time. And as I mentioned, I spent a lot of it reading. I'm usually not one to read much on my stomach because I can't get comfortable propping myself up and still having to hold a book open and turn the pages. However, the Nook changed all of that. I could stay propped up on my elbows for long stretches and just use my thumb to advance the pages. Fantastic, right? Did I mention that I read over 1500 pages on vacation? That's a heck of a lot of page advances, let me tell ya. Yeah, well, this all came back to bite me on my tush when we finally got home. Le sigh.

I jumped back into my regular routine, including my gym stuff, the day we got home. Felt fantastic! But a few days later, I started to notice my right shoulder was a bit sore. Saw the physical therapist at my gym who thought it was muscular in nature - that my pectoralis muscle was tight, which was pulling the shoulder and neck muscles a bit out of line. Okay. The next day my hand went a little numb. Didn't think too much of it, but my favorite soft tissue therpist thought my forearm was a little tight, too and worked out the knots while he worked on my back. I was good that weekend, but Monday at work, I could barely think straight because my entire right arm was numb and tingly with no signs that it was going away. Yeah, not good.

To make a very long and convoluted story short, it seems as though all that time spent propped up on my elbows, using my thumb to page advance* totally threw my neck/back/shoulder into a frenzy and left me so knotted up that I managed to pinch a nerve somewhere in my neck/upper back area. At least, that's the best guess. I've been cleared by an orthopedist that it's not a shoulder issue and that I haven't lost any strength in my right arm in the almost two weeks that it's been numb. He did leave me with a referral to a spine guy, but with the caveat that he didn't think it was anything serious and to see him only if it's not better with a steady diet of anti-inflammatories and muscle release work in two weeks. Hence, I have a chiropractor** who is slowly getting my neck and back into alignment again and that seems to be taking some of the pressure off whatever was being compressed. Added to this, my soft tissue therapist is slowly working through the amazing collection of knots that I've amassed in my neck, back and right arm. So generally speaking, I'm kind of a hot, needy mess right now.

The one bright side is that I've still been able to keep up with my cardio routine. Everyone that I've seen for this little annoyance is in agreement that since I'm not having any pain, the activity is a good thing and that keeping the arm and shoulder moving is beneficial. Hallelujah! The numbness does seem to slowly be retreating, although at much more of a snail's pace than I'd like. I'm hopeful that I've turned a corner and that I'm slowly getting back to normal.

So, I guess the moral of this story is to stop laying on my stomach to read while on vacation and refrain from using my thumb to advance the page. Duly noted universe. Now, can I get the feeling back in my arm, pretty please?


* There is actually a way to advance the page without pressing the button, but I didn't discover it until our flight home. Oops! Needless to say, I've been using that method ever since.

**I know chiropractors can be controversial, but I've been going on and off for years and they've really helped me when I've had neck and back troubles.

12 comments:

weezermonkey said...

The moral of the story is that the illiterate experience none of this.

Bwahahahaha.

Karin said...

Ouch! I am sure that you will get back to normal soon. Who would have thought that reading would cause an injury! I hope that the chiropracter makes you feel better.

Handmade said...

I'm with weezermonkey - I only read sewing instructions and pattern envelopes!!! Seriously, that all sounds very uncomfortable!

A Sewn Wardrobe said...

A reading-related injury? Crazy!

Pyjammy Pam said...

that is crazy! i just bought a kindle, but i'm going to boise, not the beach. so i don't think i'll be laying on my tummy reading. :)

Kim said...

I get "Kindle Thumb" too...lol! I LOVE my chiropractor! Mine has me on FibroEase which is designed for Fibrymyalgia, but is wonderful for sore muscles and after some serious muscle work. Hope you feel better soon!

Vanessa said...

OMG!! I am glad everything is resolving!

Elizabeth said...

Who knew technology could be so hazardous to your health! Our chiropractor does wonders with one single adjustment at the neck. What was on your reading list?

Insomniac said...

lol at weezermonkey. for real.
I'm glad you're feeling better. If I use my iphone in a certain way my entire arm hurts.

wan said...

yikes, dude.

i find that if i'm at my computer for too long, the way i'm positioned jacks up my back and right shoulder for two days. very sad.

Feminist Gold Digger said...

I cannot lay on my stomach, propped up on my elbows, for more than 2 seconds without getting a headache. Guess we just weren't meant to position ourselves that way. H+P.

Winnie said...

Ouch.

You know, I can never lay on my stomach comfortably neither.