Although I’ve just got into better health here over the past three weeks, I still want to get back to my old pace, and I keep having to remind myself to… no… take a break. If there’s anything I can do to get into better health, it’s not pushing myself as hard for so long. I’ve trained myself to be motivated through years of writing and rowing. It’s OK for me to take a break.
Writing this five-part series about passing seven years of sobriety has been exhausting. Anxiety over current events hasn’t helped. Although I don’t see a reason why my sobriety would be broken between now and year eight, this degree of self-examination has left me feeling exhausted. When I write essays normally, it’s guiding along my perspective, rather than addressing my own inadequacies. I try to do this whenever possible to bleed out false pretenses and arrogance.
In previous entries into this series, I wrote about the events that inspired my sobriety – seeing Clutch. I’ve taken some meandries because how many thousands of words can one write about any topic? Well, there is still the matter of addressing the question of how often do I want to go back to those simpler times? Although my life is much better “clean and mostly serene,” there is one major disadvantage: you can’t fully relax.
Physical therapy has been great for me to address some of the hidden patterns I had physically learned that, over thirty-plus years, caused the issues that sent me almost unnecessarily through the American Healthcare System. How much of that could have been avoided by simple preventative maintenance through learning the basics in compulsory education and having readily available gyms at trivial prices available to all? Well, that might just be being sensitive about the topic…
“Think of it like building blocks. You’re building yourself back up.” The physical therapist then exaggerated how I was slouched over, most comfortable for me, with having a hyper-corrected posture, to a middle ground that was more focused on better posture from the lower back than the upper back. He continued by telling me that the trick is to catch myself when my posture is not ideal, and practice better posture frequently throughout the day.
I missed rowing. I missed the notion of getting on my rower twice-daily and getting some of my physical stress out. It was never that much, especially lately, since I didn’t want to burn myself out. Now that we’ve figured out my neck was the source of my headaches, and my neck stretches are helping to fix the issue, I’m back and feeling better than ever. I’ll need to work on figuring out more stretches.
I’ve always been a fan of controlled breaks. You’ve gotta break things to fix things, sometimes, and when it comes to my health I don’t mind exercising to overexertion and pain if that means that the pains can be fixed. After a 6-minute arm exercise at physical therapy, my neck nerves pinched, my eyes became more light-sensitive, and my head started to hurt. We spent the next almost-hour fixing the muscles that had tensed up.
It feels good to be back into rowing again. Even at a light pace, there’s just something about getting on the machine and losing myself in the motions for a time that’s nice. After four physical therapy sessions with increasingly positive results after each other than mild back strains, an “unremarkable” MRI, and otherwise bouncing back well, I was told to get back into rowing. I noticed some minor pangs, but so far, so good.
All I want to do is sleep. Somewhere between the headaches and back pains, most of my motivation has gone, but I know it’s only rest from the rancid feelings of pressure around my head, behind either eye, and along my neck that I seek, rather than the actual sensation of sleep. Maybe it’s my negative thoughts toward Doctor-Number-Eleven, a sleep doctor, but I don’t care for sleep much more than as a biological necessity.
I’m not sure why I didn’t get a stronger reaction when I told the nurse and doctor that I couldn’t exercise because of my headaches. The most plausible reasons are that the nurse was going too fast and Doctor-Number-Nine didn’t know me. Even Neurologist-Number-Two/Doctor-Number-Eight was perplexed. I imagine once the headaches decrease from constantly and daily to mere memories, then I’ll be more likely to be able to exercise without getting any sort of headache.