Listening to our bodies.

@postaday 152; @postaday2011.

Hypochondriacs are the worst people to be around. I once used to ride home with someone who would monologue the entire distance about her aches, pains, difficult doctors, dishonest nurses, and inadequate drug supplies. I made the mistake of telling this person I had a prescription for Oxycontin that I never took because I was afraid I’d not be myself. The pain was never so bad that I wanted to be knocked out. When asked for it, I said no. Of course.

All of which reminds me about National Prescription Take Back Day, which was a few months ago. There’s also another day in the fall. Don’t flush your drugs down the toilet, and introduce pharmaceuticals into the environment!

When I get sick or get hurt, I try to take care of everything before I get off my feet. When my Achille’s tendon popped last year, that really messed up a lot of my plans. Fortunately, that has healed, but when the weather acts up, it does a duet with the bunion on the same foot. Given the looks of Hawaii’s weather, that could be today. When John and I got norovirus a few months ago, that also forced me to put life on hold. We were lucky our girls could fend for themselves.

Today is my last chance to get an x-ray of my left arm in anticipation of my doctor appointment tomorrow. I’ve known about it, I’ve just put it off. It’s great to be able to do a walk-in for an x-ray, but even then I had a hard time finding the time to do it. And today, since there will be thunderstorms and rain in Honolulu, it’s fitting that my only chance is here. At first I thought this was a rotator cuff injury, but now I think it isn’t. I spoke with a colleague who has that and she is scheduled for surgery. I do not want to have to go through more surgery! Instead, I think I might have a torn bicep or a fractured humerus. I’m hoping it’s just me being a sissy girl.

I complained about it on Twitter and @GregKnottLemond emailed me some exercises to do with rubber bands. Fortunately, I had them for my Achille’s recovery, so I use them when I can. But I also found that when I started doing laps at The Oahu Club a few weeks ago, that although the arm hurt and dragged when I tried to do freestyle, it started feeling better after the third session or so. Eventually, it started feeling less painful, and then about the third lap I’d not even think about it.

So I’m thinking that I can skip the x-ray, skip the doctor appointment, heal myself, not be someone with a high-utilization record of exploiting medical services, and do my part to help keep insurance rates down. Then the angel on my shoulder says that it’s a better idea to see what’s wrong before things get so complicated that I have an even bigger problem in the future.

I have this goal to participate in the 2011 Na Wahine Festival‘s Spin and Swim event on 9/11. It’s a rough water swim, one I’ve never done before, and it’s that time of year when Oahu’s South Shore could be pumping with big waves. The bicycle ride is 12 miles, and although I’ve not done the formal route yet, I think I’m familiar with most of it. Next month I think I’ll start practicing.

It’s kind of funny to me that I’m looking at celebrating a 35th high school reunion in a few weeks and that residing in this body is a mind that has stayed about 30 years younger. Our bodies age, and we develop a wisdom only time can nurture, but we don’t have to stop being or having fun. When we make up our minds to be healthy, to grow younger each year, to remember to respect our bodies, they function better and hurt less each morning.

By lavagal

Hawaii Kai wife and mom. Melanoma Stage 3a Cancer survivor. English Language Arts teacher, English Learners Coordinator, and Paraprofessional Tutor. Super sub teacher. Dormant triathlete. Road cyclist and Masters swimmer. Gardener. Mrs. Fixit. Random dancer. Music Curator. A teenager trapped in an aging body. Did you know 60 is the new 40? It is.


  1. it will be reassuring to find out there is nothing wrong with your arm that swimming won’t fix.

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