Yesterday as I drove home from work I felt a twinge in my upper back. I thought nothing of it, but it was a continuous pain that came out of nowhere. An hour later my whole upper back was seized up and tight, and whenever I tried to take a deep breath it would hurt my back. Two hours after that I was miserable – unable to do anything comfortably. I couldn’t lay down, couldn’t sit up, couldn’t bend over – nothing.
At 10 p.m. I gave up and went upstairs to bed, with a heating pad underneath me. The problem was that laying flat on my back was very painful, and switching to my sides or belly were not much better. So I gave up and came downstairs to do research on ways to fix the pain in my upper back. My mother was on Facebook and suggested I try a cold pack instead of the heating pad.
BIG mistake. After a few 10-minute cold compresses over the course of 45 minutes I was now completely paralyzed on my right side. My entire back had tightened into a massive shield of pain, and I couldn’t move my right arm. I hobbled back upstairs to see if the heating pad would relieve the excruciating pain brought on by the cold pack. But when I laid down it was so painful that I couldn’t take it.
I began whimpering, desperately trying to stay quiet in order not to wake up Denis. But despite my best efforts, I let out one whimper too many and he woke up. At that point it was like I had been released from the pressure and I began wailing and letting all those whimpers become full-on moans. People, it hurt REALLY REALLY BAD. Like, giving birth bad.
Denis scrambled and got me some Motrin, which I took gratefully (I had tried to find it earlier and couldn’t). I tried to lay back down but once I had been given “permission” to vocalize the pain through Denis being awake, I couldn’t stop. I finally realized the poor guy wasn’t going to get any sleep if I stayed there, so I went back downstairs with the heating pad and settled into the recliner.
I slept fitfully for the next 4-5 hours, waking up whenever I moved and caused another shaft of pain through my back. At some point around 2:30 a.m. CootieBoy woke up and came down to get juice, and told me he was sad that my back hurt. I soon fell back asleep and was awakened by CB again at 6:30 a.m., up for the day to begin.
I felt much improved, having had the heating pad on my back for a solid four hours. It still hurts a lot, but nearly as bad as it did after that cold pack fiasco. Don’t know how I’ll manage today – we need to clean the house in advance of a friend coming to visit tomorrow, Denis is taking CootieGirl to a festival about an hour away, and I am also taking CB to a friend’s birthday party.
Now I know why people with back pain stay home from work, or cancel appointments – I can imagine how I’m going to work on Monday if my back continues to feel the way it feels. I can’t imagine having to sit in a chair for 8 hours with no relief. Blerg.
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