Wednesday, February 16, 2011

332. Warning: Sleep Proven Dangerous to Your Health

Back when I was young and pretty, I would injure myself from time to time doing athletic things, things like running nine miles, or parasailing, or bike-riding, or skiing, or lifting weights. Never would I imagine that I would face the chiropractor, and beg for his help with my neck-that-would-not-turn, only to hear him ask me, “What exactly did you do to hurt your neck?” And I would answer: “I was, uh, sleeping.”

That’s right: sleeping. I am now such a skilled Olympic Contender in my sport of choice (sleeping), that I develop related injuries in my sleep. Yes, this takes talent.

It is pretty scary to wake up one day, and attempt to do a simple activity that you have done every day of your life (an activity like glancing slightly to the left) only to have shooting knives of pain zip down your neck and back. As in, I-can’t-move-I-will-lay-here-and-never-move-again.

I would like to say that when this happened, the chiropractor magically cured me in two seconds. No, this is not what happened. First, I had to plead and cry and whimper for an appointment. Next, after I got over to the doctor’s office (I drove myself, all the while cursing the fact that Tylenol did not come in extra extra EXTRA commercial-grade industrial "experimental" strength), the doctor was so quasi-“worried” about me that he insisted I must go for x-rays before he could even touch my back or neck.

In a heroic agony that made childbirth look like a fun day to the spa, I drove (!) to the hospital and got the x-rays.

Nothing broken (except my Tylenol bottle from me clutching it so tightly), so the chiropractor was able to proceed with treatment (treatment that involved a series of hot and cold compresses, and him pressing on my back and neck until I felt like I was about to pass out or at least die). I would like to say that this treatment “worked,” and I guess it did if you can consider laying on the couch for seven days without moving “a success.”

After a week, I was back to my normal (semi-) perky self, and I could even turn my head to the left OR right. Ah, yes, now I am ready to train for my next Olympic event: rolling over.



  1. I can't tell you how much better this makes me feel.
    I put my neck out while sleeping. I dislocated my hip while walking (I think. I'm actually not sure when it happened but no strenuous activity was involved) I dislocated/twisted a rib joint by reaching for my laptop while laying on the couch.

    35 is the new 80.....

  2. i laughed at you while reading this. in fact, i'm laughing at you now. my laughter, however, is covering my tremors of fear. i used to consider sleeping a hobby - my favorite hobby - before i became the sleepless, un-showered wretch that some call "mama". i was so looking forward to the days when i could return to my hobby, to spend hours focusing on improving my skills in the arena of sleep, to become a better person through a lack of wakefulness, a shift of consciousness. now all i will be able to think of is the extraordinary pain that sleep may bring me. thanks for killing my dreams.

  3. you're welcome. my job here (as a personal sleep trainer) is done. :)

  4. Dear MOV,

    Maybe you were dreaming about moving your piano a week ago and there was a delayed reaction ?

    Love, Cindy


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