August 12, 2005

maybe it's not "PHYSICAL" therapy that I need...

I left work for an "early lunch" at around 10:15am to get to my first physical therapy appointment for my back issue (two herniated discs). I got to the office right at 10:30am, and filled out the obligatory paperwork, and then was introduced to my therapist, Nicole.

She took a quick history and then went about checking my flexibility. I was on my back, and she lifted my right leg slowly from the ankle. "Tell me when you start to feel the stretch". My leg wasn't a foot off the table before I responded "I feel it". Nicole was shocked. "Wow, we've really got to work on that flexibility!" This is not surprising news.

Then I rolled over onto my stomach, and she informed me that she was going to do some prodding to test some of the joints and ligaments. Her first prod was right to my lower back - and I quickly, hissily inhaled. "Wow, you are VERY inflamed still!" (after three months people!). We discussed how I either needed to start taking my prescribed Motrin on a regular basis or start icing my back every day - or some amalgam of both. She kindly gave me a clear example of what she should be able to feel for on my upper back, and then clearly showed how the lower back differed from that feel. Thanks, Nicole, really, you didn't have to go through the trouble.

Then came the fun part, she slathered some gel, which was infused with some sort of cortisone medication, onto my lower back, and began giving me ultrasound therapy on the inflamed area. After that, it was time to attach the electrodes! Yay! I love the electrical stimulation on the back. I told her to crank it, and then she placed an ice pack on top and left me to relax for twenty minutes, as the electrodes sent vibrations through my lower back. Ahhhh.

After that, she got me up (always a bummer), and helped me with some flexibility exercises I'm supposed to do twice a day. I scheduled two more appointments for next week, and I was on my way back to work...

...But not right away. I was hungry, so I decided to try my luck at the McDonald's down the street. I hadn't any cash, so I drove past the front of the McDonald's, clearly seeing the ATM/Credit card usage availability on the front door. Cool. Then I saw the drive-thru line. Not cool. Ah well. I was willing to wait for my Happy Meal.

Twenty minutes passed until I got to the bend where I could order. My heart sank, and then nearly beat out of my chest, when I saw a handwritten sign reading "NO CREDIT CARDS - CASH ONLY" on the speaker kiosk. Mother FUCKERS! I was livid. L-I-V-I-D! It took another ten minutes to get up to the first (payment) window, and I sternly requested company with the manager.

I guess I put on quite a show, because the manager gave me a whole hand-load of Free Big Mac cards, and they said I could order whatever I wanted. "Just give me a Happy Meal, cheeseburger, with a Coke, please." But now I felt kinda guilty for getting so mad. But it was their fault! How many hapless commuters would also have gone through the agony of not being capable of using their credit cards, after waiting for nealy a half hour, had I not made a righteous stink about it? I'm doing my part for the good of humanity, here!

As I drove up to Window #2, I again received an apology from yet another Customer Service Representative. I was gracious, and said "Thank you" about five or twelve times. God, I was just hoping they wouldn't spit in my cheeseburger! I can't say I didn't heave a little self-congratulatory evil-giggle one I got back onto the street.

So now I sit, eating some french fries, sipping my child-sized Coke, feeling a cool, calming sensation in my lower back - thinking nothing but good thoughts about tonight and the weekend to come.

posted by julie at August 12, 2005 12:36 PM