An Anniversary I Would Like to Forget

Monday, November 04, 2013

About this time last year I was working an early morning shift. I was exhausted and not thinking about much of anything except finishing my shift so I could go home and sleep. I was plugging along until I got to a point where I couldn't quite reach the merchandise I needed to scan. Instead of doing the smart thing and grabbing a stool or "reacher-bar" I stood on my tip toes to reach the bar code. After scanning a few items my back started to feel like it was on fire.

The burning sensation was intense, but I pushed through knowing that the sooner I finish, the sooner I got to go home. I eventually went home in a great deal of pain, popped a few Advil and went to sleep. The next few days the pain continued to get worse. Every time I reached above my head or moved my arm repetitiously, my back would spasm. At this point, most people would have gotten themselves help. Not me. I was too stubborn. 

It took one whole week before I said anything to my managers. I came in for my weekly early morning shift and got right to work. About one hour in I broke down in tears while trying to tell our HR representative what happened. 

That afternoon I went to the hospital to get things checked out. The diagnosis: I sprained the right side of my back and needed physical therapy until I was no longer in pain. I hated physical therapy, it felt like the biggest waste of time. Despite that, it did help me. After a few sessions I was ok enough to rehab the injury on my own.

I still have back pain and spasms to this day if I do enough physical labor, or sit down for extended periods of time. I don't know if this is due to the nature of my injury, or the fact that I ignored it for so long.

I honestly wasn't going to write about this, but I feel like some of you might be able to learn from my mistakes.

Treat your body with respect, because you only get one. 


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