The Universe sending me nudges …

A Relaxed Woman

“Growing up, I never knew a relaxed woman. Successful women? Yes. Productive women? Plenty. Anxious and afraid and apologetic women? Heaps of them. But relaxed women? At-ease women? Women who don’t dissect their days into half hour slots of productivity? Women who prioritize rest and pleasure and play? Women who aren’t afraid to take up space in the world? Women who give themselves unconditional permission to relax? Without guilt? Without apology? Without feeling like they need to earn it? I’m not sure I’ve ever met a woman like that. But I would like to become one.”

― Nicola Jane Hobbs (via the excellent SwissMiss)

finally the carolbaby has come back to the blog

A little blip in the daily posting routine there.

I’ve been feeling quite low and maudlin for the past few weeks. Everything has felt hard – like wading through treacle. I have no business feeling like this because objectively this year has been great with very many good things happening. This actually makes feeling low worse because then I excoriate myself for not feeling more upbeat and thankful. Oh Brain!

I mean it could be a billion things – biorhythms, stars or chakras out of alignment, overheated thyroid meds, some distant planet in retrograde, not enough exercise, moon phase, microbiome off kilter, a curse, too much computer, too little computer – really who can know?

Sometimes you just need to wallow for a bit. Reader, I really let myself wallow.

I woke yesterday feeling much more positive with renewed energy, which is quite a relief.


prosaic and bonkers

The left side of my neck has been in quite some pain for months now. My neck muscles have been as tight and hard as … hard things. Ridiculously hard things. I could not, for example, pinch the skin at the back of my neck, so permanently taut were the muscles. There have been frequent spasms. It’s been unpleasant.

Apart from physio and being diligent about rehab, I’ve done many things to try and help: new pillows; getting a backpack for my laptop; changing how I sit; changing how I stand and walk; a laptop stand for work; a bluetooth keyboard for duolingo.

Nothing I did seemed to be helping. I’d get some limited relief from physio, but it didn’t last more than a couple of days.

My shoulder muscles have been stupidly tight too – and recently I noticed that my bra strap was digging in and leaving very red marks. And noticed that I had quite deep permanent bra strap shaped gouges in my shoulders.

At first I thought this was because my muscles were so distorted and tight. But after a few weeks I wondered if maybe, possibly my bras were the cause. I’ve increased 3 cup sizes in the last couple of years and my bras have quite thin straps. It was an extremely long shot, but
I took to the InformationSuperhighway to research. And it seemed maybe it could be the cause!

I figured it was worth the experiment and bought new bras with wide straps and no elastic over the shoulders. Within a week I had significantly less pain and an increased range of movement. Excellent Physio was astounded by the difference from my prior fortnightly visit and by the solution!

My neck is still a little tight, I have some residual pain and I’m being super-careful. There is likely some nerve damage – which should fix itself in time.

The priority now is to build strength so my neck and shoulders aren’t working so hard, and reclaim some fitness!

What a weird thing.

8911 steps

At last week’s appointment I told Excellent Physiotherapist that exercise finally felt like something that might be achievable.

I floated Yoga and/or Pilates. Hard No from her.
She suggested swimming. Alas it tends to hurt my neck.

So walking it is! I’m aiming for a minimum of 30 minutes. It seems terribly little, but I must start somewhere.

Today was day 3 – an extremely dull walk around the neighbourhood. Would that it could always be beautiful harbourside strolls.

I will write separately on the neck pain. After many (many!) months I’m making excellent progress – but the explanation is both extremely prosaic and completely bonkers.