Little known fact that I am Batman.
Though you may have had some clues given my being an orphan and certainly also having some unresolved issues in regard to the whole “being an orphan” thing.
Yet, my lack of extreme wealth may have tipped you off that I’m not really the crime-fighting playboy cape-wielding superhero.
So what the hell am I talking about now? Have I finally lost my mind?
Well, lately I’ve strayed from talking about health issues in this blog titled “Brain Wars” because my health issues have been pretty calm. No seizures – big or small – and I haven’t even felt like a lab rat in months.
At the same time, I am still am having trouble breathing, and none of the regular treatments for asthma seem to work. It’s been especially bad lately and one of my Life Change pharmacists thinks I may have an allergy.
So David and I are going on vacation for the first time in a couple years and I’m going to test out whether a change in physical environment does help my breathing issues.
Also, since this much-needed vacation is approaching, as if on cue, my body decides to be a complete and utter dick about it.
Specifically, I somehow managed to throw out my back while doing laundry this morning.
And then I couldn’t move all of me and was in a world of pain.
“No, shirt, I will not be able to hang you up to dry at this particular time.”
I hurt my back a few years ago and… well, I’ve told this story before so here is an excerpt from my book which I have been avoiding for a few months:
BACK PAIN: ORIGINS
(abridged chapter from What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Weird at Parties)
… One day four years previous, I had been getting Mom dressed at what had been my parents’ home, and she was being a little more uncooperative than usual. Therefore, I countered her move to escape by suddenly twisting my back in a violent, jerk motion. After doing so, I immediately froze because I felt and heard a noise that made me feel I had really done something terrible. My mom also froze and looked at me with great concern.
Yet, when I carefully resumed my motion, nothing was wrong.
That is, until about three years later when I was pacing in my bedroom because pacing helps me relax, and my back suddenly stopped working.
The reason I was home during the day and not with my mom at her facility is because that afternoon I had a neurology appointment. And, suddenly, out of nowhere, I found I was unable to walk… easily.
“This is inconvenient,” my mind stated. “Because you have a doctor’s appointment and you’re going to miss your bus if you don’t immediately drag your black-hole-containing-mortal-husk down the stairs to catch it.”
As usual, I listened to my mind and soon found myself on the bus which, due to the mid-afternoon time, was crowded with students from East High School. Yet, I didn’t really see them because I was instead seeing through time. At this point, I was actively experiencing pain which was nothing short of breathtaking. I had never before experienced that kind of body pain. The blood seeped from my face and I could only sit in a very rigid way, biting on the insides of my cheeks as I really couldn’t sit or walk but, somehow, I had walked and I was sitting.
I was a public spectacle. Thus, the kids on the bus stayed well clear of me. I probably looked like I was the first carrier of the zombie plague and, with all that’s happening in the world today, I may have been.
And I wasn’t able to be conscious of them. When the bus finally stopped at the medical clinic where I was to have my appointment, it took me forever to fall off the bus and stagger across the parking lot and totter my way into my doctor’s office. Of course, since I wasn’t in the emergency room and was, instead, there for my annual EEG, I did, with great discomfort, the EEG. Afterwards, I was whiter than white and shining with sweat. The pain was blinding. Yet, the doctor made a sad face and told me to make another appointment for my back if it didn’t get any better.
They then said goodbye and left the room.
I was left alone in the recovery room, sitting rigidly in my hospital gown on the table. I was to put my clothes back on and I made some progress with this task. But I then hit a wall when it came to my pants and soon it became clear that I wasn’t going to be able to put my pants back on because I couldn’t bend at the waist in any direction.
So I sat there for a bit on the cot, mulling over that realization.
I couldn’t bring myself to yell at the closed door, asking for help with my pants, and I also couldn’t put my pants back on independently.
So, I just sat there for a while.
And then I sprung to life and PUSHED THROUGH THE PAIN TO PUT THE PANTS ON! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!
And then: VICTORY!! PANTS ON!! I AM DRESSED!
Tears of a different kind streamed down my face.
By the time I staggered back outside I was certain I wasn’t going to faint because if I was, I would have done that while putting my pants back on.
The pain started to come in waves. It would consume me and render me senseless and then it would again dim and my senses would be restored and then it would again strengthen… and I soon knew I couldn’t handle the bus. So, I waited for half my life to get across the busy street outside the hospital, sweat now pouring down my face, to arrive at a Mexican restaurant which had a nice little front patio in shade.
I sat rigidly on a metal patio chair on that patio and ordered the largest margarita they had and it was no joke. I also called David to ask if he would come and pick me up after work because I had effectively lost my physical ability to move and wouldn’t be able to get home on my own.
But my notion of “limiting movement” did not mean I was going to alter my routine… (END).
Why I Retold That Story Here Today
In order to resolve the back pain I felt after I first injured my back, I eventually saw a physical therapist who told me my back was “fucked” and who put me under a machine for an hour and then did some witchcrafty “SHARP JERKING MOTION” on my back and… I could magically walk again.
She also told me to walk as much as humanly possible.
Aka YOU CAN’T SIT THIS SHIT OUT YOU HAVE TO MOVE
Since then, I took her words to heart and have spent the last few years focusing on strengthening my lower back and legs and I’ve made great progress.
In fact, I was admiring my legs this very morning and… boom.
Paralysis and pain.
Yet, and here’s where the whole Batman thing becomes relevant (arguably), I didn’t fall to the floor and call a chiropractor (I don’t have one). No, I instead fell to the ground and then did my daily exercises and pushed through the pain and stretched and did my reps and…
eventually, by the end, I had regained mobility.
Remember how Christopher Nolan’s Batman in The Dark Knight Rises seems to fix his broken back through some medieval chiropractic hanging and then also push-ups?
Well, I was out of rope.
But I WAS GOING TO FINISH THE MOTHERFLIPPING LAUNDRY AND THEN GO ON VACATION ON THURSDAY so I pushed through the pain and tears and… it worked!
I then iced my back for twenty minutes and then finished the laundry, cleaned the apartment and picked up the trash outside our apartment building.
I am Batman.
It should be noted that a truly broken back is a WHOLE different thing (don’t move… seek help… somehow) but if you have been working out daily and then seemingly tweak your back to where your eyes fly open and you freeze as if you’ve been doused with ice water?
If you’re sadistic enough, you really can push through it and fix that shit on your own.
TAKE THAT UNRESOLVED ISSUES REGARDING PARENTS’ DEATHS!!!
I will take any kind of superhero comparison my cruel mind is willing to provide me.
Now if I can just solve this breathing issue, I will have epilepsy.
Probably won’t be posting a blog next week so fair warning and thanks to those of you who will notice and then worry (don’t worry… I’m on vacation! I mean, I COULD be dead but I hope to be relaxed and refreshed instead 🤞)!
Be safe! Be kind! Be Batman!
8 thoughts on “I Am Batman”
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i lovvve ice.
That whole 20 minutes on 20 minutes off shit? Nope. Ice until you’re numb. When it thaws out enough to hurt again, hit it with the ice again. Probably a good idea to use a tea towel in between your skin and the ice, but…
In extremis, I’ve ignored it and lived to tell the tale.
I ALWAYS have an opinion, and I’m far too willing to share. Please feel free to ignore me at will.
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Have to walk it off… and ice when possible and, when lying down, lie on the side without the injury with a pillow beneath the legs. The old routine. Hugs to you. Would never ignore you. 😘
Well damn, you’re Batman all right. In my worst episode I slowly crawled into the back of a taxi in all fours and stayed in that position all the way home.
I’ve fantasised about toughing it out, but somehow I always end up in bed with a lot of painkillers and whimpering.
You’re truly an inspiration! But just not, you know, inspiring enough to make me be Batman. I am, and will always be, The Whimperer!
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Awwwww! Well, it’s really my inability to get painkillers (for no reason I can think of) that has driven me to find the hard way of healing it ASAP. 😂 But there was CERTAINLY some whimpering when it first went! 😭 I’m so sorry you can empathize Ray!💔Stupid backs! Now I’m on the couch with the pillow and an ice pack. The long hike back! Thank you so much for the kind words. Hugs hugs hugs hugs!
Well your method is counter-intuitive to everything I’ve ever been told about back pain. I have been immobilized only twice and just stopped doing everything, took Robanicet and heating pad until it loosened up again. You’re a wild woman!
Oh no! Not wild. ☹️ My exercises restored mobility by the end of them. I don’t have pain killers. But I do daily strength building exercises just for this purpose on advice from my physical therapist who fixed me a few years ago and essentially told me to get in better shape. 🤷🏻♀️ so I did and it worked for me. So to each their own. 💙