Sunday, May 11, 2008

Change of Pace

My right shoulder and upper back are in a bad way. Muscle spasm and it's getting worse. Pain has started to spread down the right arm as well.

"Not more than 20 minutes at the computer without a correspondingly long break", said the nice young man who is my new remedial massage therapist yesterday.

Which means that habits will have to change. It's not work that's doing the damage. I have frequent breaks from the computer and am more than happy to take them. It's blogging, blog reading and generally surfing the net at home.

When I'm writing a blogpost I go at the first and second draft for an hour, maybe more, without moving. Then maybe a few hours, maybe a day later I might revise for another hour. If I posted the first draft you wouldn't understand a word. Neither would I. I'm not a naturally fast or ordered thinker or writer and the drafting and editing become part of the thinking process. I lose myself, my sense of awareness. in the whole deeply enjoyable, compulsive exercise. Only on closing the lid of the laptop after a marathon session do I realise that my body has been suffering. And I haven't even mentioned the lengthy delights of a wet afternoon's blog reading.

Not good. The rules of health aren't any different for me than for the rest of humanity.

At least for a while until things improve physically I'm going to experiment with shorter posts, so that I'm not fretting to get back to the computer and finish the project. I've started to investigate blogs that make a feature of brevity and it will be an interesting change of pace. More stand-alone photographs. Maybe some link posts. Blog reading for limited times only.

I'm alarmed that I've allowed things to get to this stage, in spite of regular yoga classes. I know this stuff, for heaven's sake. There's nothing new in what the massage therapist said. And yet I enjoy my online life and don't want to give it up. I need a special back chair. I need to set gentle limits. I need to get well and to treat my body kindly.


Zhoen said...

Yes you do. Short posts are good. May I suggest a word count limit? Or haiku?

I am sitting here with every cell aching, writing this. Consistency was never really a human trait.

leslee said...

Oh dear. Forgive me for feeling relieved - as I read, I thought you were going to go offline entirely! Yes, short posts, photos, infrequent posting - all better for your body, yet keeps you in touch with us! I've become a less frequent blog reader, alas, but I'm more likely to read short posts and love to check out photos.

winterwood said...

I have suffered also from too much online time and it goes straight to my shoulder and then neck. Now I severely limit my time to lots of short bursts.

I now have also trained myself to write a blog post online and thats it! otherwise I would be there all day and suffer the pain in my neck.

Hope youre feeling better soon.

Dale said...

It's particularly embarrassing when it happens to us, isn't it! :->

do take care of yourself, gently! We'll keep.


mm said...

Thanks everyone for the empathy and commiserations. I'm probably going to go for word count limit posts and/or photographs for a while. Good to know you will be there.

Dale: Yes it is. Very. :->

herhimnbryn said...

Keep your shoulder warm:)

Sky said...

oh dear, m, i am sorry to hear of your pain. maybe you could post some of your lovely images and give us a few sentences about what it is we are seeing. they are always so wonderful.

i am sitting here with de quervains tenosynovitis in my right wrist because i stupidly picked up a heavy garden pot with one hand. after that i pulled the hamstrings and tore my popliteus muscle of my right knee in a bathtub slip of the right foot. much pain and no grip for me! can't write well and can hardly walk. not much online play for me right now either! and spring lures me through the window! :((

mm said...

HHB: Will do :-)

Sky: Ouch. I'm sorry to read this. Maybe you can sit outside in the spring sunshine while you convalesce? Those of us currently firing on 3 rather than 4 cylinders need to support each other!

MB said...

Short posts work. You certainly have some wonderful photos to post, too. Take good care, and I'm looking forward to what you come up with!

starnitesky said...

Sorry to hear you are having problems, I have had an ongoing problem with my shoulder caused by mouse use, I can no longer use a conventional mouse. I do hope you will recover and be able to write your wonderful blog posts.

Take care.