It's been pretty crazy around here lately. Between kids and rehearsals and performances and kids and photo shoots and photo editing and finals and dishes and kids and all the other stuff, I kind of lost my mind.
And my back, it seems.
You see, I always carry stress in my upper back and shoulders. It's been a major issue since high school. It gets to the point where it is so bad that it feels as if knives are shooting down my back and I cry a lot. And if you know me, I am not a baby about pain--I am generally pretty stalwart--but this can get unbearable. Things like sitting at a computer editing photos, sitting on the piano bench playing, standing in rehearsals holding heavy music and hunching over to wrap Christmas gifts really exacerbate the problem. Also stress. You can probably guess that it started getting particularly painful the day Joel was laid off from the University.
Two days ago I woke up in extreme agony. I had Joel try to rub it out a little, which usually helps, but I wasn't getting any relief. Ibuprofin wasn't touching it and I knew the only thing I could do was get a massage, but I didn't really know how I could afford that right now. So, I suffered.
Then, I got a phone call from my husband. He said he had some money left in his Christmas budget for gifts for me so he was giving me an early present. He had set up an appointment for a massage, and it was just a couple hours away. He apologized that he wouldn't be buying me any books this year, but felt that I really had to have the massage.
I started crying. Mostly tears of gratitude this time, only mixed a little with tears of pain.
I went and got my massage. The guy was a gem...he worked on me for an hour and a half even though I was only paying for an hour. He gave me some special numbing cream to take home for no charge. He could tell what horrible pain I was dealing with and took pity on my poor soul (and back). He told me all kinds of stretches I should be doing, and taught me how to most effectively rub out the pain myself. I will definitely be going back to him sometime soon.
I am still hurting, but it's mostly the sore kind of pain today. That part of my back received a good workout!
Most of the stressors are easing up, anyway. Two performances down, two to go. I finally finished grading my finals. I finished wrapping gifts. I even finished editing all the photoshoots.
Want to see?
Family of Eight (This is my best girlfriend from High School/College and her family.)
Holt kids 1
Holt kids 2
Ellsworth (mini session)
I'm happy to say that after this coming weekend, life will be bliss. I plan on sipping hot cocoa (okay, so I can't...maybe some herbal tea) by the fire while I read a good book and have a yummy Christmas candle burning.
Which reminds me...go enter the candle giveaway if you haven't yet!