Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal

Welcome to Inside the Newsroom @ A2 Journal, a blog written by the newspaper's staff at A2 Journal, a new, weekly, community newspaper covering Ann Arbor. This blog is a place for members of the newspaper's staff to write their thoughts, observations, opinions and other informative pieces they put together while covering the rich history, interesting people, institutions and traditions that make Ann Arbor such a unique community.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Jan. 8 -- Lisa's Musings from Every Day Life

Some odds and ends from this week.

While driving on Jackson Blvd to an assignment, I came upon a car that was advertising a company called "Crash Research" on the side.

Now I don't know what you'd have done in this situation, but I really didn't want to become a statistic in this research, so I dropped way back behind it and followed at a safe distance.

A couple times a year, the left side of my back will spend a good 12 or so hours spasming.

It's always the same muscle and I can usually pinpoint the cause as being something stupid that I've done, although I try very hard to avoid repeat occurrences.

The only culprit I can come up with for yesterday's episode that started late Thursday afternoon, lasted all night, and finally came to a slow, but welcomed end, early this afternoon, was that I hauled my laptop and camera around with me to several meetings this week.

If you've never had muscle spasms, consider yourself very, very fortunate.

This recent episode of stabbing pain hit every 30 seconds -- I timed them -- and if you were listening carefully numerous strings of very unladylike words spewed from my mouth as I grabbed the muscle and tried to twist and physically rip it out of my back.

Once the excruciating pain had subsided, I'm reminded that periodically, since I'm not capable of doing it myself, my body forces me to vegetate with a heating pad on my back not moving unless absolutely necessary.

For you see, the slightest movement, including a dog just jumping on the bed, starts the cycle of pain all over again.

They're really charming, let me tell you.

Modern pharmaceuticals are the only answer, and even then, if you don't catch them before they really get rolling, it seems to take forever to break that Ground Hog Day pain cycle.

Plus, I learned the hard way, if you don't have enough food in your stomach, those drugs you took to knock out the pain -- they come right back up again. And believe me, when your back is spasming, and the slightest movement sets the waves of pain back into motion, the last thing you want to add to the mix is barfing.

So, it's been a rough 24 hours, but I was able to drift in and out of a drug-induced immobile haze watching the shows I'd recorded on the new DVR this week, and figured out I could skip forward through all the commercials, which was really cool.

The problem was today, when I was finally able to find a comfortable sitting position so I could write some stories for the paper, I'd periodically nod off from the painkillers in my system with my fingers resting on the keyboard.

Throughout all of this, my dogs have had to deal with my temporary disability. Ryan, the older one, has experienced it before, and knows to just stay clear of me.

I am not his happy mommy, ready to toss a ball or fetch a bone at a moment's notice.

But my altered behavior scared Driver, the puppy, who'd never seen me in this state.

He's a Mommy's Boy, always in my lap or underfoot and when I'd tell him no and push him away when he wanted to jump on my lap in the LaZBoy, his reaction was one of confusion.

He finally left the room and hid in one of the spare bedrooms.

When I went to check on him (he's always in the same room as I am and usually under my feet), he ran away from me.

And, it's taken him most of today to return to his usual spot and forgive me.

By Saturday, all will be back to normal, and I might even be able to go out in the snow and play some retrieving games with them.

So remind me, what do dogs do on their day off?



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