I went to the acupuncturist eight times. Seven of those times, I saw no improvement. After the eighth, my shoulders felt better for a few days, and I could only think of two possible explanations. One was the acupuncture; the other was that the pain had gotten so bad that I had stopped doing almost everything. To test the first theory, I went to the acupuncturist one last time and asked him to do whatever he had done on the previous visit. This treatment didn’t work the same magic, but I took careful note of where he stuck me, ordered a box of needles, and have been doing acupuncture on myself. There seems to be a slight improvement, but since I am experimenting with other self-help approaches, I can’t pin it down (ha) to the acupuncture.
One of the humorous aspects of pain itself and the narcotics that relieve it is that you become a complete idiot. Yesterday, I got out the dogs’ collars, leashes, and poop bags; put on my windbreaker and bicycle helmet; and went for a walk. Pretend you are taking an IQ test, and you are asked to identify something that doesn’t belong in the above sentence. Right! But I didn’t find the correct word or words until I was halfway down the street, at which point I sheepishly returned home and put on my cap. Also yesterday, I was frustrated by not being able to find my keys. After a few minutes of furious looking, I discovered them……in my hand.