My hands are full a lot these days. In the early nineties, one of my boyfriends tried for weeks to teach me how to juggle, but it was useless. I threw balls into the air, then got down on my hands and knees to find them under things. Eventually, I threw in the towel when it became obvious I would never master this excellent party trick. This was also the boyfriend who took me to parties where I didn’t share a language with anyone else and I’m truly shitty at charades, so an excellent party trick might’ve saved the relationship from quickly fizzling. Oh, who are we kidding? If the sex is good nobody has to say a word.
Speaking of speaking, yesterday, the sports doctor spoke to me in soothing words of a hip replacement wizard in New York who works on the broken joints of working ballet dancers. Most of the expected outcomes for hip surgery simply do not meet my expectations for me and the post-op restrictions seem impossibly strict. But what do I know? The calcification in my hip has set my spine off at an angle, causing me to wish I spent most of my time in bed, wearing marabou bed jackets and ranting about my close-up, though – seriously – I’ve got work to do. Gritting one’s teeth and getting on with getting about on bicycles while walking with a cane invites skepticism on the part of onlookers. You would not believe how often people who see me glide down the avenues on two wheels lose their shit when they get a glimpse of my cane. My back hurts. How is that your problem?
The sports doctor suggested I go back to physical therapy. In PT, I’d strengthen my abs, my back muscles and get painful massages; that’s okay. I’m working on that anyway and have two massage therapists on speed dial. To devote any more time to exercise daily, I’d have to be a professional athlete of some kind, since running off to Cirque du Soleil with a cane is obviously right out. Next step: installing a koi pond in a kiddee pool and taking up soothing tai chi in my spare time, which looks sillier when you realize I’ve been so busy touching my toes I let an entire cherry season slip past me without getting anything into a jar. My back hurts – but that stings.