Monday, December 15, 2008

Beam me up Scottie

Ahhh bliss, nothing like being pummelled and abused by a physiotherapist. ‘My’Eli is only five foot nothing but she can pack a punch with those tiny hands and on a Monday, when she’s been resting for a couple of days, it's hell.

Still the up side is that whatever it is she does - when she pulls, hits and pummels my bulging calves, to stretch my short Achilles tendons - along with the exercises and stretching, it works and the pain in my foot gets marginally better.

My usual routine takes 40 minutes. After the massage bed battle, I’m left, tummy down – girth spreading out dangerously to the sides of the narrow trolley - and legs under an infra red lamp, set to fry me for ten minutes. It’s late in the evening, it’s warm and relaxing, and I have to make a real effort not to fall asleep, in case I dribble or snore – or worse.

On a good day, or rather a bad day when the foot hurts a lot, I get a session of ultrasound on the ball of my left hoof. I’m not sure what this does, but it feels nice at any rate. I try to make out that every day is a bad day, but I can’t be convincing enough because I don’t always get the jelly treatment.

After that it’s 10 minutes on the conveyor belt, learning to walk properly, ie heel down first and roll the foot (I have been seen doing this around the village, which just shows that I am of an age, as I don’t give a cucumber what anyone might think) before going to the ramp and stretching the calf muscles for 15 minutes. This is all done in front of large glass windows that reflect things you’d rather not see.

Then comes the best bit. I’m taken away to a small room, where hospital noises and nurses’ voices are reduced to a muted sleep-enhancing level. Here I get to lie down again (yawn, ‘scuse me) and my feet are zapped in a magnetotherapy thingy-ma-ging that is supposed to reduce inflammation.

It feels so modern, lying with my plates of meat tingling under this metallic arch while it works its invisible magic. When I am left by myself, after the nurse leaves, I mutter quietly in the hope of being tele-transported to a life of luxury, “Beam me up Scottie” but Scottie must be out to lunch with Lieutenant Uhura, in her tiny Starfleet dress, because so far he’s failed me and the session ends and I have to tumble out into the reality of a cold evening and a bathroom to clean…