For the last few months I've picked up the habit of cracking my neck. I discovered it by accident when I turned my head and heard the little popping bursts as they traveled to my left. Like a loose button that you're dying to twist off and can't quit playing with, I couldn't stop doing it. I guess I wanted to see if my head would eventually droop down over my body and hang at a precarious angle without actually falling to the ground.
This past Wednesday I had a pain on the right side of my neck.
Thursday I was so tired I lay on my couch all day and longed for an IV drip of food to be airlifted in. I didn’t see myself walking all the way to the kitchen to grab a South Beach bar and then trekking back through the Himalayas to get to the couch. I had two pillows behind my neck and even though it didn’t feel very comfortable, I kept adjusting them throughout the day.
Friday morning I woke up and both my hands were tingling in that fallen-asleep-cause-I-slept-on-it-wrong manner. It went away after about an hour and I once again spent all day on the couch, praying for food to open the refrigerator door and walk over to me.
Saturday morning I sat up in bed and the tingling sensation shot through my body like an electrical shock. I lay back down and prepared to die. I waited about 30 seconds and tried again and the numbness had diminished but something was not right. I managed to walk out of the bedroom but it felt like I had no thighs.
Sitting at the computer, I coughed and the tingles swept through my body again. I raised my shoulders and more tingling. The right side of my neck was stiff, like I’d been sleeping on a jagged rock. I sleep on one of those pillows with one side higher than the other, with the higher side tucked under my neck and chin, so my spine stays aligned all night. I’ve slept on it for almost seven years and never had a problem before.
I jumped on Web M.D., the home page of hypochondriacs everywhere, and typed in my symptoms. I did not have carpal tunnel. I had that once but managed to get rid of it.
Guillain-Barre? Hmm, no attacks of viral infection but if I do have G-B, surgery can exacerbate it.
Three hours later the sensation had gone away in my lower body but my hands were still half numb. But I had to go to Costco. I say Had To because of all the items I’m trying to stockpile for three months instead of having to buy them online every week.
These are the things I dropped at Costco: A huge box of tiny V-8 juices. A carton of 36 packs of popcorn. A box of 12 cupcakes that fell over upside down. On their icings.
The numbness in my hands lasted all day and night.
Sunday I woke up with tingling hands but nothing else was numb. This time I Googled my symptoms. Just to make sure I didn’t have Raynaud’s Disease I wore gloves around the house. Now Raynaud's Phenomenon can be brought on by stress but me? Under stress? That’s ridiculous she says as she’s gearing up for a yard sale in two weeks.
I’m hoping it’s only that my brain has given me something else to worry about so I don’t have to obsess about whether I’ll ever walk in heels again. Or if they operate on the correct foot. Oh, and after this tingling thing? My neck doesn't crack at all. Because you know I had to see if it did.
I guess I’m lucky that the tingling is now only in my hands, a part of the body you hardly ever use when you’re on crutches.
End of chat.