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I find myself couch-bound for the second time in less then 3mths (the first time was when I had my wisdom teeth out late August). This time I’ve done my back in, so instead of looking like a chipmunk, I now look like a crippled old woman.

How?? Well, I could say it was a rough landing from a skydiving lesson. Or while I was being jostled around during a 2hr horseback ride through the bush. Or that I lost my footing and slipped while doing an early morning trek up Mt Cootha to watch the sunrise at the top… Any of these would make for an excellent story, sadly though, it was none of these exciting things. Nope, in fact it was very mundanely while I was cleaning the bath.

Trying to get my house chores done before heading off to work last Saturday, only I ended up in freezing in pain while doubled over the bathtub in instant agony, unable to straighten up… Through my tears of pain I thought about trying to get myself down onto the bathroom floor, but as I’ve had previous experience with similar pain about 7yrs ago when I slipped a disc in my lower back (that time simply bending over to pick up a shoe), I knew it could be quite a while before my muscles relaxed enough for me to be able to move again. Plus my flatmates had not long left the house; I didn’t fancy staying on the bathroom floor in agony for several hours until someone came home and found me!

So crab-like, kind of half walking hunched over & half crawling, I braced myself for the four meters I had to go to get my mobile phone from the bench in the kitchen, then the six meters back down the hall into my bedroom and onto my bed.

That phone became my lifesaver.

Instead of being stuck there flat on my stomach in agony as spasm after horrific spasm wracked my body for possible the entire day by myself, I was able to call (on loud speaker) one my wonderful friends to come over and help me straight away. I then called my best friend (who just happens to be a GP doctor) who advised heat packs straight away and a couple of over the counter and prescription drugs to relax the muscles. I was then able to use the ‘voice to text’ function from Siri on my new iPhone5 (sorry – this is not a deliberate plug for Mac – even while I was in agony at the time I still took a moment to be excited to be using this feature for the first time! Haha!) to get my friend to drop into the chemist and pick up the painkillers on his way over. Next another loud speaker call to my flatmate to let her know what had happened and to ask if I could borrow some of the prescription drugs suggested to me, which I knew she had a stash of, until I could get a script for my own. Then another loudspeaker call to work to tell them I wouldn’t be coming in today.

By the time my wonderful friend arrived to my rescue 20mins later, I’d managed to multitask and organise quite a lot with just my phone, while not being able to move anything else except for my hand; Thank God I thought to grab that phone!! I need to just say here, if you hadn’t already noticed: I LOVE my new iPhone!

**Disclaimer: I have to give credit to those people on the other end of the phone who were able to decipher what I was actually saying in between copious amounts of heavy breathing, tears, blocked nose from all the tears, and grunting and swearing during the spasms**

So with the help, generosity, love & physical support of my wonderful friends and flatmates who were always there ready to help me stand up, or get something I can’t reach, get me cups of tea/food/tablets etc, combined with the (prescription) drugs, lots of sleeping, and my beloved wheat bag, I’ve gone from 0% mobility on Saturday, to about 20% mobility yesterday (Tuesday), and 50% mobility today. Gosh you really take for granted all the little movements you do everyday with a normally functioning back!

So I’m off to see the physio tomorrow to find out if it’s just a pulled muscle or ligament, or if I have indeed slipped another disc, and how to fix it. After all, it’s my birthday very soon and I’ve got lots of fun things planned with lots of great people this weekend, and I am determined to still go! As my Mum said “even if we have to strap you to a gurney to get you there!”. Hmmm, fingers crossed it doesn’t get to that – the gurney will clash with the dress I’m planning on wearing…

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