let the torture begin

I started physiotherapy this week for an injury I incurred over the long weekend. My knee’s been aching constantly, which is annoying me to no end, much like a dripping tap in the middle of the night – only I can’t cover my head with a pillow and make this go away.

Let me start by saying : I have a feeling that my Muay Thai boxing career is coming to an end.

Which gives me mixed emotions… I love boxing.  It’s fast-paced, energetic and it a definite stress reliever for me.  Picturing certain people as I pound the crap out of a heavy bag is a real relaxant… as I’m sure you can imagine.

But I get hurt a lot.

A LOT

This never deters me from licking my wounds and getting back in the ring… until now.  This injury has hampered my ability to live these past 2 weeks.  I can’t sleep because rolling onto my left side hurts. I can’t squat down to play with my children.  Walking fast is as painful as childbirth.*** Not to mention the agony of trying to shave my legs (damn shorts…) or climb the stairs in our house 400,000 times a day (why did we buy a house with 3 levels?!?!?!)

But I digress

Enter my physiotherapist – we’ll just call her Torturer (not her real name obviously, but well deserved) – a lovely 15 year old young girl with a wide smile and infectious laugh. She drifts into my little corner of the clinic, obviously either well caffeinated, or my appointment was simply early enough that she had not yet been jaded by the pain-induced cussing and name calling that so often occurs around the clinic.

This girl is familiar to me.

We exchange the obligatory banter… “Hi, I’m so-n-so, I’ll be working with you”….I’m trying to pull the name, the face, the bubbly attitude from the memory bank… nothin’ – GAWD this is annoying.

“When did the pain start?”

“When I hit my leg”

“Is it bruised?” (insert generally concerned naïve smile here)

he he

I lift the leg of my shorts to expose the bruise on my thigh.

Jaw drop.

Should you be disturbed when the physiotherapist looks genuinely disgusted?

Fast forward to the point that she starts massaging the muscle.

Wait. No

Let’s start where she had me lie down, slide to the very edge of the table/bed thingy, with my leg hanging off to test the range of motion…

Innocent enough, right?

Yeah, then she poked the muscle and I shrieked (oh, does that hurt?) then she started bending my knee while stabbing me repeatedly with a steak knife massaging the muscle.  You can see where she’s getting her pet name from now right? I was getting an arm workout as I gripped the edges of the bed over my head, instead of doing what I really wanted to do.

Grab that skinny little neck and wring it.

Fast forward 20 minutes or so…. Hubby stops by to bring me a latte as I’m hooked up to the IFC machine and then heads off to work. (He loves me).

ANYWAYS – Apparently having mashed up my IT Band and injured my quad would result in me having these knee problems.  Silly me, not thinking of that.

SO That night, as I’m bitching we’re discussing how physio was so terribly painful Hubby says to me

“Well your physiotherapist has certainly come a long way from working at the coffee shop across the street.”

(!!??)

That’s where I knew her from.

And instead of the relief I normally feel here, having figured out that which was nagging me… I’m a bit disturbed.

***I’m totally employing hyperbole here…. it’s obviously not that painful. And considering I had a wonderfully natural back-labour birth, there’s a pretty big threshold to cross there…

…sting like a bee

“Hit me”

“No”

“Just hit my damn stomach”

“No – I don’t want to hurt you”

<chuckling> “you won’t hurt me…trust me”

Hubby is a Thai Boxer.  He has studied the art of Muay Thai for about 10 years now and is extremely impressive to watch… but what’s more impressive is that he is constantly learning.  Even after that long, there’s still a lot to learn.  Well.

Hubby decided (before he was hubby) that I would be a great training/sparring partner.  In theory, I absolutely wanted to be a part of this. We went to the gym together most days (being friends). He was impressive to watch as he would explode on the heavy bag. I would sit on my stability ball, completely enthralled, completely forgetting the exercise I had been doing. Also, I’ve been a fan of UFC and martial arts in general for as long as I can remember.  But that was on TV. Not in the living room.

So I let him attempt to train me.  First step: learning to wrap your hands properly. I have to admit: having your hands wrapped up and the gloves on makes you feel pretty tough…and strangely sexy.  And the good Lord knows we could all use a little more confidence – who doesn’t enjoy feeling sexy?

Next step: pull on the gloves… do the little “float like a butterfly” dance that must accompany every form of boxing. Get in trouble for it. And hit something (or in this case, someone). That first jab was probably the most liberating feeling in the whole world.  I poured everything I had into perfecting the jab, cross, hook, combinations with roundhouse kicks, foot jabs and thai knees.

I’d had a pretty stressful year. Divorce, moving in with my parents at 30 years old, trying to find a suitable place to live for my boys….love, loss… all these poisons that built up inside me, eating away at my confidence, pushing me closer and closer to the brink of depression.  I was fighting with myself constantly. Until I put those gloves on.  No one could hurt me in those gloves. Every ounce of stress, every angry thought, every self-serving thought was released through the gloves.  And hubby holding the pads or shouting his encouragement to me only helped. I fought my way through the anger, the pain, the depression, and the self-pity.  Being physically stronger helped me be a mentally stronger woman… who knew?

That was 3 years ago… I got hurt a few months back and hung up the gloves, much to hubby’s dismay.  I’ve realized how much I miss it.  I miss that connection that we had when we sparred ~ how many couples actually fight each other and don’t have the cops called on them?? It is a special bond that we share… and I like that he’s teaching me about something that he loves so much.

The new house has a big basement…. might have to be the new ring. 🙂