The Torture Chamber

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BuildingNew

I've had a bad attitude lately.  Actually, I think it's a great attitude, but in terms of my car accident recovery, I suppose it's a bad attitude.  I've missed a lot of physical therapy appointments over the last month or so.  First, there were the holidays.  And then, I think maybe, there were more holidays.  Then The Torturer went on vacation and I purposefully accidentally skipped missed my appointments while he was gone.  I've got a few things coming up where I'll be missing a few more appointments. 

Damn, I just hate it when that happens.  Heh.

I had a visit with my doc last week.  He tells me I'm progressing just fine.  "As slow as molasses, but that's to be expected with what you've gone through." he says.  Hmmm. Progress is good, slow progress is not.  On a daily basis it's hard to see any changes and that gets frustrating.  When I look back a few months, however, I realize I've come a long way.

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This is Dan.  Dan is one of the techs at PT.  He loves his job, can you tell?  Maybe he just loves it when The Torturer and I squabble because we were really going at it when this photo was taken.  The Torturer was particularly difficult yesterday.  Dan thinks it's funny when we fight argue disagree.  Funny?  Pffft.

Here's a picture of the door to MY room at PT:

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I don't know how it happened, but room 3 is mine.  I get really confused if it's not available when I'm there.  I've spent more time in Room 3 over the last few years than I have in my own home.  It's gotten to the point, on days when The Torturer is being impossible upset, he says, "Twenty Four just go to your room."  And I do.  Room 3.  He knows where to find me.  (You know, once he calms down and starts thinking my way clearly again.)

If I ever get discharged from PT, I'm having a plaque made dedicating a wing of the building to me, but particularly Room 3.  Everyone who works there knows it and is expecting it. I'd never let them down.

Inside Room 3 it looks like this.

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You think it looks harmless, don't you?  Well, you're wrong.  I can't even tell you the horrors which have gone on in Room 3.  It's a private room so the other patients out in the common area don't have to hear me cuss like a sailor cry.  To be honest, there have been a few days when I've known I'm just not up to seeing all the other cheery patients. There have been days when I've gone to Room 3 and stayed there.

I think sometimes The Torturer rips my arm right out of the socket in Room 3 and leaves it on the floor for the janitor to find later.  I'm quite sure of it.

This is the EVIL arm bike.

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It's evil, I swear to you it is.  You "pedal" it with your arms.  I'm up to a whopping 3 minutes in each direction.  Those three minutes kill me.  I cheat and mainly use my left arm to make the pedals rotate.  Pathetic, isn't it?  But don't tell The Torturer I cheat because if you do he'll stand over me and watch me the whole time I'm there.  I can hear him now, "Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah!"

I wouldn't cheat if I was capable of doing it the correct way.  Just sayin' ….

This is Tina.

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Tina is one of the nicest people you could ever meet.  She is my co-conspirator.  She's seen me so drugged up, I could barely walk.  She's helped me walk.  She's also laughed at my drugged up ramblings.  She's seen me cry too.  She gets pissed off at The Torturer when he leaves me in tears.  I love her for that alone.  She's also my faithful "mood-o-meter" for The Torturer.  I arrive and she lets me know what to expect based on how his morning has gone.  I can't imagine the past few years without Tina.

This is the dreaded orange ball.

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I'm supposed to do stuff like that guy is doing.  Arm stretches and stuff.  I can't even tell you what an asshole that ball is.  One big orange asshole.  Really.

The real Torture Device From Hell is this thing.

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Not the blue mat, but the machine next to it.  There have been days when I've BEGGED not to be put on that despicable machine.  Lately, I've given up.  

I say, "It huuuuuurts!" and The Torturer nods his head and says, "How about two sets of 10?"  

As if I have a choice in the matter.  Really, where did he graduate from?  The top school in the country for Torturers no doubt.  He makes me do rowing, and bicep stuff, and tricep stuff and lots of other mean stuff too.  Most of the time he has to help move my arm for me because I can't do it on my own.

Does that stop him?  

Hell no.

I'm a lot better than I was.  I live with pain, but it is now manageable most of the time. Feeling better means I want to get out and play.  I'm finding it harder and harder to find the motivation to get to PT.  I'm starting to feel like a normal person, and it therefore follows I want to live my life like a normal person.  

I've become adept at using my left hand for more things.  I no longer hesitate when I have to ask someone to lift, open, or carry, something for me.  I just look them in the eye and state, "I've only got one working arm, would you mind helping me?"

People are kind.  No one has ever turned me down.

Asking for help used to cause me great shame.  It's hard to adjust to a loss of independence.  Now I've adopted the attitude that everybody has a handicap, some are just more visible than others. 

I mean, at least I'm not an asshole, right?

I asked the doc when I could stop physical therapy.  He got a far away look in his eye and said nothing other than, "Hmmmm."  Then he sent me off with a hug.

It has been two and a half years since my accident.  It will be three years at the end of July.

I'm determined to be done with PT this summer.  I'm determined to be done with it by the beginning of summer.  This has been my personal goal for awhile.  I've been afraid to voice it.  I've been afraid of setbacks, because there have been so many.  I've been afraid of facing the day when I have to accept "this is as good as it's going to get."  But now I think I have something to prove to my doctor.  I also have something to prove to myself.  

It's time to get my life back.

78 Responses to “The Torture Chamber”

  1. SSG

    I am loving your descriptions of your PT equipment, especially the big orange asshole. Too funny. I really hope it improves so you can stop being tortured, what do they say? Will you be able to use it again?
    SSg

  2. SSG

    I am loving your descriptions of your PT equipment, especially the big orange asshole. Too funny. I really hope it improves so you can stop being tortured, what do they say? Will you be able to use it again?
    SSg

  3. SSG

    I am loving your descriptions of your PT equipment, especially the big orange asshole. Too funny. I really hope it improves so you can stop being tortured, what do they say? Will you be able to use it again?
    SSg

  4. Michelle

    Great to see The Torturer’s Chambers.
    The only thing wrong with goals is that if we want to achieve them we actually have to do something, like stop eating when not hungry (sorry, that’s my goal).
    I guess if you want to be done with PT by Summer, you’d better get your butt in there and start doing it 😉

  5. Michelle

    Great to see The Torturer’s Chambers.
    The only thing wrong with goals is that if we want to achieve them we actually have to do something, like stop eating when not hungry (sorry, that’s my goal).
    I guess if you want to be done with PT by Summer, you’d better get your butt in there and start doing it 😉

  6. Michelle

    Great to see The Torturer’s Chambers.
    The only thing wrong with goals is that if we want to achieve them we actually have to do something, like stop eating when not hungry (sorry, that’s my goal).
    I guess if you want to be done with PT by Summer, you’d better get your butt in there and start doing it 😉

  7. Lori

    I can so relate to the cry of your heart to get your life back. You will get your life back…it just won’t be your old life and it will be a great life but it won’t be the same life. You aren’t the same person that you were before this accident. It’s hard to accept that…hell, I’m still trying to accept that fact myself. Blessings, Lori

  8. Lori

    I can so relate to the cry of your heart to get your life back. You will get your life back…it just won’t be your old life and it will be a great life but it won’t be the same life. You aren’t the same person that you were before this accident. It’s hard to accept that…hell, I’m still trying to accept that fact myself. Blessings, Lori

  9. Lori

    I can so relate to the cry of your heart to get your life back. You will get your life back…it just won’t be your old life and it will be a great life but it won’t be the same life. You aren’t the same person that you were before this accident. It’s hard to accept that…hell, I’m still trying to accept that fact myself. Blessings, Lori

  10. Jan

    Ah, girlie…the fact you can have any sort of a sense of humor about any of it speaks volumes about you.
    I admire you more than I can say.

  11. Jan

    Ah, girlie…the fact you can have any sort of a sense of humor about any of it speaks volumes about you.
    I admire you more than I can say.

  12. Jan

    Ah, girlie…the fact you can have any sort of a sense of humor about any of it speaks volumes about you.
    I admire you more than I can say.

  13. Kelly

    Go girl! This made me laugh, but also my heart goes out to you.

  14. Kelly

    Go girl! This made me laugh, but also my heart goes out to you.

  15. Kelly

    Go girl! This made me laugh, but also my heart goes out to you.

  16. Linda

    What’s the saying? No pain, no gain.
    Don’t hate me, just stating the facts:) I’m all for getting your life back. Go Girl!

  17. Linda

    What’s the saying? No pain, no gain.
    Don’t hate me, just stating the facts:) I’m all for getting your life back. Go Girl!

  18. Linda

    What’s the saying? No pain, no gain.
    Don’t hate me, just stating the facts:) I’m all for getting your life back. Go Girl!

  19. Lump

    “One big orange asshole.” This brought on so many visuals. Some good, actually. 😉
    hang in there!

  20. Lump

    “One big orange asshole.” This brought on so many visuals. Some good, actually. 😉
    hang in there!

  21. Lump

    “One big orange asshole.” This brought on so many visuals. Some good, actually. 😉
    hang in there!

  22. Heather

    Haven’t seen that many orange assholes in my life. Thank you for that! 🙂 I think it must be normal to be restless and ready to move on. It’s been a long fucking time!
    Hang in there 24!

  23. Heather

    Haven’t seen that many orange assholes in my life. Thank you for that! 🙂 I think it must be normal to be restless and ready to move on. It’s been a long fucking time!
    Hang in there 24!

  24. Heather

    Haven’t seen that many orange assholes in my life. Thank you for that! 🙂 I think it must be normal to be restless and ready to move on. It’s been a long fucking time!
    Hang in there 24!

  25. Heather

    And sheeeeeet! Have you seen how many comments you have on your contest! Wow!

  26. Heather

    And sheeeeeet! Have you seen how many comments you have on your contest! Wow!

  27. Heather

    And sheeeeeet! Have you seen how many comments you have on your contest! Wow!

  28. Deb

    Probably having a little time off has made it harder to motivate. I’m like that with working out. If I take a week off it is SO hard to get back into it. I loved getting a glimpse of the torture chamber though. And I greatly appreciate the fact you can keep a sense of humor about it!

  29. Deb

    Probably having a little time off has made it harder to motivate. I’m like that with working out. If I take a week off it is SO hard to get back into it. I loved getting a glimpse of the torture chamber though. And I greatly appreciate the fact you can keep a sense of humor about it!

  30. Deb

    Probably having a little time off has made it harder to motivate. I’m like that with working out. If I take a week off it is SO hard to get back into it. I loved getting a glimpse of the torture chamber though. And I greatly appreciate the fact you can keep a sense of humor about it!

  31. Lo

    aw TF, you done made me cry. ‘it’s time to get my life back.’
    and also? made me spit my tea out. “I can’t even tell you what an asshole that ball is. One big orange asshole. Really.”
    heh. heheheheheheh. duuuude i went to pt for four years. MY ENTIRE HIGH SCHOOL YEARS. can you imagine? well, i guess you of all people can. i went three days a week. for four years. and still i am not cured. ya know i think i’ve told you this before.
    ahem. anyway. what i’m TRYIN to say here is that i am SO FLIPPIN GLAD that PT is working for you. it didn’t do squat for me, but then again, i was a full time athlete and kept hurting myself by training on injuries. (stupid teenage brain.) i truly am SO EFFING GLAD that you are feeling better and also that you are bucking down and damnit, you’re gonna do your best to be your best.
    you motivate me girl to live a better life this year 🙂

  32. Lo

    aw TF, you done made me cry. ‘it’s time to get my life back.’
    and also? made me spit my tea out. “I can’t even tell you what an asshole that ball is. One big orange asshole. Really.”
    heh. heheheheheheh. duuuude i went to pt for four years. MY ENTIRE HIGH SCHOOL YEARS. can you imagine? well, i guess you of all people can. i went three days a week. for four years. and still i am not cured. ya know i think i’ve told you this before.
    ahem. anyway. what i’m TRYIN to say here is that i am SO FLIPPIN GLAD that PT is working for you. it didn’t do squat for me, but then again, i was a full time athlete and kept hurting myself by training on injuries. (stupid teenage brain.) i truly am SO EFFING GLAD that you are feeling better and also that you are bucking down and damnit, you’re gonna do your best to be your best.
    you motivate me girl to live a better life this year 🙂

  33. Lo

    aw TF, you done made me cry. ‘it’s time to get my life back.’
    and also? made me spit my tea out. “I can’t even tell you what an asshole that ball is. One big orange asshole. Really.”
    heh. heheheheheheh. duuuude i went to pt for four years. MY ENTIRE HIGH SCHOOL YEARS. can you imagine? well, i guess you of all people can. i went three days a week. for four years. and still i am not cured. ya know i think i’ve told you this before.
    ahem. anyway. what i’m TRYIN to say here is that i am SO FLIPPIN GLAD that PT is working for you. it didn’t do squat for me, but then again, i was a full time athlete and kept hurting myself by training on injuries. (stupid teenage brain.) i truly am SO EFFING GLAD that you are feeling better and also that you are bucking down and damnit, you’re gonna do your best to be your best.
    you motivate me girl to live a better life this year 🙂

  34. emmysuh

    Hmm, hate to have to say it, but maybe if you wanna be done in the summer, you should work really hard up until then? So they’re all, OMG! I can’t believe how much progress you’ve made — never come back!!!
    But admit it — you’re gonna miss everyone after that far-off, distant day when you’re discharged.

  35. emmysuh

    Hmm, hate to have to say it, but maybe if you wanna be done in the summer, you should work really hard up until then? So they’re all, OMG! I can’t believe how much progress you’ve made — never come back!!!
    But admit it — you’re gonna miss everyone after that far-off, distant day when you’re discharged.

  36. emmysuh

    Hmm, hate to have to say it, but maybe if you wanna be done in the summer, you should work really hard up until then? So they’re all, OMG! I can’t believe how much progress you’ve made — never come back!!!
    But admit it — you’re gonna miss everyone after that far-off, distant day when you’re discharged.

  37. Wendy

    love the big orange asshole…thats greatness! “Im just sayin”

  38. Wendy

    love the big orange asshole…thats greatness! “Im just sayin”

  39. Wendy

    love the big orange asshole…thats greatness! “Im just sayin”

  40. Liz C

    All my best wishes go with you. I so hope you find the… whatever you need to find inside to push on through to your goal
    The pix made my stomach hurt. I go in for an MRI/arthrogram on Monday to find out if I need surgery on my shoulder. No matter the outcome, I can look forward to some time in the chamber.
    Shoulder stuff sux. And it’s my right shoulder this time, too.
    Please hang tough!

  41. Liz C

    All my best wishes go with you. I so hope you find the… whatever you need to find inside to push on through to your goal
    The pix made my stomach hurt. I go in for an MRI/arthrogram on Monday to find out if I need surgery on my shoulder. No matter the outcome, I can look forward to some time in the chamber.
    Shoulder stuff sux. And it’s my right shoulder this time, too.
    Please hang tough!

  42. Liz C

    All my best wishes go with you. I so hope you find the… whatever you need to find inside to push on through to your goal
    The pix made my stomach hurt. I go in for an MRI/arthrogram on Monday to find out if I need surgery on my shoulder. No matter the outcome, I can look forward to some time in the chamber.
    Shoulder stuff sux. And it’s my right shoulder this time, too.
    Please hang tough!

  43. Di

    Pain just stinks… hope you can get through these next few months of PT and put it behind you….
    Di
    The Blue Ridge Gal

  44. Di

    Pain just stinks… hope you can get through these next few months of PT and put it behind you….
    Di
    The Blue Ridge Gal

  45. Di

    Pain just stinks… hope you can get through these next few months of PT and put it behind you….
    Di
    The Blue Ridge Gal

  46. Sandra

    Thanks for sharing your PT torture chambers with us. I got excited when I saw the 1st picture! I love pictures. I’m a very visual person.
    I really hope you get your wish and you can end PT before summer starts. Dan is cute. He reminds me of Joaquin Phoenix in “Walk the Line.”

  47. Sandra

    Thanks for sharing your PT torture chambers with us. I got excited when I saw the 1st picture! I love pictures. I’m a very visual person.
    I really hope you get your wish and you can end PT before summer starts. Dan is cute. He reminds me of Joaquin Phoenix in “Walk the Line.”

  48. Sandra

    Thanks for sharing your PT torture chambers with us. I got excited when I saw the 1st picture! I love pictures. I’m a very visual person.
    I really hope you get your wish and you can end PT before summer starts. Dan is cute. He reminds me of Joaquin Phoenix in “Walk the Line.”

  49. Kristan

    Good luck!
    Although I will miss stories about The Torturer and PT… (Dan’s a cutie, btw. ;P)

  50. Kristan

    Good luck!
    Although I will miss stories about The Torturer and PT… (Dan’s a cutie, btw. ;P)

  51. Kristan

    Good luck!
    Although I will miss stories about The Torturer and PT… (Dan’s a cutie, btw. ;P)

  52. goodfather

    LOL @ the big orange asshole! That was too funny. You always take my breath away at your ability to turn your horrendous pain into comedy. I don’t know how you do it.
    Joining the ranks in your followers pulling for you to complete PT. You deserve to have your life back.

  53. goodfather

    LOL @ the big orange asshole! That was too funny. You always take my breath away at your ability to turn your horrendous pain into comedy. I don’t know how you do it.
    Joining the ranks in your followers pulling for you to complete PT. You deserve to have your life back.

  54. goodfather

    LOL @ the big orange asshole! That was too funny. You always take my breath away at your ability to turn your horrendous pain into comedy. I don’t know how you do it.
    Joining the ranks in your followers pulling for you to complete PT. You deserve to have your life back.

  55. Midlife Mama

    Wow…you’ve really gone through a lot. I don’t think most of us realized the extent of everything you’ve had to endure. I mean, you’ve talked about it, but this post really brought it home. I can only imagine how terrible this whole ordeal has been for you.
    My heart goes out to you. Hugs too. 🙂

  56. Midlife Mama

    Wow…you’ve really gone through a lot. I don’t think most of us realized the extent of everything you’ve had to endure. I mean, you’ve talked about it, but this post really brought it home. I can only imagine how terrible this whole ordeal has been for you.
    My heart goes out to you. Hugs too. 🙂

  57. Midlife Mama

    Wow…you’ve really gone through a lot. I don’t think most of us realized the extent of everything you’ve had to endure. I mean, you’ve talked about it, but this post really brought it home. I can only imagine how terrible this whole ordeal has been for you.
    My heart goes out to you. Hugs too. 🙂

  58. Amy

    I wrecked my shoulder in high school and now I’m having flash backs to my physical therapy. Shudder!
    Also, I’m working on getting my life back too. Two years ago I got sick and as a result I’ve lost my hearing and my lungs are a bit shagged.
    Adjusting to a new life when you miss your old one so much really really sucks and it is nice to have people to travel that path with.

  59. Amy

    I wrecked my shoulder in high school and now I’m having flash backs to my physical therapy. Shudder!
    Also, I’m working on getting my life back too. Two years ago I got sick and as a result I’ve lost my hearing and my lungs are a bit shagged.
    Adjusting to a new life when you miss your old one so much really really sucks and it is nice to have people to travel that path with.

  60. Amy

    I wrecked my shoulder in high school and now I’m having flash backs to my physical therapy. Shudder!
    Also, I’m working on getting my life back too. Two years ago I got sick and as a result I’ve lost my hearing and my lungs are a bit shagged.
    Adjusting to a new life when you miss your old one so much really really sucks and it is nice to have people to travel that path with.

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