Keep on Dancin’

(This is a picture of my spinal column ha ha..) 

I’ve always said if something bad happened to me – say if I had a colon resection and needed to wear a colostomy bag forever after – I’d just strap on that sucker and keep on dancin’.

Well I don’t have a colostomy bag and I HOPE I don’t have a melanoma (see last week’s post) but I do have one heck of a crooked backbone, which did not express itself until I was part way through a yoga class in 2005.

“Um, so you have scoliosis?” the yoga instructor came over and whispered to me as I was deep in Child’s Pose.

“What?  No! I mean I don’t think so! Why, is there something wrong with me?”

She was so kind. She kept me after class and had me bend over from the waist and sure enough:  one half of my rib cage IS higher than the other which is the test they use in elementary schools the world over to check for this lateral twisting of the spine.

It happens right in the womb it seems. You just sit curled up for too long in one position and the die is cast. People who have severe scoliosis have to have surgery: a rod goes in and by degrees straightens you right out. My friend had this operation back in the late ’70s and had to walk around for a few months inside a tubular cast that went from her chin to her pelvis, Now she climbs mountains and paddles kayaks and I don’t know what-all else. She has no pain.

I who started out with a case so mild nobody even knew about it had no pain either –  until this last year . Oh my pants started to fit funny, yes – the fly kept tending to the northwest – but I just figured I’d bought a bunch of cheap Made In China pants. It’s when my vertically striped starting heading northwest too that I realized something was up.  

I have pain now which is why I have to go the Y all the time and quite literally keep on dancin’.  I do Zumba and Nia and Hip Hop, I do Pilates and Yoga. I hang off a giant therapy ball, I do 40 sweaty minutes of Core and Glutes Class and I must say it’s interfering hugely with my work day. Still, what are you gonna do? If it helps me keep moving then it’s worth it. I know myself; I know my temperament. If I didn’t HAVE to keep moving on account of this new affliction I’d just sit at my laptop  24/7 and slowly become a sort of garden gnome.

Here’s the honest to God image of my spine, the truth-in-advertising version of that Stairway to Heaven at the top here. It scares the daylights out of me every time I look at it. That undulating white thing is a backbone? 


3 thoughts on “Keep on Dancin’

  1. Hi Terry,
    So you told me I should write in my blog every day, and if you read my post today you will see that can lead to a bit of a stretch. Then I read your post this morning and I say, “geez…she’s writing about her crooked frickin spine! ? ! ? !”

    And I am somehow, strangely entertained by this.

    My initial response was genuine concern for your well-being, which is odd since up ti’l Saturday I didn’t even know you existed. But then my concern lessened, and turned to ease and chuckles when you described the state of your pants. Obviously, this is not something to hold you back (no pun intended).

    Luckily, you have a lifestyle that allows you to do the things you need to do, when you need to do it.

    Someone said, not sure who, maybe me…life has a way of putting us exactly where we need to be, when we need to be there…

    Yeah, I know; kind of sugary, but true.

    Unless it’s at Kohl’s on a crowded Saturday, where no one needs to be.…


    1. I know I am lucky to write for a living – I often work on the column and the blog in the car while waiting for the teenagers in my life. (That little Hot Spot gizmo is the best thing I ever bought!) But I also work hard. I’m at my desk by 630 every day and last night I went to bed at 1. ((Subtext: pity me! ha ha (not really))

      1. I’m never happier or feel as fulfilled as when I’m writing, especially the kinds of thing I’m doing for the blog. And I know, too, even when I’m writing what someone else wants me to write, at least I’m writing and not flipping hamburgers. And getting those little envelopes with the windows in them has something to do with that kind of good feeling, as well, I guess.

        Trying to do this every day, but it ain’t easy, so my hat is off to you. Everything I do all day is looked at as a potential story, which gets a little insane. (“”And then the girl at subway used the regular mayonaise instead of the lite mayonaise , so I said…”) I’m definitely enjoying it, but don’t want it to start feeling like an obligation…or even worse…a job. And I don’t want to post something lame just to post, which I think I’ve done a couple of times. Plus my tan is suffering.

        How do you deal with that feeling of I have to go write something for the blog, as opposed to I want to? To be honest, I would love to be where you are; eventually get noticed and eventually make a living at this kind of thing. But there is the conflict I always come across, at least in myself, of doing something for the joy of it as opposed to trying to profit from it. I made that mistake once before. So what starts out as fun turns into, “hmmmm, maybe I can make money at this”, which I guess is a natural human response, since eating is a good thing. But then profit leads to competition, and marketing and self-promotion…and then I just want to throw a brick through my computer, because I’m right back where I started.

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