This morning I had a physiotherapy appointment to see about some continued support with managing my Chronic Pain; the big thing we have been trying to do is get access to the highly sought after Hydrotherapy Pool. Unfortunately we only have one in Norfolk that is working regularly and one that spends more time out of action than in action and is over an hours drive from me. With demand for this being so high you have to go through a long process before getting the nod for your name to be added to the waiting list.
I had an appointment with Simon a physiotherapist today at 9.30am. With it being the Royal Norfolk Show and the routes all going via the hospital I needed to get to we decided to set out 65 minutes before my appointment and somehow the route we took saw us hit every traffic light on green, avoid queues of traffic in all the normal hotspots (without increased show traffic) and we arrived 45 minutes early. It turned out that it was a good job that we did as Simon was in early, was happy to see me and 1hr 30minutes later I reemerged after the most thorough examination I have had in a long time. We spoke about my current exercises, the goals I am working towards or hoping to achieve (remembering to break that big goal down into a series of more achievable smaller SMART targets). I spoke about the range of movements I have, how I want to improve these and especially my core/trunk and then we talked baselines.
Laura my physiotherapist from the Pain Management Clinic used to bollock me over baselines and setting them, and running before I can wheel and so on and whilst we were talking baselines with Simon today I commented about the good days pushing it harder and harder. Suddenly it was as if Laura was back in the room with me and chewing me up giving me another bollocking. When I was chatting to Simon today I said that the Baseline was all well and good but I felt guilty like I should be doing more especially since I am desperate to lose some weight too. Simon broke it down to me in words that I needed to hear (just as Laura had previously but he but a slightly different spin on it), he said imagine we get you the hydrotherapy referral and you set your baseline, you are in the pool with your LG and you think I know I’ll push it a bit more today as I’m feeling good and you then go into spasm in the pool how will she feel and panic? Especially as you know this will be something you can both do moving forward. Or you push it a bit more and then you can’t go again that week. What are you achieving then? How about though you complete your exercises and play andif you are feeling OK instead of going home you stop for lunch at WLC so you LG misses out on a treat. He certainly new my weak spot. I said I get it, I get it but what if for arguments sake I keep having a good day. Simon had an answer for everything, he said once you have had 2 weeks where everyday your baseline is easily achievable and I mean everyday, then you know it is time to revisit the baseline and maybe increase it slightly.
He could see my eyes widen like he’d told me I could go back to my dream of running (or well now wheeling) a marathon, Simon said (and at this point I laughed as it kept reminding me of that childhood game we used to play Simon Says……..put your hands on your head etc etc) your new baseline is about a very small increase on your previous one, maybe a 5% increase maybe a little more or a little less but only small amounts. Long term you may want a converted bike to be able to bike with your LG he said, but you know with your own background in Health and Fitness that this doesn’t happen overnight it is a long process and one that will take years but if you pace it right those goals of Daddy Daughter bike rides are not so daft as you thought when you wheeled in here.
The upshot of the talk, investigation (he was fairly gentle really) the box ticking and paperwork that was needed and all the exercises, meds etc and the fact that I have access to WLC and I am determined to get in the pool again meant Simon was happy to put forward the request for hydrotherapy. Now I find myself in yet another waiting list however, far from feeling frustrated I am filled with nervous excitement, fear of the getting undressed and dressed and who’s going to do that for me on appointment days (see the mind works too fast and worries that I am putting people out before I even have an appointment) but most of all I am filled with hope again. I know my life is on a different path to the one I used to be on and the baseline bollocking I got today was similar to some of the ones I used to give to the Gym Members recovering from injury, not following their programmes and so on and so forth and perhaps this is why it struck a chord with me.Simon also said to strike the first word off the name of WLC and said replace it with play or buoyancy and I laughed, he said seriously, at this moment in time it isn’t a swimming pool and using it as such will only set you back, go in enjoy your LG bobbing and floating around you whilst you exercise and make the most of it 🙂
I know I am looking forward to my physiotherapy, and I have some bold but not totally unrealistic goals especially now that I am embracing the products made to make my life easier, the chairs and beds, frames, perching stools, wheelchair, mobility scooter and my next fundraising project a hand cycle so I can go out with my LG and help teach her to ride a bike, a silly little thing that many take for granted but for me it’s massive………………………………………..watch this space…………………