Stranger things have happened since we arrived in China, but I must say this is the strangest and it was all of my own doing! Last Saturday we had a school picnic and it was highly recommended that teachers come. When we woke Saturday is was raining, so I thought it would be cancelled, but they decided to move it indoors. We still went to make an appearance and go and see all the crafts and things that were available. Soon after we arrived it started to pour rain, not the light steady rain it was previously… the remnants of a typhoon that had been in Southern China earlier in the week. We decided to stay for a bit longer and keep dry… as anywhere trying to get a taxi in the rain is near impossible. Here they love to play a cat and mouse as you flag them down, they slow, look at you and speed away! The drivers must enjoy the power! Walking was not an option, even though we live 20 min. away we would have been soaked. I am getting off track… so I was talking to a fellow teacher, who was selling some clothing and she was up on a step and I was lower. I turned my head quickly, to perhaps brush some hair out of my eyes and I felt a sharp pain, a crunch and a pull in my neck. We kept talking and I kept thinking my neck/shoulder hurts. I mentioned it and she said what did you do? As she only saw me standing there and talking as normal. The combination of the dampness, my angle and her added hight must have contributed to the “accident”. I found John and we waited for the raffle draws (a lot of prizes were massage and I thought I could use one now!). Even though we were inside it was damp with doors opening and closing and wet people coming and going. I think the dampness made me stiffen and as a result caused more damage. I didn’t win and we had to head out in the rain and luckily another teacher had a car and they dropped us at our gate. John massaged my shoulder and it felt OK, but surprisingly still was sore. The dampness and rain over the next few days did not help and I progressively got worse and tighter. Monday I talked to a mom from my class, who used to be a physiotherapist, and she suggested an English clinic to go to. I called Monday and could not get in until Thursday. Tuesday was very uncomfortable and by Wednesday it was unbearable! I could not turn my head, heat, Advil, hot showers and John’s massage would not help relieve the pain. By Wednesday I was in so much pain I couldn’t believe it. Any pain I had previously was nothing but an annoyance compared to this level of pain. Once I broke my toe and that initial sharp pain where you jump and yell is how I felt constantly, with no relief. My arm started to tingle and go numb, my right hand was cold and I was really grumpy. I went to my boss, I just couldn’t make it until the end of the day and asked to leave early. I called the clinic and asked them to squeeze me in and luckily they could that day. John came to the school and we went straight to the clinic. A doctor saw me first and prescribed some anti-inflammatories since my neck had a lot of swelling as well as set me up for an MRI. I had some relief with the physiotherapist and he gave me a lovely neck brace to wear, so I could “rest” my head and keep it warm. Of course this is the time we have cool damp weather and temps didn’t reach over 15 or 16c all week! The parents see me in shock and wonder what happened… and I tell them I turned my head the wrong way… I said I have to come up with a better story than this! Some parents suggested sky diving, skiing in the Himalayas and Big Foot jumped out and I crashed into a tree…. jumping off my balcony and landing on a palm tree!
So Thursday I went for the MRI… I guess when you have to pay for services you can get them the next day! Luckily my insurance covered most of it. I went back Saturday and good news… it is nothing serious. It appears I have sprained my neck and compressed a disc, which is causing the inflammation and discomfort because it is putting pressure on a nerve. I am still taking the meds for inflammation and I go back Tuesday. They are hoping Tuesday I can stop with the meds and in about a week I will be back to normal… well I never have been normal, but you know what I mean… ha ha.
So our fun and exploring is limited, but we did manage to squeeze in Expo before my neck issue, so stay tuned for that and more on my recovery.