Letters from the Home Office Vol. 12
“Tell Me When This Really Starts to Hurt, Dear.”
This week I ordered a standing desk. We mentioned these in previous articles and now I have no choice. Yesterday I went to the Doctor’s office because the pain in my left shoulder and neck got to the point that I was cursing even when I wasn’t watching the evening news. Walking back to the examination room I was offered an audition to play Quasimodo in a community theater production of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
The treatment consisted of a steroid injection in one shoulder and acupuncture treatment in the other. I have an epic pain threshold, but until the nurse told me I was scaring the little kids in the lobby, I was pretty much a whimpering mess. The nurse kept calling me “dear.” As in, “I’m going to keep increasing the pressure, just let me know when it really starts to hurt, dear.” I must have reminded her of her husband Fred, which explains why she chuckled fiendishly every time I said “ouch.”
Now they tell me that I should start feeling some relief in two or three days. I tried to make it clear that if they couldn’t fix it right away I would defer to my medical power of attorney, but my wife gave me a taffy, and I let it slide.
The only position that is marginally comfortable is standing up with my right hand pressing against the back of my left shoulder. So, with two fingers on my left hand I ordered a desk top stand that will allow me to work standing up. There are a lot of models to choose from, some are placed on top of the existing desk and some, like the one I chose, are take stand-alone and mobile. In addition to being mobile, this model has shelves and a desk top that is big enough to accommodate my laptop, a notepad, my mobile device, and my fresh fruit bowl.
The desk is due to arrive in two or three days and even though I could be feeling better by then, the doctor made it clear that with the number of hours I am spending at the desk, this will only happen again. I include that last line on the off chance somebody in management accidentally reads this post.
In a couple of weeks I will review how effective the new desk is, but in the meantime, I recommend you google “stretching for the neck and back.” You will get some very good suggestions on ways to prevent or mitigate the consequences of the sitting position.