Massages Are For Fixing, Not Relaxing

Got a massage by Charles Barkley today.

Not, like, the Charles Barkley.

But my massage therapist. Who does really solid impressions.

And somehow we were talking sports.

And he just threw some Charles out. And a little Shaq.

And it was impressive.

So much so that I’d forgotten that I’d developed spontaneous lockjaw. The day before. After having a conversation about lockjaw. (I’m very susceptible to the power of suggestion. I’ve explained this. Repeatedly. So stop questioning it.)

And I had meant to ask him about it.

Is that something I can ask a massage therapist to work on? Is that a weird ask?

But I didn’t.

Because I didn’t remember.

But also. I didn’t have to.

My jaw was feeling a little better this morning.

So, when I peaced out of the Mill Mountain Full Pull, at 13 miles, I wasn’t even thinking about all of my aches and pains.

I just knew I’d gotten an early dismissal from Beautiful Beastie class. And I was about to enjoy a 90 minute massage.

Except. William.

You know. Some people get massages to relax. To just enjoy the pleasure of having someone gently massage their body.

*sigh* That sounds nice…

I get massages to have the knots beaten out of me and the joints yanked back into place.

And when William asks what issues I’m having. I just say, My shoulders. Just got all the stress in my shoulders.

“What about your hips?”

Oh. Yeah. Those, too.

“How are you ankles feeling?”

Yep. They hurt.

And so he gets to work. And as he’s trying to work the tangled up thread of whatever exists in human necks. He asks, “Do you grind your teeth?”

I don’t know…Probably?

Ohhhh. Wait. Yes! Lockjaw! I thought I was getting lockjaw! But only on the left side. Yesterday. It’s much better today, though. Or…the shooting pain has lessened. At least.

And I don’t know how the ride side of my neck alerted him to the left side of my jaw. He explained it. I didn’t process what he said. I was just in awe of the magic he was performing.

Because he fixed my jaw. Loosened the one side. And activated the other? Because I was apparently opening my jaw all crooked. Like a stroke patient.

I’m good now.

Then he moved on to my shoulders. Which were…not good.

And as he’s flopping my arm this way and that. So he can just really get up underneath all the muscles. Or whatever. He’s just explaining away and using all the professional words.

“You’re just really giving me an opportunity to teach you all kinds of things today.”

I know. I’m a mess.

“No, you’re good. I wish all of my clients would be this relaxed.” (Flops arm backwards behind my head.)

I’m very compliant. I’ll let anyone do anything to me.

Which was. That wasn’t innuendo. Or even an exaggeration.

There’s precedent.

We all recall the shoeless random I allowed to massage me in an abandoned warehouse that one time, right?

Which was the point he asked if I was ok. And if I was ticklish. Because he really needed to shove his hand. The entire way through my armpit. And on out the other side.

I mean, he didn’t explain it this way.

But that is absolutely what he did.

It did free up my right arm to move freely and without pain. Something it hasn’t done in a solid year.

But the pain during the process. Was just about as intense a pain as I’ve experienced since childbirth.

I didn’t cry, though.

Moved on to my legs.

“Oh, your legs are only about a half inch off. You were a full inch off last time.”

Cool. I’m getting less hunchbacky.

And there was a lot of me pushing against. And pulling away. From him. Because that’s how you move legs. And arms. And thumbs. And ankles. Back into place. When you’re not a chiropractor.

At one point, he had to activate my left glute. Like, my entire left ass cheek was just chillin back there. Not doing a damn thing. Letting my right ass cheek carry me up and down mountains.

No wonder that bitch always complaining.

And when he was finished.

I was absolutely massage drunk.

There wasn’t a single ounce of stress left in my body.

I mean. Nothing about that experience was relaxing. Because there was so much digging. And shoving. And interactive exercising.

But when we were done. I didn’t want to even move.

I did. I eventually got up. And drove home. And fell asleep on my couch.

And woke up in a massage coma.

Just fully unable to move. Or bring myself into full consciousness.

William says I have to go back in four weeks. To make sure I don’t backslide too much. Into full lockjaw, I assume.

But also to keep me somewhat level. As I train for the Mountain Masochist. That Beautiful Beastie made me sign up for. In November. 50 miles. And, like, 9,000 feet of climbing…

That’s…a lot…

But there’s a hot tub at the house we’re staying at.

So, I could conceivably just sit my uneven ass in that all weekend.

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