Thursday, November 19, 2009

Writer's Cramp

Mouse and keyboardImage by lorda via Flickr

Those of you who follow me on Twitter might have seen me deliberating yesterday about whether to write through the pain of the repetitive stress injury I seem to have developed. For the record, I decided to write by hand, which was only slightly less painful than typing. I even went out and got a new mouse and a keyboard pad (which heats up!) to help alleviate the pain. And I topped it off with a massage.

But today, I can still feel the pain, a burning sensation that sits mostly in my wrist and shoulder, though at times, it feels like it's traveling up my whole arm. I'm typing on my laptop right now, in case you're wondering, which is definitely more comfortable than my other keyboard. I'm considering sticking to the laptop.

Of course, the other option is to lay off writing completely, but I'm determined to finish this NaNo thing. Mr. Geeky thinks I'm insane and wants me to just take care of myself. I won't even go into the many times he's stayed up all night, worked through illness, and even played ultimate frisbee despite an injury.

I'm not a fan of pain, but I've been told by doctors that I have an extremely high tolerance for pain. Both times I gave birth, the doctors (different ones) were surprised I wasn't freaking out. I also slammed my finger in a car door, which yes, hurt like hell, but I remained calmer than Mr. Geeky, who ran around like a crazy man. When I researched this RSI thing, most the info I found suggested learning to live with the pain, which kind of sucks really. So, what I may do is just write for a shorter period of time. Normally, I write for two and a half hours straight (with a break in the middle), but maybe I need to only write for an hour, take a couple of hours off and then go back to it for an hour.

Long term, I'm considering things like acupuncture and more regular massage, but I welcome your suggestions for good short-term solutions.
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