Getting a massage

You should know that, in general, I don’t like being touched.

OK, I am a hugger. But I don’t hug everyone.

Well, OK, I hug a lot.

But I guess as long as I’m the hug initiater, I’m OK. But I’m getting off the topic.

I don’t like being touched by strangers. So when my sister gave me a gift certificate to get a massage for my 40th birthday it took me a couple of years to actually use it.

It was a little creepy, I admit, but I had a great massage therapist and by the end I was hooked.

Only problem is that massages are a luxury I can’t afford, so I never had another one. Until a few months ago when I realized I hadn’t use the entire gift certificate amount the first time.

Good thing Scott Miller gift certificates don’t expire.

So I went and had another massage. I’d have been having problems with my neck and my arms; in fact, my fingers were tingling a lot and it was difficult to type. Before I got worried about carpal tunnel syndrome I figured I’d see if a massage might help.

It did. And Melissa, the therapist who did my first massage, told me that I had some knots in my neck and shoulders that really could use some more work. She suggested I come back in 6 weeks and let her work on that spot some more.

So my sister gave me another gift certificate – yeah for sisters! – and I went back yesterday to have Melissa work on my knots.

I’ve been having neck and shoulder problems for a long time. In fact, I frequently can’t even turn my head and I’m in almost constant pain in the mornings. I do have osteo arthritis in my wrist, one thumb, my back and neck, which explains a lot of the problem.

But I do have some tension in my shoulders, from the way I sleep, from sitting at the computer, from people who drive me nuts.

Yesterday’s massage was less relaxing than the others; in fact, it downright hurt at times. But she did work out the knots. I had knots on top of knots on top of knots.

The girl who checked me out told me I might be sore the next day. Sore? I feel like I’ve been beat up. But I can still turn my head – yeah!

And I’m a lot more comfortable with the massage. Part of it is getting over the fear of the unknown. Part of it is having the same girl give the massage each time. And part of it is understanding the medical benefits of a massage. I don’t feel like like some “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous” wannabe when I fork over the money. I think of Melissa as a physical therapist who happens to work in a place that also gives pedicures.

So if you’re thinking about getting a massage, my recommendation is to do it. Tell the massage therapist that  you’re nervous, leave on your underwear or whatever else will make you comfortable, and just try a short massage. You’ll feel better.

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