No pain, no gain

We’re back. Happy New Year. In our absence, I’ve discovered another component to BIDS* — crippling upper back/shoulder pain. I stopped working out when Trixie was about 6 or 7 months old. There just wasn’t enough time in the day and I figured that taking care of her was exercise enough. Matter of fact, I thought it was great exercise. It’s like running non-stop in circles while throwing around a 23.5 pound medicine ball all day long. Unfortunately, in retrospect, I now realize that running non-stop in circles while throwing around a 23.5 pound medicine ball all day long is a horrible, horrible idea. That’s probably why there haven’t been medicine balls in gyms since the 1950’s.

The main issue here is that I never stopped carrying Trixie as she’s gotten bigger. This is because of my aversion to strollers. I would rather lug Trixie around and be able to freestyle it than get trapped behind one of those monstrosities. As a result, I’ve carried her a lot (because she’s lazy and weak) and I think it all finally caught up with me.

I don’t know quite what happened but something with my left shoulder gave out the day after Christmas and got progressively worse. However, thanks to my friend Ibuprofen and lots of rest, I’m happy to report that I’m recovering. Has your body ever taken a hit thanks to your kid? Take the new poll. (Poll is to your left under Latest TTU Comments.)

*Baby-related Immune Deficiency Syndrome. Read more about BIDS.

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19 Responses to No pain, no gain

  1. Lynne says:

    I feel your pain! Sprained my sacral joint about 4 months ago because my ligaments are still loose from pregnancy. Worst pain ever, I swear! Ok, well, not EVER, but darn close! And if I turn just right I can still feel it pull and I just freeze in absolute terror that it’s happened again.

  2. viv says:

    Oh, I am so sorry about your shoulder. I totally feel for you! Nobody writes about these things in all those parenting/pregnancy books. I just had hand surgery to release the dorsal tendon in my wrist – the chronic inflammation was a direct result of childbearing and breastfeeding. Yup, the hormones caused such severe inflammation, I got carpal tunnel and Dequairvain’s syndrome in both hands one week after giving birth (as if the birthing pain wasn’t enough). It was so bad I could not hold a fork to feed myself, hold a pen to write thank you cards or hold the baby properly without throwing some other body part out of whack (I share your aversion to strollers even though my little guy has long ago outgrown the Bjorn. Have you heard of the Hip Hammock?) They gave me steroid shots and splints and told me the conditions would go away after a few months, but it only got worse when the shots wore off. So after nine months of conservative measures I went ahead and had the surgery. But they can only do it on one hand at a time, so in a couple of months I’ll be due for a second hand surgery if I’m not pregnant again by then!

  3. bronagh's mom says:

    Eight months before I found out I was pregnant, I had surgery to remove a tumor from my spinal cord. It had been there for years, but no doctor before thought the chronic pain I had was worth an MRI before…too bad, right? So, I feel your pain. My daughter is 7 months old, and already 20 lbs. Unfortunately, I have to use a stroller, which I hate doing. Has anyone used the hip hugger or anything similar? I just heard about them this weekend and wonder if they work.

  4. aidens momma says:

    with aiden getting bigger and biggre (28 lbs at 1 year) i have had severe back and hip problems. thank god for my chiropracter! that man is a saint!! my suggestion is that and a good massage therapist, without them i would be on large quantites of pain pills- legal or not lol. that would make for a fun kid, as he still is nursing and even coffee effects him!

  5. Maddie's Mom says:

    Aaaahhh…I’m not alone. That’s such a nice feeling. Maddie is about 26.5 pounds and I’m constantly sore now from lugging her around. PLUS…I also had carpal tunnel syndrome in both wrists until she was about 8 months old. It was hell.

  6. Jaynee says:

    Just yesterday my daughter’s forehead made contact with my upper lip as she came down a slide (my intention was to catch her, but instead she headbutted me). And my 4-mo-old son headbutts me all the time because he hates being burped and his only weapon is his noggin hitting mine.

  7. FrumDad says:

    I’ve got generalized lower back pain from your standard lifting and carrying… But I’ve been pretty careful about lifting with the knees and putting her down when it gets to be too much. I also have no problem with a stroller.

    But what’s really been getting me in the past two months or so has been occassional lunge-catch rescue, where the kid figures out some New! and Improved! mechanism of self-endangerment through the misunderstanding of gravity and I end up in a back-twisting, shoulder-wrenching pose with a 25 pound wriggling, squiggling, often crying weight at the end of my fully extended arm.

    And then I go lie down.

    [The Google Wangle is Back!]
    [Orthodox Jewish Father]

  8. Dave says:

    I am already worried and my child isn’t born yet. I am not a big guy, but no wimp either… but I lugged around a friends 6 month old in a car seat / carrier into a restaurant and by the time we got to the table I thought I would die. Because I am shorter I have to keep my arm bent a bit so the carrier isn’t too low to the ground and damn it hurts. I figured I would just carry my child (no carrier) like you Ben, but that too sounds painful. Maybe a lightweight umbrella stroller?

    Ouch… I have 5 months to go. (PS: Update for Trixie Software now in the new year?)

  9. Jamie says:

    I haven’t had any injuries, but I’ve noticed that my left arm –the one used to carry my 11-month old daughter– is a lot stronger than it used to be. We used the Snugli chest-mounted carriers when she was younger, as well as one of the slings. Trixie is way too big for those now, though.

  10. Trio's mama says:

    What’s this thing about avoiding strollers? I think they are wonderful. How do you take walks around the neighborhood without one? I do not get it. Please explain.

  11. Heather says:

    Rest? I’m not familiar with that word. I think I used to know what it was before I had my KYLE092103, but I can’t remember exactly.

  12. Tom N. says:

    I can’t remember any specific injuries (although Elizabeth has an injured elbow from carrying our daughter), but I certainly get the lower back pain from bending over to let Dorothy hold my fingers as she toddles all over the house. And if I sit her down to give my back a rest, she usually will complain very vocally about the poor service.

    Oh, and about BIDS: after reading the initial BIDS post, I commented that we hadn’t gotten anything, and then of course we promptly got sick. :-p

    Good luck healing your shoulder!

  13. Molly says:

    Ben, I had to sympathize when reading about your battle wounds, because I, too, have such a story to share. After taking my two children trick-or-treating on Halloween (scrunching over to one side to hold my 2-year-old son’s hand while carrying my 9-month-old daughter in my other arm), we returned home and I gave my toddler a bath. Afterward, I was bending over to comb his hair when a rolling pain went through my back and I collapsed! Unfortunately, AT THIS EXACT MOMENT, my husband came down with the stomach flu that our children had just recovered from! Our bewildered kids were put to bed very early and I had to take a cab to the e.r.! Long story short, I have a “bulging disc,” definitely a BIDS case — because my doctor tells me that it’s not the lifting that kills the back, it’s the bending over. And of course, parents of small children are always bending over to pick up toys, the kiddies … fortunately, a woman with grown kids told me she had a bad back, too, when her kids were little. Now that she’s an empty nester, she’s perfectly healthy! But misses her kids. You just can’t win, I guess.

  14. bex says:

    Unfortunately, the poll doesn’t have the answer I need. I’m finally back to pre-pregnancy weight, and I’m healthy and getting fit again, but my lower back gives me twinges now from carrying Perry (still only 20 pounds, but it’s a heavy 20 pounds). And I occasionally get sciatic pain, and I never did before. I totally agree with the anti-stroller stand, but sometimes you just gotta strap em in and go. I take a 2 mile walk most mornings, and Perry comes with me in the umbrella stroller, and when I go for my jogs, he’s in the jogger. It’s a monster, but I’d rather use it than have to get up at 6 to get my run in before my husband leaves for work.

  15. hannah says:

    try imagining your child sucking on your nipples for twelve months. that sounds much more militant that i mean it to. but i must say that i am very glad to have my chest back to myself once nursing is over with!

    sorry to hear about your shoulder!

    [this comment was edited to make it less… specific. -benmac]

  16. aidens momma says:

    im with hannah-and ill leave out the ‘specifics’. lol. Aiden is still nursing a few times a day, and we found out i was pregnant again right before Christmas. Though we are thouroughly excited….the thought of another year and a half of playing milk bar makes me shudder. im not even going to go into the pain or the fact that aiden has 11 teeth. the main point that i think all the nursing moms out there will agree with me on is how i was soooo looking forward to the concept of the concept of a ‘real’ bra….*sigh* okies..self pity moment over. 🙂

  17. hannah says:

    “real” bra? what is this you speak of? dont all bras flip open in the front?

  18. MT says:

    I, too, suffered from carrying around a baby. Fortunately, a TPOD local acupuncturist helped alleviate my tendinitis pain. As an added bonus, he offered advice, good advice, on family and relationship issues while the needles were in my arm. It was like a wonderful synthesis of traditional Chinese medicine and talk therapy. Unfortunately, the stasis in baby world is, as has been mentioned here, slightly off-center from perfect health. After two months of stay-at-home mothering, my wrist and psyche are again in need of treatment…

  19. cynfred says:

    I completly understand. To add to it my arm numbs alot from nursing her all the time. Its amazing how heavy their head gets.
    As for the mama that asked about the stroller. DD hates her stroller she rather be in her sling. Some babies like to be held all the time. I figure its becaue they want to be close to the heart. 🙂