I don’t want to get into the causes of the extreme tension in my back, neck, shoulders and brain, but I knew one solution to the problem could be a massage. I don’t get massages very often, because too many times I’ve been disappointed by the experience. However, fortune smiled upon me by bringing us back to Bakersfield where we have a connection to the best massages in the world. Period. So if you ever come to Bakersfield, and I hope you do, I will set you up with Wendy, the woman who makes me want to cry out in pain but yet actually makes me see that as a good thing. She’s special, that Wendy.
For 90 minutes Wendy worked over the worst of the damage I’ve done to my body, sometimes with a soothing effect and other times bringing me to the brink of my pain tolerance. (sidenote: during that massage when I was nearly crying out, I realized I may be physically unable to endure natural childbirth) I had involuntary muscle twitching and made lots of sounds like ‘grrrummpsssssfffferrrrrrt’ and ‘plerrrrrrrrrrrrnnnnnddddddgggg.’ At one point when I was on my stomach with face down in that circular head support thing, I was actually making a face similar to that of the man in Munch’s ‘The Scream’, silently trying to bear through the pain that I knew would lead to pleasure. At another point, Wendy was working over one particular spot for a great length of time with a lot of force, and I swear to you I was thinking ‘Um…that’s a bone!’ So, foolishly underestimating Wendy’s knowledge of anatomy, I asked her what, exactly, was giving her so much trouble there. Answer: A fatty deposit. PARDON!? Turns out if you get a small tear in a muscle your body may put a ‘fatty despoit’ over it as a bandaid. And then your body covers over the bandaid with a knot with the same density of a bone. And then your massage person has to beat the crap out of you in order to dispose of it by ending with the statement ‘I hope you don’t bruise easily!’ I don’t, Wendy! Carry on!
I left Wendy’s studio lightheaded and radiant. Once I got home I guzzled water and sipped tea and sat quietly to absorb the effects of her work. And the next day, while not bruised, I was sore in the places she had worked the hardest. But a few days out, I realize those knots truly are gone and even if I had bruised it would have been totally worth it. Despite my minor paranoia that massage therapists gather together once a week to discuss their work and this week my ‘plerrrrrrrrrrrrnnnnnddddddgggg’ sounds will be what they are laughing about, I’ll be going back very soon.