62. The Not Bell Curve


In addition to welcoming their new little sister recently, N and P|F got to trim their Christmas tree for the first time.  I saw a couple of pictures in the lights and ribbon stage, but I didn’t see the final result until this past Sunday.  JLSS told me that N had been sitting at the table, scrutinizing their handiwork from that vantage point.  “I don’t like the tree,” he announced.

“Really,” JLSS explained, “How high can they reach?”  The boys are 5 and 3.5 years old, and they did their very best to hang the ornaments, but the results were a little…bottom – heavy (see the picture).

I laughed hard when I saw the photo and immediately made JLSS send it to me because I was sure I could get a post out of it.  It only took me a couple of hours to realize the connection.  Like the tree, I’m also a little uneven.  What I really mean is that PT37 told me last week that when I walk I lean to the right, which is to say that if you graphed (nerdily) the amount of body weight I’m putting on either leg, the result would not be a bell curve.

In a way I’m a little relieved since I’ve been wondering why things look sideways so often.  I think part of it is the visual disturbance thing I’ve got going on, but I think leaning to the right adds to it.  At first she wasn’t sure so she adjusted my shirt (the usual pink polo uniform) so it was straight and not bunched up under the gait belt.  After I practiced a little more she rolled a mirror in front of me so I could see for myself that it wasn’t the shirt – it was me.

I think the leaning is primarily a walking-sans-Leo (the Cane) problem.  At least I was walking without anything when I saw myself doing the Leaning Tower of Pisa in the mirror.  Even I could see it, which means it must be quite pronounced.  I asked Mommy when we got home if she knew I had a leaning over problem, and she said yes!  So for all this time I’ve been slanted to one side and Mommy didn’t tell me!  Oh well.  I wouldn’t have said anything, either – I’d just be happy the girl was walking.

We are beyond the point where getting from point A to point B without falling is laudable.  Now we’re working on form.  PT’s are sticklers for form.  One day I was on the lateral press at The Place and PT6 informed me, “I don’t want to hear those weights clanking!”  He also told me that when I was kicked out (the real term is to be “discharged”) I needed to do strength training.

This was no problem at first.  JPAS and JLSS set up my Ned, my Total Gym (you know, the thing that looks like a Pilates machine on the infomercial with Chuck Norris and Christie Brinkley), and I happily did all sorts of strengthening exercises.  After my leg started acting up this summer I tried doing one-legged squats like the ones PT6 told me to do on the lateral press.  My left leg hurt for days after that, and I decided it wasn’t such a great idea.  Maybe it is time for me to try again, though, because I lean to the right so I’m not putting as much weight on my left.

This is not a new issue (See Post 41.  One Leg at a Time), but it’s the first time the manifestation has been so obvious in my gait and so clearly pointed out.  Apparently I also have a lack of pelvic rotation so I’ve been sashaying around for the past several days, trying to achieve a natural swagger by exaggerating the motion for now.  PT37 was careful to tell me that she was being “picky about [my] gait” – which I appreciated.  N1 told me last week that my gait’s looking pretty good considering what happened.  I was like, This is good?  But then I decided to be thankful I had a gait at all.  But as I told PT37, I’m glad she’s scrutinizing my gait.  The more she can get me to correct, the closer I’ll get to normal walking.