Thursday, October 1, 2009

As The World Turns....

I finally saw Julie & Julia. For weeks I've been hearing and reading great things about the movie. As promised, Meryl Streep's performance was amazing and Nora Ephron's screenplay was magical. Several people told me that I'd especially enjoy Amy Adam's character, Julie Powell, the blogger who gained a large following, scored a book deal and eventually sold the movie rights to her story.

As much as I would like to follow in Julie Powell's footsteps, her story is not why I was enamored with this movie. It was Julia Child's excessive use of butter that had me mesmerized. Ms. Childs was no stranger to fat, as evidenced in her pork and veal stuffed duck that she then wrapped in a buttery pastry crust. For all intents and purposes, Julia Childs and her husband, Paul, were walking, talking heart-attacks-waiting-to-happen. But, they both lived into their 90's. Fair? Hardly.

From what I can gather from the movie, both Childs were heavy smokers, enjoyed their wine and the only exercise they got was walking to the market. For more butter. I'm not knocking their lifestyle, in fact, I'm bitter and jealous. I desperately try to lead a healthy lifestyle: I avoid butter, do not eat red meat, work out on a daily basis, drink (almost) 8 glasses of water a day, eat my fair share of fruits, vegetables and healthy nuts, drink alcohol in moderation, and visit my doctors for yearly preventative medical check ups. And yet, despite my best efforts, I have had some strange ailments over the years. Well, really just since I turned 40. Five years ago (ok, almost six).

My latest malady came 5 days ago in the form of vertigo. After spending a few days in bed while the world whirled me by, I finally managed to drag myself to a doctor who diagnosed me with Benign Paroxymsal Positional Vertigo...those of us afflicted simply refer to is as BPPV. It seems that the inner ear, the labyrinth, if you will, maintains a sense of balance. Small pieces of said labyrinth, called canaliths, can break off and float into ear canals where they have no business floating and when this causes vertigo.

Using what is called the Epley Maneuver, the doctor was able to move the canaliths into an area of my head that does not upset my balance. Or at least, that was the plan. Many patients feel immediate relief after the procedure, others require a second maneuver. So far, I haven't benefitted from its effects. If I don't feel relief soon, I am cutting my own head off, thus eliminating the need for a second maneuver.

But if I really wanted to, I could perform the maneuver on my own. In fact, I did, perform the move the day before I visited the doctor. Having spent the better part of the day Googling vertigo and all that it encompasses, I was able to find several You Tube videos detailing the Epley Maneuver. But, much to my dismay, it did not do the trick. The only thing that my DIY Epley Maneuver provided me with was a massive projectile vomit session. Too much information? Yeah, well, I apologize.

After yesterday's doctor-assisted manipulation, they sent me home sporting a neck brace with directions to stay vertical for 48 hours. They told me that I should sleep in a Lazy-Boy at a 45 degree angle. And that would have been just swell, providing I had a Lazy-Boy to lounge in. Instead, my kids constructed a make-shift variety in the guest bed (while laughing at my neck brace). But, to no avail, I am still spinning.

What would Julie do? She'd probably blog about it. And while blogging does allow me to keep my head is in the perfect position (neck long, chin out), I can assure you, it hasn't helped with the dizziness. So what would Julia do? I bet she'd throw caution to the wind, shed the neck brace and saute something in butter. Perhaps chopping a few onions will force my head into a position that will knock my insubordinate canaliths back into place, thereby releasing me from this endless pirouette.

I'm going to give it a try. What do I have to lose? Everything is better with butter. That's my new motto, thanks to Julia.


Anonymous said...

Please post a picture of yourself wearing the neck brace!

Anonymous said...

I had vertigo about 25 years ago and it still bothers me to a certain extent. First time I experienced it I was driving and thought I was dying. I can't set at a railroad crossing and directly look at the trainpassing, otherwise I get dizzy. Same thing at a 4-way intersection watching cars, having the lead green, turn. Took a couple of months for the worst to wear off. Good luck.