I left work early to go to the physiotherapist, whose office is conveniently located a couple of blocks away. They had a cancellation, so I didn’t have to wait until December as originally planned. After filling out the requisite paperwork in the very Zen looking office, I went into the consultation room.
I explained what happened to the therapist, and she explained what was wrong with my inner ear and its alarming sounding problem of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. For the daughter of scientist (and someone who had a fairly successful career in finance for a couple of decades), my science and math brain is sadly lacking, so I will just say that the treatment is called an Epley Maneuver, and you can read about it here.
I will also say that the treatment was pretty unpleasant. I sat on a padded bench/exam table thing and the therapist took a firm grip on me before swooping me backwards and to one side with my head off the table. I had to keep my eyes open so she could see the fluttering in my pupils called nystagmus*. She held me there for about a minute as the vertigo jangled and spun its way out, and it was a very long minute. We then repeated this from the middle of the table and then to the other side, before sitting up and leaning over the floor.
You can imagine my enthusiasm for repeating this process a second time, but it was much better the second time, and I was hardly dizzy at all. For the first time in weeks, I was able to put my head on the pillows when I went to bed, and turn over to pet Clyde without suffering attacks of vertigo, though I still had to sit on the side of the bed for a minute before getting up in the morning the day after, but all in all, it was an improvement.
There may have been relief from vertigo, but there was no relief from the bill. Unlike Canada, where everyone sensibly pays a flat tax which rich people can’t get out of to fund healthcare, so things like this are covered, here I had to pay for the whole thing, even though I have insurance. I thought it would be like the dentist, where a certain percentage is covered, but instead, I have to spend $1,500 before the insurance starts paying for anything. So there went the money I had set aside for getting my hair reprettied for the holidays. So I may not be (completely) blonde, but I’m not (completely) dizzy, either.
*My sister told me that drunk people’s pupils also do this. Just another interesting piece of information from years of working on an ambulance!
A YEAR AGO: Back home from the city, with Thanksgiving looming.