Ok here is another installment of â€˜Bitching About Winter’. I didn’t use to have a problem with winter. I would laugh at the grumps who complained all the time about the snow, the ice and chapped lips (hi Mom!) but now I stand corrected. This winter weather sucks. It doesn’t help me that I live on the windiest street in all of Brooklyn. I maintain that the North side of Williamsburg is at least 20 degrees colder than the rest of the city. So, with the negative wind chill begins the inevitable winter depression cycle. It’s most common incarnation goes as follows.
1. Feel Williamsburg wind-chill
2. Swear to never leave apartment again.
3. Gorge myself out of boredom and to build up the de rigueur layer of winter fat to help with cold.
4. Get disgusted with aforementioned layer of fat when I can’t fit into pants.
5. Be forced to wear skirt because of #4 â€“ which feels painfully inappropriate for the season.
6. Leave apartment and feel Williamsburg wind-chill – freezing ass off â€“ literally.
7. Swear to never leave apartment again.
It is a vicious cycle that lends itself to another cycle that goes as follows.
1. Depressed feelings cause a drop in energy.
2. Stare at wall instead of completing assigned work.
3. Unmet deadlines cause buildup of undue tension and stress.
While the fat layer on top of me may be soft, the muscles underneath are hard as a rock.
I decided to find an antidoteâ€¦a way to break the cycle of depression and weight gainâ€¦ a way of relieving the sharp pain in my shoulders caused by holding them up as earmuffs. I decided I needed a massage.
Once I knew my solution I set about trying to get a massage broke-ass style. First off, I attempted to perform one on myself. I got some oils, some new-age music and set to it. However, I began to notice a pattern. As soon as I was rubbing my leg, my arms became tense. When I began massaging my neck, my toes seized up. So, it wasn’t so much an exercise in relieving stress as it was chasing the tension around my body. The deal breaker, however, came when I realized that I couldn’t rub my own back.
Next, I tried to bribe my cat to walk on my back. I plopped on the bed face down, threw a catnip toy on my back and waited. It was successful in the sense that the animal did, in fact, climb on my back. I thought it was going to work when she began prancing about my back and shoulders. However, as she weighs about 5 lbs, she didn’t have the appropriate strength to really work out my tension. She also has poor technique. While I appreciated the kneading motion, using nails is not what I was looking for.
Next, I tried my husband.
Note: You may wonder why I tried the cat first. Let’s just sayâ€¦my husband is more of a receiver than a giver.
We struck a deal. I don’t want to reveal what I had to exchange for said rubdown but needless to say he got creative. Though it began ok (as I provided him with some much needed tips on his technique and pressure) it started going south when various parts of his hands began to crack vigorously. He started to claim repeatedly that the tension he was massaging out of my back was entering his now crippled hands. I gave up when he began to assert he was having an â€˜attack of arthritis’â€¦something apparently he is genetically predisposed to suffer. Unfortunately, I was not able to enjoy my massage through the sound of groans coming from my masseur.
So, having tried every free possibility I finally broke down and booked an appointment with someone who has more credentials than simply possessing digits. I booked a â€˜hot stone’ massage with David Greenhouse of Greenhouse Holistic. A 90-minute massage runs you 100 dollars and I have to say, it was worth every penny. You cannot put a price on sanity, on stress relief, or on breaking the negative cycles of winter. You can’t skimp on treating yourself to the amazing painful/joyful journey that is a massage by David Greenhouse, L.M.T. In 90 minutes he transformed me from a slightly chubby block of solid slovenly stress into a svelte, fluid, blissed-out gal ready to take on the world. Next time I will skip the first two steps and head right to the professionals.
88 Roebling Street,