The Festivus jimmy leg
The night before last I had the worst leg cramp of my life.
It was Christmas, and after eating all day long, I had the bright idea of topping off with a brownie ala mode. Merry Christmas! Not so much later, and not at all surprisingly, during a rather intense dream in which I was training to be a ranch hand in a haunted town, I was awoken by a very sour stomach. As I rolled out of bed to look for an antacid, the room exploded in light and my leg buckled under me.
It was all that I could do to keep from screaming. I tossed back and forth on the bed, sweating furiously and mewling like a sick cat. I woke up my wife, and through clenched teeth managed to bark out, "Sorry."
Earlier, I had watched a show on Discovery about a couple of scientists investigating extremely toxic jellyfish in northern Australia. Inevitably, they were both stung. The program cut to the scientists in the hospital, writhing in pain, unable to keep their legs or arms still. They performed a ceasless dance in an attempt to find a position, any position, that would offer a fleeting respite from the pain.
I thought about this as I began to pray under my breath for Jesus, sweet Jesus to please kill me now.
Eventually, through sheer will, I managed to pull myself into a standing position. The pain began to subside, and soon I was able to move enough to shuffle my feet. I had heard that potassium helps with cramping, so I hobbled into the kitchen in search of a banana. It was about this time that my sour stomach found itself able to compete with my slowly easing thigh for my miserable attention. I leaned against the counter with a peeled banana in my hand, wondering which fate would be worse.
With a nod to Solomon, I ate half of the banana.
Later, I placed my hand on my thigh, just above and behind my knee. The muscle was still so tightly coiled that a palm-breadth length of my leg was only as big around as my forearm. It was if I were wearing an invisible corset or tourniquet.
Yesterday, my wife told me to drink some orange juice and finish the banana. The orange juice is supposed to help, as well.
I never got around to it.
How quickly we forget and adjust.
But I'm still afriad to go to sleep.