Some observant viewers have noticed that I’ve been a bit more awkward on screen than usual recently… I’ve had a few messages asking why I’m moving a little oddly, and leaning on things. I’ve tried to hide it, but clearly am not doing that very well sometimes! It’s all down to a lower back problem which began when I was training for the 100km event I did last year. It settled down a bit over the winter but started getting bad again after Christmas, and the pain has got worse and worse since then.
To cut a long story short, I ended up having an MRI scan which showed I’ve somewhat messed up the facet joints in my lower spine. I tried everything – physiotherapy, acupuncture, anti-inflammatory drugs – but as nothing was working, I was advised to have some steroid injections into the joints to try to calm the inflammation. Hence, last Thursday morning, I found myself sitting in a hospital room, nervously awaiting the needles! They do the injections under X-Ray, and it took about half an hour – fairly unpleasant but not as bad as I was expecting it to be. Apparently I have no cartilage whatsoever left in my facet joints, so bone is rubbing against bone, which hurts. I’m a fairly fanatical fitness fan, but I think the lesson here is that although exercise is very important, don’t overdo it – you need to keep your cartilage intact if possible! I now feel like I’ve been kicked in the back by a herd of donkeys, but the injections take two to three weeks to kick in, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed… I’m also going to continue with physiotherapy and have been told to have some hydrotherapy too, and will be returning to full-on exercise slowly and gradually.
I’ve been missing it so much – not being able to get out in the fresh air and run or walk a few miles along the canal has made me feel quite down. I find exercise so therapeutic – it reduces my stress levels and gives me thinking time alone, something I believe we all need. But the most upsetting thing for me is that all this means I now have to pull out of the 50km charity event I was intending to do at the end of May. I’m absolutely gutted about it, but my consultant has ordered me, in no uncertain terms, not to do it (“cancel it, that’s ridiculous” were his exact words!) and I have to be sensible – you only have one back! I’m hoping to build up gradually over the summer and maybe still do another long distance event I’m signed up for in September, but we will see how it goes – one day at a time…
My garden has been cheering me up over the last few weeks though – isn’t it glorious now that spring is finally here and all the flowers are in bloom? We have a large, natural pond in our garden in Gloucestershire and this year there’s been a wonderful display of daffodils and bluebells around it. Sometimes it’s the little things that make you happy, and I love my garden so much. I can’t wait to get the garden furniture out again and start spending some sunny afternoons out there!
And one more thing. I’m sure lots of you have heard the hype about the new Dyson hairdryer. Well, it’s coming to QVC in April so some of us presenters have been lent one to try at home. I’d been chatting to some of the Dyson people about this and they told me Dyson spent £40,000 on natural hair pieces while they were testing it, actually temporarily creating a worldwide shortage of real hair extensions – that’s how determined they were to make a hairdryer like no other. It’s taken four years, and 600 prototypes.
And this a pricey hairdryer – £300! This may sound odd, but I was really, really hoping that it wouldn’t live up to the hype. I knew that if it was brilliant, I would probably want one, and I got a new hairdryer for Christmas so can’t really justify another one so soon. Well, now that I’ve been trying it for a couple of weeks, all I can say is….noooooooo! Darn you, Dyson! It’s just SO GOOD. It has halved the time it takes to dry my hair, and it seems to leave it so smooth that I barely need to use my hair straighteners now, so not only am I saving energy but also drastically reducing heat damage to my hair. I will be giving this back to them kicking and screaming. My only consolation is that when it comes to QVC it will be on easy pays (interest free credit), and also that it’s my birthday in April. So maybe if I drop some very very subtle hints to my hubby…
Have a great week!
Love Jackie x