I woke up this morning and did something I only now realize that I have not done in a long while, at least not consciously, and that was to stretch. I thought about it after I woke up and stretched and I could not actually remember the last time I did it on waking up. I thought maybe it was such a natural thing that I just was not aware of it, but I thought and played back the days of waking, and I realize I don’t stretch anymore.
What a strange thing not to stretch, I thought. It’s a natural thing. Doesn’t everybody stretch when they wake up? Cats and dogs do it all the time. They wake in the middle of their naps, stretch and reposition them self. Why don’t I stretch anymore?
I tried to think back to when last I had a really good stretch upon waking and I can’t. That is scary. I began to think why would I consciously not stretch. What could possibly make my brain override such a natural action upon waking.
When I sat and put my thoughts to writing it occurred to me that the only reason that I can remember that I was told not to stretch was when I had my defibrillator implanted in 2007. For six weeks I was told not to raise my left arm above my head. Not being one to do what I am told without and explanation, I was told that I need to give the heart time to grow tissue around the leads and anchor them in there. Sudden jolts or raising my arm or stretching could pull the lead out of their position in the heart, and that could be fatal.
That scared me. For the next two months I slept with my arm inside my shirt so I would not unconsciously raise my arm above my head in my sleep. And that’s where I think my brain kicked in and stopped me from stretching. Is it possible I have not stretched when I woke up now for four years? That’s weird.
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