It’s been a big week and boy are my hips feeling it! A 4hr flight to Australia, 10hrs or so to Bangkok, several long car rides (plenty traffic jams), a 4hr flight to Bangalore and finally 3.5hr drive to Mysore. I left New Zealand on Monday morning and arrived in Mysore Thursday afternoon, spending 2 nights in taking Bangkok on one in Bangalore.
I love travelling and if I’m stuck with this hip pain, I need to learn how to work around it. My strategies for coping this long journey were:
1. Breaking the journey up as much as possible. This allowed me to rest and recover from the big flight before travelling in India. It also eased me into a new time zone. Part of me still agrees with this strategy, but another part wonders if it would have been better to do all the travel in one hit then manage the consequential flare up, rather than stretch the travel out and fight multiple smaller flare ups.
2. Always asking for the isle seat, this meant I could get up and move around on the plane. Having my problematic hip in the isle meant I could stretch the leg out.
3. Taking pain killers to make the journey tolerable. I hated wasting my emergency meds on plane travel, but it would have been absolutely hellish otherwise. Deciding when to take pain relief is tricky, I’ve learnt that sometimes (only sometimes) nipping the pain in the butt is best, especially when you can’t change what is triggering the pain.
4. Using ice/heat to ease the pain when the opportunity arises (ie, on arrival). For the last couple of days I’ve been using the tiger balm medicated heating pads, they have made a huge difference. These are particularly useful on the long flights or when I know I’ll have an active day. I’m finding the warmth on my skin really helps and it’s nice not to smell like a tiger balm factory!
5. Meditation. I’ve kept up the yoga nidra and it’s been great to help me stay relaxed and really calms my nervous system. This is important because the pain has been quite bad and India is so noisy. I also found doing guided meditations on the plane and before sleeping really useful.
So I have finally arrived in India, got a few essentials and had a wander around to get my bearings. The hip/sacrum has flared up but it is manageable and I expect it will settle in a couple of days if I take it easy. The left hip has started clicking and catching again which is very annoying, when it catches it’s very painful at the time but usually releases and settles within a minute or so. Knowing that the intense pain passes quickly makes me a lot more relaxed about it. My legs/hips are also feeling a good gym sore from all the walking around, this is good – even without the yoga I’m pretty sure I’d be going home fitter and stronger!
The one thing that is causing me the biggest problem is my over sensitivity to bright lights and noise. Unfortunately the place where I’m staying is on the main road and by golly is it noisy. Lots of autos, buses and motorbikes revving up the hill and beeping constantly. The constant abrasive noise is playing havoc with my nervous system and I’m unable to sleep even after taking sleeping meds! It is so bad I actually booked a hotel last night so I could give my system a break and get some sleep. My doctor infers I put too much importance around sleep, but the reality is without it I turn into a wreck! Anyways, needless to say I’m actively looking for a new place to stay for the month.
Here are some photos, including the lovely hotel I stayed in Bangalore my accommodation in Mysore is a lot more basic.