Sunday, October 21, 2007

I Miss The Running Man

Due to my recent calcaneal fracture, I have spent the last six weeks or so sleeping on my back. Up until the last few days, I have not only been on my back, but I have been sleeping on the couch. Believe it or not, it has been the most comfortable option. The arm of the couch provides a nice, built-in pillow of sorts that can elevate my head just slightly. I can also stack nearly a dozen pillows at my feet on which to prop my injured foot. The back of the couch supports the pile of pillows and prevents it from toppling over. Because I was ordered by my doctor to keep my foot elevated above heart level, this was the best option I had. Such a tower of pillows proved too unsteady when recreated in bed. If I didn't balance my leg just right, it would result in the spontaneous and unintentional demolition of said pillow tower.

Despite all this, I have, for a variety of reasons, tried to sleep in my own bed for several days in a row now. One of the most grueling aspects of sleeping in my own bed is not my foot per se, but that I am no longer capable of sleeping in the position I so dearly love -- a position I have long referred to as "The Running Man." The Running Man may be achieved by lying on one's left side, bringing your right leg up and forward while stretching your left leg back and out. In essence, your legs should mimic someone in mid-sprint, a frozen snapshot of someone dashing toward the finish line of a race. One then brings one's right arm up and drapes it over the head, such that the nook of the elbow creates a 90 degree angle at the top of one's scalp. The left arm is then to be wrapped around the pillow on which one's head is lying, squeezing the pillow snugly but un-intrusively against the face, creating a sense of warmth, safety, and peace. Although the position of the arms in no way resembles a person in mid-sprint, this remains an essential component of The Running Man and should not be overlooked.

Sadly, The Running Man is an impossibility when I am confined to lying on my back. The problem is, when I am lying in bed and not on the couch, my body aches to assume its coveted nighttime position. I literally crave to turn to my left, but I can't do it. It's torturous! I think having the back of the couch to my left has prevented my body from thinking it has any option of assuming The Running Man. Being back in bed messes with my psyche, and so it has only been in the last several days that I've realized just how much I've missed my favorite nighttime companion. To The Running Man -- I love you and miss you incredibly. I hope to see you soon...


  1. That is the saddest thing I've ever heard. If I wasn't laughing so hard, I'd be able to come up with some good advice or at least some sympathy. Weeks of not sleeping comfortably must be torture. I'm ornery after just one bad night. But your description of you favorite sleeping position... that cracks me up! I've never known anyone to give it so much thought! Then again, what else have you to do!?
    I do hope things improve for you.

  2. I hope that you get to see the Running Man again soon too. Pillow tower is probably no match for it and I imagine your wife misses you when you sleep out on the couch most nights. I still hope overall that you just heal well, not matter how long it takes.

  3. Sounds like an opportunity for an invention. A bed that allows you to be in the running-man position, or any other desired position, while on your back. It would be a more elaborate version of various adjustable beds that have been on the market, but allow individual adjustable support for each leg, each arm, and the head. I'll try to get started on it right away so you can enjoy it before you heal. Might cost you a few thousand. You can pay in monthly installments if you like. :-P