Chapter 3

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I really hate physical therapy. It puts me in so much pain, but it will make it possible to walk again. And the pain helps to relieve some of the lingering phantom pains. I guess what I mean to say is, I don't like the immediate pain while I'm doing the exercises and being rubbed down and failing to walk correctly without support. Also I'm forced to be big Niall, which I enjoy, but some days being little Niall is just so much easier. The electric stimulation and heat are my favorite parts, they hurt, but soothe at the same time. And I just have to lie there for them.

Today is a physical therapy day, and it's Louis' turn to work out with me and Mark- my good friend and the fool who's attempting to get me into a better shape for our ongoing tour. It's not that I'm out of shape, just out of commission at the moment. The first exercise is bike for ten minutes, which isn't bad, just hard with my knee replacement. This is meant to loosen me up, while Louis gives Mark an update on my progress out of my sight. Mark begrudgingly knows about the age play, and agrees it was the best option. Especially because he knows I wont do the exercises on my own and rubdowns are hard to do on your own. Mark is secretly a big softie for me. 

"So Niall, I'm thinking we'll start with the hip section, since that's your hardest portion, that way you have energy to do everything." Mark mentions as I have two minutes left of spinning.

I hum in approval and climb on the table once my two minutes are up. "What first?"

"2 sets of ten clam shells and 2 sets of ten long legs." I nod and begin. Clamshells are lying on your side, as are long legs, which are hard to balance more than anything. Clamshells are opening and closing of the legs while they're at a 90-degree bend and leaving the ankles together. Long legs are lifting and lowering the legs while lying on your side and are harder than the description makes one think.

It takes me ten minutes to finish them properly and I wait for my next assignment. "Nice Niall, I want 4 sets of five bridge roll outs next, here's the ball." Mark tells me and sets me up for the next exercise.

An hour later, all of my exercises are complete and its time for electrodes and heat. I lie back on the table and feel my knee being covered in the four stick ons. Then the heat pad is wrapped around my knee and the electrodes are started. I relax for the 20 minutes the timer is set on.

"Niall, I want to add something today, we re going to do dry needling which should help break up some of the swelling and scar tissue, okay?"

I nod, agreeing to the procedure. I look to Louis with puppy dog eyes. He gives in and pulls out my pacifier and blankie. I smile around the pacifier as a thank you. Mark walks over with a red bucket and I nod before lying down again.

Mark places a foam roller under my knees and starts poking around my kneecap. It is only painful when he puts the needles in. But then he hits something and I cant help but squeal in pain.

"Its okay Niall, its just a cramped up muscle. You need to relax okay?" Mark tells me in an attempt to soothe my worries.

I lay back, unhappy but compliant.

In the end I am in pain, sore and overall cranky. More so than normal because he twitched out my tight muscles that needed it. I do however; convince Louis with my puppy eyes to carry me back to the bus for a nap before the show tonight.

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