Last Thursday, right after the all-staff meeting, I booked a follow-up physio for what I felt was a remaining stiff twinge from my thawed frozen left shoulder. I couldn't take any more of what was being announced on the all staff forum -- I logged out of that Zoom call, and a sense of fleeting peace settled in my brain. ​ But I was still feeling numb -- the stagnation that I was feeling in the last couple of days was becoming irrepressibly overwhelming. I put on my slate-blue women's Airism lounge shirt, light beige booty shorts, and navy knit shoes. My hair was smooth, soft, and flyaway-free. I knew I looked positively smashing, so with that little bit of self-affirmation, I headed out to meet my physio. ​ My Scottish physiotherapist had called earlier, asking if we could push the session further into the afternoon. But I had a couple of meetings after my scheduled physio, so I said no. ​ "I'm so sorry I couldn't move our session," I said, after he greeted me and asked how I was doing. ​ "No problem at all!" he said. ​ "You're just saying that to be nice," I said, sitting down in front of him. "That's okay, you can take it out on me. You'll just have to punish me." ​ He burst out laughing.

I probably shouldn't have been so forward with him, after all, he's a professional health service provider. But I confess I was a thirsty for him from the get go, so these pent-up emos were now just all coming out. But he didn't seem to be averse from my blatant flirting, and he seemed genuinely amused with my sassy and sarcastic opinions on life and people in general. ​ I ended up getting tortured, regardless. He worked relentlessly on the edge of my range, which was excruciating. I suppose I asked for it. ​ I needed to feel something.