Handbags and heels are bad for backs, but we can’t help loving them. This is my friend Martha Van Zyl – known as @Syll_ble on Twitter – at her birthday tea at Jam and Daisies in Brooklyn today. I was impressed that she’s able to wear heels (I battle) because five years ago she was in such terrible pain that she had to have a back op to repair a ruptured disc.
She’s convinced that sitting caused the problem in the first place, and specifically too much sitting while she studied for exams. (Interesting that studying for exams while riding an exercise bicycle triggered my own back pain issues.)
Eventually driving became almost impossible – she would go numb in her left leg, and since that’s the one you need for your clutch, it was a problem. Doctors told her she was too young to have the op, but she pointed out that she’d recover more quickly. She’s now in her mid 30s and will need another op in about five years, but her back is in good enough shape for her to wear heels and haul around handbags – as long as it’s not every day.
“Having that op was the best thing I ever did,” she says.