I was going to start this post with the phrase ‘when I was young I never got ill’, but then I remembered that this wasn’t true. When I was young I used to get heat-rashes which were never really well explained, but if I experienced serious changes of temperature I would get a very itchy rash on my wrists and arms which lasted only about 20-30 minutes. Sometimes it would reach my shoulders and neck. I took antihistamines while I was younger, and continued buying my own and taking them while I was at university, and then eventually I just got bored and stopped buying them, and found the issue had gone away. I also had a reaction to the test at school for the tuberculosis antibodies, although I’d never had an infection personally, I did have to take tablets every day for a year to make sure (and I never had to have the BCG). I actually have a scar from the ‘flower prick’ test they used, I have 6 holes in my arm which have slowly migrated away from my wrist towards my elbow. Oh, and I broke my arm as well. Other than that though, I wasn’t at the doctors all the time, as far as I remember.
So anyway, then I went to university and I didn’t register with a GP, spent four years at University without going to the doctors, and then I moved around a bit, for a few years and never registered anywhere either. So that would make no GP visits from around 1987 to 1998. In ’98 I had Bell’s Palsy, and had no choice but to finally sign up with the GP. Then there was another long gap until I was diagnosed with diabetes, and since then it feels like I’ve been in every other week.
So I was going to write this great blog post about how I wasn’t really sick until I found out I had diabetes and since then I’ve been to the docs’ all the time, and how interesting that was and maybe it was because when you’re 20 you’re invulnerable and you just ignore being ill. But as I wrote, I realised that it was only actually 10 years where I never used the services of a doctor and the whole blog post idea came crashing down around me.
Still, I guess when I was in my 20’s I really did just ignore not being well, or maybe I was never not well and hence there was nothing to ignore.
And this all started because I was back in the doctor’s surgery today for a couple of things that have been bugging me for a few weeks. I moved our 27inch CRT TV around a couple of times, and I’ve had abdominal pains since then and discomfort, GP suggests it’s pulled muscles, and I have a cream for my foot.
A cream which I have to keep in the fridge! I’ve never had medicine that I have to keep in the fridge before. Because I knew I was going to the docs today I put my regular prescription in, and then the GP prescribed the cream (and some antihistamines, which is what prompted me to write this), so I got carrier bag of medical supplies from the pharmacy. I feel all grown up and adult now that a trip to the pharmacy results in an huge bundle of drugs.
I guess I should be happy that we have a free health service and that diabetes means I’m exempt from prescription fees.