Hospital Thoughts and Away
‘I’m Michelle’, says the kindly nurse with a warm smile, before taking my blood pressure. I’ve come armed for lots of waiting around especially as I’m twenty minutes early for my pre-op assessment but Michelle summons me before my bum hits the seat. Despite having low blood pressure, being half an inch taller than I thought and weighing a bit less than I expected (I don’t weigh myself – I have a pair of shorts which tell me what to do, if they fit, I’m fine, if they’re tight I eat less) I am found to be in rude health.
‘Just a couple of forms now’ says Michelle, leading me to an office. ‘I’ll just lock the door.’
‘We’ll just do a couple of swabs to make sure you’re not carrying any bugs. Nose, throat and groin.’
Checking for bugs is fine by me, especially since Tom needed emergency surgery and was horribly ill after contracting MRSA during a routine op, but groin? Actually it’s all very dignified and not at all embarrassing, just a quick dab at the knicker line and we’re done. Michelle adds that she has to be very quick to tell men exactly what she’s going to do. ‘You wouldn’t believe the number of times I turn round to find they’ve dropped the lot,’ she tells me, her smile wearing a bit thin. ‘I mean, just because I’ve seen it all before…’
We have a chat about the procedure that I’m having to free up my still-frozen shoulder and the word ‘pain’ crops up a lot. Finding out that I’ve been booked in for up to three days isn’t exactly reassuring either but the good news is that Michelle tells me that my consultant is THE man for shoulders. Phew!
Tom and I are off to the south for a few days to do the rounds of rellies before Christmas but I’ll leave you with one of Tom’s more figurative paintings he’s been doing lately. It’s called ‘High Preseli – Low Cloud’.