Tuesday, 31 July 2007

A Different Approach

Ever since I started to feel unwell (& admitted to it), many of my friends have been more than sympathetic, taking time to ask me how I feel, what am I doing in work (you know who you are!) & if there's anything they can do for me. All very lovely, & very much appreciated. I have, over the last couple of days, noticed a slight change in tactic from some people. They have asked me if I think it is stress. Or do I feel stressed. Or they once suffered from stress, & they had all sorts of symptoms which came down to stress. I swear, the next person who asks me if I'm stressed, I'm going to summon whatever small amount of energy I have left & knock you right down. If I then very suddenly feel well again, I shall stop to lift you up & declare you were right. But I don't think there is much chance of that happening - if you want to gamble though, I'll play right along.

Monday, 30 July 2007


In the television show of the same name, I believe (despite the plane crash, the polar bears, and the Others), they all seemed to be lost on a rather splendid beach. And the weather was nice too. Me? I was lost in New Cross Hospital today. Twice. And that's just inside. I was lost outside too. Twice. My sense of direction has always proved a delightful old giggle to my less geographically challenged friends, but today I was on my own clutching only a yellow piece of paper that entitled me to a chest X-Ray, commissioned by Dr Coocachoo, in his ceaseless bid to find out what is wrong with me. I got to the hospital with no problems at all, the legacy of my absolute clumsiness and being the mother of a fearless 8 year old has meant that I can at least find my way to A&E.

I walked confidently to the site map which told me You Are Here. And the Radiology Dept was a very long way away. Next to the Dermatology Dept. And not in a straight line. I tried looking at the map with my head at a 90 degree angle to see if this would give me a clue. It didn't, but I set off anyway. I walked in what I hoped was the right direction, through 3 car parks, past the neurology block, the diet & nutrition block, and some portakabins. No sign of either Radiology, or Dermatology. I tried a shortcut(!) but then cam back again when I got to some dustbins. I passed the maternity block & thought about going in there, not because I needed them, but because they must be accustomed to hormonal women who have gone a bit daffy & therefore might help. I decided I could sort it out myself. I rambled a bit more & found a side exit to Dermatology! This must be the way! I followed it, saw a sign to Radiology and followed that too! I ended up in a Loading Bay.

I retraced my steps, saw where I'd gone wrong and finally got into the Radiology Dept. I followed some people up the stairs, after having seen that X-Rays was on the 1st Floor. There seemed to be a lot of stairs. I came to the top, ambled up & down the corridor, walked almost into a ward that appeared to house heart & lung transplant patients & walked swiftly away again. I stopped to ask a nurse who said it was right down the other end of the corridor. I duly walked there & saw a sign for X-ray. Interventional X-Ray. I don't know what that is, not helped by me misreading it & thinking it said International X-Rays. But it wasn't where I needed to be. I stopped & asked the receptionist who told me I needed the floor below. That explains all the stairs then.

I tried the lift this time, got to the right department, just had to wait a little while, & was then shown to a little room where I was invited to strip to the waist. Ah, now HERE is the life that late I led! I was a little nervous about the gown if I'm honest. I know they're very skimpy & they don't always meet at the back. I did as I was told, to find that it could have wrapped round twice & it was longer than the skirt I had on. I am such a floozie! X-Ray done & dusted, I was pointed in the direction of the Way Out sign. Seems very straightforward. I ambled about for about 15 minutes before becoming involved in this little snippet of conversation:-

Me (spying a porter in the distance) Excuse me! Excuse me! Could you just tell me please where is the Way Out?

Porter: Which Car Park are you looking for?

Me: I'm not looking for any car park.

Porter: Where is it you want to go?

Me: Out

Porter: Just out?

Me (finally overcome by the stupid getting lost business) Yes, just out. I've been walking up & down for ages & if I can't find my way out, then I'm just going to slump in the corridor, & then I'll end up being admitted & there's nothing wrong with me, apart from the fact that I'm lost.

Porter: It's just there, madam.

Ah. I see it now. I find my way to the fresh air. I never thought I'd see fresh air again. I walk confidently in the direction I believe the bus stop to be in. And end up by the bins again. But I think they were different bins this time. I walk the opposite way & finally find the exit. I'm free! I'M FREE!

Dear lord, I know you don't hear from me very much at all, or in fact hardly ever, but if there is to be something wrong with me, please don't let it be the sort of something that I have to go back to the hospital for...

Sunday, 29 July 2007

Growing up

Growing up for me was fairly easy - I barely even knew that I did it. I was a shy little girl, wouldn't say boo to a goose, frightened of my own shadow. Then I became a teenager, not a terrifically rebellious one, no smoking, no drugs, I'd like to say no drinking except I'm looking out of the window and it's apparent that today is the day when I could indeed be hit by a thunderbolt. I may have stayed out a couple of nights without letting my parents know where I was, and on one of those occasions my mother did indeed feel it necessary to call the police. But I maintain that on the whole I was a good girl. My glimpse of rebellion was to turn vegetarian, a concept that my mother never got to grips with. Sundays was always a proper roast dinner, which I had minus the beef, so not too bad there. Strangely the problem was mainly salad - I must have told my mother 50 times that "just because ham is cold, it doesn't mean that it isn't meat!". In the end it didn't matter, because I fell into the temptation of a bacon sandwich, and despite my ethics I've never really looked back. Something strange must have happened, because by the time I went to sixth form college to resit nearly all my 'O' Levels and do some 'A' Levels, I'd turned into a young woman who had an opinion on anything and everything, and for a while was a political animal. The outspokenness has never really left, but I like it, it defines the person that I am.

Maybe you don't see the growing up that you do yourself because it's too close, but today I saw it in my son. He left this morning with his dad, so grown up, ready to be an usher at his aunt's wedding. He's going to be wearing a cravat, and telling people where to sit. ("I know what to tell them mom, I'm going to say do please sit here and spread out. No, not there! THERE! No, that's too close! I SAID SPREAD OUT!"). And today I'm so proud of my little boy that my heart could burst.

Saturday, 28 July 2007

Tired, very tired...

Well, last week, somehow it just sort of got away from me. Spent the whole week feeling like crap, turns out I haven't got a thyroid problem after all, so it looks like it might be old age. Can a doctor sign you off work for being old? I think not. I struggled into work every day, faced a barrage of tellings off every single day from my well meaning friends who clearly love me very much, but strangely couldn't wait to get shot of me. I could feel eyes gazing at me all day, either willing me to keep going, or just hurry the hell up & keel over, I can't decide which. Wednesday was the worst day, no sooner had I arrived than I was being eyed up for a lift home - I'll grant you I was a bit wobbly, but really! It had taken me over an hour to get in, I wasn't going to turn round & go straight home again!

The old books have come out again, in the brief moments I can keep awake, which I'll grant are very few & far between. I'm currently looking at Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, it's a book I never expected to like, but did. I'm a million miles behind on my studying, but I'm so near now, I refuse to give up. And I know I'm stubborn enough to keep going.

I watched Heroes today that I'd taped in the week - that was so fantastic! I want to be Clare, the cheerleader - indestructibility, now that's the super power to have. I've had many discussions on this subject before (Tina Tangent!), and in the past I've always gone for flying or invisibility, but I was so wrong!

Sunday, 22 July 2007

Hello World

Good morning world, I'm very glad to have your company this morning! Although quite what I'm doing here, instead of writing my essay, which is what I'm meant to be doing, is anyone's guess. For those of you wondering what I do in my spare time, apart from grumbling about being poorly, I study too. I'm doing an English Lit degree with the Open University and this is my last year. Hurrah! Next year will see me up on a stage somewhere, in my little gown (no mortar board!) getting my degree & then the world is my lobster! Actually, I'm not sure if it is or not, but I'm hoping so. A degree is meant to be like getting a key to the door I think, it should take you to places that otherwise wouldn't let you in. SO whatever doubts I may have about my career (!) at the moment, they should all be answered then. I'd love to be a teacher, but it doesn't look as though finances will run my way on that, there's lots of hoops to jump through, like getting a teaching qualification for starters, and there's no way on God's earth that I can afford to give up work & do that for a year (which is why the lottery keeps being done every week). And anyway, it's going to be a moot point unless I do my essay, so I'm off. Bye for now!

Friday, 20 July 2007

It's Raining Men, Hallelujah!

It just isn't, it's quite simply raining, but lord, if it was raining men, I'm sure that 1 would have taken my fancy by now. Do you know what sort of man I'd like? He has to be taller than me, that's obvious. Also fairly easy, cos I'm not exactly blessed on the height front. He has to be kind, considerate, strong, faithful, and he has to love me till the end of time. (Did a bit of Meatloaf creep in there? How spooky!) Looks wise? I don't care what some of my friends say - I maintain & I always have done, there has to be some sort of physical attraction. If I met a man who filled all the characteristics, but there was no spark when I looked at him, would it work? I'm sure it would for some people, but I don't think it would for me. So he has to be blonde, have blue eyes, and good strong shoulders. I know that probably sounds a bit freaky, but it's really important! Strong shoulders make you feel safe - when a man takes you in his arms, you want to feel secure. Well I do anyway.I'm a supportive woman, and I'm a strong woman too, but I still want a man to make me feel as though I'm taken care of. I'm quite independent, and I imagine that there's a billion women out there who just shivered at my denunciation of feminism. It's really important to me, I don't want any man to make me feel like an idiot, if I'm with a man, he has to respect me, and the person that I am, but I don't want to be the boss in a relationship. I do want my voice to be heard, and I want us to have mutual respect for each other, but I want him to protect me too, just like I'd protect him if he needed me to. So I say let it keep raining, let it bring me the man that I want. I know he's not far away, even though sometimes it feels like a million miles. Today, he feels close.

Thursday, 19 July 2007

Hope springs eternal

I was convinced when I went to bed last night that today I was going to feel better, really I was. Sadly, I was wrong, which always comes as a shock! But, no today I'm still off work, still suffering, & hoping for a better tomorrow. Sounds like a song? Maybe next time!

Wednesday, 18 July 2007


When all my troubles seemed so far away? Except they didn't really, not at all. Yesterday was the day after Monday (lord, how clever I am!), which is the day I went to see the doctor about the problems with my throat. A few questions later, and he appears to have diagnosed me with a thyroid problem. Now, forgive me for mentioning this, but is this not the sort of thing that you get when.... well, when you're older than 39 for goodness sake! In the last month, I've had to start wearing glasses for the first time, now my thyroid's gone on the blink, and at this rate I'll need a stairlift by Christmas. So yesterday, I was fairly exhausted, not very well at all, but today at least I'm out of my bed without passing out (always a good sign!) and I've made it to the doc's for a blood test. I only have to wait for the standard NHS 7 days and then I'll know if I have a thyroid problem, or if my body has gone into some sort of meltdown. I'm very much hoping that this isn't going to be a blog about various illnesses that crop up - where is the life that late I led?

Sunday, 15 July 2007

Sunday, Bloody Sunday

I wonder how many other people have this as the title of their blog entry for today? Sundays are never my best day. My son goes back to his dad on a Sunday, before the morning has barely started, leaving me bereft when I should be taking advantage of the day stretching out in front of me. Sunday sees me alone when I need to be with people, but that's never the way it works, is it? If I were talking to a friend, I'd tell them of how wondrous it must be, to have a day to spend as they choose. But mothers around the world, whose children aren't with them on Sundays, know better than that. They know how your heart stops you from living, when it's the only thing that keeps you alive.