I have for the first time ever asked Adam to not go to work. I have never felt that need before to not let him leave my side, although he has often enough offered. On Sunday morning, I woke with the worst headache I ever remember having, well last night I topped that one. It was just after 11 p.m. when I woke to go to the loo, a problem there is no simple solution for when all I seem to be doing is drinking cold liquids. In itself there is a clue, cold liquids, Adam has no doubts left that I keep throwing temperature spikes. Anyway, when I woke I felt as though someone had been dancing on my brain in stiletto heels and one was still stuck through my right eyeball. I couldn’t get off the edge of the bed, just sitting there knowing I needed the loo, but with no way of getting there as that meant standing up. I don’t know how long it really took me to get there and when I did and sat down, I didn’t want to move again. My body wasn’t so much mine, as some horrid vessel that I was trapped inside. I kept trying and trying over again and again to cough as my lungs felt as though they were underwater and every breath in or out was travelling through that water in bubbles. I felt sick, distant and so far from myself that I was actually scared of heading back into the bedroom. Adam was in the kitchen so I lite a cig in the living room and sat there in the dark, wondering why I had lite it at all, it was the last thing I wanted, not something I ever say. I let it burn for a few seconds then put it out and headed back to the bedroom, I wanted to be without my dressing gown as I was starting to drip sweat, once again without being warm. Waking up at 5 a.m. to find a that a pneumatic drill had moved in on the party and I quite honestly didn’t know what to do with myself.
If I had been able to think clearly at that point I would have spoken to Adam there and then, there was something really wrong and clearly growing, but all my brain was saying was sleep. Right now I am waiting for my doctor to phone back, When I called I knew he wasn’t going to be there, but I was hoping that if I were at the top of his call back list that he might call before surgery rather than after. As luck would have it I found myself talking to the snooty receptionist. Everything about this woman is annoying but her patronising tone is her worst attribute but on I actually removed at the end of the call. I told her that I am having problems breathing, her one-word answer was “Asthma” not even as a question, it was a statement. I clearly didn’t answer quickly enough for her liking as she then said “Do you have Asthma?” I answered “No, I have COPD” and she changed instantly. I don’t know what her problem is but when she seems to think that you have something standard or minor, she’s rude. Mention my MS or my COPD and she’s really nice, but it shouldn’t be like that. She went from snooty to almost apologetic that the doctor wasn’t in until 9:30.
I honestly can’t believe how bad my head was overnight. I like everyone has had headaches, but without any exaggeration this is the worst I have ever known. Until I am told otherwise, between the pain and the way that I wasn’t really making sense of things either last night or on Saturday night, I am guessing that I was short of oxygen. Thanks to the fact that in the UK we don’t have a 24/7 medical service all I could do was wait for this morning. Our doctor surgeries and the hospital services are virtually none existent at weekends and are working on a shoestring. Part of me was screaming that I did need help and I needed it there and then, part of me was screaming I’m not going to the hospital. If I had gone to hospital as I have done in the past for bronchitis, I know they just give me a steam inhaler and then sent me home. How many hours that would have taken as I can’t just go there and come home, I would guess I would have been stuck there until today when they could eventually arrange a stairclimber crew to take me home again. Going to the hospital at the weekend isn’t something I even want to try. It seems to be one of those oddities of life, that it is your health that has made you housebound, yet the most dangerous aspect is when you need medical assistance, finding it is almost impossible. A healthy person is only as far from their nearest hospital and to medical care. For anything from assistance for anything from a sprinter to a broken limb, or heart surgeon who can say their life. I, on the other hand, can’t really say that, the hospital is no further away from me, but it might as well be on the moon when you can’t get there or home again. I didn’t need or want to call 999, you only dial that number when you are in danger of imminent death I wasn’t, but I would then have been stuck, at their mercy.
I needed help, what most these days would be called walk-in help, as clearly I am still alive and I wasn’t dying. In fact, if I were to go back in time to my twenties, I would have just phoned my GP’s number and I would have been put through to a duty doctor, who would have come to me. That was standard NHS treatment, not just for the elderly or terminal ill, if your baby had a temperature the time of day didn’t matter, you called. If I had called last night I would have been put through to NHS 24, a switchboard of people with scripts to read. Yes, I have done it in the past, they normally ask if you can get to the hospital and that’s where you go. The passenger transport ambulances don run at night, but only as single crew member, which means no stairclimbers, a 999 ambulances would have to have been pulled to collect me and take me to what they call minors, where there is a duty doctor. I have to admit to having been just living on a wing and prayer, that this wouldn’t happen, that I wouldn’t need medical assistance outside of weekdays and daytime. My GP is great in one respect, he is happy to listen to me and to prescribe without seeing me, doctors who don’t know you, won’t do that.
Just like at this time yesterday, if I keep my body as upright as I can, I seem to breath without too many problems. I just sat on the settee for ten minutes, leaning forward as I was searching for something on the TV, by the time I stood up, all I could hear once more were bubbles. Cough, and I rearrange them, I still can’t cough it up which is probably why I couldn’t breathe last night. I had pools of phlegm that just bubbled as I breathed, blocking the oxygen from filling my lungs. When Adam ask if I wanted him to stay at home, I for the first time ever said yes. My thinking was that with luck my Dr would call back sharply and Adam could then jump in a taxi to collect it. I am sure that an antibiotic and a nebulizer will sort this out quickly, but only if I get them quickly. Now I find myself sitting here both feeling really crap and guilty that I hadn’t told him to go to work.
Read my blog from 2 years ago today – 14/06/13 – Secondary pain
They call it sods law, I call it B* annoying. For two nights I have climbed, no sorry fallen, climbing indicates real control, going to bed is more a case of my setting up the motion and instinct taking over. But yes it has been two night ………..