Sometimes events take a turn far removed from the familiar; today was such a case. This morning I managed to get myself down to ‘Open Church’, for the first time since my pre-Christmas collapse there. Wrapped up in a warm overcoat and armed with an umbrella I boldly strode my way and, once there enjoyed some really stimulating conversation.
On my way back home I called in at the bakers to collect the wholemeal loaf so, there I was, open umbrella held in one hand and a loaf of bread in the other, heading for home when my mobile begins to ring. To be honest, this was one of very few occasions that I’d bothered to switch it on; I’ve never understood the necessity of holding telephonic conversations whilst ambling down the road. It was quite a juggling act to transfer the instrument from coat pocket to the proximity of my ear, encumbered as I was.
The voice at the other end, my elder step-daughter Beth, tells me that she doesn’t want to worry me but my beloved has been rushed to hospital. She’d apparently been taken ill whilst at the dentists. I knew that she was going to try to make an appointment, having been woken in the night with really painful toothache from an area where she’d lost a filling about a week ago. Although quite wiped out, energy-wise, she’d travelled over to her work in Wetherby, early this morning, where I subsequently discovered, she’d already begun to feel sick before arranging the appointment with her dentist back in Harrogate. The dentist had taken an x-Ray, and informed her that she would need a course of antibiotics to tackle an abscess, before she came over really ill.
Beth picked me up and ran me to the hospital where I found an atypically flush faced and cold-handed Helen. Her blood pressure had sky rocketed, once again very unusual for ma belle who traditionally has a remarkably (but healthily) low BP. Fortunately the ECG results showed no cause for concern and sundry blood samples were taken before she was sent for an X-Ray of the jaw. Whilst I waited with ma belle, Beth, with assistance from Cathy’s partner Ken, was able to get into town to collect her Mum’s car and deliver it back home for us. As a non-driver, I was of little use in these circumstances. Helen subsequently saw a consultant in the Maxillo Facial Surgery who made a few incisions and prescribed two lots of antibiotics.
On several occasions, in the past couple of years, ma belle has had to come and hold my hand in A&E; today the tables were turned. I so frequently worry about the burden my ill health imposes upon my beloved, realizing how mutually dependent we are; today my concern was how helpless I may be if the burden of care shifted the other way. It was so fortuitous that Beth happened to have some holiday days this week and so, was available to perform such a valuable chauffeuring and messaging duties.
Once again I must express my gratitude to the NHS, especially the staff in A&E at Harrogate District Hospital. I only wish that the Health Service was in safer hands than those of the Tory ConDem coalition.