The Missing Club Member
I wonder who that might be? Regular attendees will know that the webmaster has not shown his ugly mug for some time, “why?”, do I hear you say? Well, I have been at the beck and call of the NHS, who are still are still trying to tell me what is wrong with me.
Things began (reached a climax) during our weekend trip to TINGS. I had volunteered to be effectively “on call” through out the whole week-end as we had problems regarding members available to provide operational and service skills during our models operation for the duration of the exhibition and also to pack and unpack the model at either end of transportation. To cut a long story short throughout my stays there I began to notice that I needed to sit down more and more often and that I no energy or stamina. On the last day, when I should have been packing things away for transport back to base, I felt totally “bushed” half way through the afternoon and wondered if I was going to make it home, let alone pack the truck and off load it at Tipton. I am afraid I left the rest of the lads in the lurch and ask Ken if he minded if I went early, sorry lads I wouldn’t normally do things like that if I was just tired. I got home sunk on the settee and only removed the tools and models from the car the following day.
Thereafter, I continued in the same vein and found that after about one hour of fairly sedate effort I had to sit or fall over. Enter our GP and the assistance of the NHS. You have guessed it; it is all down hill from here.
Book an appointment, but if you want to see your own GP you had better pitch a tent and have food supplies. So you see a Locum to whom you have to explain your entire medical history, who then suggests paracetamol and give it a week or so and return if no better. It is no better, worse if anything, and again an appointment is booked. You meet a bored student doctor who yawns during the interview and seems totally out of her depth, more medical history recycled and after a frustrating age she calls in my GP for a consultation, who listens while I go over everything again. Eventually, she decides a blood test is required and an appointment is made for the test and I insist an appointment is immediately made to see her rather than wait for the test and then book an appointment.
The day of the blood test arrives and I call at the surgery. I am not expected. The nurse will “fit me in”. The nurse explains that she has no record of the appointment nor a card explaining what is required. Have ever had anyone look at you and say “what sort of a blood test do you want?” Of course you have no idea, so you say “I didn’t know there was more than one, I’ve only been told to get a blood test and here I am. Needle in, blood out and your on your way.
A week or so later you ring to ask if the test is back ready for your interview. The test is back and available, but it seems nobody is going to tell you, unless they find something it just gets filed, so if it is part of a continuing investigation, you never hear anything unless you chase the surgery for information and the next appointment. That is unless they haven’t lost the report or it has not gone astray between the main hospital and the surgery.
Next you book the appointment and call at the due time, only to be told you haven't had the right blood test. Are there more than one? You gets a needle in your arm and blood comes out! What’s complicated? Needless to say we are back to square one and another blood test and I have to see the “phlebotomist”. The place must buried under “hypodemic nurdles” and doctors, why need we go for another
appointment? Needle in, blood out and your on your way. Nope, you have go through channels. This time you do have a card which includes the right type of blood test; progress.
A week or so later you ring to ask if the test is back ready for your interview. The test is back and available, but it seems nobody is going to tell you, unless they find something it just gets filed, so if it is part of a continuing investigation, you never hear anything unless you chase the surgery for information and the next appointment. That is unless they haven’t lost the report or it has not gone astray between the main hospital and the surgery. Next you book the appointment and call at the due time.
Head scratching by GP, certain bits are high or low but are within parameters. Another blood test by appointment and keep taking the paracetamol. (See above paragraph.)
More head scratching, suggests stopping the statins but not the paracetamol. “Dr this has been going on for months and feel somewhat worse rather than better, what is going on?” Another but different blood test. (See above paragraph.)
At last, hope. It seems most of the results are reasonable except one, my vitamin D levels are not right, they are seeming 15. “is that bad?” I ask. “They should be around 50 as a minimum” she says. “Am I about to self destruct?” Apparently not, but I will need a strong course vitamins to force the levels up. It seems that we have proved that, as I have often suspected, I suffer from S.A.D I need vitamins and a good dose of sunshine (some hope). I leave with a prescription and a hopeful spring in my step.
Two bottles of pills (vitamins) later, I again chase the practise to find out when and for what they will need me again. Another blood test. (see above paragraph)
Great news! My levels are up to 40. I’m nearly there. Wrong; I should have them at about 60-65 to be good, so more pills. “Dr I feel brighter in myself, but still have no stamina or get-up-and-go. I work for about 60mins and then feel totalled, also I am starting to get aches and pains in my arms, legs, back, shoulders and neck.” “Keep taking the tablets”. Eventually the tablets ran out and I had to get another appointment for a prescription, at which I said that my aches and pains were getting worse despite the vitamins. Apparently I had been in her thoughts and some more head scratching had taken place. As I was seeing increasing levels of discomfort she wondered if I had polymyalgia. Not having much to do with many parrots I wondered if I was turning into a “Norwegian Blue” and about to fall off my perch. However, I was completely wrong, I needed a “Specialist”……………. These rare and creatures only reside at major hospitals and I would need….. an appointment.
The hospital would contact me. To my shock, quickly, but by “snail mail”. I could take my pick of hospitals and specialists; things were looking up. My choices were on the rear of the letter/form would I please contact them as soon as. I turned over in eager anticipation and found that I either travelled to the other side of the universe or I could see some-one in 71days.
So. I sit here creaking in my joints, arms, neck shoulders etc. awaiting the due date, of course I now have so much vitamin D in me that the sun shines out my …….., and you thought that the recent heat-wave was an early summer!