Friday, 15 April 2011


So something mildly startling has come to my attention. And hear me out on this theory before you start throwing stones and rotten vegetables at me. So a couple of days ago I was rushed to hospital (dramatic pause) – gastritis or some other kind of horrifically painful thing. And as I writhed around on the hospital gurney, a nurse attended to me, followed by the doziest doctor ever known to man. And at the time, through the haze of pain and general sadness and disappointment, I didn’t quite grasp the extent of the treatment that I received. However, after the pain, morphine and fatigue wore off, I realised a shocking truth: nurses and doctors don’t like sick people.

I’ll explain. As I mentioned earlier, I was a-writhing and a-moaning for quite some time, and understandably I choked out to the nurse that I would quite like some pain relief. Her response? ‘Well, I can’t magically make the pain go away. You’ll just have to hold on’. Now call me a pleb, but surely magic needn’t be considered when we were a building brimming with medication of every kind and degree. Woman screaming in pain should usually = some kind of compassion + some f-ing drugs, no?! She followed this startling rebuff with a request for me to stand up to perform some kind of demoralising thing or other. As I tried and failed to even sit up, let alone stand, my trusty friend Chloe ran to my assistance as the nurse looked on in mild boredom. As Good Friend Chloe tried to help me up, the nurse stopped her in her good-deed-tracks and assured her that I was perfectly capable of getting up on my own. Just for the record, I wasn’t.

And I won’t even go into what the doctor had to say to me. I’ll just say that he called me a drug addict and a raging slut, in about two breaths. He used different words of course, but you can only really dress up such accusations so much.

Now I’ll stop there with the doctor’s brutality and the nurse’s general unkindness, though trust me, there are several more examples. The crux of this post however is that the next morning, when the writhing and moaning had stopped, they were as sweet as punch to me! My name became ‘love’ or ‘darling’. The nurse’s face muscles remembered how to smile. Her rough handling became the touch of my very own mother. And why dear readers? Because I had transformed over night into some semblance of a healthy person. It’s messed up, but that was the only difference between the night before and the morning after. Same Pensive Buddha lying in that bed. Same Mrs Nurse on the same shift. Same dozy doctor doing his rounds.

So my advice, from me to you: next time you encounter a nurse or any kind of practitioner of medicine, I suggest you pretend to be an individual with a perfect bill of health. You act and pretend till your face falls off, because otherwise, you may well be treated like a person who secretly likes to have intercourse with cats. Yep. You heard it here first.