Well, it's official. My disc has well and truly slipped. There I was only just telling you that I was in less pain generally, and was contemplating a return to work next week, albeit on reduced hours, to see how things go... When I turfed up at Newcastle's General Hospital today for my long-awaited MRI Scan, I did not quite know what to expect...
What I did not expect was having to stand on an office chair to actually get on to (and off!) the MRI 'bed', (more like a tea tray really, like they use in the downill luge event - Is that how it's spelled?), as the up and down bed-adjuster thingummyjiggy was not working!
The blurb the hospital had sent me mentioned that I might experience some noise and warmth while the machine was operating, and said that you could take in a CD to listen through some headphones to during the 20 - 30 minute procedure.
What I could not have anticipated is that for most of said procedure I could scarcely hear the darned CD for the clanking and wailing (maybe that was me?) of the dratted machine! When the technician handed me a 'panic button' to press 'Should I need to', it triggered an automatic response - One in which I began to panic! "Don't panic, Mr Mainwaring (A UK TV reference...inserted merely to disorientate, sorry).
What kept me going, and stopped me from pressing the button once my (age onset)claustrophobia set in was my late dad's words which he always addressed me with before exams, and other early trials, "Fhina, what is the worst that can happen to you in there? They can't kill you!" That, and the sheer humiliation I felt I might incur should I need to press the panic button, be withdrawn (it was a tight squeeze, I'm telling you, Stinking Billy, for I have eaten a few too many Turkish Delights in my time! You won't want me in your harem, I cost far too much to feed!) from the Tunnel of Doom, and face the wonderful technical staff, who were excellent, I need to add.
So, I emerged, teary and bleary-eyed, grasping the orderly's hand as she proffered it to me, as if it were the veritable Holy Grail, only to be told not to leave the hospital just yet as they wanted the Registrar to check whether they had captured everything they needed to.
Just as aforementioned panic attack was settling in nicely again at the thought of being subjected to what I shall from now on refer to as "THE ORDEAL", the Registrar arrived, aged just a tad more than Grizzler, to ask whether I had been experiencing any problems with the waterworks? Well, what could I say? I was a little worried that they might be about to introduce metering of our water supply in a helpful 'pay as you wash' kind of way, but other than that, no...
It transpired that, without him actually being my Consultant proper, and being scared to give a diagnosis, as such, he was pretty concerned about a big disc having slipped low in my back (Don't ask - I fell off a doctor's couch, half-nyecked, in May during an ECG! ), which has not retracted, hence me being all peg-legged, tingly and numb in a not so good way! I dare not drive, as my foot can't feel the accelerator pedal- Yikes!
So, if I had been experiencing any kind of, ahem, water problem, he would have whipped me in immediately, thereby queue jumping any and all NHS Waiting Lists!
So today's blog finds me not rested, not reassured, a little tipsy (I find Sainsbury's Pina Colada to be an excellent, over the counter, painkiller and tranquillizer....
With that picture in your mind, I shall bid you adieu, and perhaps I will live to fight (and indeed write) another day!