I went to the doctor's this morning. It was a bit of a spur of the moment thing, like many in my life, suddenly springing from a fermenting idea. On Saturday, my husband suggested I should have visited the doctor with my persistent cough; and on Monday, my best friend did her best to send me. I was having none of it. I was fine, I spluttered, I had a nasty, but short, brush with a bad cold (perhaps a touch of flu?) over the Christmas break and just had a nagging tickle left over. I also had another infection which had not shifted in the past week.
So yesterday evening I decided that I would pay the GP a visit. I had mixed emotions, half of me wanting to be proved right and to be sent away with a clean record, the other half hoping for some magic pills that might make me feel better. The doctor was brisk, matter-of-fact and even a little cold. I realized how much I had been hoping for some sympathy when I got none at all. She listened to me breathing and announced that I had a chest infection. One quick prescription later, broad spectrum antibiotics, and I was out of the door.
Perhaps I have been gradually feeling worse or perhaps it is the permission to be ill, but I have felt rough today, fragile and headachey. I decided to give myself the day off and to miss our social group tomorrow to catch up. My son trekked to the bakers for buns and made me camomile tea and I took myself to the sofa with a DVD.
I have tried to treat myself the way a good mother would treat her child, with compassion and sympathy, but I don't like the anxious feelings which come with being unproductive. And I can tell that my anxiety levels are high when, chatting with the children about mud-slides and avalanches, I worry that I have forgotten the way to act if caught in a avalanche, something I read in a Joe Simpson book a while ago and thought would be useful to know. How can I protect my children if I don't know what to do? I have reassured myself that I am safe in South West London and given them the best advice a mother can: if you are going to some snowy mountains, ever, make sure you find out what to do first! I think it may be time for another cup of tea!