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Showing posts from October, 2012

If I was in World War II they'd call me Spitfire

I went for a run this evening. Granted, this in itself is not extraordinary; three and half miles, which for those of you whom completing a triathalon is a Saturday well spent, it is not a remarkable achievement, but I should point out that it was raining. Three-fifths of the way round I was flagging, but two things helped power me through: the first was The Prodigy, and the second was my burgeoning understanding of just how fortunate I was to be able to go out for a run at all. The use of our legs, and their innate ability to move at speed is something most us take for granted, and there is nothing inherently wrong in doing so: by and large we know of no other reality than one in which Two Legs are Good, and to spend time giving thanks for generic anatomical processes is, frankly, time that could be better spent. But occasionally it does no harm to take stock and this is precisely what I tried to do as I puffed my way around the the streets of Islington.

I once watched a documentar…

Better the devil you know

Great excitement at the hospital. After much anticipation, as of today we finally moved into the heralded new unit, down the road from the old one. It is much larger than Bostock, and is light years ahead in terms of modernisation; it is clean, for a start. Yet I am sceptical. I feel just as my dearly departed Grandma Nina did when my Pop-Pop died and she was left with no option but to leave her home and move 300 miles from Wales to Kent, into a dinky little house ten minutes away from my Dad. I am the renal equivalent of a crotchety, eighty-four year old woman who knows what she likes and likes what she knows: Bostock might have been old and dingy, but it was familiar and I had just about made my peace with spending so much of my time there. Just.

I was lured to the new premises on the promise of a self-care unit where I could come and go as I please and get on with performing my treatment myself in quiet and tolerable surroundings. On my way to "Olympic Room", where I am …

Dialysis cramps my style

Cramp is an occupational hazard for dialysis patients, just as it is for Olympic athletes - and clearly we have plenty more in common besides. I know not the scientific ins and outs of the origin of cramp -  Google it - but I would imagine having a large amount of fluid sucked out of your body within the space of a few hours is a reliable trigger, and during dialysis it is a symptom that you are somehow removing too much, despite having calculated the appropriate amount and programmed it into the machine before starting. I have had cramp during dialysis before, usually in my toes as I wriggle them around in an effective pain subversion technique that has stuck from childhood. I now do it automatically whenever there is a needle three feet from my person.

Until Wednesday, this minor ailment had never been anything a gentle foot rub couldn't relieve, but during my mid-week session this week I had a cramping experience the likes of which I am not likely to repress any time soon. T…