You know you’re getting old when….. Yes, it sounds like the beginning of a really bad joke, but recently this one line took on a whole new meaning for me. I received a letter from the NHS offering me my free health check which is being offered to people aged 40 and 74 once every 5 years. This did confuse me a tad, given that I’m 58, however, I shall continue. It’s a great idea, helping prevent the likes of stroke, diabetes, heart and kidney disease, although, something happened a couple of weeks ago to move things forward: just a bit. Ros and I had been out shopping in Corby when I began to feel a little dizzy and very breathless, almost akin to the asthma that I used to suffer as a child. We were close to a chemist’s and decided to seek advice. Perhaps I needed an inhaler, or decongestant of some kind. The chemist listened to my symptoms and suggested I visit a doctor.
Now, my doctor’s surgery is closed at the weekends, presumably because nobody feels the need to be ill from a Friday night through to a Monday morning. Anyway, she suggested that I visit the medical walk-in centre that is the Corby Lakeside Urgent Care facility on Cottingham Road. This was such a good move: what a fantastic resource, run by the most dedicated, professional and empathetic staff.
To cut a long story short I had an electrocardiogram and the dreaded blood test: I say that because I live in fear of anything to do with needles. The staff gave me all the attention and help I needed to sort out my immediate breathing problem, yet at the same time had unintentionally provided me with an alternative and somewhat relieving clean bill of health as suggested by the NHS health review. Now, do I still make an appointment for the aforementioned examination, or do I still need to face yet another horrendous blood test?