Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Painful Truth.

When in doubt, blame your parents. I have inherited from my father the tendency for 'dodgy mincers' (particularly developing non-serious but unslightly eye infections, styes etc). When I lived in the UK, I had to have one surgically removed. When the hospital appointment eventually came through I had moved house, but had to travel out to leafy Windsor to have my eye "done" (an inadequate catch-all verb that masked the horrors that awaited me). My parents had gone on holiday and the alarm bells should have probably started ringing when my dad told me "oh yes, I've had that done, it's not very pleasant". All the hospital told me was that I wouldn't be able to drive afterwards, which seeing as I didn't have a car didn't seem like a big problem. Long story short, after having 4 separate doctors and hospital staff berate me for coming alone ("Don't you have ANYONE to look after you??"), I ended up, post-op, setting off the burglar alarm at my parent's house, so then having to climb over the fence with an eye patch and feeling like I had been punched repeatedly in the face to sit in the garden wondering how I was going to get home.
I eventually made it back to London where my flatmate enjoyed singing Gabrielle songs to me the rest of the day. By then I was able to see the funny side and even crack a few pirate jokes....
I had to have the same thing done yesterday here in Barcelona. This time I made sure to ask if I needed to bring someone with me, and exactly what I could expect. I was told I would be able to go about my business "without interruption" afterwards. What actually happened was I was lying on a table, tears running down my face into the terrorist style hood that they made me wear with two surgeons bellowing "Why are you crying???". I couldn't quite pinpoint whether it was that the needle they had just stuck in my eye was smarting a little bit, or the ridiculous surgical shower cap they had made me wear, or just the constant references to the "little knife" they were about to use on me which was bringing tears to my eyes.....I am a wimp, but I think most people might be a little bit distressed in similar circumstances.
Then came the "Of course you can't work for a few days, look at the state of you!" comment, (so not exactly 'without interruption' then??) and I noticed that the surgeon didn't come out to tell everyone in the waiting room how brave I had been, like he had with the previous patient. I felt sorry for the old woman who was going in after me.
So after suffering the same chien andaluz type experience twice, I can confidently say, if they tell you it's going to hurt a bit, you must always assume it's going to hurt A LOT.