As a seasoned hypochondriac, it's about time I go to see my doctor. Except my doctor, Dr H, isn't there any more. He left a couple of weeks ago.
While I'm waiting for a new GP to be assigned to my body and mind, I get to see one of the others at the practice. Dr C.
I liked Dr H. And I like Dr C. I've seen her before on one of the weeks Dr H was off with stress from having to see me every few days.
My current complaint is very strange.
I get these aches, you see. On a Monday night when I lie down in bed I get these aches going down my inner thighs. They go down my inner calves, too. It's like the veins are filling up with blood. I panic and the aches go down my arms. Then I get twinges in my chest. I worry Betty and keep her awake. Then I fall asleep.
Dr C asks me to get on the couch. I can leave my pants on.
She checks the circulation in my legs. It's excellent. No varicose veins, either.
She asks me to stand, holds my inner thigh and asks me to cough. I've got a little reflux in the thigh vein. Nothing to worry about though.
She asks me if I do any unusual activities on a Sunday. Horse riding, for example?
I say I don't ride a horse.
"Do I stand a lot on a Sunday?"
"No. I don't stand a lot ever."
"Why on a Monday evening? The meds you take can do funny things to the muscles. But if it was your meds it would happen all the time, not just on a Monday."
I say I drink alcohol at weekends and not during the week. Maybe it's a reaction to my body not having alcohol after the weekend. A craving manifesting itself in the troubled veins of my inner thighs.
Instead of advising me to drink every day, you know what she said?
"Maybe give up the alcohol for a couple of weekends. If you're ok on the Monday you know it's that. Then you can decide what to do in the future. It's up to you."
So I put up with a bit of discomfort, knowing it's not going to kill me. Or I forgo one of life's pleasures and watch Betty get merry at the weekend.
What would you do?