|Picture - Laura Mary|
"And why shouldn't it be me?", I thought to myself, as we retraced our route half-a-mile after a hurried wrong turn in Isleworth, "I am perfectly capable….. dammit has the entire hospital actually moved or something?"
When I eventually found the West Middlesex (where it always has been, less than a mile away) I had no hesitation parking in the drop off zone, and sweeping confidently in through the doors of A&E.
Then, facing the barrage of questions from the triage nurse I began to realise it was quite a long time since I'd had responsibility for any crisis of a medical nature
"Does he have any long-term medical conditions"
- "Um, well, not that I can think of"
"I beg your pardon?"
-"No. No he doesn't"
A sharp look
"Does he have any allergies?"
- "Um, I don't think so - um, hang on - do you have any allergies, son?"
- "no, he doesn't have any allergies"
"Is he taking any medication at all at the moment"
- "um, not so far as I….. Hang on…hey! are you taking any pills or anything?"
- "no, he isn't"
"Are all his vaccinations up to date"
I stared defiantly into the eyes of the hostile nurse.
- "Ok...I am going to say… 'yes' "
She stared right back at me.. and eventually she made a small, disbelieving tick on her form.
- "Right, now stop messing us about: I want a CBC, a Chem-7, an ECG and a Tox-screen, and start him on a general antibiotics for any infection"
It's entirely possible I watch too much American hospital drama.
They were very professional: they explained gently that such tests are not possible on the NHS outside of working hours and then they led us into a small and babyish play area in paediatrics to wait for the doctor, and meanwhile would I mind moving my car, please, no don't worry there's four people ahead of you so plenty of time before doctor will get here.
The wait wasn't much fun. I had brought no small change for coffee machine, I had forgotten to bring my old-man reading glasses and all the other families in the unit spoke Polish or Hindi so there wasn't much conversation.
After an hour or so young Botogol's colour had returned, and he was feeling a lot better, which must have been what the nurses were waiting for, because as soon it was absolutely clear that he had completely recovered and was ready to go home a sceptical doctor arrived "So, what is the matter with you then young man?"