An Apple A Day…

I have been suffering from a mystery illness of late which leaves me feeling drained, nauseous and dizzy. Now I’m no expert on medicine and I’m pretty sure that I don’t have leprosy or the plague but beyond that I don’t have a clue. I have resisted self-diagnosing myself using the internet because whether I have an earache or chest pains I will be told YOU ARE GOING TO DIE!!! Which is quite clever really because everyone dies at some point but that is not particularly relevant to my current situation is it? I bloody hope not anyway!

Naturally when you are feeling sick everyone tells you to go to the doctor and I know I should but I have been putting it off because dealing with the American healthcare system gives me a lot of anxiety. In fact it gives me an unreasonable amount of anxiety and people keep telling me I should make an appointment but I can’t. I have to use a website to choose a doctor but there are so many to choose from the choice is just bewildering. Now don’t get me wrong, I like the idea of having a choice of doctors. In the UK my GP for most of my life was a dour Scotsman whose response to any medical complaint was to look at a book on his bookshelf and utter in a way that inspired no confidence “well it could be IBS”.

I like having some choice, but in the same way that I like to go into a coffee shop and ask for a coffee with milk and sugar and not choose from 16000 different combinations, too much choice is a little overwhelming. There are literally hundreds of doctors that I can choose from and the website that my healthcare provider uses has more unnecessary extra pages than a Buzzfeed article and not enough filters. A filter that can help you choose to avoid a doctor who likes to say “it could be IBS” would be really helpful for example. I would also like to choose a doctor who understands that British people like to understate everything. A Brit might finally admit that they were “feeling a little under the weather” on their deathbed. Last week at work I told a concerned coworker that I was “a little dizzy” as I clung to my office chair to stay upright.

In addition to being spoiled for choice there is nagging fear at the back of my mind that I will finally get round to choosing someone and they will either be terrible or they will no longer be covered by my insurance and I will be left with a bill bigger than the National Debt. This nearly happened to me when I chose a dentist; they were covered on my plan according to my providers website but when my wife called them to check for me they were no longer accepting my insurance. All of this worry makes me feel almost more ill than whatever ailment I actually have.

As a result of my (very reasonable in my opinion) fear I have resorted to self-medicating. As a British person if I am feeling unwell and I don’t know what will fix it there are two things which will help; chocolate biscuits and a cup of tea. Actually there is a third option which is ignoring it and hoping it will go away so I don’t have to make a fuss but I feel like I have overdosed on that option. My wife bought me some British chocolate biscuits last week and I have apparently overdosed on them too; the nutrition advice says that the serving size is one biscuit. HOW IS ONE BISCUIT A FUCKING PORTION?! Who eats one biscuit at a time?! My blood pressure is rising, I think I need to see a doctor…

21 thoughts on “An Apple A Day…

  1. As a British male, with generally no hope of you even thinking about going to a doctor, you’re being marvellously modern actually discussing your ailments!! Seriously though, hope you’re ok. Tea and biscuits go a long way but what if you spill it all in a dizzy spell? Vertigo maybe? I’ve had that before, triggered after a virus and it was rubbish. Although people did find it amusing when I fell off things 😔

  2. Way too many ‘choices’ for everything these days – will probably lead to a mysterious epidemic: choiceophobia, choicexia. Things would be done and dusted so much more quickly if there was less choice – ranting a bit, but still suffering from the stress of yesterday being offered a catalogue that was 2 inches thick! Sales lady decided for me in the end! Really hope you feel better soon…

  3. I vote vertigo or an ear infection resulting in vertigo or a flu. Pick a few doctors accepting new patients and call them and this will clear up if they accept your insurance before heading out the door needlessly. You could always go to an urgent clinic – which is commonly what I use. You see I suffer from choice-phobia too. 😉

    1. Thanks for the tips! I have called around some of the people who are accepting new patients and none of them have any appointments soon. I might end up going to urgent care like you say!

  4. I must still have my British blood flowing strong in my veins. ignoring ailments followed by tea and chocolate biscuits is always my go to thing aswell! Hope you start recovering soon.

  5. You and my daughter, she won’t go to the doctor either! Oh well, hope you don’t hurt anything when you fall over, haha, just kidding. Just look in your book of doctors and go “eenie, meenie, miney mo”.

  6. Haha. Great read. You’re right. British people do understate everything! I’ve been known to mutter that I was feeling a little dizzy whilst my vision had pretty much gone and I couldn’t stand from feeling faint as well. What’s worse is I was on a train and was trying to make my way down the carriage quickly for a seat and I still kept up my manners to strangers, saying “sorry” and “excuse me” while I was almost on the floor!

  7. This had me crying with laughing! I come from a family of self-medicators. I almost died during an epidural injection of steroids into my spine and obviously having no more clues as to what to do with me, the last consultant I saw 35 years ago advised me to see an acupuncturist. And I have been using complementary therapies ever since with much more success and far less pain or threat of death by needle! I now juice regularly and am the only person in my extended family who hasn’t succumbed to colds or flu – man or woman variety – in the past 12 months. I highly recommend it and it would fit into your apple a day theory ☺️ Hope you feel better soon!

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