I had to go for a fasting blood test today.
Before you start packing up the Red Cross parcels (biscuits please), I am not ill.
Well, no more ill than my normal Victorian consumptive state anyway. I am merely trying to behave a bit more like a grown up. It won’t last, I assure you, but I am trying.
When we were living in rental it was really easy to think; ‘well, I won’t do that because I don’t really live here,’ or ‘No point in registering that because it’s not really my house’ – etc.
Which is kind of OK if you’re in short term rental. It’s the way UE used to live when I first met him. He even rented his phone just in case he had to do a moonlight flit (probably after having killed a man in Reno, just to watch him die) and didn’t want the hassle of having to worry about belongings fitting into the spotted hankie on a stick.
It’s not OK when you have three kids, a delinquent cat and you actually end up living in rental houses for over two years – like us. I was going through the motions of grown upness without a lot of the admin – but sadly, none of the sense of freedom from responsibility that not behaving like a grown up should bring.
Which seems unfair.
It led to a kind of tsunami of paperwork and things I really ought to have done, which I was just putting off from day to day. Mostly I could ignore those things, and then every now and again I’d get a battering because of something I’d let slip, and then there was the constant nagging in the back of my brain about all the things I’d left undone.
We bought this house in February, and after we had unpacked all the boxes, and repacked and shipped out a lot of them when I confronted my inner hoarder, I decided that I really was going to tackle all that stuff; the semi important detritus of a life, that should I have been run over by a bus with it unfinished would have sent my family into paroxysms of stress and from thence to cursing my name.
I have been hacking away at the mountain little by little. Too much makes my brain fry, and then I become petulant and my lip sticks out, and sometimes, when it is very bad, I bend my beak.
This is the face I pull when having to have any dealings whatsoever with National Savings and Investments. Sorting out the children’s post office accounts (as was), premium bonds and children’s savings bonds took six weeks of my life and twenty years off my life expectancy alone.
There is only one thing left on my really, really old pile of paperwork left to do, and it is probably really simple, but it is to do with insurance policies and there is a lot of very miserable paperwork I need to track down and understand, and I need more caaakkke, and probably biscuiiiiits and a long lie down before I can face that one.
So it lurks at the side of my desk, waiting for me.
So that I won’t have to have face the pile of shame reaching levels where there is actually a different climate on top of the papers than there is on the bottom layer, part of my tackling being a grown up and really actually living in this house, is my attempt to keep up with the sort of stuff that if left, could easily cause more paper work and possibly snowfall in the office.
Hence things like taking my car to be serviced last week instead of ignoring the dinging noise that is supposed to spur me on to action because I should feel guilty that my German made car is actually worrying about it on my behalf.
Things like only driving round with a wing mirror held together with bits of masking tape and spider spit for three months instead of praying that nobody would notice – for the rest of my life.
Things like registering the cat at the vet and actually keeping all her jabs, pills and potions up to date instead of praying that she doesn’t get feline leukaemia from chewing frogs and giving mice new hair dos.
And then there’s the health stuff.
You know I am notoriously lax about matters of health, preferring to maintain a constant level of low grade moaning and throwing over the counter cold cure down my throat, along with vats of Rescue Remedy than actually going to the Dr’s surgery.
Usually I don’t register with a surgery when we move to a new house until someone’s eyeball is actually swinging out of a socket. The whole thing is too stressful and demanding and requires me to fill in forms and worry about how all my relatives died and whether I might die of the same or come up with some new and more inventive malady to die of.
This time I have taken the bull by the horns and registered us all, before we are even ill.
I have had my welcome to the practice appointment with the Dr. He seems very nice. He suggested, after five minutes in my presence, that I might want to dial my life down a notch, as it might help with the migraines, sleeplessness/constant falling asleep, headaches, teeth grinding, grey hairedness and other symptoms of my middle aged life (it can do nothing for the impending varicose vein on my left calf – I shall just keep prodding that with a pencil – an old wives remedy – not really). I looked at him for a moment. He looked at me. We both laughed hollowly. He doubled my migraine meds prescription and I trotted off.
I have had my welcome to the practice appointment with the nurse. She seems nice. I like her because she told me I wasn’t too fat and I haven’t shrunk in stature.
She also suggested I have a Well Woman consultation. I booked it, and then had to cancel it because I had singularly failed to dial my life down a notch. I did have the nagging suspicion that it might behove me to remake the appointment due to impending decreptitude and the fact that I live on espresso, cake and any meat I can wedge into the slow cooker that won’t upset the children too much.
I thought about ignoring the nagging suspicion.
Then the pile of shame caught my eye. I rebooked it, and went for my fasting blood test today. Apparently it will tell me if I am going to die of diabetes from the cake first, or clogged arteries from the cassoulet.
Which is nice.
But you see, the thing about dealing with the pile of shame, and the impending pile of shame is that it is never bloody ending.
So on Tuesday I have to go back to do more stuff to see how much of a Well Woman I am.
And after having filled out a load of paperwork for Tilly’s school at the weekend, she has now brought home another great swathe of papers which I have to fill in, and pay out for.
And the children’s passports have run out.
And I need to renew my membership of the National Trust so we can continue our hunt for the finest flapjack in the British Isles.
And the bank forgot to send me a new chequebook…
I wonder if I will learn that I am actually quite well for a woman of my proclivities only to die from an infected paper cut from all the bloody paperwork I am handling on a daily basis?
Either that, or going back to ignoring it will lead to me dying in a paper avalanche.
It is all very depressing.