It's now twelve days since I had my tooth out. The pain has almost gone but the gum is still much too tender to let me eat on that side. What is worse is that the gumboil is still there - and that was the reason why the tooth was pulled out in the first place! How can I possibly still have any infection there with my decaying old tooth gone? I am rinsing with warm salt water and rubbing Corsodyl on it but nothing seems to work. Any ideas, anyone? I really don't want to have to resort to antibiotics.
Last time I was at the doctor's she merrily offered me a flu jab and I turned it down. The only time I ever had one was in 1996 and three days later I developed full-blown flu with a high temperature and all the aches and shivers, and then my poor mum died so I had to drag my flu-ridden body onto a train - on a Sunday, with engineering works turning a 2 1/2 hour journey into a 5 hour one - and arrived to find that the police had taken her away to the police mortuary, and wouldn't let me see her for a whole week. I was desperate. It was January 1996 and every day I would walk into the police station and beg tearfully to be allowed to see the body of my beloved mum. And each time they said no, because the doctor hadn't issued the death certificate yet.
Eventually, I went to see him. By this time, I was beyond speech. My voice had completely gone, I could hardly breathe and as soon as he saw me, he said I had laryngitis and a chest infection as well as flu, and gave me antibiotics. When I got back to London, I visited my own doctor only to be told I was no longer a patient of theirs. I broke down in the surgery, thinking that I'd committed some misdemeanour and been struck off their list. In fact, due to an administrative error, all my notes had been transferred to my mother's GP in Liverpool.
This episode ranks alongside the day my daughter's father ditched me for another woman when I was pregnant with the child he'd said he wanted us to have, and the day I had to hand her over to the adoption society, as one of the most wretched times of my life. So when my GP gaily asked if I'd like a flu jab, I said no, because it brings back very unhappy memories.
I don't want to get flu, of course, so in place of a jab, I am taking a homoeopathic remedy called Triple Flu Defense - http://www.triplefludefense.com/ - which is formulated afresh every season to protect against the latest strains. 20 drops on the tongue every Sunday. I shall let you know if I manage to dodge the virus or not. Last night, I went for a meal with an old friend in North London and stayed over. Her lodger had just come back from Sweden and brought a nasty cold with him and by this morning she had started going down with it. Will I escape their germs? Watch this - atchoo! - space!
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