As promised, a look at the inside of my arm.
As you can see, apparently I have ribs. This is not necessarily something you would notice from the out side. Who knew? I did at one point have difficulty in hospital when they were scanning my arm for damage to the tendons and nerves. They got me in the scanner and said: Breathe in and hold your breath and I couldn’t. So they X-rayed me to see if I’d cracked my ribs but I had not, thankfully, just bruised them, so I did have an inkling that I had ribs and Lo! there they are.
As you can also see there are now additional extras. I’m slowly turning into the Terminator: I already have titanium dental implants and now, says the doctor, I am likely to set off the alarms at airports. Though if such a thing happens it will be way in the future as it takes me two hours just to get up in the morning and by then I’m exhausted and ready to get right back into bed.
Otherwise, perceive! I am well and truly screwed. I count four screws and what they call a long nail. The top of the rod goes right into the ball joint of my shoulder. It aches all the time. Then there’s another screw and then the bit where the bits of the bone are pushed together. Round that join apparently is a net with a lot of smashed bone fragments in it gathered round the nail, then there’s a gap and then two more screws through the solid bit of bone before you get to my elbow.
The two metal items on the first X-ray are bra strap adjusters. The X-ray technician was quite annoyed with me for wearing them. But I had taken several doses of morphine to be on the |Internet long enough to find a front fastening bra in my size and wasn’t about to give it up for the thing with no fastenings and molto elastic I wore in hospital that takes two strong nurses and a mashed potato scoop from the canteen to get me into. It’s quite nice in maturity to be able to get into your own undergarments. It gives you an illusion of independence.
It looks as if I am osteoporotic. The hospital have sent a letter for me to go through a bone density scanner in another hospital at some time in the future. If I prove to be so it is undoubtedly a legacy of my past. I was not a wanted child and started off in a children’s home. I think much more damage was done by my adoptive mother when she systematically starved me in my teenage years. As well as leaving me in the geriatric ward to starve while they went on holiday, twice, she did it all the time at home. She threw lavish dinner parties for friends, mostly the doctors from the group practice, but Jane was allowed five green beans, one dessert spoon of gravy and meat, two teaspoons of potato and two thirds of a pot of yogurt and every damn thing was weighed until it was put on the plate cold. They were not the Swinging Sixties for me, they were the Starving Sixties. To this day I can glance at any plate of food and tell you the calorific value in a moment. When you starve a teenager you are not making a thin compliant teenager, you are making an osteoporotic old lady, who will be suffering crumbling bones and 24 hour a day pain when you are long gone and not even there to gloat.
Needless to say, if you are doing any of this to yourself, please stop.
People are diverse. This is a good arrangement so that you can tell us apart. We come in tall short, wide narrow, fat, thin, busty flat chested, broad shouldered, narrow and geeky, athletic, cerebral, small and bijou, huge and imposing and every skin colour from really black to see-through white. AND IT’S ALL BEAUTIFUL.
And if you have a child, celebrate what they are, rather than yearning for them to be what they are not. We need leaders but we also need followers, we need people with every aptitude, ability and physical and mental type there is and we need all of this for the survival of the human race because in our human history it is our diversity which has enabled us to colonise the whole planet and in our future it is this diversity which will take us out into the stars.
As for me I am so glad that some people wish to be surgeons. I am so glad that some people wish to research which metals you could screw into broken bones. I am glad they were available to help me and I am so so very very glad of Aneurin Bevan who oversaw the foundation of the National Health Service when he was Minister for health. I cannot imagine what sort of state I would be in if, for example, I had needed health insurance and been too poor to have it. Would I have had to live the rest of my life in excruciating pain with a useless arm? Would it have gone gangrenous and had to be removed? Earlier in history, no matter how much money I had, probably yes.
If you are alive and well and reading this, the minute you stop go and get a mirror and have a good look, be sure to tell yourself how utterly beautiful you are and how lucky to be alive right here, right now.
There will be Miniaturas in the future and I will be there.