clean bill of health

For someone who is getting old, I am really quite healthy. During flu season co-workers sprayed the office heavily with anti-septic. They walked away apologizing profusely for the smell.
I didn’t have a cold, but I couldn’t smell anything. I began peeling an orange and realized I could not smell it either.
I went to ask my physician if I should be concerned. He thunked my head a couple times, peered into my eyes, ears, nose and throat and flashed a bright light through my facial bones. He said not being able to smell as efficiently as I had was related to getting older.
Me? Old? I may have grandchildren, but I still have a couple years before the AARP sends me birthday greetings.
I’m not old, but I am concerned about my health. After several days of having my left arm and shoulder ache with the pain of internal pressure, I pulled out a clipping I had saved in our AMA Home reference book. “Women can have heart attacks with odd symptoms that do not correspond to the typical sharp chest pain … the only symptoms may be a pain the arm and shoulder.”
Sounded like my shoulder pain. It used to leave after a good nap. This time it was still there when I woke up in the morning.
Just before lunch I went to ask my physician if I should be concerned. He thunked my head a couple of times, peered into my eyes, ears, nose and throat, took my blood pressure and weighed me with both my shoes and all my clothes on and my car keys still in my pocket. There is no way that weight was accurate. Oh yes, and he listened to my heart and asked me my age.
He didn’t say I was getting older. He said he didn’t think I had a problem, but women are more likely to have subtle signs of heart attacks so he arranged for an appointment with a cardiologist right after lunch.
Half dressed, perched on the examination table in a little cubby hole of a room, I waited on the doctor and began reading a book with many chapters. In between chapters I dozed. The staff at the cardiology clinic didn’t thunk my head, but they did everything else the family doctor had done, pus wired me up for an EKG.
The cardiologist said the EKG looked fine. I closed my book and asked, “so when should I get worried about a painful pressure in my left arm?”
“That is what we are going to find out with a couple more tests.” He left me in the cubby hole with my book. A couple chapters later, the nurse scrubbed my skin and stuck metal snaps to my chest.
Three chapters after that I was shown to another room for a stress test and echo-cardiogram. As the technician and I waited for the doctor to work his way through the day’s overflow of patients, we swapped stories about our children and volunteer work.
Finally at supper time I emerged with a clean bill of health. I finished my book and had a couple short naps. The cardiologist assured me if I ever have any questions. I should call and talk with him.
The next time I have a pain in my arm, nee a good think on the head and have a good book to read, I’ll do just that.