Thursday, September 21, 2006

Tail Spin

I have Meniere's Disease, and I like to say it makes life a little more interesting and unpredictable. What I really think about it is another thing entirely, but one is not supposed to open up the darker recesses of one's soul on these subjects because people don't want to hear it.

I had an attack early this morning, so my day consisted of lying on a couch with my eyes firmly closed in order to avoid seeing everything in the room jumping several feet from side to side every second. Later I stopped taking my anti-nausea tablets and spent some time vomiting for a change of pace. So today ended up being a complete washout from the point of view of getting ready to move to Korea.

Since developing Meniere's two years ago, every trip out of my house has been a bit of an adventure - even if it's just round the corner to the shops. So how I'm going to travel half-way round the world if I'm not well is an open question. I have visions of them pushing me onto the plane in a wheelchair, and I know it might have to come to that too. Unfortunately, stress and air-travel do not mix well with Meniere's so the odds are going to be more stacked against me than usual. I'm seeing my doctor on Friday to get a 'fit-to-fly' letter and I'll probably beg him for some better medication at the same time, but I'm not too hopeful; much of the UK National Health Service seems to revolve around the 'live-with-it' principle. And apparently this is what I pay around 47% of my income in taxes for.

The Korean health system on the other hand obviously works on the principle of wanting to cure its patients, since generally this is more financially lucrative. I imagine this can be a double-edged sword though; I want to find a solution to my illness but not at the expense of being over (and unsuccessfully) treated. I met a Korean a few months ago who told me that she thought Meniere's was normally 'easily treated' in her country, which perhaps irrationally made me quite angry with the UK for a while. Maybe I'll get to the bottom of this subject when I'm in Korea.

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