Health is relative, literally. I’ve found out in the past five years that when I have a health problem, and go to the doctor for diagnosis it’s something that has “run” in either side of my family for generations. I could just as well call my Mom or some older relative and get told the same thing that my family doctor just told me, less the money for the office call. The phone call usually goes like this:
Mom: How have you been, O loving son of mine?
Me: Not so hot. My (fill in the blank, and don’t let your imagination run too wild) has been bothering me. I can’t even get a good nights sleep.
Mom: Oh that, it runs on the Ripley side of the family.
Me: What have they done about it?
Mom: Not much. Its just part of being a Ripley.
If you’ve got a health problem…you may want to consider calling an older relative first. They’ll usually give you a “blow by blow” account of what you’re going to live with, or can refer you to some kin of yours that can…if they lived through it.
Occasionally I’ll have a day off where I can sleep in, past 5 in the morning. Invariably my body won’t let me. It literally screams at me to “get up and move!!!” It sounds like this:
Sinus: Hey! Wake up!! We’ve been pounding on the Brain for an hour! Get up and get upright so we can drain! Look in the mirror Quasimodo! How do you like the right side of your face? Just a little puffy today are we?! Anyway…the Stomach or “bottomless pie trap” as we call him has been bitching all night about the two bowls of chili that you ate last night for supper. The Ears reported late last night that your wife was none too pleased with the way the bedroom smelled either. Have you ever heard of “Beano”? The Ears know about it and so does the Brain. We think that you either don’t care or (and I hate to say this) like farting. I don’t even want to hear your answer. The Upper Intestine and Lower Intestine are just about ready to teach you a lesson with a case of explosive diarrhea. Yeah…that got your attention. And they said they’d wait until you’re either at a meeting or at a water park!
Me: Ooohhh, my head. I can’t move.
Sinus: Oh…your lower back has been throbbing since yesterday. You’re middle aged now, that throbbing that used to be below your waist line that used to be considered “fantastic” has now moved to a quieter, more “kid friendly” neighborhood…just a little north and totally west of where it once was.
Me: It’s settled over my left hip and lower back. What the hell?
Sinus: Sorry pal. Things aren’t what they used to be, the warranties ran out years ago and I saw on the TV last night (thank you Eyes) that guys your age have another 30 years of work ahead of them prior to retirement.
Me: Ouch and shut up!.
Sinus: I did a quick systems check this morning while you were dreaming of new siding and windows being installed by a crew of Hawaiian Tropic suntan models…ya perv, and can report that while the Brain is moderately damaged (thank you ZZ TOP) your heart, lungs and liver are all just fine…for a guy your age. Oh…wait a minute, the Brain is whining again. He wants Starbucks coffee, fast.
Me: Must brush teeth.
Sinus: I’ll buy you some time and tell the Brain to go onto “auto pilot” for the next 45 minutes. Will that give you enough time to get ready and put some clothes on? And let’s not forget to wear underwear today, aye “king of the jungle”?
Me: Must brush teeth.
Sinus: Super! Have a fantastic day and try not to unleash a toxic cloud of post-apocalyptic chili bean fury into the air as you depart the bed. Your beautiful wife is still asleep.
Me: I ain’t making promises the Lower Intestine can’t keep.
Sinus: I hope that she forgives you.
Me: She’ll have to…it runs in the family.
Tomorrow…I’ll have a test for you to take to find out if you’re “middle aged” or not. Until then, God Bless.