Car Coddling and Such

Yesterday’s visit to the radiation oncologist was a bit of a surprise, inasmuch as the doctor I saw was a woman (whose name escapes me) with whom I was unfamiliar. The “regular” doctor was on vacation. I actually prefer the demeanor of the doctor I saw yesterday to the guy I normally see, though my regular doctor is not annoying in the least. But yesterday’s doctor seemed friendlier. I liked her. She suggested my trouble swallowing could be related to candida, a yeast infection that develops in the esophagus when the body’s immune system is weak. The endoscopy recommended by my primary care doctor, she said, would help determine the cause of my pain. She said candida can be easily treated. And she gave me assurances (though no guarantees) that my pain will eventually disappear and all will be well with the world again. Eventually.

Despite the doctor’s assurances, I am not in a particularly happy place, physically. The pains in my neck and shoulder, diagnosed as symptoms associated with bone spurs and shrinking nerve channels in my spine, have returned with a vengeance. I thought those pains were history. I’ve been taking massive doses of gabapentin for “nerve pain” for some time now and I thought/hoped the symptoms were long gone. And they were. But they are back. My neck hurts like hell. I have a hard time lifting my head to look upward. Pain. Pain. Damn pain. Just yesterday, I fantasized about returning to my deck, pain scraper and sandpaper in hand. But unless my neck and shoulder cooperate, that won’t happen. One’s body can retaliate against one’s youthful disregard; it can happen years after the misuse and abuse.

I intended to ask my primary care doctor, during my Monday morning visit, about the odd twisting/strangulation pain in my chest and gut. But I forgot. So, I suppose I won’t find out for quite some time whether it’s something treatable. I suspect it’s a hernia of some sort, perhaps a hiatal hernia. The pain associated with whatever it is can be excruciating, but it disappears as soon as I feel my guts slip back into place. At least that’s what I think I feel. I really should make a list of questions to ask the doctor when I go for a visit. Should. Maybe one day will.


In a short while, I will drive to Little Rock to have the Subaru coddled. Oil and filter change, tire rotation, and repair or replacement of the rear wiper blade or assembly. If I owned a car lift, the right tools, and had all the requisite skills, I might do these things myself. But my disinterest would factor in, even if I were the proprietor of a mechanic’s garage, so I don’t feel so bad about driving to the Subaru dealership to have the work done. Mi esposa desired to make the trip, too, as she planned to run errands in Little Rock. However, she awoke briefly a while ago to let me know she was dealing with a sinus headache and would rather not go. So, I will go alone. I realized not long ago that I received no confirmation of my appointment. Perhaps I’d better call the dealership to make sure I’m on the calendar before I drive to Little Rock. Hmm. They don’t open for a while yet. Hmm, indeed.




About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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2 Responses to Car Coddling and Such

  1. John Swinburn says:

    Cheryl, road trips are my oxygen, too. The Subaru is Janine’s car and now our “road trip” car. I drive a 17 year old Camry!

  2. Hopester says:

    I hope the throat issues fully resolve for you soon. And being in chronic pain? It’s exhausting. I hope you have a nice little drive today. I love going for drives. It feels so freeing and I often give thanks that I have the means to get in my car and do so, even if it’s a short hop, skip and a jump away from home. My car is 15 years old and a Subaru is what I am looking at replacing it with when it finally stops taking me on road trips.

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