Firstly an apology. I’m sorry I haven’t kept everyone in the loop and I don’t have an excuse for it. The bottom line is that I’m fine.
Let me elaborate. If you haven’t read my post from February, you should go back and read that. My appointment was around two weeks after I got the referral, which goes to show that private healthcare is very quick (the main delay was the fact that he was on holiday!)
The referral was probably the most complicated part of the process. I couldn’t get through to the GP on the phone to check if they had the letter for me to collect, and in the end I had to walk there before work in order to pick it up. In the snow. I get to the GP and they don’t have the letter. Apparently it was sent to the hospital, but Guys don’t have it and neither does London Bridge, so it’s pretty much a lost cause. A few minutes later and I have a print out of the letter template and I’m on the train to work.
Next job: check that my parents can actually make it in the weather conditions, and if not consider alternative people to come with me so I feel more calm. It wasn’t snowing in Brighton so the flurries in London were no barrier to their arrival. Once in work I called the hospital too – everything was working well and Mr Lucas was in the building (or a hospital building somewhere…)
Fast forward 6 or so hours, I’ve pretty much stopped doing work and have had to watch ‘Trans Kids: The Right Response’ twice to assess the complaints that had been made because I cannot concentrate. My parents are also already stood under an arch at the entrance to London Bridge station waiting for me so I leave work.
Private hospitals seem to me very much like the NHS, except for the concierge at the entrance. Nobody mentioned that the usual building for Mr Lucas’ clinic was being refurbished but after wandering round for several minutes we find the corridor and wait in a rather long queue for the receptionist to register me.
We didn’t reach the front of the queue: Mr Lucas saw us, recognised me and ushered us straight in. Private healthcare is good like that. We made small talk and I updated him on my life, and how great it is to be able to see him so quickly. By this point I was shaking a fair bit, but got through the physical examination and happily he said that the alignment looked perfect.
The lump I found? It’s the tip of one of my metal rods, made prominent because I’m so slim. Just to be safe he sent me for some X-rays and said he’d call with the results the following week. Here they actually registered me at the hospital and we waited a little while before the radiologist called me through. The only difference to an NHS X-ray seemed to be an additional dressing gown like thing that went over the back of the hospital gown to cover the gaps. Good, but perhaps not worth the money.
Once the three X-rays were complete we headed home via M&S Simply Food (some traditions never change) and had dinner before my parents headed back to Brighton. By the time they got home it really was snowing. Despite good news, I was very tired from the stress of the day, but what else is new!
The summary letter came through to my email very quickly, and I was told he would call me the following Friday to confirm the results of my X-rays. I booked the time out in my work calendar and enjoyed the snow in the meantime (by which I mean struggled into a rather empty office in multiple layers, then came home and put the heating on very high).
The Friday came and I eagerly awaited the call. He was a bit late, but his PA did at least call to warn me. Eventually the phone rang and I got the all important confirmation that I really am fine, which was great to hear. The small caveat is that he’d like to see me again before I’m 25, but hopefully that will continue to be good news!
Update over and thank you especially to everyone who got in touch with messages of support and love. I couldn’t go through anything without you all!
And keep your eyes peeled, because I have more to say (and hopefully much sooner than the update happened!)