By Tony

Spring! I have finally clicked on something new, just the other day and that is odd symptoms I had previously but never connected with anything in particular I now have. One of these is full-body stretching in bed, like you see kittens do in front of a fire. Another is itching in my right hip area. A further symptom is blood pulsing in my left ear as a noise and a feeling in my left instep. I put all of this down to Spring and coming out of semi-hibernation. Think of butterflies coming out of a cocoon and how they pump blood into their wings. The cocoon is Winter shelter. Look how flowers burst up through the soil or out of the hard wood of branches, when better weather comes (the warmth of the sun and longer days in which this is achieved).

I have also realized that this relates to getting older as some of this is painful or discomforting as blood is pumped into areas it was withdrawn from, in response to the cold. It is like when your hands get cold and numb then hurt like blazes when they start warming up again.

I have also realized that mucus build-up, like wax in the ears, is a sign of substance intolerance and defence by the body in trying to shut out such unwanted material (pulling up the body’s drawbridge and shutting the door on further invaders or hostile weather).

I wonder if sensitives like me may make good experimental subjects and whether hypochondriacs are like us but worried about the significance of their symptoms, instead of having a scientific curiosity about the causes?

It is funny how several correspondents talk about meltdowns in the April issue, though they use different terminology. David, in his piece about fear, calls it a mega-mindquake, Willow calls it falling down the rabbit hole*. I had a case of it this very morning when printing something and trying to fill up the paper tray while the machine was still feeding sheets in. The printer jammed and I went ballistic, shouting at myself and frantically pulling out the jammed sheets, going from mild-mannered David Banner, to the Incredible Sulk (or Mr Angry) in seconds. I think this is down to the perfectionism and OCD that Ita mentioned in her response to Bruce from the last issue (Gene Wilder and his comfort blanket, in The Producers — yes, that is us and it is normal for Norfolk, where, funnily enough, I come from).

Like Katrine, Katrine, I noticed that my sensitivities are getting worse with age and again referring to Ita’s partner: yes, I wash my hands then I wash them again. Stimming and ticking (yes I know that is Tourette’s but I am getting that as well as time goes by) are also increasing as I age. It irritates my wife when I twiddle my thumbs (never used to), scratch the palms of my hands, crack my joints or show signs of restless-leg syndrome. Explosive, hypersensitive knee-jerkers — who in their right mind would want anything to do with us, I’d like to know?

*After an explosion, my destroyed world falls down inside myself, like a mirror smashing or Humpty-Dumpty falling off his wall of apparent normality (and his partner realises that their relationship has hit rock bottom again).

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