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Drinking Interdit

I’m at my medicin traitant about a blotch in my right eye. It’s probably not important but I’m taking holiday precautions. The phone makes a mechanical peep as I enter the bureau— I’m a few minutes late so I let her off. She hangs up, taps her keyboard with one finger, then angles her chair towards me. The phone peeps encore. This patient is more demanding than the previous. Something about an infection, we can’t be sure— she’ll need blood tests. Doctor Moreau hangs up and looks at me. “You’re very thirsty, is it normal for you to drink that much water?” I justify my response, remarking the weather and the importance of staying hydrated. “We don’t do that”, she says calmly. “What, drink water?” She shakes her head and pauses for impact. EspeciallyNot. Here.” I’m au courant that my doctor is conservative, evidenced by her disgust the day she discovered I’d been to an osteopath. Drinking water and alternative therapies seem to go together. I run through possible consequences of H20 consumption in a bureau; slipping on saliva, mouth escaping microorganisms, death by drowning… She breaks the silence with a question, “what seems to be the problem?” I’m self-conscious speaking about my health with strangers, this intensifies when doing so in French with dry mouth. Moreau scrunches her face. I repeat the phrase stumbling over the same mistakes. It feels like I’m being fact checked. I breathe slowly to cool the guilty sheen on my lip and brow, then shift to the couch for ophthalmologic inspection. It’s brief. “I can’t see anything”, she says ironically, “are you in pain?” “No, but there’s this layer…” I say, hoping she’ll find something. “Rien” she confirms, “feel free to see an ophtalmologue (if you don’t believe me)”. She nods at Chester in the pram, “bébe va bien?” I study his chubby face. “His vomit has carrot in it” I declare, reaching for my purse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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