One of the difficulties of the ageing process is assessing whether one has a serious ailment or a transient meaningless pain. Recently I noted a sharpish intermittent pain above the heart. Was this the start of a coronary or nothing of consequence? Had a life of rich food clogging up the arteries and the exertions of pleasure seeking finally taken its toll? A trip to my excellent Doctor might result in further consultation with a cardiologist. I recall the wise words of my doctor father that cardiologists do not adequately reassure the patient. I decided to wait and see whether it increased or decreased, or spread or not. After a couple of days the pain has subsided.
People have differing pain thresholds. My p/a Polly, in the two years she has been working for me, has suffered from wisdom teeth, skin splints, a urological problem and – over the weekend – trod on a heater, causing severe burns. Throughout all of these I have never known her to complain once. Contrast a French friend of mine who, during the 35 years I have known her, invariably arrives with some unspecified condition. My late mother bore her cancer in her final days stoically and none knew whether she was in pain or not. And what of my beloved cat? What has he suffered and will suffer without intimating anything unless there are symptoms?