Boils. Big ones. Filled with pus and blood. All over my lower back and waist.
Not now, of course. This site is all about memories. That was a the state of me back when I was about 11. I didn’t think anything about it at the time. I just thought it was entirely normal. And I enjoyed squeezing them in the shower.
My parents noticed, though. Especially when one of them grew so big that you could see it through my underwear. At this point, I was whipped off to the doctors as fast as humanely possible.
Our doctors’ practice were an interesting lot. Dr Eykyn was always kind and helpful. Dr Hyland was technically our family doctor and my favourite. Her daughter was a year younger than me and she was clearly very proud of her. And then there was Dr Coleman.
Dr Coleman was, to put it politely, a bit odd. You can read about him here if you really want to, but suffice it to say that I never liked seeing him and my parents were not that keen on me seeing him either. His daughter Helen was in my class at junior school for a couple of years and seemed quite normal, in a slightly stuck up sort of way, but I don’t remember him ever coming to the school, even though all of the teachers seemed to know who he was.
Needless to say it was Dr Coleman that I ended up seeing about my boils. He immediately diagnosed an iron deficiency, prescribed some tablets, and the problem did indeed clear up.
Of course, knowing what I know now about Dr Coleman, I have never been sure if the tablets did any good at all. What I do know, though, is that that big boil gave a very satisfying ‘pop’ in the shower one evening about a week later.