Hi everyone, I hope you’re all well.
I thought I’d start bothering to write full book reviews because, why the fuck not really? Also, when other areas of my life are going to shit, I tend to just pretend it’s not happening and focus on something else (really emotionally healthy…) and so what I’m focusing on currently is trying to get through my gigantic To Be Read pile congregating next to my bed, that is giving the Burj Khalifa a run for it’s money.
This Is Going To Hurt was a book I thought I’d never read, let alone enjoy, and so I cannot believe I now crown this as one of my favourite books of all time.
When I was ill, I got health anxiety as a result, and in the end it reached a stage where I was unable to even watch an episode of a series that involved illness; if someone was diagnosed with cancer in a film, it was immediately switched off. If a celebrity died because of a disease, I couldn’t bear to read the news articles. If there was even a whispering of a hospital appointment in a book, it was slammed shut and I’d try and track down The Twins At St Clare’s to ease my mind (I’m joking, but if I still had any copies I definitely would’ve).
Back then, the thought of reading a book that was a diary of years spent saving lives, experiencing death face on, and dealing with illness and trauma, it would’ve sent me into a panic attack unlike any other. I knew it was happening, every day, to people all over the world, but I couldn’t acknowledge it. The low level fear bubbling away inside me that there was every chance I’d become ill again and I’d die, and I’d never get married or have kids or run around Vegas off my face on tequila and inexplicably ruin my life. Dream big, obvs.
Rather than speak to anyone, 2 and a half years later health anxiety hit me full pelt in the face; being able to read a book may not seem like an achievement to some, but to me, it was something I could only have dreamed of 3 years ago.
This Is Going To Hurt by Adam Kay is a book that I feel, and hope, will stay with me forever. We think we know how overworked, underpaid, underappreciated and colossally underfunded the NHS and it’s staff are, but unless you actually work for them, it’s hard to understand the full extent of it. This Is Going To Hurt gives some insight into the debilitating working conditions, with 100+ hour weeks that you’re only paid half for, running from emergency to emergency on 0 hours sleep, being unable to save someones life through no fault of your own, and not even being able to take 5 minutes to process it, but being forced to rush to the next patient instead.
You can buy the book here and I really hope you do – it’s heart wrenching, emotional and thought provoking, whilst also managing to be laugh out loud funny, witty, and dry. It’s one of those books that stay with you, that you recommend to everyone, and that starts conversations.
And it should start conversations; our NHS is on it’s knees and slowly becoming privatised. Politicians think we won’t notice, as they slowly privatise the odd corner here and there, but it’s being dismantled before our very eyes. NHS contracts are being privatised in the realms of billions of pounds.
If I were to live in America, or the National Health Service didn’t exist, I would be repaying the treatment I had in 2013 for probably the rest of my life. One single injection I had cost £25,000. That injection was part of what saved my life, and I will forever be grateful that essentially, it was free. In fact, if I added up the cost of all the medication, scans, bed, etc, it would probably be over £100,000. I do not have £100,000 sitting about. If I did, I would have a pair of DD tits, a timeshare in Ibiza and a very expensive personal trainer who could un-do the fact I snort custard doughnuts and garlic bread baguettes on a daily basis.
As usual, I digress; This Is Going To Hurt is an incredible story of what it really is to work on the frontline of the NHS, and the sacrifices that are made not just on a level of personal relationships and a social life, but of their own mental and physical health.
I couldn’t recommend the book enough, plus it’s a bargain on Amazon for only £3.75. I know if I’m ever sitting at A&E again moaning about waiting hour upon hour, I might think twice.
All my love BGP xx