Sometimes we need to be able to bend – not break

She was too neat. Too controlled. Too precise. She sat quietly, not moving any part of her body. Her feet crossed at the ankles, legs pulled at a 90˚ angle to her chair. Her home-knitted jersey was buttoned to the top. Her hair was white  grey,  cut  into  a  neat,  practical  style.  She  wore  no  make-up.  Her  skin  was  flawless,  with  an  albaster-like quality.  She  was  of  medium  build  with  delicate  hands  and  bony  fingers.  Her  eyes  were  intense  blue.  She  looked right through me with a fixed gaze. Every so often when I looked down to make a note; I would notice how a flicker of uncertainty would flash over her face, to return to complete control once our eyes met.

“I have been very worried about my osteoporosis. I get exercise every day, I eat all the good foods, I can’t believe I got  this  disease.  My  doctor  has  prescribed  a  drug  to  help  with  the  absorption  of  calcium  but  my  stomach  is  very sensitive and I can’t take it. I am on oestrogen replacement therapy to help with the bone loss, but my breasts are so tender and swollen, I don’t know if I can continue to use the drug. Also, my husband does not like me to be on hormones. He gets very worried about my health. Maybe you can help me to find another way. We are pensioners and live on a limited budget. Please bear that in mind!”

Her  request  was  delivered  in  a  tone  of  voice  which  can  only  be  described  as  neutral.  There  was  just  about  no emotion, which I found odd. Her gaze returned to her folded hands in her lap, waiting for me to respond.

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