Looking around the A&E, I contemplated whether I was the only female in there as a direct result of an abusive relationship.
A Saturday evening. Women everywhere united in an insane need to watch that awful, awful show, the X Factor, and women in this waiting room united by their suffering at the hands of the man in their life.
My man, of course, is Brendan.
The pain that began as soon as I started dialysis on Friday night became increasingly unbearable until the decision had to be made to wreck the weekend with a visit to the grimmest outpost of the Irish health service.
One of the perks of arriving at an Emergency Department already in the throes of a chronic illness is that you are fast-tracked through the trolley system – no hospital wants you to die on their watch.
There was speculation first that the tube had shifted inside me, that it may have somehow hooked itself on to my omentum (the internal layer of tissue that covers the peritoneum).
The agony was being felt in my shoulder - one of the hilarious little quirks of the body. Anybody on APD will know that the first few rounds of dialysis grant you a jolt of pain in the shoulder area when the machine is draining your tummy of fluid.
This was much more than a quick jolt. It felt more like a heart attack, but at that moment, a heart attack actually seemed preferable to the idea of having surgery to return to the tube to its correct position in my pelvis.
Those doctors can be such Daily Mail-like scare mongers however. X-rays revealed that my tube was behaving itself perfectly well, that it had not strayed or gotten involved with any tissue. Their diagnosis was thus downgraded from a Code Red and they told me the pain was being caused by...air.
Apparently if any air bubbles leak into your peritoneum cavity through the tube, they lie there, ‘tickling’ the diaphragm and causing unmerciful pain to shoot through your shoulders.
Brendan did this to me on purpose. As I mentioned some weeks ago, I have started using extension lines to keep him as far away from me as possible. Those other abused women may banish their man to the couch, but I only moved Brendan to the hallway, and still he had to punish me.
He is now back in my room. Extension lines abandoned, sleeping again side by side.
I swear he is louder than ever now. Or perhaps that is just his form of an evil cackle, mocking me.