What followed was a lifetime of health problems, mainly prompted by a leaky valve in the heart which had been discovered at the meeting with the insurance company's doctor. In 1996, my fragile but hardworking heart literally began to break - and it was to do so twice over in the coming years, both physically and emotionally.
We've been fortunate enough to have two healthy babies who are growing into strong girls. Neither has had anything more than a runny nose or high temperature so far. But what if this wasn't the case and we were reliant upon healthcare beyond the usual measure of calpol or the odd appointment with the GP? How would we deal with that?
The internet was set ablaze the past few weeks, by Candace Payne - now dubbed the 'Chewbacca Mum', for sitting in her car and trying out the talking Chewbacca mask she had just bought. To this day, she is the biggest star on the internet. The emotional connection she built with the world wide web is just a small indicator of the power of storytelling.
It boils down to the fact that doctors and nurses do are the point of the NHS. Everything else is just a structure to allow them to do it in the most efficient way. And two of the things that makes it efficient is making it free at point of service, and making the people at the point of service happy, awake, and willing to make the necessary sacrifices their job requires.