I never thought would my JW upbringing would ever come back to haunt me, but it sure gave me a jolt today.
Brought up as a JW from birth. My father always an elder and my mother the Prima Donna, we were at every assembly and meeting, there was always the home study, field service, had the CO stay with a few times, we moved to where the need was greatest in 1974, (moved back in 1989). At about 1 or 2 years old, so I was told, I should have an operation to have my adenoids(?!) operated on but they couldn't find a doctor at the time who would operate without blood - poor me.
Anyhow time rolls on. At 18 I'm DA'd for smoking (a couple of cigars - wow). Push Jehovah and his Organization to the back of my mind and get on with life. Move out, get married, get divorced. Only went to the doctor when I felt a bit poorly, never had anything seriously wrong until aged 36 when I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. That came as a surprise, no known family history, not overweight, ran 20 miles a week. Now I have to go the doctors a lot more than I had to because of check-ups, prescriptions etc.
Forward to today. My partner and I have just moved to Scotland, so we have had to change doctors. I get my first check up at the new practice. They took blood samples last week and the results have come through, sugar levels good, cholesterol is 4.2 and blood pressure is OK. I'm quite pleased.
The doctor says to me at the end of the session, "We have just had your records come up from your old practice.". I nod, "I take it that being a Jehovah's Witness that you will refuse blood transfusions and all blood related products?"
WTF! After I picked myself up off the floor I asked him, not very politely, "What are you talking about? My parents are JW's but I certainly am not!"
"Oh," he said, "I found this in your records" and he showed me a printed form stating that I reject all blood products. "I'll throw this away then shall I?"
"Er, yes please."
This statement has been in my medical records since my birth. Its been following me like a shadow. Who knows what would have happened if I'd needed emergency surgery, with no one to state that I would have blood.
So all you folks that were brought up in the "truth", check your medical records, you never know what secrets you'll find in there!