Keep smiling with Rosie Preston – Lowered expectations


By Rosie Preston

In describing the title of this article, I must share with you that a few days ago, I was taking a shower and slipped hitting the crown of my head on the metal faucet. I obviously have a very hard head that can only be compared to a bowling ball. I screamed for my husband Phil, and it took forever for him to hear me. Finally, he arrived.

The pain was the worst I’ve had since experiencing kidney stones a few years ago while on a vacation in The Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. I soon started to experience great pain, so I knew it was something serious.

Phil took me to the hospital emergency, which of course was packed to capacity. Patients were lining the hallways, but I was in such misery that the nurse placed me in a room. During the several hours I was in the room, I could hear everything the people outside the curtains were saying. By the way, I had already diagnosed myself with having kidney stones.

Through the curtain, I heard a lady expressing her fear that her husband had passed. I opened my curtain and told her that I would check him. I did so, and he was breathing, which was quite a relief. I soon heard another lady telling her husband that their son had not yet been seen by a doctor. I walked to her room and discovered that her son was suffering from a migraine headache.

I went to the nurses’ station and told an employee that this boy needed something for pain, and within 10 minutes, he received an injection. I knew what was going on because my son has suffered from migraines since he was four years old. My friends later said I made an excellent caretaker that night. If only they had paid me for my night’s work in the ER!

That incident was similar to what I experienced earlier this week at an orthopedic clinic due to the pain I’d suffered from since the shower accident.  I now realized why the kind doctor was looking at me with a perplexed face! I was telling him that I had fallen twice over the last couple of weeks. The conversation went something like this:

“Doctor, I fell in the shower and hit my head hard. I’m having pain in my head, on the right side of neck, on my back and in my right arm. I’ve tried ice and heat and I’ve taken Tylenol, but nothing has helped. I’ve never asked for pain medication, but I’m ready to buy something off the street to get some relief.”

The doctor’s look became puzzled when I said, “I’m not a drug addict, but I do need some help.”

Want some free advice? Don’t ever go to the ER and ask for pain medication. Apparently many people come to an emergency room looking for pain meds because they are addicted. So, by saying what I did to the doctor, little did I realize that I had opened the door for judgement.

At any rate, the doctor left me in the room wearing only a hospital gown and continued on his rounds. I was at level 10 pain, and the longer I waited, the more the pain seemed to move around my body. A nurse eventually came in to check on me and I explained to her my accident and how much I was in pain. She looked at me and asked me if I was on drugs, to which I replied, “I wasn’t when I entered the hospital, but I’d like to leave with something for pain.”

The doctor finally prescribed me medication for nerve pain along with a muscle relaxant. I felt some of the pain level decrease but was still far from being able to function, which in turn caused me to turn into a very ill-tempered lady who had returned home and laid on the sofa. I found myself giving instructions to Phil on how to cook fried chicken and broccoli with cheese. It soon occurred to me that Phil does not cook anything but breakfast (sometimes), although he has been known to throw some meat on the grill on occasion.

I could not get over the fact that Phil did not know the basics of cooking – he wanted to fry the broccoli! As he was getting the cooking oil out of the cabinet, I asked in a very stern voice,

“What are you doing?”

“I’m going to cook the broccoli.”

“You don’t fry broccoli, you boil it.”

“How do I do that?”

“First get a boiler, wash and cut the broccoli, then put it in the pan, then cover it with water, then add some butter and cook it until it is tender. Drain the broccoli and put cheese on top of it to melt.”

“Do I put it in the microwave?”

“No, you put it on top of the broccoli and place a lid on top and it will melt.”

I admit that the meal turned out to be delicious, and since I was starving, it was probably the best food I’d ever tasted.

The next morning, Phil asked if I felt any better. I silently checked my body parts for pain while remembering that he could now cook.

“I’m still very sore where the pain was,” I replied. “There seems to be a lot of soreness in my neck, shoulder and arm, and it’s now going past my elbow. I still need to heal, and I’m still hungry!”

He said, “How would you like a turkey salad from Pruett’s BBQ?

“Yes, with Thousand Island Dressing, please.”

“You always order ranch dressing with everything.”

“That must be a sign that have a swollen brain.”

Within an hour, Phil ordered two salads and left to pick them up. I have to admit that sometimes it’s true that the food tastes better when someone else makes it.

Does this remind you of a little child who cried wolf? This is our little secret!

Contact Rosie Preston at

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