Monday, April 6, 2015

I'm Not Dead Yet!

Dear John,
 
I was wrong. I'll be in the lobby all this week. It was good today - it's amazing how much better I feel at the end of the day when I get to sit down while I work. I enjoyed it.
 
Something funny happened today. Two young women came in with coin to be counted. They had one nickel that was bent and wouldn't go through the counter, so I explained it and said they could have their nickel back. One commented to the other about the group Nickelback, then they explained to me that it's a group. I said that of course I know Nickelback, and they were floored. The first thing out of my mouth was to say that I'm old but not dead, which gave them quite a giggle. One told me about her aunt who had a Green Day CD and had no idea who they were, and I said that was so sad.
 
They left smiling, and everybody said I had handled them well. I wasn't handling anything - I was being myself. Of course I know Nickelback and Green Day. How could you not? You'd have to live with your head in a hole in the ground. So I was teased all day about not being as prim and proper as I seem.
 
And that brings up an old, familiar subject: being judged and stereotyped by the way I talk. Everybody up here hears a southern accent and assumes I'm frail, fragile, dependent womanhood. Well, crap. I'm an old battleax of a critical care nurse. There is nothing frail, sheltered, or na├»ve about me. I'd think that was glaringly apparent. My favorite music is 1930s Delta Blues - that's nobody's prim and proper. There are words I don't use, but after twenty years in critical care, I know words that would make a longshoreman blush. Give me a  break.
 
I think it's time I was let out of the drive-up so these people can get to know me better, don't you? I hope they can handle a whole week of me. I shook folks up today just by knowing - and rather liking - those two groups. What other traumas can I inflict before the week is over? What a lovely thought!
 
Well, we're off to bed here. Duke and Wisconsin are just getting started and I have no intention of staying up past midnight for this one. I'd love to see it. But I'm tapering Prednisone and have to be coherent and functional in the morning. So I'll let the game go on without me. See, I can use good judgment at times. I just do it to keep you off balance, you know.
 
Your not-dead-yet, not-frail, not-sheltered wife,
Joan.

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