SHELLEY TERRY

SHELLEY TERRY

When life goes upside-down I turn to humor.

Take last week, for example. Hubby went to the emergency room with severe upper abdomen pain, fever and vomiting. After four hours and a litany of questions and tests, they admitted him.

Faithful readers may recall two important facts: 

First, I have a very sensitive stomach and I can’t stand the sight of any bodily fluids. When my kids were sick, I got sick. When Dear Daughter fell and knocked some of her teeth out during an away-team basketball game, I drove to the hospital in my nightgown and a pair of shorts, walked into the emergency room, saw her, saw blood and fainted.

“Get a bed for the mother!” a nurse yelled.

Second, Hubby never matured past sixth grade.

I always thought we were the only ones who knew this, but apparently, the hospital staff knew it, too.

They assigned Hubby a room in the children’s ward! The room decor included butterflies, dragon flies, flowers and lots of bright colors. He had a big boy’s bed and his roommate had a crib.

After several different doctors examined Hubby, poking him, prodding him and starving him for two days, they came to the conclusion he suffered from pancreatitis, most likely caused by a gall bladder stone. 

Poor Hubby. 

A big sign on his door read, “No food or drink.” 

For 48 hours, he only had an IV for nourishment. 

“Think of all the weight you’ll lose,” I said in an attempt to cheer him up.

He didn’t seem excited.

Well, of course, eventually I had to eat and get a drink. After all, I wasn’t sick.

He begged me to sneak him in food or drink.

“No, I’ll get in trouble,” I said.

I did drink a Pepsi in front of him and gave him a sip, but I didn’t eat in front of him. 

Consequently, I lost a little weight too. 

On Day 3 when they finally let him have fluids, I went to the Dairy Queen and got him a grape slushie float. He was so happy! I swear there’s nothing like ice cream to beat depression. 

Frankly, I was thrilled to get out of the hospital for a bit. I hate hospitals and I’ll admit I don’t like being around sick people. I feel bad for them, but I don’t like being around them. Why? Because they are sick!

I will say the staff on the fourth floor of Ashtabula County Medical Center did a great job of taking care of Hubby. And ladies, I couldn’t believe Hubby’s demeanor — he was so charming to the female doctors and nurses. 

When talking to me, he was depressed, insisting he was dying. 

“I’m a goner,” he said repeatedly. “Tell Darwin (our one-eyed Jack Russell terrier) I love him.”

Then he would ask me to do this, do that, get him this, get him that, rub his back, rub his feet — he was dying, after all.

However, when talking to the pretty nurses, he sat up, smiled and made pleasant small talk.

It was like a series of small miracles — dying one minute, sweet and clever the next.

Finally, on Day 4 I couldn’t take it any more — the boredom, the sickness, the waiting around, the lack of good food ... Like Job’s wife in the Bible, I said something like, “Just die if you’re going to die and get on with it!”

That’s when Hubby announced, “I feel better. I think I have been granted a reprieve.” 

Staff writer Shelley Terry is happy to report Hubby is home, awaiting gall bladder surgery. Apparently, he’s going to live, which is good news because no one else provides column material like Hubby.