This is the first in a series of posts about things Strokees wish you knew.
“I had a stroke, I’m not deaf!” I want to say this a lot sometimes. Someone I know called me the other day and, for some reason, began shouting at me.
“HOW ARE YOU DOING!!! ARE YOU FEELING ANY BETTER NOW!!!”
Wow. I wondered where they were. Someplace really loud, obviously, to make them talk like that. Even though I couldn’t hear any background noise coming through the phone.
“Where are you?” I asked. (The gravel pit? A traffic jam? An active building site? On the weaving floor of a textile mill? Next to the track at NASCAR when the race is about to start?)
“I’M AT MY OFFICE, AND I JUST WANTED TO CHECK ON YOU AND SEE HOW YOU’RE DOING!!!”
(Your office? What the hell’s going on there? Are they drilling for oil there?) “What’s going on at your office?”
“NOT A THING!!! IT’S AS QUIET AS A CHURCH HERE!!!”
(For real??!?) “Why are you shouting at me?”
“I JUST WANTED TO BE SURE YOU COULD HEAR ME, YOU KNOW, AFTER YOUR, YOU KNOW, STROKE AND ALL!!!”
Well. Bless their heart. (I’ll write another post about what Southerners – and I’m Southern – actually mean when we say things like, “bless their heart.”)
“I’m getting better, and my hearing’s great, too!” I said that with a smile in my voice.
You don’t really mean to scream and shout at us. We know that. But we want you to know that even though we had a traumatic brain injury, and the brain is located in the head, and even though our ears are also located on our heads, our strokes did not affect our hearing. There’s really no need to shout. Our hearing’s just fine, thank you.
SO TONE IT DOWN A LITTLE, OK???!!!
And we are really glad when you call to check on us. So, um, please keep doing that.