Wherein I Feel Like A Rock Star and English Saves A Life

Well, enough of me talking about the downsides to being a writer and whatnot. I’m sure we’ll come back to it at some point, but today, I want to touch on two things:

  1. When/how being an English Person makes me feel like a rockstar 
  2. What the world  would be like if everything depended on English 

So- as some of you may know, Husband is in nursing school. He’s brilliant when it comes to scientific things and numbers. All the things that completely confound me. He also knows grammar very well. But papers (while he’s good at them, he hates them) are his Achilles’ Heel.

Yesterday morning the alarm buzzes far too early for me, and he hops out of bed to get a jump start on the mountain of homework he has to have done before he goes into the hospital after lunch. Well, I just roll over and go back to sleep for a little while. Then, once it’s a reasonable hour for me to get up on an off day, I walk out of the bedroom bleary eyed into the kitchen where he’s set up shop.

Picture this:

I walk out of the bedroom. The sun, a bit too bright for my still sleepy eyes causing me the squint and rub them. My sock-footed feet shuffle on the hardwood floor to the kitchen. Half way through a yawn HUSBAND looks up at me. His face brightens.

HUSBAND: Will you proof read this for me? And maybe help with the citations? He shoves a handful of papers into my hand. 

I look down at them and the wheels in my brain start to move. I need to answer him. I glance back up.

ME: Yes, but only if you make me eggs and an english muffin

HUSBAND: Agreed! You rock baby!

And here’s how I feel:

Awesome. Simply awesome. 

I love it when my talents as an English major kick in. It’s times like this, and when I can help my mother solve literary questions on her crossword puzzle, that I feel like a total rockstar. 

This is what the world kinda looks like when I’m all pumped up on feeling awesome:

It’s a great view.

So, this brings me to point two. If the world depended on English.

Right, so there are days when I come home from work, particularly grumpy over having to make what feels like a million salads while helping horrible customers. I walk into the house and see Husband, sitting on the couch totally deflated. This is about the time when he tells me that one of the patients he was working with died, or had major complications, or is just in a horrible situation with terrible injuries and no insurance.

As you can imagine my day gets put into perspective. And really, there are some days where I totally beat myself up about this. Even if I get my dream job as a kick-ass writer, it’s still not like I’ll be saving lives. My career won’t be anything like what Husband will have to deal with. But after I think really long and hard about it, I’m okay with that. I’m okay with being a part-time English rockstar. 

Here’s why….

DOCTOR: Quick! This man is dying! There’s no pulse! We need some literature! FAST!
ME: What? What kind?
DOCTOR: Anything you silly girl. Just recite something!
ME: (floundering for something and watching the medical people scurry around the poor man that’s dying on the bed in front of me.) ‘To be, or not to be — that is the question…’
DOCTOR: Good! Keep going!
(There’s a slight beep on the heart monitor and then it flat lines again)
ME: ‘Whether ’tis nobler to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune or to take arms against a sea of troubles…’ 
(The heart monitor starts producing a steady beeping sound and a smile breaks out across the Doctor’s face.)
DOCTOR: You did it! Thank God, he has a pulse once again. 
ME: (shaking and horribly glad I didn’t have to recite the entire thing. Because let’s face it, I couldn’t really remember any more than that) Yeah, any time. 
(And then I run like hell away from the hospital and hide under my bed for the rest of my life)

Yes, I’m very glad we don’t live in a world where life and death matters are solved by english instead of sensible things, like medicine. *shivers* I don’t think I could handle the pressure.

When I think of things like this, and that quote about fish and flying, then I am very glad that I am an English person. No, I may not ever drill a hole in someone’s leg in order for the to be able to walk again one day. And no, I may never have to incubate anyone. But I really REALLY glad of that. 

The way I look at it is, maybe I can’t save their lives in a hospital  but I can save them on a different level. I can create stories and characters that make them feel happy, or not so alone in the world, or even just connected to an idea that’s bigger than themselves. I can entertain them. I can’t attend to their physical needs, but maybe to their emotional needs.

And that will make all the difference.   

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