The X-ray Guy Says it’s a Mental Disorder

Oh, really?

So LATE Thanksgiving night, my family was all asleep and I was up planning my shopping strategy. When I went to go to bed, I climbed up on the window sill to turn off the really tall pole lamp that should be hooked up to some sort of normal-height light switch.

I fell down.


All —lbs of me, on the front of my left foot. It killed. It still kills!

Let me say there was no mercy for a poor cripple at the Day After Thanksgiving Sales, no mercy whatsoever.

It slowly started to get better but when I woke up yesterday morning, it was hurting again and I thought, “What the hay? We’ve got the best insurance in the world. I might as well go to the Doctor and let him have a look-see.” He referred me to the Urgent Care facility so I went late at night after the kids were in bed and so the experience would sound more dramatic and urgent on my blog.

foot-rayOnce I got there, I was really embarrassed. I wasn’t urgent and I really didn’t need much care and it probably wasn’t broken anyway. But they took the pictures and I must say I was startled at the loveliness of my bone structure. I have exquisite feet!

It was getting awkward in the little room with the X-ray guy as he kept taking pictures of my perfect feet in silence so I started blabbing away. I thought, “What do me and this guy have in common? Why, X-rays of course!”

So here’s where I got into trouble. I started telling him my history of X-rays. When I was in early elementary school I had a dream. Bobby-Joe Somebody-or-other had shown up at school with a cast on his leg and received no end of attention for weeks. Everyone got to use the Forbidden Sharpie Markers to sign all over his cast how much they liked him, BFF, Keep in Touch, U R A Q-T, etc.

treeI wanted a cast so bad that I started throwing myself out of trees in an attempt to break something. My mother put an end to this one day after watching me from the dining room window, climb to the crook of the tree in our front yard, stand stalk still with my arms outstretched and fall like a log to the ground….several times.

The problem was, I was too chicken to really “go all the way”, so I would bend my knees and catch my fall right before the bone-jarring landing.

I stopped taking the falls after our little “talk” but every time I got hurt in the slightest, I would beg her to take me to the doctor, limping around for days saying that I KNEW! THIS TIME IT WAS BROKEN. She’d take me in for X-rays. They’d say I had a contusion and send me home, a very disappointed little girl. (I was really impressed with the diagnosis at first. Until my mom said, “A contusion is a bruise, Katie. Get in the car.”)

Lots of X-rays in my formative years, no protective lead helmet. Explains a lot, eh?

…And I’m telling all of this to the X-ray guy whose job it is to see if I have a broken bone or not.

Me: Yeah, I used to always try to get a broken bone so I could get a cast. I would throw myself out of trees and ram into things. Pretty hilarious, huh? Heh heh….. um…. yeah…..”

X-Man: You know that’s a real disease?

Me: Huh?

X-Man: Yeah, that’s a mental illness.

Me: Um, yeah. I was seven.

X-Man: (silence)

Me: I don’t do that anymore. I never get x-rays. I haven’t gotten an x-ray for as long as I can remember. Except earlier this year when my son was born. But then, we thought he’d damaged my pelvis so……(blabbing on and on and on)

X-Man: (silence)

Me: Yeah. He was 10lbs 8oz.

X-Man: (silence)

Me: Yeah so this experience reminds me a lot of that one. Ha ha. (nervous laughter)

X-Man: Hmm?

Me: Well, like I kept telling everyone he was really big and they didn’t believe me and I thought that if he really was big that would be good because “I’d show them” but then if he was small that would be good too because…um…he’d be small and the labor would be easy and that’s like this experience because…um…because…um…well, it would be a good thing if my foot isn’t broken, but then if it is broken it would be good because I wouldn’t feel so dumb for coming in here and then I’d get the help I need.

X-man at this point is walking out of the room and motions for me to follow him.

The doctor looked at the X-ray and his diagnosis was not mental illness but a “sprain”, which is the appendage equivalent of a “virus.” As in, “Dude. Your foot hurts. Go home.” But to make me feel better, he did prescribe a “special shoe.” I have an actual prescription for a “Bunion Boot.”

Problem is, I can’t find anyone who will fill the prescription so I have no “special shoe” pictures to show you. But when I do, no “Run Forrest, Run!” jokes, okay?

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16 Responses to The X-ray Guy Says it’s a Mental Disorder

  1. Helpful Mom says:

    This is hilarious! though am so glad your foot is not broken. But listen to your body now that you are older and wiser than you were when you were seven. It took me three years of getting doctors to find out what was wrong with me before my hysterectomy. So I wasnt being a hypochondriac at all! Maybe a podiatrist will fill your prescription. My husband has one and his name is actually Dr. Shumacker and he is really a good doctor too!

  2. Kelly says:

    My… What really big feet you have.

  3. blackbird says:

    gosh those are gorgeous feet.

    I feel so…so…unfulfilled for you.

  4. LFierge says:

    omg- I have got to stop reading your blog while I’m on the phone with customers. I cannot restrain myself from the peals of laughter which tend to disturb the customers.

    I’ve never had a cast either but the one time I really hurt my elbow (all my — lbs fell and landed on my right elbow) was in finals week in school and my teachers didn’t believe me that I had to take my tests orally because I couldn’t write. Because like, every other week, I would come in with an ace bandage on my wrist from “spraining” it. It was a badge of honor, and I guess mom let me wear it hoping I’d embarrass myself explaining what a klutz I was.

  5. Heth says:

    Hi DYM, I’m Heather. *waving*

    I’m loving your blog, it’s cracking me up.I say wear the Bunion Boot proudly, you earned it. And maybe people will feel sorry for you and be extra curteous to you. Who knows, maybe you could even get a temporary handicapped parking permit out of the whole thing. Milk it girl, milk it.

  6. jessica says:

    You have my profound sympathy over the sprain, DYM!! After my first (and last) attempt skiing and the subsequent trip to the ER, the oh-so-helpful x-ray tech and the doc-on-call both said the same thing: “You’re gonna wish you’d broken it!” (This was referring to my sprained left knee and ankle). I was unpleasantly surprised to find out that although a break is much more glamorous, with the cast and all, sprains actually tend to be a lot worse in terms of hurting and healing time (so there’s nothing mental about what you’re feeling). But, on the plus side, I can now forecast the weather with my left leg. So, in short, get the “shoe” and milk this “virus” for everything its worth, because as it says in Pride and Prejudice (if I remember right): Those who do not complain are never pitied. Take care and you have my pity!!

  7. Karen says:

    You are probably completely paralyzed or spazzing uncontrollably with twinges this morning because that was DANG FUNNY. (Sigh) What a great way to start the morning. Thanks.

    Oh, er, sorry you haven’t been able to locate a bunion boot. I hope you find one soon. Can I sign it when you do?

  8. I’m glad you didn’t break your foot!

    Just so you know he’s not the only x-ray guy who doesn’t talk. Believe me I have had my share of x-rays (I think it is in the double digits now) and none of them ever talk. At first I tried to talk to them, but well, you know how that goes.

    I hope there isn’t a next time, but if there is bring a book with you.

  9. Anna says:

    Just had to tell you that this post totally cracked me up. Thanks for the laugh. I understand your urgent desire as a kid to have a broken bone. I once saw someone walking around on crutches, and it looked really fun. I longed for a broken leg or ankle so I, too, could swing around on crutches. Finally in my freshman year I kind of sort of sprained–okay, well, really just hurt–my ankle. I insisted I needed crutches. It took me about a day and a half to get over that and just limp instead! Hope your foot feels better soon.

  10. Heather says:

    Dying over this one. You must win the award, mi hija!

  11. jak says:

    This post is so funny!!- and your right-your feet do look long and lovely-

    I thought for sure you were going to say xray guy called a psych consult-but then I realized-xray guys can’t call for psych consults..duh..

    Not that I was thinking you were crazy-it just seemed that’s where the story was headed-

    All I can say is-I’m glad I wasn’t drinking something when I read this-Take care Girl!

  12. JenIG says:

    I tried like mad to break my ankle when I was in grade school. I used to find holes in the ground and run then get my foot lodged in it and then heave myself left or right. It never worked. I think my bones are made out of titanium. or rubber.

  13. GLHM says:

    Love U R A Q-T. Smart kids.

    Man I wish you had told me you wanted a cast when you were young. I would have helped you break it. Maybe a good throw from the tree would have done it.

    By the way, am I remembering wrong or didn’t you have a cast when you were 10 or 11?

  14. Torn ligaments GLHM. I had to walk on crutches for a couple of weeks and I hated it.

    It cured me forever of wanting a broken limb.

  15. You’ve got sole! (puns are not nearly as much fun in type)

    sprains actually tend to be a lot worse in terms of hurting and healing time

    Amen to that! I fell down the stairs four days before Christmas several years back. I told every one I had a Tiny Tim Complex.

    And I made the mistake of taking a Percocet left over from my c-section before I got to the hospital. They didn’t think there was anything much wrong with me…except they kept asking me if I took the drug before I feel down the stairs or after!

  16. Jodi Jean says:

    um, okay i realize that this post was in december and it is now may, lets just say that i stumbled upon your blog a week ago, and am now going from recent to oldest and chuckling along the way, girlie you are awesome.

    but i had to comment on this post. the dialogue between you and the “x-man” was priceless. and to top it off you were calling him ‘”x-man”.

    moral of the story: i LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog.

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