Nellie Bly Interviews PaperGirl: Interview No. 09228971

posted in: Sicky 6
Nellie Bly. Not pictured: Me.
Above: Nellie Bly. Not pictured: Me.

Nellie Bly: How’s Atlanta?

PaperGirl: The Quilting LIVE! show is fantastic. Lots of quilters, beautiful quilts, classes — it’s a great show. We did a luncheon event today where I had the pleasure of interviewing my mother and Liz Porter while attendees enjoyed salads and pecan pie — it was kind of a phenomenal event, honestly. Very inspiring, very entertaining. Mom and Liz are amazing. Later, I sold a ton of books at my book signing and there’s another signing tomorrow. So yeah, it’s been good.

NB: (Pause.) I understand that you had a setback.

PG: (Pause.) Correct.

NB: You went to the ER?

PG: Yeah.

NB: In Atlanta?

PG: Yeah.

NB: When? What happened?

PG: I was struggling pretty bad Wednesday but pushed through. At about 3:15am, I couldn’t catch my breath, the pain was so intense. I decided to drive myself to the hospital.

NG: You rented a car.

PG: Yes, and I’m very glad I did when I arrived here. It came in handy.

NB: The pain you were experiencing was related to complications from your illness. Do you want to elaborate on what was going on?

PG: Not particularly. It’s all so unpleasant. I can tell you that I’ve had these issues before and I know when to say “uncle.” Wednesday night — Thursday morning, actually — was as bad as it’s been. I said uncle.

NB: Did you find relief at the hospital? Were they able to help you?

PG: I had better care at Bellevue. It’s hard to be at a hospital in a town far away, on your own. It’s hard to advocate for yourself in the system, you know? And if you’re in excruciating pain, it’s worse. Look, I’ll spare you the details, Nellie. I had a pretty awful nurse. She was…unresponsive. Very cold. The doctor tried order a CT scan, which was absurd. They always want to to a CT scan but 9 times out of 10, you don’t need one. That’s my very unprofessional opinion, but I’ve been around the hospital block enough to know. Anyway, they gave me enough Tylenol 9000 or whatever to crest the worst of it. I returned to my hotel room and got about two hours of sleep before I had to teach my class at 8:30am.

NB: Yikes. Maybe you should’ve cancelled class and rested. You have to take care of your health.

PG: Oh, I thought about cancelling the day, sure. But I weighed the options. Option 1 was to be in pain but push through and grit my teeth and make it work. Option 2 was to languish, feel depressed, still be in pain and miss the committments I had made and let people down, etc. Option 2 seemed worse, so… I went with Option 1. My students were so wonderful I had a great class, actually, and I just sorta made myself stay upright.

NB: How do you feel now?

PG: Better! I got a really good night’s sleep last night. That helps a lot. Thanks for asking.

NB: When do you go home?

PG: I go back to New York tomorrow for about 36 hours. Then I fly to Iowa for the first week of TV. Mom and I go to South Carolina over the weekend for a Quilts of Valor event. Then we come back for the second week of TV in Iowa. Then I go down to the Panhandle for another 3-day event.

NB: Hm. Are you su–

PG: Option 1, Bly. Option 1.

NB: I’d like to ask you ab–

PG: I’m pretty tired. No offense. But it’s been a very long couple of days and, uh, I’m gonna hit the hay.

NB: Of course. Good to talk to you.


6 Responses

  1. Jody
    | Reply

    I vote for option 2. Your true fans will understand. The others can go eat paste.

  2. Cruz
    | Reply

    You are amazing!

  3. Jodie
    | Reply

    Mary, the event with you and your Mom and Liz was truly magical. I know a lot of the story and was still entranced. As Marianne said, it’ the American Dream tale two farm wives who simply wanted extra money to pay for diapers and milk and created their own opportunities to do so. The stories, the chemistry between the two of them, and your expertise as an interviewer… it was an event that I’m not sure can be duplicated, but if it is it’s a must-see.

  4. Susan
    | Reply

    My husband has Crohn’s, and has for years, even longer than I’ve been quilting and following your blog. 🙂 He did the SCD and got great relief from it. Like you, he kept going to work, and we kept taking our kids places because really, the alternative of just never leaving home was worse. Things are MUCH better now with the combination of meds he’s on. Wish I had some sage advice for you but I don’t, just keep your chin up and do your best.

  5. Susan Davies
    | Reply

    Oh Mary, I wish I had a magic wand to make it all better! I get sad when I hear how you suffer and I am amazed that you can carry on. Oh, when will this nightmare stop?! On a positive note: my husband found the cause of his neuropathy after suffering for many years, and my nephew recovered from ulcerative colitis. It has always seemed to me that the digestive diseases are the worst. There’s no wheelchair for that. I hope the love and support of others is a comfort. Boo to nurses that don’t feel for others. They are in the wrong business.
    Love and prayer, Sue Davies

  6. Shayna Shipley
    | Reply

    You should really take some time and get better! We will understand I promise! We love you and don’t want you to be miserable!

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