Saturday, November 7, 2009


Four weeks have passed since my encounter with hell began...isn't it amazing how this happens??? How does time pass this quickly???

No matter, it is what it is, isn't it?When I left you in my previous post I had just come out of cardiac recovery and was surrounded by my loved ones feeling a certain sense of relief --this huge operation was over and I was still here with my DH and my darling "Chicks".
However, they leave and now I am alone, concious, and completely numb in body and mind.

Alone with one nurse assigned to me--a real angel of mercy--so kind, so gentle, so soft spoken, so attentive to all my needs--I am blessed!

I lay in the bed hooked up to IVs, drain pipes protruding out of my chest and neck, cathera in my bladder, legs bound in ace bandages--unable to move--Ha! where would I go anyway?

I am feeling upside down, topsy turvey, inside out, numb, and sloth-like. I lay there wrapped in my wierd feelings, wrapped in my numbness. Tubes taken out, cathera removed--some relief and more comfortable--that's nice. Vital signs taken, sips of water, body washed slowly and gently. This nurse is wonderful. I slip in and out of sleep and before I know it I am being taken to the heart medical unit--a step down and yet really a step up.

Another bed in room but it is empty for now, that's good. Vital signs taken, helped out of bed to bathroom--ah, the relief of urinating on your own--weak and a tad wobbly--legs and hands distorted by water retention--I look down at my hands and legs and wonder whoses body parts are these. Allowed to eat food--OMG, hospital food tastes okay--"topsy turvy indeed!"

Pills in morning, pills in afternoon, pills at night--I am a human pharmacy. I have also developed full blown diabetes--a common phenomena after this type of surgery--sugar level tested 4 times a day followed by shots in stomach--combined with all the blood tests taken I am a human pin cushion.

Ace bandanges unwrapped from my swollen legs and white surgical stockings, like vices, are put on each leg. So uncomfortable, but necessary for improved circulation. Life in the hospital has taken on a rhythym of it's own. Vital signs at 6:00AM, now I get up to sit in the chair next to bed. Surgical stockings put on--not an easy task! Blood sugar tested at 8:00AM, insulin shot next, then breakfast served. Watch a little TV, tired need a nap, into bed again.Nap for a hour or 2 then get up to go to the bathroom with help. Sit in chair, sugar tested, insulin shot in stomach, pills, lunch. Watch a little TV--no real focus--close TV, sit in chair numb, zombie-like, no thoughts--time seems to pass. DH here, fills me in on stuff from the "outside" world. Take a little, walk together--weak, very little energy, no stamina, back to room. Talk some more, visiting over, will return tonight. Chicks coming in evening after work.

Sugar level tested, insuling shot, pills taken, dinner is served. Visiting hours again, DH and my sons come--how wonderful to just chat about everyday things with them.
Visiting hours over--Routine is the same--that's okay I am not all here anyway.

By the 5th day after operation I am waiting to be discharged from hospital ( Sunday, Oct. 19th).

Ooops, not leaving so fast-- a small glitch--have a potassium difficiency and need to have potassium IV that delays my departure for 4 more hours--not such a terrible thing--the hospital has been a safe place for me.

Late in afternoon I am briefed on what I need to do once I am home--meds to take, sleeping situation, how to shower, surgical stockings, follow-ups for cardiologist and surgeons and lots more.

Wheelchair ordered, transporter takes me down to hospital lobby, DH goes to get car. Not allowed to sit in front seat--if we get into car accident the air bags will be quite harmful to me. Oh joy!!!

DH driving slowly--we get home--I am totally exhausted, need to sit down on couch for a bit. I am numb and sloth-like, nothing feels the same.

First night at home is about making the environment "Margo" friendly. Here are my some of the challenges I face--swollen legs and hands, shortness of breath after anything I do, talking included. Pain and discomfort in my chest, shoulders, arms, neck and head. Difficulty in getting out of chair. A strong sense of being out of place--upside down, inside out, topsy turvy, and numb. A huge mental numbness--almost like I'm not really here. "Whose life is this, anyway?"

Routines need to be set up--now, I test my blood sugar and DH gives me the insulin shots.

Can't sleep in our bed--hafta sleep alone--must sleep on my back with my head and feet elevated. A stool put in shower for me to sit on--must not face the shower spray--bad for my chest now.

Need help with shower and dressing. Not easy for a hyperative me!

I am going to end this story soon--no need to give you a blow by blow account of my every waking moment--just want to bring you up to "snuff".

Each day I am feeling a little stronger--went to cardiologist and then the surgeons for follow-ups and all is going well. In fact this is the first day that some of the those "upside-down, inside-out, topsy turvy, numb, and sloth-like" feelings are dissipating. Yes, I have been crawling sloth-like through a dark tunnel but that bright light ahead, that is my life, is almost in reach.



  1. A little victory goes a long way, xoxo, thoughts and prayers for a speedy complete recovery.

  2. You will be fully recovered in no time at all, then when you stop and think about months down the road you will wonder did I really go through all of that? I hope and pray you have a speeding recovery

  3. keep thinking about you at a meeting at the UFT knitting....or selling goods at a fair....keep moving to the light at the end of the tunnel....miss you lots