Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Three Years Ago (part 2)

Above  is a photo of  me sitting on my balcony drinking a protein shake after my workout taken March 2010.
Fortunately, I have always had the ability and wherewithal to bounce back from many medical procedures. After having gone through two surgeries and three total hospital stays during 2010, I enjoyed the second half of 2010 free from any impending medical procedures or complications. 

I enjoyed my 10 day cruise immensely, I was back to my routine. I will never forget Saturday December 18, 2010. I went to the gym as usual and everything was fine, I had stopped to talk to a friend near the locker room and it was then that my world began to change forever. Walking the short 150 feet from where I was talking, to the front of the gym, a clot occurred. One of the most insidious things about this hyper coagulation syndrome is that you have no warning, one minute your blood is flowing the next minute it is not, kind of like turning off a faucet.

There I was sitting on a couch in the front of the gym, terrified. I knew from past experiences what had just happened. I also knew what lie ahead for me at least in the short term and what potentially and most likely lie ahead in the long term. It took about 15 minutes for a sufficient amount of blood to reach my feet before I could walk to the car and drive home. Often times even though you have a clot,  some blood can eventually reach your extremities, the amount of time it takes varies with the severity of the occlusion, I knew this was bad.

When I finally got home my mind was whirling like a cyclone, fear, anxiety, worry, what to do, who to call, I was a mess. I had a conversation with God pleading with him to not let this be true, to let it pass or let it be my imagination on overdrive. In my heart of hearts I knew the truth, and yet I immediately went into denial, I did not deserve this, I had already been through so much, I was a good person and on and on. 

It took a lot of courage for me to do the unthinkable, remove my shoe and sock and look at my left foot. Tears were welling up in my eyes as my greatest fear was visually apparent, my foot as white and as cold as snow. No blood in my foot causing the whiteness and coldness, this had really happened. A voice in my head resonating Dr. Jacobs words, "if this bypass fails there is no where left to bypass." What that meant was I was going to lose my left leg also, I broke down and sobbed.

Always a resident in the hotel denial, I thought well maybe it will be better by tomorrow, it was one of the worse days and nights of my life. I lie awake most of the night, I slept with my left leg draped over the side of the bed letting gravity pull as much blood as possible into to my poor blood starved left leg and foot, but it was of course of no avail, a last ditch effort.

It was one week before Christmas, Bill was in Nashville for the holidays, Marguerite and Paul were two hours away in Normal Illinois and everyone in my family lived three and a half hours away in Indianapolis. I could either call an ambulance or call my personal assistant Frank. I opted to call Frank to take me to the hospital. When I called him on Sunday morning I told him what had happened and told him to pick me up in a couple of hours, I needed time to pack.

It was one of the longest and most somber car trips I had ever taken..........

To be continued.

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