Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Heart attack...or a very surreal Christmas

Well...where should I begin? Let's start with a brief chronology of the events of the past few days:

Saturday, Dec. 23
10:40am - As I was finishing an hour of Jazzercise, I began to feel lightheaded, nauseous and had some burning and tightening in my chest.
10:50am - I walked out of Jazzercise and opened the car door, where Wendy was waiting, and told her I needed her to drive us home as I was feeling sick.
11:20am - Wendy came to a screeching halt outside of the emergency room at the hospital and I was taken inside via wheelchair.
11:30am - I threw up all over Wendy as they put me in an ER room where within minutes about 10 people were poking, prodding and otherwise doing whatever they do to keep one alive while they're having a heart attack.
12:40pm - I was taken to the cardiac cath lab where an angiogram was performed and a stint was placed in my left anterior descending artery (which was completely blocked).
1:30pm - Surgery complete, I was taken to the cardiac intensive care unit for recovery and monitoring.
1:45pm - Wendy joined me in recovery.

Sunday, Dec. 24
I spent the majority of the day in CCU but was sent to the much more restful cardiac floor around dinner time where I spent the night. After being woken every 30 minutes to have vitals taken and blood drawn every few hours, the new floor was like a Hilton in that they only drew blood at 1:30am and then woke me up again at 6am.

Monday, Dec. 25
I was discharged around 1pm and sent home.

I have 4 new prescriptions for various meds to keep my blood pressure down and blood thin and pumping, have been told not to lift anything heavier than a gallon of milk for a couple of weeks as well as to limit my activity until I visit my cardiologist on Jan. 23rd for follow-up.

How's that for a festive Christmas?

I will say that I never really thought I was going to die. There were no moments of unconsciousness nor any visions of a light from beyond calling to me. I did offer up quite a few prayers for both myself and Wendy but most of all just remember thinking "holy crap...I'm actually having a heart attack!" over and over again. It still doesn't seem quite real to me, but here I sit with a teeny little stint (with a barcode on it to identify it and a card with that info to carry in my billfold) in my heart which now has my arteries all open and the blood flowing. Nothing like a little scare to make for an interesting Christmas!

Wendy held up beautifully through the whole ordeal and is doing well. We both got a wonderful day after Christmas present when Kylie kicked hard enough for me to feel her for the first time today! We have our next appointment to check on Wendy and Kylie on Jan. 8 but Wendy seems to have popped even more in just the last few days.

So, here we are....home, resting together and feeling very, very, very grateful to be alive and kicking as we head into the new year.

We want to wish you all a happy holiday season with your loved ones and we'll be posting more about all our experiences of the past few days and the days to come.

- Karen


J-Le said...

oh my goodness, that's some christmas you had! you two look after each other and take it easy.

Mama2BandT said...

Oh wow...I read the title and quite frankly thought you were joking...that's horrible, hope you guys are both doing well...
Confession, from an ER nurse we like to descend on pt's w/ 10 different people just add to the freak out factor...
Keep an eye on yourself and that ticker! You have a lot to stick around for...

Mama2BandT said...

ignore the misplaced comma above....didn't proofread

Anonymous said...

Oh my!! I am so glad that you are doing better and I am so glad that Wendy decided to take you to the ER instead of home. Hang in there and I hope you start feeling better. Yea that you got to feel Kylie kick. I bet that was pretty exciting.

Anonymous said...

Wow...so good to hear that you are doing well after all of that! How scary.
Feeling Kylie kick must have been the exact opposite type of excitement!
Take care of yourself!!!!

Anonymous said...

Wow! That's scary!!! So glad that you are alright!!!!!!! I can't imagine how scared you and Wendy must've been!

That's great that you got to feel Kylie kick for the first time!

Anonymous said...

Oh my. That IS some Christmas. I'm glad to hear you're okay and that you're taking care of each other.

Anonymous said...

Oh my. That IS some Christmas. I'm glad to hear you're okay and that you're taking care of each other.

Anonymous said...

OMG! Talk about scary. I hope you're both doing much better! Hopefully next Christmas will be better with a new little one to spoil and no medical emergencies!

Gretch said...

oh my gosh! glad to hear things went well...and hope everyone is able to get some good rest over the next few days. we'll be thinking positive healing thoughts for you!

how exciting that you got to feel Kylie kick!