A Week Ago (part 2)…

In part one of my story, Ed and I had gone to our local ER because he was experiencing chest pains and high blood pressure. Not long after arriving, we were told, by the ER physician, that Ed’s EKG didn’t look good, and he would need to quickly be sent to another hospital by ambulance. That hospital was about 50 miles away.  After giving Ed some “clot busting” medication, the staff began preparing Ed for transport.

I left Ed at the hospital, and quickly headed to the nearest gas station.  I rarely let my car run low on gas, but I hadn’t been driving the PT Cruiser much since we’d recently bought a new van.  (Our new van was sitting under the carport at Ed’s parents’ house, filled with gas, but there was no way I was driving it to the hospital to become a victim of those idiots in the hospital parking lot!)  After, filling up with gas, I quickly headed for home to pack a few things to take to the hospital. I made a mental check list of what I needed on the way.

While at our house, I quickly decided I needed to leave food for our animals, too, since nobody would be home to feed them the next morning.  I put on a “head lamp” and wandered out into the night.  I fed and watered the chickens, then left some dry cat food for the cats.  I must have been quite a sight, running all around in the dark with that light on my head, but I was a woman on a mission!

While I was darting around like a mad woman, the phone rang.  It was my daughter asking where I was.  She was still waiting at the hospital emergency room.  Apparently, we’d had a miscommunication.  She thought I was coming back to the hospital, and I thought she was coming home to get me.  She told me Ed had already been taken on the ambulance.  We hung up and she quickly came home to get me.  Meanwhile, her husband came outside and offered to help me finish feeding the animals.  He was out in the garden, in the dark, pulling up turnip greens for my chickens at 10:30 pm!  Now THAT’S a good son-in-law!

My daughter and I headed for the hospital, shortly before 11 pm.  It began to drizzle rain shortly after we began our journey.  Thankfully, the highway was pretty much deserted at that hour of the night, so traffic wasn’t a problem.  We talked as she drove through the night. We pulled into the emergency room parking lot, in Savannah, shortly after midnight.

The ER attendant had told me Ed would be going to room 123, in the next hospital, but I had no idea room 123 was located in CCU, until we asked for directions at the ER desk.  I think it was about this time that the seriousness of Ed’s condition really began to sink into my weary brain.

When we got to the entrance of CCU, of course the door was locked.  Keep in mind, my daughter and I were each carrying our purses, a tote bag filled with clothing, a small bag of toiletries, and my lumbar support pillow.  We must have looked like a couple of pack mules seeking shelter! We pressed the buzzer, and stated who we were looking for.  A kind nurse, named Linda, met us at the door, saying “We’ve been waiting for you.”

My daughter and I quickly learned that Ed had already been taken back to have an emergency cardiac catheterization.  This was the second jolt to my brain that Ed might be in real trouble.   I knew if the cardiac cath team had been called in at midnight, the situation was quite serious. The nurse explained to us, “saving time is saving muscle” during a heart attack.  The nurse left us alone, and for a brief moment, I felt myself losing control, and let out a small sob, but I quickly regained control.  I had to be strong.

Nurse Linda went above and beyond the call of duty to make sure my daughter and I were comfortable and taken care of while Ed was having his procedures.  Later, I learned that Ed had told Linda his wife and daughter would soon be coming, and asked her to please take care of us when we arrived.  Bless him.  He was having a heart attack, and, still, he was worried about us!

We waited in Ed’s room, in CCU, while he had his heart cath, and angioplasty done.  The cardiologist called me on the phone and told me he’d removed the blockage, put in a stent, and Ed was doing okay. I felt relief flood over me.  He also told me Ed would have to stay in the hospital for a few days, and I found  myself wondering, how long is a few days?

Eventually, Ed was rolled back into the room in CCU, while still in his bed. Ed had been given some medication to help him relax, so he was “feeling pretty good” when he got to his room.  He had a pressure bandage on his groin area, where the catheter had been inserted, so he couldn’t move around much.  He seemed to drift in and out of sleep.

My daughter and I were listening to some relaxing music on the television in Ed’s room. After Ed returned, and the first thing he asked was “Is that the viewing music?”  My daughter and I both laughed,  for the first time in several hours.  Ed’s sense of humor was still in tact!  I knew the next few hours could still be critical for Ed, but, deep down, I felt like everything was going to be alright.  Before too long, we all settled in for a long night–Ed in his bed in CCU, and my daughter and I in one of the CCU waiting areas.

Published in: on November 5, 2015 at 8:20 am  Comments (4)  

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I really got a giggle out of imagining you with the “headlight” strapped on your head wandering around feeding the pets. It provided just the right comedic relief to a wonderfully told story of a serious event in your family’s life. May Ed get a bit stronger each day.

  2. I’m glad that everything worked out and that you can find things to laugh about now. I’m sure it was a scary time.

  3. I’m so glad that we all know this story has a happy ending! I’ve been through catheterizations and stents with my Joe five times. I know what you have gone through.

  4. I love that he had a good sense of humor. Thanking God for the blessing he has given to you. Please take care of Ed (I know you will) and I pray he has a full recovery. ((Hugs))

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