Thursday, November 15, 2012

a lot of life left

the three year anniversary of pete's cardiac arrest is right around the corner,
just 12 days away.
what an eery way to celebrate,
right back in the hospital where the life saving miracle came.
pete is here today undergoing another surgical attempt to get his heart beating in rhythm.
as i have been sitting for the last 4 hours waiting for him to be wheeled back in,
my mind has wandered to the next tower over,
to the shock trauma unit,
to a nurse named sandy.
wondering if she is still there.
wondering if she still remembers the miracle she was a part of,
wondering if she has/had any idea of the amount of hope she gave me.
wondering again if there really is any gesture that could re-pay her.
(other than a day off and a nice bottle of wine. she made many jokes about those things being highly cherished. she was a crass old thing, but she is exactly what i needed much more than a softy.)
in the first hour or so of him being checked into this unit the doctors spoke with me about the possibility of his heart stopping again and wanted my input on if i wanted them to revive him.
at that point there was no way to know the extent of brain damage.
i was at an emotional loss.
i had no idea.
he had told me many times throughout our marriage that if anything ever happened to him to not let him live like his dad did before his death.
in those moments i was at a loss.
honor his possible wish or fight for life?
how was i to really know?
that's where sandy comes in.
she was working in the dark corner of the room
and never spoke until the doctors left.
she said that she had been at that job long enough that she had acquired a sense if someone was going to live or die.
she said she had gotten where she could predict it almost every time.
as she looked at my "wicked sick" husband,
she said she could feel a lot of life left.
she encouraged me to not even think about pulling the plug yet.
her opinion expressed like that probably violated some medical code of conduct,
but i didn't care.
i needed something that went beyond a medical projection.
she was really right.
there has been a lot of life in him,
and every thing he has done since then is to extend that life as long as possible.

he's now out of surgery.
it went well.
the dr. found that the abnormal nerves they burned off the first time had started to grow back together.
he said the tissue in a strong, young heart like pete's oftentimes can be difficult to get all the way through.
he re-burned those nerves again.
he said it was more like repairing the fence than building a new one.
when pete was wheeled back in and still unconscious the anesthesiologist was updating the new nurse on him, his condition, and past medical history.
he told her he had been a cardiac arrest patient.
her response was "he was one of the lucky ones that survived, huh?"
always a surprising realization to anyone who learns the story.
it was then that i had the same re-confirmation that came from sandy almost 3 years ago.
there is still a lot of life left.
and thank goodness.


Roxey said...

So glad for that. <3

katwalk said...

so happy to hear things went good. thanks for lets us know.

Unknown said...

Glad things went well.You are amazing.

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