Tuesday, August 9, 2011

One Year Ago Today...

I was in the ICU after a massive and bilateral pulmonary embolism after suffering a deep vein thrombosis.  It was all very scary and I didn't realize at the time how close I was to taking a walk into the light.  I spent a full 7 days in the Hospital and then went home to recuperate.  It was incredibly difficult to be so slow!  I could barely walk 10 feet before I was done in, and had to use a cane for my recently surgically repaired knee.  The cane actually kept me on my feet when the embolism hit me - I leaned on it with both hands so I wouldn't fall down. 

I did finally make it to my car or rather I got close enough to lean over and lean my hand on the back and then walk hand over hand to the driver's door and got in.  My ears were ringing louder and Louder and LOUDER and it was going higher and higher up my body to my head - kind of like filling a vessel with water.  The thought that came into my head was this "If the sound reaches the top of my head I will die".  I didn't want that to happen so I willed myself to be calmer and slowly but surely the sound went down and eventually went away. 

Me in ICU the second day.  My friend Ceannie visiting and keeping my mind off things.

I thought about calling my roommate on my cell from the car, but then thought "No, I can make it back to the house".  Luckily for me she had taken the day off.  Her dogs were going crazy in the bay window overlooking the stairs and she opened the door to ask if I was OK.  No I said.  No, I'm not.  I was standing with one hand on the railing, one hand holding the cane, one foot on the bottom stair, and my head hanging way down trying to breath.  She told me to get in the car - so I walked ever so slowly over and opened the door.  The seat was full so I just stood there in the rain, head hanging down until she came out and moved the stuff.  Technically we should have called 911 and had the medics take me to the Hospital...but no...I decided I was better now that I wasn't walking around.  So...off we went and the rest is history. Thankfully!

Swollen leg and foot...
Stupidly I had been ignoring the symptoms for about 4 days.  First my lower leg and foot swelled up quite large, then I had trouble breathing, then I couldn't breath, and then it hit.  I should have gone to the Hospital on the Saturday before, but my roommate had someone in town and was at a dog show.  I didn't want to leave the dogs unattended and I guess I just didn't realize quite how serious my state of being was at that point.  Funny thing was that the out of town guest is a Doctor and if I had just showed him my leg I'm sure he would have driven me directly to the Hospital without passing go or earning $200! 

This is me from the Saturday before the embolism getting a little whippet puppy therapy.  My leg was very swollen and painful...but I wanted to see the puppies!
My Mom is still a little freaked out because on that first day I was telling them how the blood clot began in my leg and then travelled up through my heart and into my lungs.  She stopped me and just kept saying "It went through your heart?  It went through your heart?  It went through your heart.  Maybe I should have saved that for later?

Lovely flowers I received...I had to send them out to the Nurses station because I was allergic...
Moral of the story honorable children friends...Listen to your body...it may be trying to tell you something.  AND  Listen to your Mom when she tells you to wear good underwear in case you end up in the Hospital.  I had both very old undies and hairy legs when I got there...

1 comment:

  1. We're so glad you're still around! ;) And the conclusion made me giggle - I'll try to remember the underwear. LOL!