5.11.2008

I Can Explain...

I'm sorry I haven't been "around." Things have been up and down over here, mentally, physically, psychologically, spiritually,...any other "ally" you can think of.

I found out some time ago that my ex is engaged. So, that kind of threw me for a loop. I'm ok now. It just took a few days to sink in. Maybe this will help me finally close that chapter. I mean, Jesus, I'm 30 years old, divorced like 4 or 5 years ago, and I can't make this better.

My brain/soul/whatever holds on to things. Even things that I don't want to hold on to. Things, pieces of paper, scraps, memories, words, dreams, feelings, knowing, pain, unachieved happiness, time...it's all there.

Then, Grammy had her heart surgery, which, thankfully, went really well.

And just for the record, if anyone you know and love is going into the hospital, for surgery or anything, please always have a notebook and pen on your person. There are so many medical errors, and it's so unfair for the healthcare system to hide things like that. Make lists of questions to ask the doctor, tell your loved one to request copies of their records, xrays, reports, any and everything. The average person doesn't know diddly-squat about what happens to someone in the hospital and can't understand when docs and nurses talk in all that medical jargon - so PLEASE, for yourself and obviously your loved one, do this!:
  • ASK QUESTIONS
  • WRITE THINGS DOWN
  • TAKE PICTURES
  • ASK FOR COPIES

Ok, enough of my medical banter. I just hate to know that there are people out there who suffer because families either don't know what's going on and just put their full trust in the doctor (please don't do that), or they're too afraid to ask questions, challenge the doctor, or ask for second opinions.
Please do everything in your power to be involved with yours or your loved one's medical care.

Ok, seriously, I'll stop now.

So, my grandmother went in to Brookwood on April 30th. She had a heart cath done, and they only found 30% blockage in the LAD artery, which is excellent, I think, considering her age. They said the don't put in a stent unless it's 70% or higher.

He knew that if he didn't find anything in the cath, that the problem (heart palps, weakness, blacking out, fainting) could be solved with the pacemaker. So, after the cath, she went straight in to have her pacemaker put in.

Thanks, by the way, to Alison & Steve Smith. Heather remembered that Steve worked in the cath lab there, so she called Alison, who called Steve, who kept coming up to update me on how she was doing. It was all I could do to restrain myself from hugging him to death. He was on the ball, and every time she'd come out of something, he'd rush up to tell me, then tell me to act surprised when the doc came in! &=)

Thank you, Steve & Alison!!!!! I hope I can return the favor one day!

So, she had the pacemaker in, came back to the room and started fussing right away! I was so relieved, though. I was thinking, "you can fuss ALL you want to, because I'm just glad you're ok!!!!"

They got her transferred back to her bed, and Amy, Shelby & I swooped in to take care of her. Who needs nurses????

Oh yeah, for the meds. That's right. Sorry, Laura & Anna!!! &=D

She wasn't supposed to raise her left arm above her head, because of the surgery. The leads need time for scar tissue to form, to keep them in place. So, while we were talking to her, she pulled both her hands up and tried to FIX HER PONYTAIL! We were yelling, "Grammy, put your arm down! You can't raise your arm above your head!!," as she said, "Well, I have to fix my ponytail. My hair's all messed up." I actually had her left arm and was wrestling with her to put it down. Amy was yelling at her to put her arm down, and reached over to help me make her put it down.


We were arm-wrestling my grandmother, in her hospital bed, directly after surgery. &=\

How many times have you heard that?


Anyway, I hugged her and held her hand, and she was freezing! I went & got blankets, and covered her up like a mummy. She was real groggy from the sedatives they had given her, so she slept a bit. When she woke up, she actually let Amy feed her a quarter of a turkey sandwich. Her recovery was excellent, except that she couldn't get comfortable in that bed. It's hard after you've had surgery, and you can't roll onto the side on which you normally sleep. That happened to me after my knee surgery. But I went to the store and the gift shop, and got her watermelon and tea, both which she said she wished she had. She was so excited when I brought her those - she tore that watermelon up! &=D

I spent the night with her and slept like the dead. Amy left the Xterra with me, so that I could take Grammy home that afternoon (May 1). I went to work the next morning and worked until she called me to say they were starting her discharge. I left work, went to the hospital, of course waited another hour, packed her up and headed to Pell City.

We jabbered all the way home, and she was SOOOO glad to finally get there. She got this cool phone kit that she'd use to send in her pacemaker information - Gordon was pretty stoked about that.

I got her all settled, gave Gordon all the info on what happened, what's going to happen, and her post-operative do's and don'ts. By the time I was finally leaving Pell City, it was 2p, so by the time I got back to work, it would be 3p (traffic was gross), so I called my boss and told him I wouldn't make it - he was cool with it, which I appreciate. He was really accommodating with this stuff with Grammy - taking off a day, then only working half of the next day. He knows I love my family, never get to see them and want to take care of them.

Thank you, Chris. I really do appreciate it.


Ok, Heather's coming over to help me with this stupid work poster that's due tomorrow, so I have to get ready. I will update further...when I return. &=P

4 comments:

Laura said...

I know it is hard to hear about your ex, but from your post, it seems like you have a good handle on it? Maybe? At least you are typing the right things. ;) I love you girlfriend. Know that no matter what. I don't think we ever get over stuff, we just move on to different type of feelings-kind of like graduating.

I am glad that your Grammy's surgery went well and she is doing well. I like it when my patients are a fiesty out of surgery...well a 'good' fiesty. ha ha ha. You also have NOTHING to apologize about to nurse's- Nurse's in general love to see family take care of their own. Patients that have family to help them get better quicker- they have a reason to go home, and they are pushed to get better. The love fills the room-as I am sure it did in your Grammy's. Plus, as an added bonus we aren't as rushed to get stuff done-but that is a little selfish (hey, I am just being honest..hee hee hee.) First and foremost we do want our patients to get better- and family helps them get better. Good job!!!!

I also agree with you in that families should be well informed and educated. Remember doctors are only human to..that being said don't get sue happy though...I am married to one..most really don't mean harm if something happens. Do education yourself though.

Hope you have fun with your work poster! Love you girlfriend!

Minx0r said...

Hello there :)

When you say you would like to correspond, does this mean I will be receiving a very tasty serving of 'gratuitous profanity' in an email? I'm intrigued!

and it is a very interesting read, to say the least hehe.

Gina said...

Jennifer, You are such an adorable wack-a-do! Luv, Gina (Heather's sister)

anna said...

Love you my friend. One day we need to seriously connect and go hang. I'm here for you if you ever need me.