Life Flight - Part 3 - The Gift

on Wednesday, January 14, 2009

This is 3 weeks after "My James Bond moment" (the helicopter ride) - I used it as my Christmas card this year, ...no matching clothes, no fancy poses, just happy to be together.

Here's the end of the story:

Remember that neck pain I was telling you about? Well, it popped up on me while at the beach in June 2008 (6 months ago), just 3 weeks after my mother passed away. It scared me that I may be having another heart attack. My tests came back abnormal and I had a heart catherization. Nothing showed up, still in pain, we started on the 6 hour drive home.

In the car, 5 hours into the trip, I felt that artery (in the groin) burst open internally. It felt like something (blood) running loose around your body...very strange. It's odd how you know when something is really wrong and this time I knew something was really wrong.

I slumped over in my seat, blood was no longer feeding my organs. My Hero is driving like a maniac trying to get me to a hospital. Feeling all the strength leave me, knowing soon I would not be able to speak, .......I said good-bye to my family. Hardest thing I've ever had to do.

"I don't think I'm going to make it, keep your eyes on Christ, I love all of you so much, I will be in heaven, Daddy will take good care of you"...and that was all I could get out.

Everyone is crying and my middle child, normally quiet, reserved, composed, was yelling, "No Mom, no..hold on, don't die". At that point, I wanted so badly to reassure her but I couldn't talk and I looked like a rag doll, slumped head over knees in the car seat. The vascular pain had kicked in at this point and I knew this was the end of me.

I got to a small hospital where they gave me the maximum amount of morphine allowed but it didn't affect the pain. In my mind, body in convulsions, I cried out to God, to my mother and that's when I went into shock. What a blessing. Honestly, I was thinking about soldiers and how they bleed to death in this same way.

It's midnight at this point, I'll let you imagine the scene of My Hero and children in the waiting room.

After 2 hours of not being able to stabilize me, they life flighted me to a larger hospital. A sweet, 75 year old Greek vascular surgeon, at 3:00 a.m. hastily cut me open, repaired the artery and told my husband, "She had 10-20 minutes left". 12 units of blood later, I'm here. You only have 8 units to begin with. Just for the record...my nurse told me that only 1 out of 6 life flighters make it. Lovely.

Now about that gift: the inherited heart problems from my father, the LP (a). It has changed my perspective. I've come close twice. So why is it a gift...because now, I look for the sweetness in life, I cherish every exchange with those I love most. Every walk around the block holding a hand is precious, every sunrise is breathtaking, every book read to my Baby Girl could be my last, it all becomes a matter or perspective, I cherish it all, good and bad. It's a gift.


In the end, He doesn't make mistakes, He works all things for good. He, God is, ....all about shaping my heart.

7 Comments from you:

Purple and Paisley said...

you are just awesome...can i point people to this story? i'm so glad you made it...♥

Carrie P. said...

WOW, what a scary time for you all. Praise God for the wisdom He has given doctors. So glad you are doing well and enjoying every minute of your life with your wonderful family.

Joanna said...

Wow what a story - I can't help but think of your children and how strong they must be. Thank you for sharing all of this - it has made my day seem a lot simpler for some reason:)

Quiltdivajulie said...

You are a born story teller ~ I'm so very glad for you that there have been happy "endings" so far. Blessings to you and yours as you live your lives ~ may the Lord watch over each of you!!

Robin said...

What an amazing and inspirational story! And your optimism is so heartening. Thank you so much for sharing. :)

Yvette said...

Wow. Thank you for sharing your story.

Billy said...

I printed out the story and gave it to "Mother Dearest" to read. She came back sobbing with paper in hand. Thanks alot for making my mom cry :)

We love you all as always.

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