Followup appt

I’ve been home for a week now… Today I will go back to the hospital to have my blood drawn and my incision looked at. It’s been a VERY long week, every day having stomach issues and migraines (I literally had 3 on Wednesday). I’m hoping that they can adjust my medications because this stinks.
I can’t believe it’s 2015 and we are still using drugs like morphine. It’s the worst!
I tried to explain to them that I didn’t want to take it, but they thought the benefits outweighed the risks. I took it 3 times-
Day 1- Christmas Day in the hospital, I climbed out of the foot of the hospital bed, and removed all of my IVs.
Day 2- at home, I couldn’t sleep, because I was so uncomfortable. I took it and had crazy dreams about hiding drugs from the mafia. It was absurd. It took me a long time to figure out that it was a dream.
Day 3- I had a dream that I worked for the White Sox. I was trying to get some game-day socks for people, it was stupid.

Dear pharmaceutical companies, let’s make a pain pill that blocks pain, doesn’t constipated and doesn’t make people feel crazy. So far everything you have made totally sucks.

I’ve had a visiting nurse come to the house every day to measure my INR level, to make sure the anticoagulants are preventing my blood from prematurely coagulating. I missed a dose on Wednesday, and it has been too low every day since. Hopefully, it is back up to the right level today… It would be nice to have a few days off of blood checks. I don’t know how people do it every day.

Wake me up in a month

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One week

The worst is over.

I got to the hospital Monday morning and got to see what would be my room for the next undetermined number of days. I was anxious. But I had been dreading this day for 4 months, and I was ready for it to be over!

We checked in, I got weighed, and changed into my johnny. I arrived with my husband, and met my mom, sister, mother-in-law and brother-in-law in the room. With one quick snafu with the IV- my missing left arm veins, and it was time to go.

I woke up with this horrid sleep apnea mask… Don’t know how people sleep with those, I thought I was suffocating. I had no idea that it was over. In fact, over the next few days I woke up several times dreading my surgery, only having to remind myself that I was in bed because had already had the surgery.

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I came in and out of consciousness over the next day. I did not love the taking out of the NG tube- ughh, I could wretch just thinking of it now.

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On day two they took out my chest tubes and my catheter. It was nice to be slightly sedated for the latter, no sense in feeling self conscious. The chest tubes did not feel great coming out. I also went for my first walk today:

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Day three I got the pacing wires that were secured to my heart gently pulled out. Ouch!

Merry Christmas!

By the time day 5 rolled around, I hadn’t hit any setbacks… I was sleeping, eating, feeling better than I expected. It was time to go home!!

I can’t believe how many people wrote to me and my family, or did kind things before and during this whole ordeal. Super sweet things, brightened all of my days in the hospital. I was very happy to see Dr. Kurzrok EVERY single day. He brought me some activity books, lotion, and a beautiful card. So thoughtful. My family and my new family came every day, at least once, and usually stayed for a long while. I was always with loved ones. Andrew only left each day for about an hour to run home to shower and change. I was very thankful that he stayed over with me every night. Hospitals are scary. I received some beautiful heart ornaments from Andrews older sisters for our tree. I think I’ll find a place for them year round- they’re so beautiful. We got a beautiful figurine from Caitlin’s grandmother for Christmas, just what we needed. I also got the funniest DVD (broad life) and book (hyperbole and a half) from my favorite lady, Katie. So nice to pass the time!! She gets me.

My friend Brooke brought me a beautiful book and literally the BEST pillow ever made on this whole earth! I’ll definitely be using this slogan… Everywhere! She’s the best!

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Before the end of my stay, I got to see Cindee and my oldest friend in the world, Caitlin, all the way home from Kabul. She brought lots of treats from her trip to Belgium… Chocolate, yummo! And a few other super sweet prizes.

At home now, with a visiting nurse every day. Feeling better as each day passes, looking forward to sleeping better and getting back to my normal life.

I know it’s only been a week- I’m just super impatient!!!

Tomorrow’s the big day

I’m heading to the hospital at 5:30 tomorrow morning… We even have to go through a special entrance because “normies” won’t be awake that early. At my pre-admission testing last Monday we got to go see the floor that I’ll be on, which is beautiful. I can’t believe how nice the rooms are. If you’re going to be in the hospital, you might as well have heart surgery– you get the best room! We met my anesthesiologist, Johanna, who is from Sweden (a place I love) and talked to her for a long time. She is the best, we got in touch with her through a friend and I’m so happy he took care of the whole thing. It’s nice to feel like you’ve put effort into something that is so out of your hands.

I have been bathing with a special antimicrobial soap for a couple of days now and putting this antibacterial ointment up my nose twice a day. The nose stuff is weird, it’s like neosporin, but it eventually gets to the back of your nose and into your throat… Tastes so bad. I wonder what they would say if I said it didn’t taste good. Hah.

I’m so relieved to have my sister home. There’s something unique about a sister, someone who gets what you’re feeling with just a look. Someone who you can ask anything of. Someone who will fly halfway around the world to help you get better.

My husband has been my rock through all of this. He hasn’t always known the right thing to say, but I don’t think there was a right thing to say for most of it. He has made me laugh, helped me cry, and rubbed my back while I tried to get to sleep every single night. I don’t think most people know what it’s like to have a husband like mine, I can’t imagine getting through this without him.

Going to bed now feeling anxious, but so grateful for the prayers, calls, many texts, dinner dates, cards and gifts I’ve been sent by beautiful friends (Katie).

Goodnight

Class act

This past Thursday I took my last final exam of the semester, such a relief to have it out of the way…

my class surprised me with a super thoughtful collection of gifts and a beautiful card filled with well wishes from all of them.

i was so touched by it… Whether they went in on it, gave ideas, or orchestrated the whole thing (this means you, Brooke) it was just so nice to know that these people who I am on this 15 month journey with have bonded with me in some small way. We have been through a lot as a class of 17, and I’m so happy to have met them all.

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Thanksgiving weekend

On a happier note, we had the best weekend this thanksgiving.

We spent time with both sides of the family, and then drove to Virginia to see my favorite couple and their two beautiful baby girls. All Andrew talked about on the way home was wanting to have twins… They were the cutest babies everrrr!

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