Wednesday, November 30, 2011

My mind is whirling with thoughts, but I literally cannot get it down in my blog without it being super confusing and jumbled.  There is so much to say, I just can't organize my thoughts and say it.

Every week I take my sister out to lunch.  Usually I just pick her up, we make small talk through lunch, then I take her home.

Today was different.  I could see something was heavy on her mind.  Just as I suspected, she started to talk to me, but then stopped short as her chin began to quiver and she blinked back the tears.  Me being the sister/nurse/but.mostly.sister said "Just talk!  Who cares if you cry?"
...and so she did.

These are thet topics that are breaking her heart:

"Why me?  All the tests show my heart is perfectly why did that happen?"

My response to that was, "I don't think we will ever know."  Now I have only been a nurse for about 4 years.  I never did any critical care nursing, so the patients I see aren't nearly as ill as my sister was.  But MY take on it is that she had a clot in her heart which caused the arrhythmia, which caused the cardiac arrest.  They resuscitated her, and her labs showed cardiac damage.  Several days later, after she stabilized, we found she had lots of clots in her leg and lungs.  Once she was on aggressive Heparin therapy along with Coumadin, things started to heal themselves.  This could also explain why then they finally got around to testing her heart through a cardiac cath and cardiac MRI, everything was perfectly normal.  Of COURSE it would be by that time!  And I don't doubt for one second that it will remain perfectly normal.

"I don't know if CPR was done right.   I'm on a message board for people with brain injuries, and they are doing WAY more than I am right now, and their "down time" was way longer."

My response:  Maybe.  Who will know?  Humans are humans and they make mistakes.  29 year olds don't go into sudden cardiac arrest very often.  When the EMS arrived on the scene, they had no idea what was going on, but they didn't hesitate a single moment.  You were tubed on the scene, and then re-intubated at the ER.  Maybe it wasn't done perfectly, but they saved your life.  The fact that you didn't die that day still gives me goosebumps.  The odds were SO AGAINST you and you beat them.  It's unreal. 

"I identified myself by my jobs.  I worked all my life.  The only time I left a job was when I was moving up.  That's just what I did....I worked"

My response:  Those days aren't done.  Do you even understand how far you've come in a year??  This time last year you could hardly shower alone.  You couldn't carry a conversation and your memory was literally so bad, you would just repeat yourself over and over again.  It'll happen.  It just hasn't gotten there yet.

"I wrote a list.  It's called "Ways to Make George Love Me Again."

Me:  What makes you think he doesn't love you? (insert Leslie crying)  He doesn't say that!  He never makes me feel like he doesn't love me.  But LOOK at me.  I offer nothing to our family anymore.  I was the worker.  We had plans.  We wanted to travel to Europe.  We KNEW we were going to travel to Europe.  And now our conversations consist of  "Do we have enough money to order pizza tonight?" (crying ensues) And at this point, I have nothing helpful to add.  It was a heartbreaking moment.

"I constantly have to remind myself, "I am here, I am alive" scares me to think that when I was at school that day, I was also "here and alive" and then one second later I was gone". 

To which I reassured her that she was here, she was alive, she was progressing way faster than any of us could ever predict, and she is doing amazing.

"Someone sent me a card, and there is a part of it that I can't get out of my mind.  It says "God had other plans for you.  I'm not religious, but that saying gives me a lot of peace.  I just wish I knew what God's plan was."

So do we, Les.  So do we.

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