Friday, December 18, 2009

You Only Die Twice

After 8 days in a drug induced coma, fighting pneumonia, and some bleeding after the stent procedure, Dad woke up! He was still on the ventilator, half drugged with the Michael Jackson drug and obviously uncomfortable, but in order to extubate (take the breathing tube out) he had to pass some breathing and response tests. It was up and down for a couple of days, as he was not able to respond properly, but on day 10, the breathing tube came out, and he took his first breath of his second life.

After that, his progress was astounding. Within two hours he was sitting in a chair, talking, albeit very quietly, and eating jello. Then came standing, and, 3 days after the tube came out, and 13 days after the cardiac arrest, he was walking.

He had no idea what happened, and slowly began to ask questions. Mom wanted to protect him from the full truth, but being the smart man that he is he asked some poignant questions that I had to answer. Did he have a heart attack? Yes. Did they have to shock him? Yes. More then once? Yes. How many times? 6.

Everyone called him a very lucky man. The fact that he had arrested in the emergency room, on the bed with the doctors next to him, was the only thing that not only saved his life, but prevented any damage to his heart and brain. There are no words to describe how grateful we are that things turned out like they did.

So... now for a couple of funny moments at the ICU. The dialog below was all said in a funny Polish accent. (yes, we are all Polaks livin' the dream in the USA)

Nurse: Has he woken up yet?
Mom: No, but the doctor said it is because he was seduced for 8 days (She meant sedated)

Doctor: Are you still seeing double? (After Dad woke up he was having some double vision)
Dad: Yes
Doctor: The MRI doesn't show any damage, so this will probably clear up in a couple of days. For now just enjoy having two wives.
Dad: Yes, her four boobs are very nice.


jomamma said...

So happy for his speedy recovery. He's a very lucky guy. I think he should know everything that happened, that way if he ever has those feelings of the impending attack again he will know what to be ready for and head it off earlier. My Dad's Drs told him that he was probably having all the symptoms of a heart attack anywhere from a couple of days or even months before his heart attack.

We have many funny stories from the days spent in the hospital with our parents. The boob story is hilarious.

rob said...

Wow its almost worth going through ICU all over again for the suduction bit :o)) when I came around from sugery I had access to the morphine drip and kept winding it up so I don`t really remember much about it untill they sussed me out and took it away :o(( .

Glad that your Dads getting better his improvements will soar and his recovery will be startling! I hope that your Mums up to it :o)) take care rob uk

Travis and Maggie said...

Hey J. I agree totally that Dad should know everything especially given his usual lighthearted, nothing will happen to me, lets eat more steak attitude.

Rob, not only did Dad not get morphine, except after the initial "procedure", his only pain killer throughout this ordeal was Tylenol (a $23 dollar a pill Tylenol) Another great example of the healthcare in the US. My folks have awesome health insurance thru Moms work, but it did make me wonder what would happen to someone well, like me, who isn't covered?

Jamie said...

Amazing story. I work in health care (used to be a paramedic) and the sheer luck that it took for this unabashedly happy outcome is fantastic. I'm so glad he's doing well. Thanks for the funny stories too - that's what gets us through some tough times!

jomamma said...

That's another good thing about health care in the US... those $23 a pill Tylenol covers the ones who don't have insurance. Hubby's Aunt had Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma for 20 years, she was never refused treatment even though all she could manage to pay was about $100 - 150 per month to the hospital. I think as long as you are making an effort to pay something you shouldn't be denied treatment.

Anonymous said...

So what is the point of health insurance??? Why have it at all if your neighbor with insurance will take up your slack? Interesting post, timely with the debacle going on in the current health care reform in the US, if you can call it that... Why are Americans so afraid of nationalized health care? For a country full of Christians, there is a lot of selfishness and hatred that stirs up when the question of money arises.

jomamma said...

LOL at A-non! You said Christians, ha! Most of them are the farthest thing from Christ like.

The Insurance Companies and the Doctors have an alliance... a sort of you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours.

rob said...

Ha! "The last thing that Christ would be if he ever came back to earth is a christian"

We have good health care here in the UK which is (by law) taken from our wages, some folks prefer to have private medicine too. Others don`t work (for what ever reason) and get it anyway. Immigrants (illegal or otherwise) get it immediately they arrive. If you are ever refused, get on a plane bound for the uk collapse in the airport and claim political and economic asylum, on the grounds that "you are going to be mudered by the state for being ill". :o))

jomamma said...

Oh rob! That is good, I'm going to remember that one. Hubby and I watched a documentary last night about Jesus' years in India. It was very interesting.

Jolea says she'll go back to Australia if she ever gets sick, said they were awesome there and all she needed was birth control pills.

Travis and Maggie said...

That is a good one Rob, I'll consider that plan C. I'm surprised to hear that illegal immigrants get the benefits of the uk healthcare. So do the Brits gets pissed off about having to work for someone else's benefit or are they a more evolved species?

Travis and Maggie said...

OH I forgot J, what's the documentary?

jomamma said...

It was Jesus in India or something like that, it was on the Sundance Channel.

Bill said...

I had to come along and see your boat. Lovely, and your header photo is priceless ( means worth a thousand words, but no cash) Glad your dad is ok. My wife Heather had chest pains ( sorta) before we went sailing and got two stents put in. Thank goodness for Canadian medicare or we would have had to sell the farm to pay for it all.We waited for another year to be sure all was wellbefore we crossed the Pacific.Lucky it happened then and not at sea. Funny how what seems like a disaster at the time was fortune smiling after all.

Overboard said...

Bless. I had no eye deer you were going through this.
Am so relieved that your father is okay.
Love your mother and father's quips.
Reminds me of my grandmother, who had Altzhiemers(always forget how to spell that) saying at the 'Disabled Lift' at the hospital, 'We can't take it. It won't work.'

Love to you all during this difficult time. Your dad's humor will get him fit in no time.

Jolea said...

Glad to hear your dad is doing well. And it's just so lovely to see my mother posting information about my birth control all over the internet... boy oh boy.

jomamma said...

LOL, sorry Jolea, I just think it was amazing that you were only there for 3 mos. and they treated you to better health care than what you can get here.

Travis and Maggie said...

Its so lovely to see mother and daughter bonding via a stranger's blog. Jomamma we saw the Jesus in India doc. and it was super interesting. It was funny how the Indians were all like "well yeah he was here", but the Christians simply refuse to accept this. Seems like all religions have their problems Hindus -caste system, Buddhists- enlightenment in next lifetime, Jews and Moslems-don't know what their problem is, but the thing with Christians is the lies! Why so much secrecy and lying and fear? Oh well I'm ranting, but this is one of my most favorite subjects.

jomamma said...

I missed the first of it, hope to see it again.