The Catalyst Part 3

Monday finally rolled around. Surprisingly, I was not restless lying there in my hospital bed in Allen. Anyone, who knows me knows that is unprecedented. It is hard for me to sit still.

At ten a.m., I was taken to the cath lab to begin the start of my journey. I got some drugs that put me in a twilight sleep. While in this dream like state, I vaguely remember seeing a bunch of monitors and heard people talking. It all went by pretty fast. I was blissfully unaware of what was going on. Even when I was sent to the ICU to recover, I hadn’t a clue as to what the result was of my cath. When I did find out it wasn’t good news.

Apparently, when the doctor read the results of my echocardiogram, the sonogram of my heart they did over the weekend, he felt my aortic valve stenosis was severe. Then when he took a look at my coronary arteries during the cath, he determined that what I needed done was too extensive for their small hospital. But what did they find? What exactly is too extensive? I don’t recall him giving me the details and I didn’t ask. I was still under the effects of the drugs.

Anyway, the bottom line was they were going to transfer me to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. And because they hoped I would be going soon, they left in the sheath that was inserted into my right femoral artery that allowed for the instruments and things to be threaded up to my heart. As a result, I needed to lay on my back and keep my right leg straight. I couldn’t sit. I couldn’t stand. I couldn’t roll over. Nothing. It was very important for me to remember to keep that leg straight or I could bleed out.

The worst of it was that I was not transferred to the other hospital that day. No, I didn’t leave till the following day, Tuesday. For 24 hours I laid on my back in the ICU, keeping my leg straight, getting the backache of the century, trying to shovel food in my mouth while lying down.

Many people came in to check on me while I was there but my main nurse was a young-looking blond who called herself the singing nurse. She called herself the singing nurse not because she sang but because she would recite music lyrics that popped into her head. She seemed impressed that I told her the song from which she quoted. Well, the singing nurse bustled around me with more energy than I could deal with checking my blood pressure, checking the site where the sheath was, asking me if I had any pain.

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