The day everything changed: Heart Attack

So we left off around 4:45 AM in the last post as I laid down and try to go to sleep. Our oldest awoke shortly after 6 AM. First question where is Dad. The not so simple answer, still at the hospital.  But today we are going to still go to school but skip band.  The next thing I knew my father and mother in law were on the phone. You ironically he was already heading to us that morning to assist his grandson with a heart dissection  at school.

I was on speaker for the call so they both could hear what was going on. After the call ended about 5 minutes passed and my mother in law was in the car and back on the phone with me. We came up with a plan. She was heading straight to the hospital and I would get the boys off to school, pick up payroll, and head back to the hospital.

We own our business a small pizza shop, so I had to get payroll otherwise no one would get paid. Thankfully the payroll company was 2 minutes down the street from the hospital.  Finally I am back with him, only to have life disrupted again.

My mother in law and the nurse are in the room when I arrive.  The bag I have is packed is set down as I question when the echocardiogram is going to be and state I have his medicine he takes daily in their prescribed bottle to be told a different plan. He is going to have a heart cath and is being changed to admitted status. So, the medicine I have can no longer be administered unless it comes from the pharmacy.

Wait a heart cath? What? Why? It is then explained to me they have been trending him. Trending what? Troponin is a protein enzyme released in your blood stream if you have damage to your heart. She then showed me his level went from .3 to 1.6 to 2.3. No echo now heart cath.

For the heart cath they go in through an artery and release dye to see the heart better.  Ummmm okay I thought we were okay but am rolling with the punches.  My mother in law heads out to the Pizza shop and we head down to surgical.

Hubby is tired and confused but comfortable. Me terrified. The doctor comes in and explains they will try to go in through his wrist but if that does not work they will go in through his groin.  He also lets us know if he a stint is needed it can be completed where we are and worst case scenario if he had a 100% blockage we would have to transfer hospitals for open heart surgery because they do not do open heart.  I’m sorry what open surgery, stints, what is going on?

A quick I love you, kiss, and see you soon and off the hubby goes. As I sit alone trying so hard to keep it together I call my parents. They live outside of Philadelphia and we are in Michigan.  My mom use to be a nurse so thankfully she can talk me through some of the technical pieces. We discuss the potential for them to come and end the call. Hubby arrives back and I take a deep breath, he is with me again.

On his wrist is a strange plastic box. The little box will slowly be decompressed once giving the artery a chance to plug. Next the doctor arrives. I notice an awe in his eyes. A very emotional touch to hubby and a slow deep breath. He begins by saying how lucky we are, how lucky hubby is that he is here with us.

The emotions he feeling swirls around me as I gasps for air, the emotion is so raw and real. I absorb this questioning what is going on. Truth bomb just dropped hubby has 100% blocked artery, he has to be transferred, he will have open heart surgery, a consult will be in this afternoon, it is serious, and how he is here with us is a amazing.


Heart attack just over 40

It has been awhile and my life with the boys is still crazy. Spring sports are upon us and 5 weeks ago right now yesterday our world changed. I was ready to go to bed. My steps for the day where in. I had talked with my Mom while on the treadmill. My efforts were focused on me. Around 8:30 I had finished and hung up with my Mom. My husband had come home early from work. We own our own Pizza shop. He had been in the garage cleaning. He was on the couch and said he had gotten dizzy and was having some chest pain. So my response of course was have you eaten, to get the response of well no. I said eat something.  He ate and went and laid down.

Now, we are at 11 PM ready for bed my husband said I just do not feel good and am having chest pain.  So I am totally thinking he pulled something while cleaning in the garage earlier.

When I go to bed I fall instantly asleep so yawning and being totally exhausted I suggested he eat, drink some water, and take Advil.  I consider Advil a fix for everything  but not this little did I know. He sat at the table as I googled chest pain. Google told me it could be indigestion or acid reflux. I reflected on his eating habits and made my medical non-degree opinion that this made sense.  Mom skills then came into play BRAT diet.

Prescription: lets have some toast to appease your stomach and water for dehydration.  I am a skilled medical professional, not!

During this time he ate two piece of my fabulously made toast, however I did notice he kept yawning. Like yawning over and over again. Except he did not seem tired. I was though.  During this time he was having a strong conversation with me and not rubbing the center of his chest so much.  Lessons learned later on….

Hubby finished eating we decided to go to bed and watch a show. So sweet he was concerned about keeping me up.  I said no worries and propped him up in pillows, why, not really sure. I think he said it hurt when he laid down. So, then we watched tv.

Just as we drifted off he rolled over to lay almost flat on his side. Soon after he was up and admit I need to go to the hospital my chest really hurts. Conversations ensue why, what, and how. He stated that laying down on his side hurt so much and he had to go. If you are not taking me then I will just go. Enter feel like an asshole and eye role . Still I fought him.  I said give me a minute and let me get the boys. For some reason as I approached the boys, who by some strange reason were sleeping together I decided to wake the oldest (my emotional challenging adolescent). In that split second I woke him and stated I was taking Dad to the doctor and would be back.  Watch your little brother and call if you need me. He said okay then asked if he could sleep, which I said yes. Off we went after that.

To be continued….I need time to process my thoughts.







Balance and Belief

Life, work, balance….key catch phrases in life and business today. But how much does anyone really understand or work towards this? Business today can cut people deep and for others not even a scratch.

We all need to return to even ground. You gain respect by how you work not who you are. If you believe your title or position earns you a certain respect you are right for about two seconds. After an initial meeting your respect is earned by what you do and how you are. No one is better then anyone else. 

So Friday was a really hard day. I had to react then walk away. Walking away was really the best thing because as I re-composed my emotions I realized I knew the answer all along and it was to our favor.

But…big but I doubted myself and the answer at the time. In so many cases people feel the need to provide the right answer at that time the question is asked. This gets you into trouble, sometimes no, but let me tell you it is best to be correct. So since this meeting took place late on Friday I said I would answer on Monday, glad I did.  Because now I have the right answer.

Have you ever heard when you are upset to draft your e-mail, pause save and review the next day. Works wonders….in this case I used a technique one of my old bosses said to me once. Let her sleep on it, then it will be okay. Yes, daggers may have shot out of my eyes during the meeting and fumes from my ears, but now I have what I need to support our arugement. Sometime stepping back is the hardest step but can take you so far in the end.