The last four or five weeks have been both crazy, and very, very draining. Going back to May 9th when my last Cardiac Catheterization was done, and May 8th when my last EchoCardiogram was done... and it was decided that surgery was absolutely necessary.. things in my life these past six weeks have either been filled with medical activities, or with absolute terror.
Emergencies, calamities, catastrophes... as long as they are happening to someone else... I say... "put me in, coach."
This time, of course, they have involved ME.
I have had bad teeth for about ten years. Not having dental insurance, and living along and not having the ability to have them taken care or... I had been going around and around with both Cardiologists and Oral Surgeons about my teeth, and neither one would even "touch" me until the other "performed their miracles."
To operate on the heart while having bad teeth can infect the heart and cause endocarditis. To operate on the teeth can cause severe heart problems... depending on what else is going on. Endocarditis can very easily kill people.
Bottom line, and me without health insurance, I had to go to a "county hospital" to have all of my teeth extracted in order for my cardiac surgeon to agree to perform heart surgery. That was done on July 19th. A follow-up visit was made on July 26th, which showed that healing was progressing as expected, and I could schedule the heart surgery, which brings me to TOMORROW.
I am Petrified. Crazed. Think up a bunch more words, and add them to the mix.
I am going to be wheeled into the Cardio-Pulmonary Surgical ward of Arlington Memorial Hospital tomorrow (Wednesday) at 7:15am.
They tell me the surgery is going to last 295 minutes... which ends up being just five minutes short of Five Hours.
On the agenda is an Aortic Valve Replacement with a tissue valve, an Ablation of the Atrium, and some sort of minor amputation of a different part of the Atria... which I do not fully understand.
My condition is Severe Aortic Stenosis. This means that the blood flow out of the heart and into the rest of the body... providing nourished and oxygenated blood for the rest of the body... is almost completely stopped. The aortic valve does not open anywhere near the degree it should, nor does it close after it's poor attempt at pumping.
What that means is that some of that small amount of blood actually spills back into the heart... making things even worse. How fun!
I know there are many who say that an aortic valve replacement has become commonplace these days. Uh huh. I know. But this time, it's me. And I just am having so much trouble shaking this crazy anxiety. Some nights, instead of sleeping, I find I just cannot stop crying.
Usually, when something in the past like this would happen to me... I just did the old "whistle a happy tune" and managed to mask my fears.
Nobody knew I wasn't SuperGirl. I hid it well.
Why it isn't working this time... is beyond me. Dammit.
As I said... I am totally, absolutely Petrified. My brain is a rock, my mind is mush, and my emotions seem to be running things.
Although I know very well that it all must be done in order to consider living (if you call what I am currently doing... "living...") then it must be done.
This is all so bizarre. In ordinary circumstances... and you have probably seen some signs of it... when trouble arises, or someone is picking on someone here in The Rain... I am up on my horse, and ready to defend them. I am pretty good at chasing away other people's "bad guys."
Here it is... "me"... and all that stuff I learned in the Girl Scouts... out the window. Well... I think you get the picture.
Please... I could use your help. Positive energies, prayers, whatever. I am guessing that if I make it through... I will not be writing anything on Active Rain for at least a week, but I will probably find a way to have someone read your comments to me. I would love to hear from you.
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