Tuesday, January 31, 2017

There's Thinking for You!

This was the best graphic I could find to explain what happened to me.  All of the others had the word death as the next stop after septic shock.  And I can't bring myself to think about that.

But I can't help it.

You see, I was on that very trajectory.  I had septic shock.  I didn't know it.  Didn't think I was that sick. Thought I had a run-of-the-mill stomach bug.  Hemmed and hawed about even going to the emergency room on day three.  And then it hit me.  I was on a new immunosuppressant medication for my Sjogren's.  Maybe that's why I wasn't getting better.  Holy heavens, what took me so long?  What was I thinking?  I'm the very one who spent five weeks in the hospital as a child because I had appendicitis for four full days before going to the ER.  Wouldn't you think that I would have learned my lesson?

So now I'm left with flashbacks of things that happened (or I imagined happened) in the ER.  I'm left with the knowledge that - given another couple of hours without medical attention - I would have died.  I'm left with regrets that I didn't tell my family how much I loved them as the nurses and doctors scurried about; trying to bring my blood pressure up from 50/30.  And for the life of me I just can't imagine why I wasn't praying to God above to save my very life.

Was I just going to lie there and die fat, dumb, and happy?  Was that how my life was going to end?  With me not having a clue?

Sure, there were times when I was completely out of it, but at some points I was lucid.  When they told me that I would have to go to the I.C.U., I told them it was better because I wouldn't have to wait as long for a bed there.  Now that's thinking for you!  When my nose and lips turned blue, I somehow agreed with them that Sjogren's often makes my lips blue.  What?  I manage to complain about a lot of symptom, but circulation problems that bring about blue lips has never been one of them.  When they expressed concern over the fact that my skin was mottled, I told them that I often get rashes.  Yeah, like WHEN I'M ABOUT TO DIE!!!!  I get rashes then!

And what about the good catholic girl that I am?  I briefly thought about getting last rights but knew that every priest I know - including the hospital chaplain - was at the very same birthday party I was supposed to be attending at that very moment and I didn't want to bother them.  Yes, I was to be the first one to arrive at those pearly gates and tell St. Peter that I arrived there in a state of sin because I had the misfortune of dying on a Saturday night didn't want to be a burden to anyone.

And then I heard music that no one else did.  Not angelic chanting, mind you, but marching music. . . like John Philip Souza music.  Yes, I suppose I was planning on high-stepping on in to the afterlife to Stars and Stripes Forever.

Like I said. . .



And happy.

Oh yes, and lucky.  Very, very, lucky!