Thursday, March 15, 2007

What it felt like when my brain went pop.

What I remember - leaving Jefe's office at the end of the day, saying goodnight, getting as far as the file cabinet in the hall outside his office when a sudden, crushing pain hit my head. Like an elephant fell out of the ceiling. I grabbed the nearest file cabinet and then fell to the floor. I remember people yelling "Call 911," and I vaguely remember the ambulance ride to the nearby hospital. I was in and out of consciousness, I remember being loaded into a helicopter for a flight to the Big Hospital. I remember requesting the brain surgeon who took care of my husband years ago. I don't remember the next 3 days.

I remember waking up in the ICU that Monday. I was wired to every sort of sensor and multiple IVs, it was like being tied to the bed. Girlchild says I really wasn't out cold during that time, I just don't remember it.

My surgeon came in and told me that post-surgery scans were perfect and there was no sign of the aneurysm. At least five other doctors gave me a clean bill of health - I have to do a follow up with the very cute cardiologist, but he said that tests didn't show anything wrong with my heart, my cholesterol was only a wee bit elevated, and my blood pressure actually runs low, not high. In short, nobody has a clue why this happened to me. There is no underlying condition to worry about, and no reason to think this will ever happen again.

I still marvel that if it had hit a mere 15 minutes later, I'd have been behind the wheel in rush hour traffic. If it had hit an hour later, I'd have been home alone, Girl would have been at work. If this had to happen, the timing saved my life. A very goose-bumpy thought. I'd like to say that this made me all thoughtful and spiritual and contemplating the meaning of life, but it hasn't. I'm still shallow and looking forward to watching Gray's Anatomy and getting another good night's sleep, and doing something about my funky partly shaved hairstyle.

Oh, and here's how shallow I am - I could tell I'd lost some weight, but I didn't know how much until I got on the scale this morning. I'm down 11 pounds, and inspired to take off 20 more, so I can be skinny with my practically shaved head. So much for insight into major issues of life and death. Sorry!


Martha said...

Miz C,
Well, hon, shallow is not a word I would ever use to describe you - I'd go w/smart, funny, wise, straight forward, a thinking person's person, a lover of her family & friends, grounded, politically cool, mad as hell at the times that I'd like for someone to be mad as hell, a great daughter to her parents,a great & way cool Mom to her children, a great dog & cat Mom to those in your home, thoughtful.
That's just the beginning of my list ^..^
In other words, you are someone I want to be on the planet because we need more people like you.
Much XOXO, humor & patience to you as you heal.

Gencesca said...

I'm sure there's something stirring under there that's spiritual (you Catholic girl you), but right now what it seems you need is humor and a normal, everyday goal, like losing 20 lbs.

Man, yeah, the timing was INcredible. Living alone, even at just 39, I sometimes think I should get Lifeline. Stuff happens.

And ditto what Martha said. :-)


Debi said...

Hey a girl's got to see the silver lining, right?

All kidding aside, you are a very lucky woman Catherine.

KnitNana said...

Like it or not, there was definitely "someone (or -thing)" watching over you, Catherine. There'll be a time of reflection, I suspect, but maybe on down the pike a bit? After my heart attack, it took awhile. Just getting recovered enough to feel you can do what you used to do without a nap is what's important at first. The fact that you're accusing yourself of being shallow indicates to me something's perking away in the back there..not ready yet to reveal itself! (you ain't a shallow gal! nope, deep, you are!)
You're smart and talented and all that stuff. Eventually, you'll get to the point of some sort of irreverent analysis of "the meaning of life."

And it'll suit you!
(btw...just delighted to see your blog pop up in my bloglines every so often really scared me!)

Amie said...

'Fess up, C.

At least some of that weight was hair. (I lost 3 lbs when I did Locks-of-Love. If I'd have known that going in I might have let them have it all!)

Maybe you need more fugsalt in your diet? or less?

Bess said...

Oh sugar. The very first thought I had after Girlchild said you were recovering was

wow! She hasn't eaten for several days. Probably won't have much appetite for a few more. Won't she be glad about the weight loss.

ShallowGalTwin! I love ya!

Sue Woo said...

I am so glad you are feeling better. I think about you every day.

Catherine said...

Amie - my hair was still above my shoulders when this happened, and the doctor thoughtfully (!) shaved a small swatch on the left side of my head for the surgery. I didn't even lose an ounce of hair, but was left with a completely hopeless hairstyle. K the Hair God will have his work cut out for him. I think we'll have to cut the rest of it off and start over.

poormary said...

The timing was good, that much is right on the money. Shallow?? Not!!

Glad you are doing so well. They damn sure better get your raise on your next check. And it better be retro!!

Anonymous said...

So glad you are back online and doing well. I agree that you aren't shallow---I think that other situations you have already lived through have made you consider all that spiritual, deep stuff.
Brenda in Iowa

Jane said...

Catherine, you didn't need any more insight into major issues of life and death!

But weight loss without doing a thing besides sitting around? Why, it's a fantasy come true!

Elysbeth said...

Shallow? Hardly, how about hopeful and realistic.

Glad to hear timing worked for you. : )

Here's to many more years of worrying about your waistline and not other *bigger* things.

zippiknits said...

Life is for living, Catherine. It's really ok to go right on living the life that you had, enjoying your children and the art of life you have developed. I'm sure you already know this anyway. I'm selfish enough to be glad you are here and rejoice with you over your weight lose and favorite doings. Two big Thumbs UP!