Saturday, February 9, 2013

It's Been a Roller Coaster

I have been a blog slacker for quite a while now.  To be honest I just haven't felt like blogging.  My husband's brother, Harold, went in the hospital on January 7 to have a heart pump put in below his heart to help his heart function.  He was in congestive heart failure due to a virus attacking his hear several years ago.

He was up and down about having this procedure done as his wife is in a care center under hospice care as she has Alzheimer and has been steadily going down hill.  Harold and Janie have been married 50 plus years and those years have been happy ones for them.  Harold made the comment to my husband more than one time that he didn't want to live without Janie.

After the surgery was done on January 8, Harold was put into a coma for a 24 hour period which is the procedure they do on all patients having this surgery.  They left his chest open, and wrapped it with special type of saran wrap so they can watch for bleeding and also to make sure the pump is working like it should.  When Harold came out of the coma everything was functioning like it should. They closed up the chest and moved him to his own room as he had been in intensive care.

He was sitting on his bed eating his breakfast, and when he finished he asked the nurse if he could sit in the chair by his bed.  The nurse left the room for just a few minutes to get someone to help Harold into the chair.  When they came back, Harold was laying unconscious on the bed.  He had flat lined and they did CPR on him breaking a rib in the process.  I can't imagine doing CPR on a Chest that had just been stitched up from the heart surgery.

The doctor who had operated on Harold just happened to be in the hospital as they had cancelled a surgery, so he was called, and they rushed Harold back into surgery.  From that point on it was an up and down cycle of hope and despair.  They kept him in an induced coma, again this time saying they would slowly bring him out of it.  His vitals were good, but they kept finding things that were wrong.  He got infection in the portal in his neck, found out he had diverticulitis, and other things that kept coming up.  All of this was treatable. So thus the roller coaster ride.

Finally, it was decided that the family would have a conference with Harold's doctor.  Frank couldn't take part in this as he took me to the doctor that day.  When we got home, Frank called his sister who told us the results of that conference.  The doctor was a little upset as he felt we were getting false information about Harold's condition and he wanted us to know that Harold was doing well, that they would be slowly bringing him out of the coma and unhooking him.  Then they would do a CT-Scan to see if there was any brain damage.  He had told the family that he thought if there was any brain damage it wouldn't be anything Harold couldn't live with.

Finally after another week of waiting, they were able to unhook Harold and have the scan done.  Unfortunately, the results were not good.  When Harold had the blood clot, it must have broken off and and had hit the lower lobe of his brain, and he had a stroke.  Harold would be a vegetable as long as he was alive.

His daughter Sherrie will be flying down to GA from Maine as soon as the horrible weather they are having back in that area clears up.  The flights have been cancelled until Monday.  She is the one that has the power of attorney and has to give the permission to unplug her Dad.  I feel so bad for as she is really close to Harold, and this is going to be really hard on her.  She will get to say her good by to him and that is a good thing.  Harold wants to be cremated and his ashes placed in his wife's coffin when she passes away.  We don't know if they will hold any services, and if they do, we will fly to GA to be with the family.

A year ago at Christmas time, I bought my husband a skype camera so he could skype with his brother.  So they set up a time on Mondays to skype.  I will miss hearing that Southern drawl saying long and dragged out "Hello Brother."  I would come into our office and visit with Harold and we would laugh about how we were doing with our diabetic diet.  He mostly cheating and me saying "Harold what are you doing."!!!!  It is sad to watch as we are all aging, one sibling at a time is leaving the world. Frank is now the oldest in the family and at one time was the youngest of three brothers and now he is the only brother left.  Harold, we will miss you terribly, but we know you are in a better place, and someday soon you will have a joyous reunion with Janie, and eventually with all of us.  May God rest his hand of comfort on the family.

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Hi, thanks for dropping by my blog. It is a place for me to let my family and friends know what is happening in the daily lives of Frank and I. I appreciate your comments.