Priming My Pump and Spacing My Pacing

My daily routines, regimens, peccadilloes, and freedoms are all quite vulnerable as of late. I have been in the hospital for two weeks and am still baffling the cardiologists and Infectious Diseases doctors.

My pending prognosis is no closer to fruition than I am to having “six pack” abs. My thus-far fourteen days in the Acute Coronary Care Unit has now kicked into typically-Tarheel high gear: thirty blood cultures, daily x-rays, twelve doctors, sixteen nurses, and three sleepless nights.

The specialists have yet to ascertain the source of this damned blood infection. There are, however, two schools of thought. (There are always two schools of thought regarding the diagnosis/prognosis continuum.)

It now looks as though the faulty L-Vad and its accompanying Drive Line are hosting this bacteria. That dormant pump has set up some sort of intraveneous Pill-a-Palooza.

What is there to do? I shall be riding in 3702 until that VERY DAY on which the Cardio team excitedly wheels me down to the O.R. for preparation. Of course, I’ll be delirious and silly and most definitely incoherent.

As the various anesthesias seize my consciousness, I might just start the long process of naming my new heart. It’s a Marklewood tradition to name the nameless and breathe life into the lifeless.

I shall be home soon. We’ll fry up some chicken, skinless chicken. And you and I can catch up and “dish the dishy”.

Maybe … if the stars align and all goes according to Doctor Sheridan’s expectations.

Shalom, Lillian

(Image: “The Naked Man” by Joseph Hirsch, 1959-62.)

Hospital Hopping and Pondering Lent’s Bent

Thank you, everyone, for your kind prayers, generosity of spirit, encouragement, and altogether inclusive and heart-felt nurturing. They have all helped bolster my faith for those intense and scary days ahead.

Your wonderful cards, messages, and Facebook greetings have provided such a positive distraction at a time when I face certain fears and thoughts of mortality. I am humbled. I cherish greatly those moments in which I can “ditch that nagging little voice within” and simply frolic and make merry.

Oh yes. Let’s not forget the upbeat and zany responses on that other social network by Claire, Deb, Andrew, Elena, Suzanne, Twilla, Mitch, and Heidi. Forgive me for singling just a few folks. I just wanted you to know that I do indeed read all of the comments, emails, and private messages. It just tires me to write.

And then there’s that erstwhile Siri. My voice recognition cannot understand my squeaks and empty syllables. I constantly remind Siri to at least enroll in night classes at Miller-Motte or ECPI.

Shalom, friends, on this wintry and Carolina Blue Monday from 3702. Give my best to Lillian should she be at Bea’s Booking Bee.

(Image: “Tale à la Hoffmann” by Paul Klee, 1921.)

The Night Before the Morning After

A half century of habit is never easily booted. Friday nights still prompt me to emote with both internal squeals and sighs. And on Sunday nights, I still get that awful tightness in my stomach.

You probably know what I mean. You almost certainly experienced the same undeniable feelings. Sunday night always preceded Monday’s return to school. And I was always the odd sort who even loved school.

Saturdays just ended far too quickly.

Of course, I am on the short side of 60 and have been out of high school since Mr Ford was President. And I finished college before Mr Reagan ever moved East.

Like most adults, that anxiety continued into my working years, even when I worked on weekends.

It magnified once my schedule allowed me to maintain a more conventional schedule. Moments later, or so it seemed, I was on permanent disability. I no longer need experience any Sunday sinking feelings.

It has been five years and I still get that feeling. I still remind myself of my silliness and smile politely to my Id. The games we sometimes play are governed by odd rules, at least in the humble opinion of this odd sort.

Yes, tonight was no exception. I did, however, go into Downton Abbey knowing that I could dance until dawn. That is, that might be true if I were neither without inclination nor energy.

Ah, I allowed this post to spill into February, thus tainting the celebration of Black History Month and the birthdays of Mr Lincoln and Mr Washington.

I best dock my pay right now, Lillian.

(This 1962 painting, “Lincoln for the Defense” by Norman Rockwell, made me smile earlier. Initially, the oh-so-subtle colors aroused me in less than subtle ways. However, on second thought, it might’ve been the suspenders.)