Mar 4, 2014

Happy Anniversary Now Get Out of Here

Friday was our 22nd wedding anniversary. 22 years ago we dreamed of rainbows and unicorns, making babies, making a home, and being in love forever.

Yeah. You know how that goes.

This year we spent our anniversary in ICU.

Alyssa, almost 19 years old, wants to go on a mission but kept having episodes with her heart picking up an extra beat and short circuiting. A couple of weeks ago she was having an episode that wouldn't quit so she drove herself to the emergency room. The medical team was able to hook her up and catch about 30 seconds of it before it slowed back to normal and the cardiologist on call determined she had an extra biological pacemaker in her heart. The way to stop the episodes is to kill a little piece of her heart by threading some tubes through her vein via her groin area then zap it.

The procedure was successful and quick. The part of the heart was between two chambers so it was hiding. Once the tubes were in her heart, they stimulated an episode and found the problem area, zapped it, then tried for 30 minutes more to stimulate another episode. Her regular heartbeat ensued. We followed her upstairs to ICU where she was just gaining consciousness and complaining that her heart hurt. Then we were told to wait while they pulled out the sheaths from her groin. I can't type that last sentence without feeling a little grossed out and light headed. They were direct veins that went to her heart which is where I get grossed out. They had to push down hard so she wouldn't bleed for the first few minutes while the blood clotted and the healing began. She was instructed that she couldn't move for 4-6 hours. At all. So she freaked out.

Just to clarify, Alyssa is a golden child. She really is. Thoughtful, kind, easy-going. She has a touch of OCD like most of the population but it kicks into high gear when she is coming out of anesthesia. We'd forgotten about her obsessiveness after getting her wisdom teeth pulled. She got mean and scary. This time around, she got mean and scary but there were more people involved. She yelled at the nurses because she couldn't put on her clothes. They told her before that she could put on her clothes but now she couldn't. When we arrived and she was yelling at everybody, we tried to placate her. She yelled at Scott and I to Get. Out. Now.  In her mean and scary voice.

Banished, we stood in the hall, looked at each other and cracked up. It was the Wisdom Teeth Episode all over again. We tried, over the next hour and a half to go and sit with her. She used her mean, scary voice and told us to GET OUT OF HERE. NOW. RIGHT NOW. GET. OUT. Unfortunately, she said the same thing to her nurse. She refused food. She refused water. She refused to use a bed pan. She wanted her underwear.

Finally, she accepted my company and, in tears, admitted she had a horrible headache. She knew she had been mean but couldn't seem to stop herself. She took a little Percocet, ate a little food, drank a tiny bit of water and apologized to her nurse. They became best friends. She let the nurse take her to the bathroom. She let her nurse take her for a walk. She let her nurse check her healing holes.

Eventually I went home and was relieved that Scott accepted my company. There were no rainbows or unicorns. There was no hanky panky. There were simply two exhausted parents that flopped into bed. Together.

Which is the best way to handle a day like this.

2 comments:

CountessLaurie said...

Congrats on 22 years!! Sorry about the mean girl. That doesn't sound fun for anyone...hope she is healing well...

Kaye said...

So glad she is OK. And so are you. Love ya, gal!