The Long Road

I already had the title to this post in my head before I even sat down to write it. I already had a few sentences rolling around in my brain before I took up my pen to my journal. I had words like ‘shock’ and ‘dismay’ and ‘the universe sucks, sometimes’. All the while, the world continued to spin and mine had hit a mountainous rock and bumped into a ditch with water seeping into my socks.

Hubby had a heart attack.

It was a shock. That’s what everyone who has experienced this says, isn’t it? What a shock! Not ever something you can predict or say is going to happen, like a car hitting a tree for no reason or a person falling over her own feet or your face suddenly slamming into a brick wall you didn’t see in front of you (I know from experience) …it just happens.

And then, in that moment you have to deal. Deal with doctors and emergency rooms and blood tests and medications you have never heard of before, all in hours of hearing the words “my chest hurts”. It’s overwhelming and terrifying and, pardon the pun, heart wrenching. Your guts hurt, your mind reels and you don’t know what to do first. Should I call someone? Did I turn the lights off in the truck when we parked? Are the kids at work or school? What the hell is my husband doing connected to all these wires? When did we suddenly become a statistic? Today. Today we did.

A heart attack?! Him?!  

They sprayed nitro glycerin under his tongue. They took his blood pressure that many times he looked like they were blowing up a tire around his arm. They took his blood. They gave him pills. Baby aspirins. Then needles in the guts. Then more pills. They spoke reassuringly but always with the caveat, ‘you were lucky’. LUCKY?!  

Not feeling the luck right now, thanks.

The hardest part was returning home without him. Telling the kids that their father had a heart attack but he was ‘okay’. There were fearful tears, some questions and then son with the biology text book assertions of how he knew exactly what happened and rattled off the technical medical terms that remain in my mind as ‘blah blah cardiac blah blah’. It somehow comforted him to know exactly how it happened and the physiology behind it, because that’s how his brain works. I let him go on.  

Days in the Cardiac Care Unit with amazing nurses whose knowledge about the heart and what happens next and which tests will be done, were invaluable and alarmingly accurate. The Cardiologists were professional and kind and repeated the ‘lucky man’ phrase. After the dye test and they put in the stainless steel stent that ‘fixed him’ and he was proclaimed good as new, we found out why he was ‘lucky’. A 95% blockage in one of the main arteries; had he wasted any time getting to the hospital, he would not have been here. At all.  

Huh. Lucky man.

Lucky I was home, lucky he hadn’t taken a nap, lucky he had taken that year before to lose the weight and eat healthy, lucky he had gone to the hospital when he did….it goes on.

Luck. Not chalking it up to luck, sorry. Some missteps led to some common sense that led us to the hospital. Nothing to do with luck.  

The universe still sucks, but at least it left the door open a tad for us to jump on through if we so chose.

Genetics. That’s the term that was flying around his room. What your father went through, you will inherit. You did everything right, but you can’t change where you come from.  

But, it was a blow. It was a blow to our ego. It was a blow to everything we had been believing in. We are still young. We are doing things right. Eating well, exercising all the damn time. What the actual fuck, life?! You tricked us. Not fair.    

Then the denial. That was evident from the second we walked into the hospital. This is silly. The pain is gone. Let’s not waste their time. All words he had said. Then when the words had been spoken and they laid it out to him, it still took four days for it to resonate as reality.

A heart attack.  

He returned home with questions and trepidation and a mountain of meds that we had never had to deal with before. Every time I handed him a pill it was ‘what’s this one for?’ and ‘what’s this one called, again?’ It was confusing and scary. I called my ‘hood nurse for insight and reminders and medication guidance and I felt ashamed I had not remembered everything I thought I should have in the hospital, but then again how could I? I’m a mere mortal.  

Now we question every little ache and every little move as a possible follow up attack. Is this another one? Is it happening again? Are we doing something wrong? Are the medications not working? WHAT IS GOING ON?!  

We don’t know.

How are we supposed to?

Moving forward, we resolve to be positive and I’m sure he doesn’t tell me everything because he doesn’t want me to worry, and of course, vice versa. Stress causes damage to the heart. No stress=no damage. At least, in my mind. But is there such a thing as no stress?

I don’t think that’s possible when one is in the midst of raising three child-adults, and there’s uni and work and groceries and running a household and dealing in real life.  

Maybe it should be about how to handle stress. We exercise and go for our walks and try to live a healthy balanced life. We take things hour by hour and what happened, happened. We can’t change that. Move on and move up.

This heart attack didn’t just happen to him. It happened to US.

We are dealing together. It’s a long road and we are embarking on this journey as a team. There may be t-shirts in the making. And team logos. And banners.

Because nothing says team like a good logo!
            

        TEAM


                     HUBBY

 

 And taking a punch for your teammate.    

That’s all we know, now.  

Take care of each other…

https://www.heartandstroke.ca/heart/emergency-signs

 

 

 

 

Perfection Is A Myth and Words I Don’t Like


It is a myth. Seriously. Perfection is impossible to attain. It’s an illusion. A mirage. A trap designed to suck you in and laugh while you fail miserably at all attempts to own it. Don’t fall for it. Just be you. Imperfect. Flawed. Making mistakes and owning up to them. It’s better for all of us if you just calm down and be you. You will be better for it. So will your mother. And your father. Siblings. Friends. Colleagues. The kid that mows your lawn. The guy that leaves you creepy notes on your desk….Everybody. Essentially, the human race will be better for it. Stop trying to perfect perfection. It can’t be done. Instead, concentrate on being. Being in the moment, being present, being you. Still trying to stand up straight, still working, still breathing, still paying your bills and raising your kids; still walking your dog and helping your neighbour; still falling down and getting back up only to fall down again. Maybe that last part is just me. Anyway, we like you. Honestly, we do! Stop trying to be better than someone else or better than anyone or anything. It’s not a competition. Just be you.  

That was my anti-perfection rant. I felt it needed to be said.

Also, I need milk.

Words I Don’t Like

I felt like I needed to sub-title the second half just to make it easier for you to follow along. I didn’t want someone to get lost inside this post and wonder what the hell all the fuss was about. I care.  

I hate the word ‘deserve’. I don’t understand its usage. How does one person ‘deserve’ something more than another person? How does that work, exactly? I deserve to have a day off and the other person doesn’t? Or do we both deserve it? Who decides? “Go have a good time. You deserve it!” I’ve heard that on many occasions. How do I deserve that? I worked hard? So did many others. Do they deserve it to? “Oh he got what he deserves.” Implies that he was on the other end of some bad shit. What did he do to ‘deserve’ that? Broke the law? Broke someone’s heart? Broke Mrs. Brady’s lamp? What?  

It bothers me.

I never use this word.

It’s in line with other words I don’t like.  

I have a list:

Bitch ( Although, I did force myself to use that in a post)

Moist (I’m not the only one who HATES this word)

Dumb

Stupid

Retard(ed) (SHOULD BE OBLITERATED FROM THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE)

Various terms used to describe women genitalia (All of them are AWFUL)

Craptastic (WHO THOUGHT OF THIS WORD?! Ugh)

Newfie ( Newfoundlander is much better, thank you. AND, just so you know, I’m not a REAL Newfoundlander, I’m still a Mainlander with an honorary title of Newfoundlander. Somebody important told me that. I can’t tell you who, it’s all very hush-hush. Stop asking. A secret ceremony was held. There may or may not have been alcohol involved…)

 

I can’t think of any more right now, but I’m sure there are a few that bug me. Add to the list if you like…It’s an add-on-to-the-awful-word-list blog post. I like to get people involved.

I’m a giver like that.  

 

 

 

Namaste, Bitches

Daughter and I have decided to give Yoga a try.  She signed us up last week and tonight is our second class.  It was a little disconcerting to be walking into someone’s private home as a Yoga studio, but we decided to keep an open mind and give it a go.

Our Yogi is a slightly-more-than-middle-aged woman who has cleared away the front room of her house to use as a space for practicing.  It was spacious and warm, a perfect spot, really.   There are only 8 people to a class, and to say Daughter is the youngest is akin to stating that an elephant is big.  EVERYONE is my age or older.  She seemed undaunted by this, but I was a bit concerned.  I mean, hey it’s all good for me sista, but she’s just a youngin’…not the class I think she had in mind when she went on Google to find a studio.  Yep.  Googled ‘Yoga Studios’ in our area and this is the one she chose…huh.

yoga

Yeah, we don’t look quite like this

I was unfazed by the older man with the ZZ Top beard and the ragged faded jeans, but the dude who placed his mat beside me (I think his name was Brian) was a heavy breather.  Yep.  Like a bad Seinfeld episode, this guy sounded like he had just run a marathon in under four minutes.  Good thing he wasn’t a close-talker or I really would have had an issue…

seinfeld-close-talker

Close Talkers and Heavy Breathers back up and turn over, please

There were more men than I expected, but I think they were part of couples since the ladies they joined seemed to be very supportive and insightful in the ways of Yoga.   “Bob, YOU WON’T NEED THAT BIG CABLE KNIT SWEATER DURING CLASS.  UGH”.     “Jim YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG”    “Frank, for GOD’S SAKE JUST BREATHE!”

I did not hear any of that, but it would have been AWESOME if I had.

Couples Yoga should provide counselling services after class.

Hello, business idea for the psychiatrically inclined…

By the way, ‘psychiatrically’ is probably not a word and I’m not about to look it up.  I just spent waaaay too much time re-watching Seinfeld episodes looking for a Heavy Breather gag…

The class was a wee bit longer than I thought and when she pulled out the bolsters and dimmed the lights, I thought ‘couples yoga’ is about to get weeeirrrrrd, but it was more like nap time in Kindergarten.  Sorry, ‘relaxing time’…

Her voice suddenly dropped a few octaves as she went around the room to make sure we were ‘relaxed’…mkay.   I suppressed my urge to laugh and made it through relaxation time unscathed…. except for Heavy Breather Dude who I think almost went into cardiac arrest when it was time to come back to reality and this plane of existence…and stand up.

Poor Bob had to put on his sweater lest he got a chill….tonight is about to get awesome with Geriatric Couples Yoga….

yoga-posing

Lose the sweater, Bob.  It’s about to get real up in here…

I CAN’T WAIT!!

Namaste, Bitches.