Dying Man’s Daily Journal – I am content – God is with me

May 31, 2010

Vi and I both thank all for the prayers and kind wishes sent our way. I am at home and am doing fine.

Spent Thursday afternoon at the hospital again as they did more tests. The doctors are going to get all the test results together and from that decide on a course of action. They are to contact me next week some time setting up an appointment to go in to see them. I really am a lucky man that we have such a wonderful free health care system in this country, without it I know I would have been dead long ago. I am comfortable with this whole issue, I have prayed about it and placed it, myself and family all in God’s hands. What better place could we possibly be? I know He will guide my doctors to the right course of action for me. Now it is up to me to “patiently wait to hear what that decision is.

I haven’t been at the computer all that much in the past week or so. It is very heart warming and gratifying to see how our little community here has held together.
Continuing to provide loving support for others that may need it at the time.. I do thank you all so very much. I ask for special prayers please for Cat and her father, Betty and her husband. It is truly wonderful to see my blogging friends banding together ready to help others in their time of need.

I sit here feeling quite content actually, at peace with myself and the world. Now don’t get me wrong here, “according to Bill”, I still have another 10 or 15 years of blogging left in me.If though that is not God’s plan for me, I can deal with that,my family though I worry about.

Now it might be asked, you are facing possibly some very high risk medical procedures, how can you feel content with your life as it is? The answer to that is easy. I have a good life, a life in which I am surrounded by loving family and friends. What more could I ask for? OK,there is this whole health thing, how do I deal with that? The answer to that is also easy. I look back over my life. It most certainly hasn’t always been a “bed of roses”. There have been times when the situation just seemed hopeless.I was in a field of woe to which there just seemed to be no way out. I prayed about it and some how a path just seemed to open up before me, leading me past the issues of the time.

Our Heavenly Father has led me as He has for all of us, led me through some what I saw at the time, pretty horrific circumstances. He was there with me then, why would He not be here with me now?

I like to blame it on this memory of mine. There are so many times when in the heat of the moment, so to speak, I forget that God is with me. Some times, most times I seem to need a few days to quiet my mind enough to remember this big fact.


Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Pericarditis

May 26, 2010

I was back to the hospital yesterday. This time just for blood work. It is pretty amazing how much they can tell about your health from a blood sample. Within a couple of hours the hospital phoned to tweek a couple of my medications.

Tomorrow is a pretty big day for me. I am back at the hospital for more tests. The result of these tests will help the doctors determine the course of action they will take with me. My stay in the hospital last week was very interesting, parts enjoyable. The results of the medical tests and what not, not so good.

St. Boniface is a teaching hospital. In the cardiology department naturally there were quite a number of them. It turns out I am a prime example of an ailment that possibly may be a once in a life time opportunity for the student s to see, to learn about and to help them possibly diagnose in the future. I was happy to oblige as various groups came around to my bed side. I do hope and pray though that I am the only patient they may see with this condition.

I am going to try to explain this but I am not a doctor and have a terrible memory. Keep that in mind as I try to explain things as I understand and remember it and should not be used as any sort of medical reference.

Our hearts are contained within a membrane sack. This sack expands and contracts with the beating of our hearts. Occasionally though for a variety of reasons this sack can harden or stiffen or as in my case a part of it has. This hardened area restrict the heart from expanding to its full extent when beating. This restricted pumping action does not allow the heart to effectively pump as much blood through the body as is required. This reduced blood flow causes issues such as fluid build up and retention, problems breathing, lack of energy. Geesh, that sounds like me.

Solutions, open heart surgery. The hardened part is cut out creating a window, allowing the heart to beat more freely plus drain the fluids that will have built up around the heart. Doctor described this surgery as being particularly brutal on the patient and more difficult to recover from. This leads to the next question, after 5 heart attacks is my heart strong enough to make it through this process.

The second issue involves another blockage in the heart. I have had an angioplasty in the past, several of them actually. Experience tells me this is a very safe procedure with almost no discomfort for the patient. EXCEPT, in this case. As I understand it, my blockage is in a very difficult to access position. It is also located at the junction of 2 arteries. Being at a junction the 2 arteries form the shape of the letter Y. My blockage has wrapped itself around the inner fork of that letter Y. This just means it would have to be treated as 2 sperate blockages that have come together at the intersection.  It would mean doing one side first then pulling out to go back in the second vein for the second side. This is deemed very high risk as a piece of the blockage at the tip of the junction may well break loose. This would very likely cause a heart attack right there and then. Now there is just no place that is good to have a heart attack but I suppose if you do have to have on, being on an operating table in the cardiac unit of a hospital would be the place to do it.

I am back at the hospital tomorrow for more tests. This is to help the docs decide just how strong this old ticker of mine is and what or how much they feel it can put up with.

If it is decided the heart isn’t strong enough for either of these procedures. That brings us to option 3. Do nothing. This though is done knowing tha with that blockage there, it is in fact just a matter of time until that last heart attack comes.

Right now I can’t really say I am to excited about any of the options that lay before me. It is like they are yuck, yuckier and yuckiest and I can not decide which I think each option is.

After the tests tomorrow, the doctors will get together, brain storm and come up with their recommend course of action. I will be hearing from them one day next week. I have total faith and trust in my doctors, they are nothing short of amazing.  I have been so very blessed in my life time. Our Heavenly Father has always place the right people in the right place to be there just when I need them. it has always been that way and I can’t imagine it has changed now.

I think it would be fair to say I am a little apprehensive about this whole thing, a little nervous. But, I certainly am not afraid. I know I will survive, be it in this life or the next but I will survive. I am though kind of hoping it will be in this life.


Dying Man’s Daily Journal – God has a sense of humor.

May 22, 2010

Through one of my adventures in the hospital, I am firmly convinced God has a sense of humor. I laugh at it now but at the time, geesh.

One of the procedures performed on me was a type of double angiogram, I suppose you would call it. An incision is made in your lower belly area, just above the groin. A long tube is then inserted into the artery and follow the artery up to and into your heart. This time it was a little different than in the past. This time 2 tubes were inserted one into an artery and the second into a vein. Both are pushed up to the heart. This way they can check the pressures of the blood flow both in and out of the heart. Now that is as I understand it. Now from the patients point of view that sounds scary having a tube in your heart. From the patients point of view though it is a very simple, easy procedure. You are wide awake and just lay there. There is no pain, no discomfort nothing at all like that. Now as the incision is made into a major artery and/or vein direct pressure is applied to it immediately afterwards to stop bleeding. The only hard part for the patient is you then have to lay absolutely still for 3 hours to let the cut heal and not break open again.Now if the hardest part of the procedure is laying still for 3 hours, I certainly have nothing to complain about.

It was suggested I don’t wear underwear of pants that first day as the waist band may rub on the incision area and may cause it to break open, fair enough.

So there I am, clad in one of those hospital gown, the ones that tie in the back. It reached to about my knee so my “frontal” area was well covered. The behind area is much less covered. I put on one of the hospital dressing gowns to protect my modesty and cover the back half of me, everything is good. It has reached the point where I am past that 3 hour period of laying still, I have been up and moving around for a couple of hours. I am trying to be careful and am walking a little slow but it is all going fine.

Vi is visiting and the time comes when she is leaving. The nurses maybe somewhat reluctantly give me permission to walk her down to the front door. Everything is just fine. We get to the front door and it is a beautiful sunny day outside and I have been cooped up inside for 3 days straight at this time. I decide to walk her to the car and get just a little fresh air. The trip to the car and back will only take 3 or 4 minutes, off we go.

Now remember how I am dressed. It would be roughly comparable to a knee length dress, with NOTHING on underneath. Off we go, it is wonderful to be outside, that is until an unexpected gust of wind comes along and raises my “skirt”. I am in a panic trying to get it down. I get it down and am hanging on for dear life. I am embarrassed and look around but thankfully no one seems to have noticed. Doing this though I do notice there are a number of ladies coming and going all wearing skirts or dresses and the wind isn’t affecting them at all, huh.

I am feeling a little conspicuous hanging on as I am. I think well it must have been just some little freak gust or something and I let go. Bang, up it goes again. This time I am hanging on and not letting go. We get to the car and I do let go just to give her a hug and you guessed it, at least this time it was just the back end. Needless to say I hung on for dear life for the rest of my outing and never went outside dressed like that again.

Now you tell me God doesn’t have a sense of humor. Ladies skirts not even moving in the breeze, mine up around my ears. Sorry to anyone that may have seem a little more than they have been expecting


Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Hospital Stay

May 21, 2010

I am back at home. I had a very interesting expeience during my stay in the cardiac unit of St. Boniface hospital. A big thank you to the nurses, doctors and staff of unit 5A South, each and ever one of you were wonderful and made what could have been a miserable time into an “almost” enjoyable time.

I have some individual stories I will share over the next while about my stay and the wonderful and very interesting people I met there staff and patients.

All the news I received on my medical condition wasn’t the best but we will deal with that one day at a time. I will be writing more about that also.

A thank you to all my blogging friends that have left me good wishes and prayers.


Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Hospital

May 17, 2010

I guess I will be gone from the blogging scene for the next, I hope just short while.

When I saw my cardiologist a couple of weeks ago, he indicated some concern over something he detected in my neck?? He simply said some tests would be scheduled and I would be called shortly. I didn’t realize this meant hospitalization for a week or so.

He called and they want me there this morning so off I go. Hope to be back soon.

All are in my prayers.


Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Visit the ill

May 16, 2010

In the past few weeks I as apparently are others, have gone back and started reading some of my earlier posts. This is something I haven’t done before and I am really not sure why. I don’t even read the post I have just written, it just comes out and up it goes exactly as is. I do use spell checker thank goodness.

Reading back has been good for me, it shows me how much my mind set has changed, how much I have evolved I guess. I started blogging in Sept/06 and at that time in my mind I was pretty certain I wouldn’t even make it until Christmas. Huh, now here I am 4 years later and still going amybe not going quite as strong but still going. In my mind I now see myself still going for years to come. That change of mindset or of thinking is about as complete a turn around as you can get.

Reading back I can see it slowly taking place. I am a slow learner it seems as it most certainly didn’t happen over night. It was I suppose a process. It was a little unsettling waking up every morning wondering if today was my last, or when going to sleep wondering if I would wake up. Thank goodness I got past that. Today I never have those kind of thoughts. I just live my life as best I can knowing I am in God’s hands and am comfortable with that.

Some of my thinking has changed another part has not. Here is a copy of a post I made back at the beginning, a portion of my Oct 12/06 post:

 A man is dying and some friends and family are starting to avoid him. Some it reminded them of their own mortality, but for many it was fear.

Fear of saying the wrong thing. How sad that they would miss spending time with someone special to them out of fear of saying the wrong thing. Doing that and you are depriving both of you of possible quality time, that you will never have again. Now, I can only speak for myself, and here I am yacking to the whole world that I am dying. But, in normal private life that topic will not come up, unless someone asks me a direct question about it. To this question I will reply as directly and honestly as I can. What are you afraid of, afraid you may something to upset me. Afraid you might blurt out something upsetting like “you are dying”, well quess what, I already know that, how upsetting could it be if you tell me something I already know.

Don’t be shy, embarassed or hesitant don’t let feelings go unexpressed or words unsaid, you well may regret it later. I may have things I want to say to you, if I do please just listen. I may try to talk of some past event and you may try to brush it off as nothing. Let me have my say, you don’t know, it could be weighing on me, something I need to get out while I have the chance.

Others may just feel uncomfortable just being around a dying person. Suck it up, and at least give it a try. I think you will be surprised at how quickly that uncomfortable feeling will disappear once you begin actually talking.

Talk to me and treat me like any other person. Do not spend the entire visit trying to comfort me. I am no different than anyone else. I am dying but so is everyone, some just faster than others. Really, who is to know with traffic accidents etc. I may live longer than you.

Lets just have an enjoyable comfortable visit.


Dying Man’s Daily Journal -Men have better memories???

May 14, 2010

I have a severe case of my wonkie head going on today. I have been trying to pay a little more attention to my body and when this wonkie feeling comes on. I have edema which simply means fluid builds up in my body. It goes with the heart failure, my body doesn’t have the oomph needed to pass the fluid on its own. I take medication daily to make me pee. Once a week I take a boosted shot that really makes me go. i have notices that this wonkie feeling is more prevalent when  my fluid levels are higher. Will have to check with the doctor next time I see him.

My wonkie head has come up with a thought, a Bill chuckle if you will and I do say it tongue in cheek. I am curious how the Lady readers of the blog will respond to this one. LOL.

There seems to be like an unwritten but very strictly enforced law in virtually all house holds in which a Lady resides. Now we are talking very serious stuff here. The toilet seat must remain down. Now I have heard stories from several Ladies justifying this. Stories of getting up in the middle of the night, stubbling to the bathroom still half asleep and then basically falling in when sitting down. All because the seat was left up. I can totally understand that would not be all that pleasant and I am sure would quickly wake you up from your half asleep state. I agree if the seat had indeed been left down such a disaster would not have happened. AND ALL BECAUSE SOME FORGETFUL INCONSIDERATE MALE FORGOT TO PUT DOWN THE TOILET SEAT. I got it.

Now lets look at it from the other side of the issue.As a male if I get up in the middle of the night, half asleep, stumble my way to the bathroom.  I am expected to first raise the seat and then lower it again. I am in that same half asleep condition but still face greater expectations (raising AND lowering) and face potential wraith should I forget either.

So this is how I see it. The lady wants the seat to be down at all times on the chance she should forget to check to make sure it is in fact down.

Are you ready for it, here it comes. The Ladies are counting on the fact that the male memory is better than their own, huh.

I say that in jest (or do I).OK,ladies it is your turn, it me  with it.

PS. I am in fact house broken and our toilet seat is always down.