Monthly Archives: July 2010

I’m still here…

Hey gals,

I’m afraid I’ve become a bit of a lurker. I read most of your posts everyday, just can’t be bothered to log in and leave comments as that requires more than I’m willing to do (ie just scroll and click). But you guys have been keeping me entertained.

I’m definitely feeling a bit stronger, breathing’s getting easier and I can walk to other rooms in the house without hyperventilating. Am taking a sleeping tablet every night now which is weird for me who could always sleep at the drop of a hat, but if you have a 3 month date with possible major surgery, your mind wanders… a lot.

DH came home last the other night and said: Hey MinkiMinki has started playschool! And I said erm… yes. Turns out he also follows some of your shenanigans! Sweet. And the day LL posted about D’s sensory condition, he also came home and told me all about it – didn’t have the heart to say I read it already. Oh and Becca, he LOVES your stripper shoes! Told him he can get the wife after me to wear those… my heart wouldn’t be able to pull it off!

Cams – I want to freeze Tash and unfreeze her when Thomas is her age… Can’t imagine having a better DIL – so sussed and sorted.

Deb, I once did an entire term with a broken zip in my dress – luckily it was winter and I always wore my jersey/blazer. It was my favourite dress as it was just the right ‘shortness’ and even though I had two other dresses, I knew they were longer and I was not going to be allowed to shorten them so I kept quiet and had an interesting term with a gaping hole in the back of my dress.

E&I – daai baby KOM – net so klein bietjie nog wag.

Sumanda – Your little girl is just so precious

Teagirl – Q definitely looks angelic in that dress… what a great uncle.

Charlotte – My hartjie bloei vir seuntjie kind – ek mis my ouma net so baie. Wonderlik dat hulle so ‘n spesiale band het.

Had to laugh at Spruit’s Mommy – I had the same experience with can he see me? what can he see? anxiety

NUSHA!!!! Good god woman! You be brave. Good luck with your mission. πŸ™‚

Adele – gotta love J and his wisdom re you dancing in the takeaways.

Anyhoo – off to lalaland

Whatever happened to Boutros Boutros-Ghali?

You know how many of us struggle with the consequences of always having to be polite and please people and have people in our lives who just live to make kack comments? Well, I have a very good excuse to be rude now(if you have a bum heart, people will let you get away with things, I think) and I have the perfect retort.

On one of my many travels through PMC, I was in Ward B who has the early onset dementia and other such delights included into the mix. They try to keep all the different types of animals together but we were mixed up every now and then. On one such mix-up I shared a ward with an Alzheimer’s lady who had truly travelled the world (dunno if it’s imagined, but she had me hooked with her stories). But the weird thing was that she would stop anywhere in her story and suddenly ask: Whatever happened to Boutros Boutros-Ghali and that would be the end of the conversation. You would get nothing more out of her no matter what you said about BBG.

I’ve decided that I will do that from now. I’ve had some beauties since my diagnosis. From people wanting to know if I’m comfortable leaving my son in DH’s care when I die (because men don’t know how to take care of kids you see) to all sorts of other really kack comments. And what have I been doing? Not doing the usual fish out of water mouth flapping and not knowing what to say and crying about it afterwards…

I look them straight in the eye and say: Whatever happened to Boutros Boutros-Ghali? with the most earnest expression on my face and just walk away. Tongue out

Heck, people thought I was loopy for long enough. I’ve earned my loopy stripes.

Oh and if you want to know whatever happened to him:

Boutros Boutros-Ghali (Arabic: ???? ???? ????, Coptic: Bουτρος Βουτρος-Γαλι) (born 14 November 1922) is an Egyptian diplomat who was the sixth Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN) from January 1992 to December 1996. An academic and former Foreign Minister of Egypt, Boutros Boutros-Ghali oversaw the UN at a time when several foreign crises, including the breakup of Yugoslavia and the Rwandan Genocide, demanded its attention.

He’s involved in humanitarian work currently.

Elephant tranquilisers (2)

So it’s Saturday morning 26 June and I’m too tired to even go shopping with the boys. Had to send them on their own to the shops… Dunno if I still know how to use my atm cards.

Boys are at the shops and I have another attack. But this one is the type where you see bits of your life… I’m hardly breathing. Call DH and luckily they’re on their way home already.

Get to me and off to ER#2 we rush. Get there have to be helped out of the car into a wheelchair, can’t even walk and guess what they do first? Give me a paper bag – not even a brown paper bag to breathe into and scold me for causing a panic and overreacting. And…. out comes the pilletjies. By then I am beside myself with fear and rage and of course it doesn’t help my case. Nurses talk amongst each other and tell me to just calm down I’m upsettting the people around me where all I’m doing is TRYING TO BREATHE. Not screaming, not thrashing about – just trying to breathe normally.

The pilletjies of course calms me down and they say see? You’re all better. Tell us what is bothering you now. You can tell us anything in confidence, yadda yadda yadda Psych, psych, pscyh.

I then realise I’m either going to die today or I’m going to kill a nurse with a blood pressure monitor. I ask DH to call my Dad and tell him to come at once. My Dad is a noisemaker and fighter if you need one. My sweet DH is not. My Dad comes through and the nurses realise that they are not going to get away with just pilletjies. The doctor on duty (thankfully) gets to me at the same time and decides to do a chest X-ray. Once they have the X-ray the doctor calls the nurses and says: Have you seen how big this heart is? THey all rush to see my big heart and finally start taking me seriously. ECG stickers gets clamped on and they look at it but I don’t know if they really knew how to interpret it as they didn’t say much and later that night at Panorama Medi-Clinic, it turns out some stickers were put in the wrong places… a case of slap some ECG stickers on the loon, connect her to the machine and let her think we’re doing summat.

ER#2 has no specialist on duty and there’s a WC game in Cape Town so staff’s short. They call around and I thank every power in the universe, there’s a specialist on duty at PMC and off we go. Get there and sweet doctor gets me settled, onto oxygen and starts talking to me about my symptoms – no pilletjies in sight.

He tells me he thinks it’s severe pneumonia but my heart cannot be ruled out and we’ll do tests until we find the culprit. How great is that? I’m settled, I’m breathing clean, clear oxygen and have two drips going into my body and lots of bloods being drawn. Can live with that.

Sunday Doc says one of the drips he’s about to put it is a diuretic( makes you peepee like an excited puppy) and that it’s being done to drain my lungs of fluid as there’s way too much fluid on my lungs and that’s not helping my breathing. I peepee myself 8kgs lighter which is pretty cool!

On Monday is scan day – scans and X-rays and all sorts of other cardiac echos and stuffs involving every letter of the alphabet is done. For the first time I realise how serious things are and at the first big machine (almost as big as the wheel of excellence, I swear) I start bawling. Been very brave and holding pose for my boys but to be alone, uncertain and faced with the wheel of excellence while your bum is being exposed in a too small gown ain’t no fun. I bawl and bawl and the poor technician is just trying to get me to sign an indemnity form.  Managed to compose myself and survived the morning of tests.

Monday afternoon I’m wheeled into the sweetest cardiologist’s rooms and he breaks it down for me. My left ventricle (the major one responsible for pumping blood from head to toe is severely damaged. Operating on 20% of function and they don’t know why yet. He says he will get behind it but it looks like a virus for now. Lots more blood drawn. I see myself getting into a swimming pool and being full of bubbles like a punctured inner tube.

On Wednesday they’re still struggling to figure out what the virus is and how to tackle it and I get pains in my chest. Off to theathre they wheel me to perform an angiogram. They cut a hole in your groin, go into a vein that leads to your heart and check out the arteries for narrowing or blockages. This of course sets me off again as I have to sign all sorts of indemnity forms and I call my fam who luckily lives very close to PMC. See my dad and I bawl and bawl and bawl. Once Dad wiped all the snot, I get taken in and farking hell, I think they forgot the anaesthetic! I felt ALLES. Cardio declares my arteries to be beautiful – no cholesterol, or fat bombs lurking there.

I spend the next two days on meds and recover from my wound and cardio calls me into office to say the virus that’s attacked my heart has been at work for a while and they really cannot identify it. I’m on three months of medication to strengthen my ventricle and if it’s not doing it’s job way better in 3 month’s time… I’m going on a violent organ harvest… either amongst my in-laws or some other enemies I think may have healthy hearts… or just go on the heart transplant list and wait it out.

Frikkin scary but I really cannot afford to dwell on the worst-case scenario too much.

I’m on a month’s bed rest too which I can so do.

One more thing… It’s amazing how my Sprogblog friends were way more caring and concerned than my real life friends… hmmm I see more candidates for organ harvests… UNfriend.

Love you Sprogblog guys so much!

Elephant tranquilisers (1)

Hey everybody. I’m back and on the mend hopefully.

Thank you so much for all the concern and wishes and to Deblet for the surprise visit and treat!

Two days before the World Cup started I was still self-medicating what I thought was just the yearly cold we all get. On opening ceremony day I felt worse than ever and decided to go to my GP. She diagnosed chest infection and gave a me script and off I went. I had been feeling exceptionally tired,short of breath and I had this constant wheeze/rattle in my throat though and was not coping too well. I had to use one of my couch pillows to sleep up against. No ways could I lay down and sleep. Once the meds were finished I felt even kacker and called GP who said give it a day or two then call me again.

On Thursday 17 June, I started coughing up pleghm but it was more hacking and hurling than cough. At 10 that night on my umpteenth trip to the loo to hack and hurl, I just passed out. Scary. Luckily I passed out just as I was leaving our room so DH heard me go down. I was very afraid then and insisted on going to our local hospital. By the time we got to the hospital I was hyperventilating because I couldn’t breathe properly and because of the shock of falling. Get to ER and they take one look at me and declare me insane in their minds.

I get asked all sorts of Pscyh questions and if I’ve had any ‘episodes’ before and how often I have episodes etc. Am I anxious about anything, Blah Blah.

They give me two pilletjies onder die tong and said- see you’re all better now! I said of course I’m all better now, you’ve sedated me. Doesn’t mean you’ve figured out why I’m not able to breathe properly.

They took blood and called me the Friday morning to come for an X-ray as the blood work came back with a high marker for clots. Finally, I thought, we’re getting somewhere. We do the X-ray and no clots according to them. Throw more antibiotics at me and sends me home.

The next Tuesday when the antibiotics are done again I still feel like the dog’s backside and decide to go back to my GP. She then decides I have acute bronchitis and back to the pharmacy with a script as long as my arm. On Saturday 26 June all the meds are finished and I have another asthma like attack and my entire chest is heaving with a simple breath. Decide to go to another hospital’s ER -maybe they would do better…