(For visually challenged reader, the image shows a person walking in a desert, dwarfed by huge sand dunes. A long line of their footsteps can be seen behind them)
Just Around The corner He said it was No mention of sand The endless miles of dunes I should give up, turn around But which way will take me back home? Far away from all this endless sand Not further away from all I hold dear…
ABOUT US: For those new to our website and blog, we would like to thank you for visiting. Between us, we write in several different genres, so there should be something for everyone to enjoy. Anita cannot abide computers, so I (Jaye) do all the technical (oily rag) stuff! Our books tend to be varied, from horror to supernatural romance and coming of age, and mystery thrillers. We try to keep our website interesting with guest posts, bloggers, poetry, and reviews for all the books we read. Our books are shown in the right-hand sidebar and clicking on the images should take you straight to Amazon.
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And looking surprisingly well after her ordeal and determined to carry on where she left off before the proverbial stuff hit the fan.
Anita also came home with even more medication than last time, plus a daily injection, all of which to be carefully administered by little old me.
We also have a new set of worries, due mainly to the fact that Anita is still not fixed, not quite yet. It will take a pacemaker to do that. Her heart must settle down first, clear the rather large clot that is preventing the left side of her heart from working properly, and recover enough for a pacemaker to be possible.
This requires an intense regime of blood thinners and warfarin, a nasty drug that needs constant monitoring and blood tests. All worth it if the pacemaker returns Anita to full health!
Turns out it wasn’t a second heart attack after all. Due to the massive damage the first one caused and the presence of a large clot inside Anita’s heart, it just couldn’t cope. It stopped minutes after we arrived at the emergency department. Luckily, they managed to bring her back, but it was touch and go for a while.
Apparently, the first heart attack was what they like to call the widow maker because it is usually fatal.
So the fact Anita is here at all is miraculous and something we are all grateful for…
Waiting five weeks for the MRI was bad enough, then we had to wait for the results, so when the telephone rang, our hopes soared.
Our hopes quickly dived again when it wasn’t the results, just the Cardiac Failure nurse, ringing to make an appointment to visit and run checks on Anita’s progress.
When she arrived, complete with plastic apron, gloves and mask, she proceeded to carry out a barrage of tests in our living room, including Anita’s blood pressure, both sitting and standing, a full ECG, breathing monitored and then a ton of questions about the medication and how she was feeling.
The nurse seemed quite pleased with her findings, but changed several medications, according to instruction from the consultant.
There were so many questions I wanted to ask, but I knew instinctively that she probably couldn’t answer them. The only thing that can do that will be the results of the MRI.
In the six weeks since Anita’s heart attack, she has become stronger and is able to continue pretty much as normal. She gets very out of breath going upstairs, and this is a strong indication that she still has a long way to go.
After the nurse left, I had a look at the copy of the paper readout from the ECG machine, and I have to say that I have never seen a reading that bad. The familiar, normal spikes were non-existent.
I am quite familiar with heart patterns, due to my own heart attack a few years ago, and this one resembled nothing I had ever seen before.
Printed at the end of the printout were the machines conclusions and the words myocardial damage said it all. Among all the technical jargon was the word aberrant, which I knew meant deviating from what is normal. At that point, I would have given my eye teeth to know how badly Anita’s heart is damaged and/or what the MRI found…
I looked up at him, my cup of tea on its way to my lips, wondering why he bothered with his objections. “What stuff are you referring to?”
“Tea… filthy stuff, it’s got more caffeine in it than coffee. Can’t be good for you…”
I wanted to ignore him, refuse to become involved in yet another tedious argument, but found myself speaking. “I read somewhere that tea is good for your heart and your blood pressure. Which is more than can be said about the muck you drink!”
He snorted like a pig. “That’s a load of rubbish! Has to be, it’s just a load of old leaves…”
“Very special leaves that come from the Camelia shrub. Did you know it was once so expensive it was kept in locked boxes?”
“Best place for it, if you ask me…” He reached for the tv remote. I had him on the run.
“They have been drinking tea for 2000 years in China, and then there’s the Japanese tea ceremonies…”
“Still no reason for you to be guzzling it, though…”
As I stared at him, he looked at me, with what I thought was a flicker of defiance in his eyes. Oh no you don’t, I thought. “If you want any supper tonight, you’ll be a dear and go and put the kettle on… and don’t forget to put the milk in first. Just the way I like it…”
I’m sure it wasn’t my imagination, but last week seemed to crawl … each day longer than the one before as we waited for the day of the MRI to arrive…
Apart from the time Anita broke her ankle a few years ago – she hasn’t needed any medical attention in the last fifty years, which is just as well, for she wouldn’t have gone anyway! She hates doctors and hospitals, but luckily, always been disgustingly healthy…. which has left her without the patience necessary for a sick person!
When Saturday finally arrived, our nerves were stretched to the limit. There were quite a few iffy moments, moments where Anita swore (literally) that she wouldn’t be going, that she couldn’t stand any more of the waiting and worrying. I tried hard not to dwell on what might happen if she stuck her heels in, but luckily, she didn’t push it.
We gave ourselves two hours to get to Basingstoke hospital as we hadn’t been there before and uncertain about the route and the traffic.
Better to arrive miles to early than to risk being late!
We hadn’t gone far before we were diverted. I should have known then that fate was having a laugh, for this diversion seemed to encompass the whole of Hampshire, taking us far away from Basingstoke. I didn’t think we would ever find it the blessed place. The satnav was as confused as we were, kept changing her mind and issuing ridiculous directions. In the end, we simply followed the diversion signs and prayed we wouldn’t end up in Land’s End.
Fate didn’t stop laughing when we finally drove into the hospital car park, either. It was the wrong one for the MRI clinic. By this time, we were all frazzled, and there was steam coming out of Anita’s ears!
We finally found it with literally minutes to spare…
We were not allowed into the waiting room, so retired to the car. Luckily, we managed to grab a free coffee and found somewhere shady to drink it in.
The MRI took just over an hour, and from Anita’s account, it was a miserable experience. The room was too hot, the machine cramped and noisy, and she had to keep her face mask on all the time.
When she emerged, with large dressings on both arms from the injections, she looked exhausted, but extremely glad to see us.
Driving home, exhausted but glad it was all over, our stomachs started rumbling, so when we spotted a Welcome Break nestled among the trees, we didn’t hesitate. We ended up eating our lunch in the middle of a beautiful pine forest, a peaceful haven so far removed from the morning we just had as it was possible to get. The fried chicken never tasted so good!
The only thing left to do now, is wait for the verdict!
P.S. We want to thank everyone for their good wishes, hugs and prayers… I really think they have helped so much with Anita’s recovery…
Thinking thoughts I dare not speak They stick like thorns inside my head How long can I hold them there? Before they fester, fight their way out Hurting those I’m thinking about If I don’t feed them with further thought Will they go away, stay unspoken? Then my family will think I am still nice My friends will still like me until like most locked boxes Someone finds a way to unlock them…
Sally Cronin provided the photo for this month’s photo challenge:
I Should have Held her more Loved her better She ran far from me Held by a lobster pot golden mermaid waits freedom This I must give back to her now Together we live beneath the waves I will hold her more, love her much better…
Living in misery Attended by misery and woes Inferior in performance or quality Very unpleasant: deplorable
For the past two weeks, it has been a case of all the above, since Anita, the head of our family had a nasty heart attack. She also had pneumonia, which was complicating matters even further, but due to the corona virus lockdown, we were not allowed to visit her in the hospital.
So for seven miserable and wretched days we worried our socks off at home, wondering what was going on and how Anita was feeling.
On the third day, we managed to acquire the number of the telephone, which was conveniently right next to Anita’s bed, which enabled us to speak to her and find out how she was feeling and what had been happening. This contact was a godsend for all of us and went a long way to keeping us from self-detonating!
Anita is back home now, but the misery is still present, although not as intense as it was before, as she is still very ill. She has extensive damage to her heart and as yet no way of knowing the exact prognosis. There is a waiting list for the MRI which will ascertain the damage, but until that day arrives, wretched will unfortunately be the order of the day…
Seven years ago, when I had my heart attack, I was rushed to hospital in the middle of the night. The ambulance crew ran the tests on the way, and when I arrived at the hospital, I was taken straight to the Cath Lab, where a stent was fitted in the failing artery.
I went home the following day, as right as ninepence…
I know most of the family were expecting something similar when Anita collapsed and was diagnosed with heart failure last week.
Unfortunately, she was not so lucky.
This past week has been upsetting, confusing and frustrated us all to hell and back. Due mainly to the restricted access to information because of Covid 19. We couldn’t visit Anita, and the doctors are so busy, nailing one of them down for a detailed explanation was well nigh impossible. We had to gradually piece together all the scraps of information until we had a clearer picture, but the result of our detective work was heart breaking. Ours that is…
Not only did Anita have a nasty chest infection, and a build up of fluid on her lungs, but her heart was so severely damaged that any treatment apart from medication would probably have killed her.
So we, and the doctors played a waiting game for most of the week, adjusting her medication repeatedly until she began to respond. Anita didn’t become stable (don’t you just love that expression?) until late on Thursday.
And this is where the confusion started again in earnest. They began talking about Anita coming home over the weekend. But how could she come home without any treatment for her damaged ticker?
It wasn’t until we became first class pests that we learned of their plan.
Because of Covid 19 and the incredible workload at the hospital, and taking into account Anita’s increasing cabin fever, it was decided to allow her to come home to continue to recover until she was well enough for an MRI to assess the extent of the damage to her heart. Only then would they know how to treat it.
So, as of late Saturday afternoon, we collected Anita and became official carers. Armed with a pharmacy of pills, a strict regime, and orders to make sure she rested, we knew it was down to us to keep her going…
But I am sure that all your good wishes, hugs and healing prayers played a huge part in getting Anita this far, and we (the whole Dawes family) thank you all from the bottom of our hearts!