The good and bad news of our hospital stint (pun intended)

If I ever write a book, the title will be, “You can’t make this stuff up.”

Jamie was once again in the hospital for chest pain this week. On Tuesday night, he had meetings at the church and I asked him to drop off something.

“I probably can’t.”
“Why not?”
“I think I need to go to the ER,” he casually informed me.

He then revealed he’s been having chest pain since FRIDAY but never said anything because he knew I’d freak and make him go to the hospital and he would have missed his pumpkin party and weigh-off.

Death vs. a pumpkin party? Priorities.

And so they admitted him Tuesday night. We knew they wouldn’t be able to do anything until the next morning and that he’d need an angiogram. The nurse told him it was OK to eat breakfast so imagine how pleased he was to have the cardiologist come in a few minutes later to inform him he couldn’t eat before the procedure, that he now had to wait six hours, and that they were so backed up they probably wouldn’t be able to get him in until the next day.

This news did not go over well with me, in large part due to the already-overwhelming medical bills we’re paying off. There was NO WAY I was paying for an extra day in the hospital due to THEIR screw-up.

I was still at home at that point so I made some calls. They were not pleasant but apparently my loving threats hit home because 20 minutes later, Jamie called me.

“You contacted the hospital, didn’t you?!”
“How did you know?”
“They just informed me they found an opening for 3 p.m. today.”

Sometimes it pays off to be me.

The findings? When Jamie had surgery back in February, there were three arteries that were almost completely blocked as a result of his chemo radiation treatments he had in his late-20s. For two of the main arteries, they were able to put stints. The third artery is a smaller branch off the main and due to its position and size, they were unable to do anything with it. The only possible solution to open it up is bypass surgery and at this point, they don’t want to go there.

Believe me, neither do I.

And so they think it’s that darned third artery that is causing the chest pain. Because it’s not a main artery, they’re not overly concerned about it but if the pain continues they’ll reevaluate. They hope by switching up his meds, they can help him manage the pain.

So, I guess it’s a bit of good news (the stints in the main arteries are fine) and bad news (there’s nothing we can do about the blocked third artery). We hope Jamie will return home today.

I’ve got to say once again how grateful I am for our awesome friends and family and their outpouring of support. Whether it’s watching the kids, bringing us dinners or just offering to help in anyway they can, I am so humbled by everyone’s support. And I’m hoping that someday soon we can return the favor.

Read: Cease from being charity cases.

The kids and I spent most of Wednesday afternoon and evening in the hospital, with a quick trip to the nearby pumpkin farm while Jamie was doped up in recovery. I’ve become disarmingly comfortable in a hospital setting this year but what I was not prepared for: Jamie’s celebrity status.

As two nurses were wheeling Jamie into surgery, he managed to worked it into the conversation that he grows giant pumpkins. Both of the women scrutinized him, turned to me, recognized The Hair and exclaimed, “You were on The Marriage Ref!” Jamie then delighted his captive audience.

It didn’t stop there. Following his surgery, his new nurse not only remembered him from six months ago (horrors to be considered a “regular” in the cardiac unit) but also from TV.

It was my worst nightmare on many levels.:)

But here’s for hoping we’ll be able to once again pick up where we left off and start running again today.

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