Monday, July 19, 2010

New Direction

Last post I mentioned that I took a trip which kept me from painting on schedule.  
The trip was to the hospital to be treated for what turned out to be a heart attack.  In the next week, when they dry, I will be posting some paintings which I will work on this week, resulting from that experience and some reflections on hospitals, mortality and what not.  It is a bit of a departure from my usual fairly impersonal posts, but while the impressions are fresh it seems like a good idea to share them as they may be of some benefit to others.
Here is an account of what happened.On Sunday, July 11, I walked up my back  stairs carrying grocery bags -  It was very hot and the bags were heavy.  I was carrying a 'lazy man's load' as my grandmother would have said.  Four bags at once. I am 71 with no history of heart disease.  The next thing I knew I was in the hospital being told I had had a heart attack, that a stent had been inserted in my artery and I was doing okay.  This of course was quite frightening but probably not as frightening as it should have been.  I was in no pain.
I apparently have 'global amnesia' about the experience after the trip up the stairs with my groceries but this is what happened according to very reliable sources.
I called my daughter Gail who lives a block away and said I had chest pain, pain in my arms and tingling fingers.  She came quickly over and gave me an aspirin.  Soon after her husband, Steve, arrived and my husband, Walter.  They put me into the car and took me to Jefferson Hospital where they very quickly arranged for me to have a stent put into a clogged artery.  My husband, Walter,  is a retired Cardiologist, my daughter is an Obstetrician, Gynecologist and my son in law, Steve,  is a Gastroenterologist.  My husband worked at Jefferson and my son in law is an attending there now.   Things happened quickly because they all knew what they were doing and were able to get things rolling in a hurry.  I am extremely lucky.
I am home.  I feel fine if a bit shaky.
I will post more about my hospital experience as the days go by and I have paintings related to my hospital stay to post.

First lesson - if someone appears to be having a heart attack give them an aspirin.
Second lesson - call your doctor on the way to the hospital or someone you know who is a doctor and see if they can get things rolling quickly.