Saturday, February 27, 2010

Greg Update Feb. 27th, 2010

Okay, this is not a good day for me to begin with, so please bare with me. 15 years ago TODAY was 'the' worse day of my life. Bar none.

I was 9 months +1 day pregnant and I found out my baby Alex had died inside of me. The doctor showed us there was no heartbeat on the Ultrasound and none of us could not believe it. The grief I experienced on that day is something I cannot really describe. I mean... I had a dead baby inside of me!

These are two excerpts from the book I am writing regarding this day, 15 years ago:

"The nurse accompanied my mother and I to the perinatal office where they have more sophisticated Ultrasound machines to confirm what they called 'fetal demise'—how I hated that word. Alex was full term; he was far from a fetus. I remember needing to lean on someone to walk, remember feeling like I was out of my body, like I was living someone else's tragedy. I did not know what to think, say or do, I was numb. I could not even cry."

"That was most likely the worse day of my life; I shed more tears that day than the previous ten years combined. Nick went home with me, and from there we called the doctor to schedule an induction. I would have to wait that whole day and that following night before I could go in. It was the longest day of my life. I just sat there on the couch, unable to do nothing, unable to eat, unable to speak, unable to do anything but cry."

Anyway... this blog is not about Alex, I just wanted everyone to know that if I sound a little emotional... this is why. I don't cry often about Alex anymore, I am not someone who cries or thinks about this constantly, but this is HIS week. It will always be.

My dad made me chuckle today. He asked me why every bad thing has to happen to ME! Well, I told him, at least it's not self-inflicted, right? By that I mean, it's not like I caused any of it. Yeah, some days I feel sorry for myself, I nag, I complain, I get moody, but those other 350 or so days of the year I am able to look at the bright side of things, I can find the silver lining, thinking what I can learn from it. I don't want to be a victim. I have my health, and I cherish it, and I am able to care for my loved ones. That's what life is about.


Greg, Connor and I came home Wednesday night from having the Carotid Doppler test (among several others), all with a negative outcome except for the blood being WAY too thin. They told us that if they would not call us in the AM by 10, to call them to get to see the Neurologist-with the sole intent to get an MRI basically. No surprise here, they didn't call, so I called them at roughly 10minutes after 10AM (I am not messing around, LOL) and the lady called me back to go see a certain Neurologist nearby at 1:30pm. We went in and the Dr, thankfully, was only too willing to get Greg to do the MRI, he was very worried, even told us to go in STAT! Greg is so funny, he was feeling quite awful and wanted to do everything 'tomorrow', or 'some other time'. I insisted, mainly because I've never seen him in such pain and I was worried to death. He kept telling me that his headache was caused by him not eating well. I was doubtful. We went in to get the MRI, which took about 3 hours, and then we went home. All Greg could do was lie down and sleep. Even texting took a toll on him.

The next day I got a call from the Neurologist and he literally scared me to death. He told me, to my shock, that there was a large hemorrage on the deep right side of his brain, that he was to get off blood thinners immediately and to bring him to the ER right away and that they would need to keep him into observation in ICU for the next 3 days. He even told me that if I wasn't going to bring him in, that he was going to come and get him!!! I freaked out. I went in to Greg, told him what was going on, he wasn't happy, but we managed to get his bag packed, get him dressed and all and on our way within 45 minutes.

At the ER they brought him right in (we didn't have to wait in any line), they got him a bed in the ER right away and within one hour of him being there, they took his blood, did a EKG, a chest Xray, a CATscan, give him anti-seizure medication and hooked him up all over the place. I never, ever saw this fast work anywhere, it was astounding. Greg was actually feeling better right now that he had been in the past several days, so when people asked me if he was okay my only answer was, well, yes?

Three doctors came in to talk to us. The first was a NeuroSurgeon, very nice man, he told us that what Greg had was a hemoragging stroke. There are two kind of strokes, a clot stroke and a hemoragging stroke. This, of course, explains a LOT. Explains why his cholesterol #s, blood pressure and all were normal and he still stroked out. There were no CLOTS anywhere that caused this. So, what was the cause? The vein that burst was in the SAME area of the brain as his previous one, and that clot stroke he had last September weakened the veins in that portion of his brain. He told us no excercise could have caused this, that this is just 'bad luck' so to speak. It was going to happen eventually.

The other thing he told us that I thought was interesting was that the blood thinners might have had something to do with this, but that their main concern at this point was to make sure he stopped bleeding, that the blood in his brain was not going to CLOT because that would be very, very dangerous, they were happy that he hadn't had any seizures, so their hope was to keep an eye on his progress as to make sure the blood absorbed back into the brain. He confirmed that his headaches had been caused by the bleeding. Later Greg told me his CATscan already showed that there was less blood and that the doctors were pleased with his progress.

The second & third Doctor (both hospital Neurologists) pretty much said the same thing. I thought it was interesting that they both asked if Greg smoked or drank. Greg has never been a smoker, and hasn't had a sip of beer since his last stroke. They are all baffled that he's having these problems and he's only 50. There is no history in his family of this either, so, no real warning.

Since yesterday Greg had two blood (plasma) transfusions to thinken his blood, and he'll have at least one more tomorrow. He's had no less than a dozen blood tests to check for all kinds of things just today, but all in all he's in good spirits. I'll be able to go see him tomorrow when his friend from work comes and watches the kids. Hospitals don't allow children under 16 to go see patients, especially in ICUs, since they have patients with H1N1 up there as well.

I want to thank everyone, especially Mike & Don, for being such amazing friends to Greg. Thank you everyone for the sweet words, prayers and kind support. I will probably give an update in a few days, after Greg comes home from the hospital.