Skip to main content

The first part of October I got another respiratory infection, it seemed to have gone away and I was off at my usual pace very soon after finishing a round of antibiotics.

A very enjoyable visit from one of our children who lives on the West coast, a trip to San Francisco for another daughter's birthday and a visit with some of my husband's family.

Life moved along and I just kept blowing off that pesky little cough.

There were things to do. Another trip in order to take care of some unfinished business on the East coast. No time to stop and nurse a dang cold.

Then Monday morning I was awakened by a strange voice, restrained, with a tube down my throat, 1800 miles from home.

As a nurse explained where I was, and why, I started fighting as reality sunk in.

"This had not happened to me."

"Me, almost die? Not me."

"Not me, I was living life."

And that strange voice again:
"Stop fighting so you can breathe good enough and in the next two hours we'll pull the tube."

My mind screamed, "the hell with that, it's coming out now."
The restraints on my wrists left that thought as just that, a thought, not an action.

In the next few hours I was in and out of consciousness. All I wanted was to see the faces of my daughters, one more time, just one more time.  
There was no bargaining, just a sheer sense of fighting like hell to stay on this side of consciousness.
Life had almost ended permanently. For me four days had gone away, zappo, never to be gotten back. I'll gladly give them up for a few more 24 hours on this earth.

There's so much I don't remember. After getting off my flight last week I finally gave in and decided to get treatment for  this "minor cold." I ended up in the ER with a pulse-ox of 69. They admitted me and I was stable for about 16 hours before I crashed around midnight last Wednesday. (if there was no OND, that would be

Monday morning while staring at the white board on the wall in my ICU room I kept trying to absorb the fact I had lost four days.
Four days? That board couldn't be right, it was only Thursday.  I had a flight to catch back home on Sunday, but Sunday and that flight had come and gone while I was unconscious.
But I was still here, that meant everything.

As my mind ever so slowly came back to life, it raced with thoughts of people I would have never seen again, never said things to that matter so much.
Suddenly hugging my husband, my children, my step-daughter, petting my dogs, all these things became worth more than anything in the world.

Many people here who I've been blessed to cross paths with, online and in person, crossed my mind.

The weird thing is that I thought of people I've had disagreements with, because any disagreements or slights whether real or imagined just fade away in any importance.
They mattered. I mattered. Petty shit just didn't matter, I hope it doesn't ever matter like I once let it.

My thoughts the last few days have mainly been ones of gratitude, but my feelings are all over the place.
The first night I was off the respirator I was terrified to go to sleep.

Among other family members my sister flew out here and brought a picture of my daughters. At moments I look at it and smile feeling so much gratitude, other moments I bust out in tears, my precious babies I came so close to never holding again.

The feelings keep coming and going in waves.

They say it will be a long recovery.

This weekend is my birthday, I will not gripe about growing older, I'll fully embrace it.

Many of the friends I thought of this last week I was supposed to see at the SF Kossack holiday party this weekend, that was my birthday present from my husband.
So many in this community that would have been there, or not been there, mean so much to me, for the good and the bad.

I won't be there, that makes me sad. On the other hand, I'm just damn glad to still be here.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site