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10:57 a.m. - 2003-08-19
Memories and regrets
Heart surgery sure has changed. I remember in the days my dad was still alive, we had to fly out to the Mayo Clinic somewhere in the mid-west for heart surgery. And it was brutal. Several hours of surgery followed by several months of recovery. I've heard the story of his first open heart so many times, I feel like I was there.

I was about 1 or so when he had it. He was struggling, and his heartbeat was weak. He wasn't making progress. The nurses took a baby from the infant cardiac unit to put beside his bed. They said it would remind him that he was a father. The baby cooed, gurgled and cried at intervals. And little by little, he regained his stregnth and recovered. That was one of four total surgeries and 4 total heart attackes. The last one killed him at 37 years of age.

Now, my step father has a heart attack, they transport him to a major hospital one hour away, do about an hour of surgery, and he's coming home today. Two closed arteries, two springy tube things inserted through the groin, and bam. Home. On his way to back work in two weeks. I'm amazed. And a little sad.

Its hard not to think about the what ifs. What if we had Lipitor in the 80s? What if all they had to do was stick a couple of tubes through my Dad's arteries to keep him going? Why did a good man that I loved so deeply have to die at 37, when this other man for whom I have no love or caring for can whip through a heart attack/surgery as if he had a sprained ankle?

Its sad for me to remember that I cried so hard when I thought my dog was going to die last week. Yet, for this man, I only felt fear that if he did pass away, I'd have to go back and live with my mother. Give up my freedom. Horrible, isn't it? Yet a friend told me yesterday that its OK not to grieve when there is no love lost. So, maybe not so horrible.

So, I think its time for me to think of other things, other people. All this regret and lost hope are destructive and unworthy of my time and attention.

Thanks to those strangers who left notes for me. It astounds me that anyone would take the time to read my story and respond.

Thanks to all those good friends who offered their homes, their hugs and their humor. Love ya all!

Time to get back on track with the assholishness that is Zencelt.


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