Please indulge me in this rather long update. At the very least, it will distract you from worrying about the election. ; )
Yesterday marked the one-month mark since my open-heart surgery, which I find amazing. I’m sorry it has taken me awhile to reach out. It went so fast! And I’ve been a bit overwhelmed.
First of all, I want to thank you for your support via this platform, as well as via texts, calls, emails, visits and cards. I’ve gotten food, chocolate, a book, clothing and even a puzzle! Not to mention great lists of shows to binge watch. THANK YOU!
I will confess that when I decided to use Caring Bridge it was more for efficiency’s sake—to get the word out in one place. As an independent person, I was not focused on needing a lot of support. However, support is what you all provided and indeed very much what I needed. Just the awareness that you were there made a huge difference that morning, at 5:30am, October 1st, when I walked in to be prepped for surgery. A surreal and terrifying moment.
People have been asking me “how are you doing?” and my partly-joking reply is “I’m not sure, I’ve never done this before.” But from what the doctors and nurses are saying, I am doing very well. I did not expect to be up and active so quickly. They want you walking twice a day. My motto is “do what they tell you to do.” I’m getting home physical therapy and home nursing. I’m now completely off pain meds, which seems like a miracle, considering. I’m doing social outings and (safely) hosting visitors. My chest is sore, but not the sharp, burning pain from before. I am surprisingly busy with walks, managing meds, doctors appointments and getting myself fed. And, of course, getting a good night’s sleep. Day by day I am getting stronger and my endurance is going up. I see my cardiologist in one week, so I will get his updated view of my progress soon. Updates to follow.
I want to thank Dr. Glenn Egrie, my surgeon, the anesthesiologist, Dr. Greenberg, as well as the many nurses, orderlies, PT people, nurse’s aides and other healthcare providers. Every one of them was compassionate, kind and knowledgeable. Yet another example of how much the quality of our lives depends on the kindness, and expertise, of strangers.
While it varies widely, the estimate is it will take another 1-2 months to get some normalcy back in my life, and another 3-5 months for full recovery. I will need to be patient, which is not my strong suit. I have been counseled by some of you, who have been down this road, not to rush things. I am following this advice.
That's all for now. Thank you from the bottom of my (recently repaired) heart for all your love and generosity. I am deeply grateful and so very honored to have each of you in my life.