November 3, 2006

TtBTF, #3

Things to Be Thankful For, #3: Pat's return to health.

We got to see her last weekend at the family bash to celebrate Laura's birthday (actually tomorrow, but we're hosting yet another tournament, which is a topic for a different blog.) We enjoyed comparing near-death experiences (her latest was, of course, just before her trip to the Critical Care Unit when her heart stopped for about 6 seconds; my only one (that I know of) was just after Emily was born when my blood pressure dropped to about 17/11.)

In the interests of science, here is what we discovered:

~Unlike Santa's Little Helper, we did not see a bright light ("Come to the light, boy, come to the light...") Perhaps this was because neither of us stayed in the state very long.

~While we both agreed to a vague sense of something being very wrong, especially hearing the monitors go off and knowing the hospital personnel were rushing towards us, the most overwhelming sensation was a desire to close our eyes and rest. ("Perchance to dream...")

~Pat said she noticed her vision narrowing, as if a set of double doors were closing right in front of her face. I didn't, but I gave in early on to the urge to close my eyes as part of the resting. She also said she felt her vision going back the other way--the doors opened--as they got her heart going again. I only remember returning to awareness and wondering what the fuss was (and when the @#!& I could see my BABY!). That was when the--usually, nice--recovery room nurse printed out my BP chart and shoved it in my face, saying, "You are stressing me out!" (In retrospect, I hope I had impressed them with my sense of humor; otherwise, that would be a pretty awful bedside manner! But I think they knew I'd be okay with it...I had been joking about Hurricane Emily in the OR, after all....)

~It didn't hurt at all for either of us. Of course, your mileage may vary, but as long as one's not wounded, this should be good news for anyone who's worried about Death. Not that either of us is eager to "go there" again.

Anyway, I'm glad Pat managed to stay with us.

1 comment:

Tami said...

That is so scary and fascinating at the same time. I had almost exactly the same experience when my own BP tanked right after they completed giving me and epidural when I was in labor with Wrenna. I, too, remember that intense need to just close my eyes and rest. I wonder if that's a purely physiological reaction to the body's machinery shutting down, or more of a psychological fight or flight protective response to shield our brains from suffering additional trauma (mental or physical) as a result of the circumstances. Hmmmmmm

I have also experienced that "automatic-door" sensation of vision beginning to narrow, during the aforementioned time, and also at times of feeling faint.

How little we truly know about ourselves...