As Serious As a Heart Attack – An Observer’s Perspective
The sounds of early morning are trickling in from outside. I have been up for hours and already feel exhausted before the day has begun. Crying and pounding my fist into the bed, I find myself bent over yelling, you are going to die, please listen to me, please. The words of anguish fell on to no one’s ears but God’s. Unbeknownst to us, the stopwatch had started, and we were in the race of his life.
Several minutes later, he emerged from the shower, saying, ” I think you better take me to the hospital.” In that instant, my old self stepped into high gear. Over the past several months, I had envisioned this moment 100 times, and my instincts knew precisely what to do, my internal 911 protocol began clicking through the steps.
As the dispatcher asked what my emergency was, I began calmly dressing and systematically walking through the needed steps – I hear myself stating the emergency and my assessment of his condition. Out of the corner of my eye, I can see, hear, and have a sense that he is scared and angry that I am calling for help. “No No, just take me; don’t call them.” I shut off all emotional connection to the situation and proceed with my inner protocol. I unlock and open our front door. I place the dog behind closed doors. I put his wallet and cell phone in my purse. I am now, handing him four baby aspirin and telling him to chew them per the dispatcher’s instructions, I try not to look at his eyes or to feel the terror emanating from his being. I must stay in the space of disconnect; I must remain in the disconnect.
Within a few minutes, two Magilla Gorrila Sheriffs are walking into our home. Their presence feels intrusive and frightening. This picture is getting too real, and the seriousness of the situation is beginning to escalate. The sheriffs engage him and ask what’s going on. His angst and resistance to the inevitable have heightened; for a nanosecond, I question myself if I made the right move in calling for help. He had all the signs but did not have the crushing pain. Maybe this isn’t anything. NO, I tell myself, you must stay in disconnect and proceed with the protocol.
The paramedics arrive next, two extremely young muscle men hauling their equipment burst into our sanctuary and begin to do their job. From the place of the observer, I answer the questions, DOB, list of medications, the beginning of the symptoms, known allergies, health factors, etc. He is still fighting and not wanting help, as they connect the leads for an EKG, I step out of the room. I must remain disconnected. I continue with my inner protocol.
I make the needed calls, his work, my daughter in law, to tell her I won’t be there to watch my granddaughter and then the dreaded call to his oldest daughter. I want to crack; I want to cry, but I stay in the disconnect and state the facts. Four minutes later, I walk back into the room. One of the young bucks is saying, “your EKG is normal, so it’s not a heart attack, but your blood pressure if very high, we should still take you in.” I want to scream at the man, DO NOT SAY THAT TO HIM. This is serious; this is a heart attack!
Then the unwanted guest arrived with a crushing entrance. The preverbal Elephant had made its presence known, and the scene takes on a new sense of urgency. They prepare him for transport. I can’t look at him, under my breath I say, I love you and grab my purse. They have instructed me to take my car and not to follow too close. I head out the back door as they are loading him into the ambulance.
From the car, I make the second call to his oldest daughter. This time to inform her that we are headed to the hospital, and it doesn’t look good. Somewhere during the past 15 minutes, I had called my daughter and my best friend, they both call me back as I am sitting suspended in the wait (weight) while they prepare him in the ambulance. I’m starting to crack, and I struggle to maintain my state of disconnect. I wish I knew what was happening. Will he make it? The stopwatch is ticking faster.
Arriving at the emergency room, I step up to the counter, it is early morning, and no one is there but me and the young man behind the reception desk. I state that my husband has been transported there by ambulance. The young man picks up the phone and says the following. “Hi, uh, yeah the cardiac arrest’s wife is here, oh OK, I will call the chaplain.” The room tilts, I feel like I’m going to faint. Did he say cardiac arrest? Chaplain? Someone starts screaming in my head Noooo Noooo Nooo, but the outer me remains in disconnect and moves towards an opening door and the lady who is introducing herself as the hospital’s chaplain. She says that she will take me to the family room where I can relax. My inner screaming voice is booming, RELAX, RELAX; what the hell do you mean Relax? The disconnected me turns to her and says, where is my husband, and what is his status? She casually states that she did not check on him before coming to get me and that she will check on his condition now and return in a few minutes. I could have punched a wall, but I maintained my composure. I must stay strong and composed; this is going to be a long haul.
An eternity later, the chaplain walked back in and said to follow her; she would take me to him. Now standing in an ER exam room, I see my husband writhing in pain. His eyes are tightly closed; I step over and caress his head and whisper in his ear that I am there and that I love him. His skin feels foreign to me; he is clammy and cold. I look up and realize that the faces, words, and energy in the room were screaming; THIS IS AS SERIOUS AS A HEART ATTACK. The ER doctor approaches me and says your husband is having an acute heart attack and we are doing everything we can to save his life. He then explains that the Cath Lab will be coming to get him shortly, and we are waiting for them now. Once again, I caress his head to reassure him or maybe myself, I then step outside of the room. This time the call to his daughter is made with emotion and urgency, her significant other is on the receiving end of the call. I state firmly and with intense emotion that this is serious. I am hoping that he would understand that it was life and death. I make sure that someone has called his other daughter to inform her. I was reluctant to make that call myself because she was at home with her newborn twins.
I step back into the room. My husband had heard the words of my phone call and is now crying out that at least he got to meet his new granddaughters, the twins. I touch him again, holding back tears and the urge to start screaming, I firmly state, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO DIE! At that moment, the Cath Lab team arrives, and we begin running through the hallways towards the next phase of this race. As we make our way through the corridors I am aware of the extreme urgency, and it is palpable in every dire step; I feel like I have left my body. An eternity had passed since I made the 911 call and now the stopwatch is ticking in a hyper mode.
As we reach the Cath Lab, someone grabs me and redirects my steps, and I watch as the team races away with my husband. My knees begin to buckle as the immense sense of separation overtakes me. Once again, I find myself in a designated family room. The unit’s supervising nurse hands me a stack of pamphlets and explains what will be taking place in the procedure room, then leaves me to my thoughts. My head is spinning; panic has begun to set in. The nurse returns to the entrance of the area where I am sitting and says the cardiologist would like to speak to me before he starts. I walk with her to the big doors that say NO ADMITTANCE; they swing open, and a small man garbed in scrubs and mask stands before me. He says that he wanted to introduce himself to me before he started. He too says the same scripted words told to me by the ER doctor, “we are doing everything we can to save his life. ” This interaction takes maybe 20 seconds, and then the doors close. Once again, I am left with the screaming voice in my head… no no no no this can not be happening. The stopwatch has now broken the speed of light.
Sitting alone in the designated family area with my internal screams and tears, I find myself blessed by an angel of Mercy. Just when I think I could not contain myself and was rapidly approaching hysteria, my dearest friend Marianne arrived. I had told her not to come. I did not want her to miss work, but there she was, stating she could not have let me face this alone.
By the grace of God, Marianne is a cardiac nurse with a gazillion years of experience. She did what I needed and spoke to me about possible scenarios and outcomes. We reviewed all the pamphlets, specifically the one showing the main arteries of the heart. She pointed to one specific area saying, we do not want the blockage to be in this area. She had come to keep me in the safety of disconnect.
Somewhere during all of this, I had decided to send out SOS text messages. I tend to be extremely private, and my husband even more, so this was a very unusual move on my part. But the screaming voice in my head knew that we were in battle and that all the troops needed to be summoned. Some call them prayer warriors, and others call them lightworkers; at that moment, I needed to know that we were surrounded by an army of angels and the power of God. So I started blasting away. Please pray, please send love, please encompass him in the healing frequencies, please please please, PLEASE!
Just two days prior, I had been immersed in the role of support for The Reconnection at the Psychotronics International Conference. I had been staffing a vendor’s table and supporting Dr. Eric Pearl and Jillian Fleer as they presented and facilitated a workshop. Now, as I was frantically scrolling through texts, I saw the last text we had exchanged at the end of the weekend. In a knee jerk response, I texted them, asking for prayers. I didn’t know if they were still in the Chicagoland area or if they had returned home, but I received a rapid response from both. Eric replied that he would facilitate a Reconnective Healing at that moment. Immediately all of my senses became alive with the familiar resonance of the Reconnective Healing Frequencies, and I felt the warm comfort of oneness envelope me.
The other responses poured in, prayer warriors, lightworkers, and Reconnective Healing Practitioners from around the world were surrounding us in a blanket of love. My Knowing sensed that the power of the multi-verse had been beckoned forward, surrounding us in the peace of God that surpasses all understanding. I no longer felt the need to be disconnected, and I became acutely present in the now.
Marianne had wandered off to find coffee and something for us to eat. As I sat there alone, the cardiologist returned to the family waiting room. The first words out of his mouth were, 58 minutes; we were able to intervene in 58 minutes. He continued with what he had discovered in my husband’s heart and what interventions he had made. Using the diagram in the pamphlet, he pointed to the area that Marianne had said “we don’t want the blockage to be in this area” and said that my husband had a total occlusion of that area. They had placed two stents to open the blood flow to that area. He then pointed to another area stating that area was 70% occluded and that my husband would have to return to place stents there, but for now, he was resting. The cardiologist continued saying something about scaring and damage to the heart and that the next 24 hours were critical. At that moment, I wasn’t absorbing much of what he said. I felt the sensation of extreme relief that my husband was alive and that something had been done to help him. The rest was something we would worry about tomorrow. The stopwatch had ceased its spectral counting of the minutes; we had won the 58-minute race.
I continue to wonder when the stopwatch started its deathly 58-minute tick tock. Was it the moment I called 911, was it when the EMT called ahead to the ER staff, or was it the moment my husband went through the ER doors? Someday I will ask that question, but for now, I am deeply aware that we were in a race against time, and with the grace of God, we won.
The seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, and months since that morning have been full of ups and downs. The relief of surviving the episode melted into the reality that much was lost. The 58-minute battle had now turned into a fight to return to some level of normalcy. Everything had changed and had to change. The daily routines, the food he ate, and how it was prepared, the barrage of medicines and medical appointments, and the constant monitoring of everything had infiltrated our lives.
The physical aspects of recovery were daunting, but far worse was the emotional and mental aspects. We soon discovered that we were both suffering from PTSD and from the guilt of should of, would of, could of. The words and attitude that my husband has used to push through were Acceptance, Compliance, and Gratitude. 100% compliance with the medical, dietary, and activity guidelines was crucial. Acceptance of a new way of life and a new way of defining self was pivotal, and immense gratitude for every single person who took part in the prayers, life-saving efforts, and continuation of care was imperative.
Several Days after the cardiac incident, my husband experienced an internal shift that would have shown a 10 on the Richter scale. He distinctly remembers the sense of letting go and detaching. He experienced the purest form of surrender and the space for off the scale healing.
Today, one hundred, twenty-five days later, I ponder the idea of miracles. Did a miracle transpire somewhere along this timeline? If so, what was the impetus or singular moment? Is that how miracles work, a zap, POW switch of outcomes or are miracles a gentle shift in perspective and realities? One day your truth is I have a damaged heart, and the next moment, you are being shown results that say you have a normal, healthy heart, with a few additional human-made apparatuses. Can this be true, can a heart heal the scars of a “Widowmaker Heart Attack?” Can you have a significantly reduced Ejection Fraction rate return to a normal rate? What repaired the damage and scarring to the heart? When was it healed? Was it the prayers and the Reconnective Healing Frequencies? Was it his focus on self-care, weight reduction, or was it mindfulness and living in the moment? These are answers we will never receive, but the seemingly miraculous outcome humbles us.
What I have come to KNOW is that a miracle is a minuscule change in one or more of life’s variables. It can be a slight change in the fuel combustion, the propulsion, or the degree of angle (angel). It can be as meek or as profound as a morning breeze. A miracle is a change in a life’s trajectory. The key here is to observe the subtle shifts and to allow the course corrective maneuvering to get you to your original “Go/No Go” alignment with your Creator or your return to balance.
To recognize miracles, we must first drop the “Newtonian Illusion” of cause and effect; I did this or that so I will receive this or that. A miracle is the knowing or remembrance that you are the miracle. You are an integral part of the miraculous never-ending, never beginning Creator or what I call the OMINIVERSE.
Walk like a miracle, talk like a miracle, share like a miracle. Be the miracle in other’s lives. Then watch in awe and wonder what you will begin to notice. A million gazillion miracles are happening all around you, and you are one of them! — And that my friend is as serious as a heart attack —
Important Medical Take-Aways
- My husband had hidden symptoms of heart disease for several months prior to his cardiac incident.
- He did not have high Cholesterol Levels or Diabetes. He did not smoke and he walked over 4 miles every day. His EKG showed no abnormalities.
- His Blood Pressure has been borderline for over 10 years.
- His body was sending messages of extreme fatigue and dis-ease.
- He has a paternal family history of cardiac disease.
- Anxiety, Angst and extreme Stress surrounding his work life had him out of balance and in a fight or flight state for several months prior.
- His pre-cardiac incident symptoms were at times mild to moderate, nothing was screaming or intense until the night before.
- His wife (me) felt an uneasiness surrounding his health and for months had been asking him to see a physician.
- He had an overall uneasiness like a “gloom and doom” feeling for 6 months prior to the incident.
I am one who understands that our sense of time may be an illusion, and I often wonder if time as we know it exists. But on that particular morning, we became acutely aware of the preciousness of every second as if a contract had been executed with the notation time was of the essence. Early detection and intervention are LIFE-SAVING factors when faced with the possible symptoms of a heart attack. What is your internal/external 911 protocol?