Thursday, August 4, 2011

Day 4 of TX Evaluation -- Heart Catheterization

The prayers worked. Seriously, thank you, thank you. Today was a little rough and long but could have been so much worse. Again, the nurses and Doctors who attended me today were so kind and gentle...always a reminder to me that I am being watched over and blessed during this process.

I got to the hospital at 7 am and was prepped for the right heart cath. There are a few different approaches to this procedure, the best being going in through the neck and threading the scope down to the heart. The most difficult approach is going in through the groin and threading up to the heart. In that case, you have to be laying completely flat (which is a difficult position for me to breathe in) and the recovery is about 6 hours as opposed to a 2-4 hour recovery if they can go through the neck. Needless to say, I was praying the Dr. would decide to go for the neck and to my great relief, he said he would attempt that first.

After I was all prepped, they let my mom come into the big waiting area and wait by my bed with me. They were very busy and I wasn't wheeled back to the operating room until 10:00. Because I was nervous and a little restless, I decided to pass the time by saying a prayer for each person who was wheeled out of the waiting room before me. It honestly calmed my nerves and I eventually fell asleep until it was my turn to be wheeled back. My mom snapped the above picture of me right before I left and to quote my Grandpa, I am only smiling because "I didn't understand the situation!"

I was given an aspirin and a Valium orally, and a sedative in my I.V. They also gave me a local anesthetic in my neck and then proceeded with the catheterization. I was awake but felt very foggy. I had a wonderful nurse with me for the duration. He maintained eye contact with me and reassured me through the whole procedure. It was not painful but I did feel pressure in my neck as they inserted the catheter and thread it down. The entire procedure took about 45 minutes to an hour but then I had to recover in the bed for 2 hours. They brought me some fruit to snack on and then I slept. Finally they transferred me to a chair and let my mom come back to sit with me for a while until I felt stable. I felt pretty strong and was able to dress myself and walk to where the car was waiting out front.

I was so relieved they were able to go through the neck and although my neck is swollen and sore now, I know it could be worse and I am so grateful it's not!

My mom and I head home tomorrow. I am anxious to be reunited with my family, get some good rest for a few days in my own bed, process this week in more depth and get as ready physically and emotionally for what is to come.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Kaylene Jackson said...

You are truly an amazing woman and you never stop teaching me one of a kind life experiences. I'm ashamed to say if it were me it wouldn't have occured to me to pray for everyone around me. Thank you for reminding me that I can do better and be better. You inspire me!!! xoxo

Carol Keener said...

I am so inspired by you Sharlie! Days of evaluation, capped off with a heart cath, and you are beautifully writing, the same day, in a way that all you have inside, just shines through your words. What a testimony of spiritual, emotional, womanly strength! Thank you for touching my life, even though you have no idea who I am!

Stacy Harmer said...

I'm so glad that the day went well for you! You really keep your energy so high by giving out your love so freely. Such a good reminder for me. Love you!

Dax said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dax said...

So proud of you and how you handle your trials with such peace.

I can't wait to brag about my sister getting accepted to Stanford.

Michelle S. said...

I feel so lifted every time I read your blog. You are such a gift in my life! I am grateful your evaluation went well. The Bishop has been gone for the last two weeks, but he should have cell reception tomorrow. I can't wait to catch him up on your progress. Love you Sharlie...and your adorable family.

Teresa said...

I am so glad things are going well so far. I am amazed by your ability to think of (and pray for) others-total strangers, no less-when you are going through so much yourself. You will be in my thoughts and prayers, Sharlie.

Anonymous said...

Thoughts and prayers are with you. Be strong and persevere because the journey doesn't end here..

Your unknown uncle. Bob

Anonymous said...

Wow - just got updated on the whole experience. I am so relieved that the testing went well and you had the stamina necessary. All of our prayers are working!!!! ;) Bella has been praying 2-3 times a day for our neighbor for the past few weeks and yesterday she said, "He must have Jesus powers by now!" from all of the prayers said for him. So there you go - with all of the people praying for you I can only imagine the powers you have! Super Sharlie!!! Love you! - Annette

Pamela Couvignou said...

I'm thinking of your EVERY DAY! Stay tough for so many who love you!


Cormorant said...

Sharlie! What strength and peace you always display! I cried and am always touched at the faith and kindness shown in your posts and updates. Even during hard times for you, you are ready to think of (and pray for) others. Our family is praying for you daily, thinking of you, and fasting for the best possible success. We love you and hope you feel our love and strength during this trying time!

Bee Drachenberg said...

Thinking of you Sharlie, and how you've touched our lives. And you don't even know so many of us, I'm sure! :) But believe me, you have a loving, praying, caring family of friends who think the world of you. You are an angel, and very precious in Gods eyes. Bless you and your beautiful family.

~ Bee

Lala said...

Shar- You are amazing and I KNOW you can do this! I'm thinking of you and praying and anything else I can do! I'd give you my lungs, but..... well, you know! You can find better! Ha! Love you so much girlie!
Love, La

Regular Joe Cool said...


Despite needing a double lung transplant, you continue to maintain a positive outlook on life! It is very inspiring and makes the small, petty inconveniences of life seem, well, small.

I have a close friend who has CF as well, she is 27 now. She's been lucky, hasn't been hospitalized, but there have been times where she struggles to breathe.

Thank you for continuing to inspire us and keeping us posted on your journey! You and your family are definitely in my thoughts, even though we haven't met. (I'm also a USANA Associate and love the family!)