Monday, November 23, 2009

Fun With Gloves

My dad and step mom live in an idyllic country setting about two hours south of St. Louis. It has a pond fed by a natural spring. It is surrounded by National Forest. It is quiet and private. It is picturesque. It is nowhere near emergency services.

So, 10 days ago when my dad thought he was having a heart attack, my step mom had to drive him to the nearest hospital, which then helicoptered him to St. Louis.

He arrived at the hospital on Saturday. All day Saturday, Sunday and Monday, they alternated between getting tests performed, hearing that the tests showed nothing wrong with his heart, and sitting for hours without any information at all. On Monday night my dad was ready to check himself out. The doctors and frantic tears from Linda convinced him to stay for one more test.

On Tuesday they performed a cardiac cath. On Wednesday they performed triple bypass surgery to repair three of the five blockages. He woke up during the surgery, something they said would never happen. He also put up quite a fight with the nurses after the surgery, trying to get out of bed and pull out his tubes and wires. It took four of them to hold him down and finally get him sedated. The phrase, "Strong as an ox" comes to mind.

On Thursday morning they removed the breathing tube and moved him out of ICU one day ahead of schedule because he was doing so well.

On Friday they diagnosed him with MRSA, the antibiotic resistant superbug.

On Saturday, I brought the boys up to surprise him. They weren't allowed in the room because of the MRSA, but they could stand in the hall and talk to him, which they did.

And what do you do if you are a young boy at the hospital? You play with medical gloves. They make great balloons. Luke discovered while wandering the halls of the hospital that if you squeeze them just right while wearing them they make a fun squeak. Luke was happy to demonstrate this fun trick.

Yesterday my dad got to go home. He will have months of recovery, but I think he'll surprise everyone with how quickly he gets there. As long as his five large dogs take it easy on him.


Unplanned Cooking said...

I'm sorry to hear about your dad. About five years ago my dad had a heart attack around this time of year. He did great during his surgery, and is still exceeding doctors' expectations.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Lizzie said...

I'm so glad I came across your blog. I'm sorry that your dad had health problems, but I'm glad that I've found another fellow blogger who is outnumbered by boys (I have four boys). :)

Jen said...

Oh man, I hope your dad makes a speedy recovery. That is frightening.
As for your boys...yeah, I can relate. LOL

Anonymous said...

Hi Heather, how do we email you? I wanted to give you a personalized story about your blog, email me at and I'll send you what I want to do.

PS- I'm from St. Louis! Went to Ladue.

Kathy said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your dad. I hope he makes a speedy recovery. Yes, hospital gloves are fun!