sharing my life experiences, reflections and insights as a mother, a writer, an Occupational Therapist and and a spiritual being having a human experience

Posts tagged ‘MI’

June 18, 6 weeks post MI, A message to my soul

This is my first moment to breathe in a long time.  I worked 20 to 25 hours outside the home for 10 weeks (Feb to May), about double the hours I had been working, and still homeschooling three kids, ages 13, 9 and 2. The week that the extra hours ended and I was relieved to cut back from working every Sat, Sun, Mon and  Tues to just some Saturdays, Sunday and a few hours on Tuesday, my husband had a massive heart attack.  It’s been just over 6 weeks from that day, May 4, 2011.

I used to go out about once a week by myself to a coffee-house (to drink tea) with my lap top and journal and write and work on my website and play games.  It was my alone time where I was only responsible for myself, a needed break and recharge for a homeschooling mother of three as well as a chance to reconnect with my soul and my passion, writing.

Over the past week, it has become more obvious to me that I am experiencing “burn out” or caregiver overload.  My husband, Don,  has been home for over 4 weeks and improving but only watching the kids in small increments of time and not at night yet.   He is still recovering and so I play the role of mother, homeschool mom, wife, caregiver of my husband, Occupational Therapist for my husband as well as still working a couple of hours at a time when I can as an OT at the Nursing Home where I have been working for a while.

Today, the youngest two kids and my husband went across the street where our neighbor has agreed to give our shaggy dog, Olive, a much-needed hair cut.  My oldest is still asleep or maybe just in his room, he’s 13.  The house is quiet.

The last time I got to enjoy a quiet house was when my husband was in the hospital and I would wake up around 3 am, because I couldn’t sleep more than 3 hours when he was in the hospital for 12 days, and I would come to my lap top in the kitchen and get a few things done and then write.   I have been missing that early morning time to myself.  The lack of sleep caught up with me and shortly after my husband came home from the hospital, I slept well and slept in. Now I am ready to live on less sleep again, not 3 hours, but wishing for alone time in my house.

I am not religious but a spiritual person and I get daily messages from Neale Donald Walsch, author of the Conversations with God series of books.  His messages are sometimes very fitting to my day.  They became very timely when my husband, Don, was in the hospital.

And a few days ago one of the messages was very loud:

June 17, I got this message:

On this day of your life, Gina, I believe God wants you to know…

…that your Inner Life is begging you for some attention. Can you not hear your soul calling to you?  Please do not ignore this call any longer. Please do  , “Yeah, yeah, tonight.” Or…”Okay, I get it.   I will meditate every morning…”Stop everything right this minute. If only for 90 seconds. And say hello to your soul. Reconnect. Touch in. And listen to what you are trying to tell yourself.

So I set my blackberry down but I didn’t have to pause for even a second and my soul screamed, “BLOG, BLOG BLOG!!!!!!!!!!!!” at me.  I stayed quiet for a few minutes and tried to be in the silence.Writing has always been my form of meditation. When I journal, I find my own truth and things become more clear to me. Creating my blog recently, has been my way of finally sharing my journaling and my truth, something I have felt compelled to do for many years.  Despite 30 years of journaling, I only started my blog less than a year ago.
Yesterday, Neale sent a great message about choosing how we feel and I decided to choose to have a great day.  It worked for most of the day, but when you are in “burn out”, unless you stop and take time for yourself, no amount of choosing happiness in your day is going to prevent that burn out from seeping out into your life.  For me, in the form of yelling at my kids (loosing my peace and falling away from the parent I choose to be) and just feeling disappointed at the end of the day.  I had a sore neck yesterday and it lingered despite me exercising and stretching.  I was blaming it on my pillow and the fact that my two younger kids sleep with me and sometimes on top of me, reason enough to feel achy in the morning.  And today, the sore neck was still there.

This morning I decided to go out and take a walk by myself again (something I also used to do several times a week and have been trying to get back to) with my music.   I was checking Facebook on my blackberry, because I did that yesterday and had fun hosting a game of “Name that Tune” to my Facebook friends and I read this message from  Neale Donald Walsch on Facebook:

Your soul talks through your body, which gives you a here-and-now experience of your truth. If you want to know your truth on any subject, look to your feelings. Checking in with your body is the fastest way of doing this.

My first thought was, “My neck hurts, I wonder what my soul is trying to tell me.”  I kept walking, not giving it much more thought. When I got back from my walk, it occurred to me that the reason my neck hurts is most likely not my sleeping arrangement or my pillow, but the fact that I have been communicating with my friends and trying to connect with others via Facebook on my BlackBerry at night and in the early morning.  Let me paint a more clear picture: using my touch screen blackberry while laying on my back, my arms over my head to type and to read message.

I had symptoms of shoulder capsulitis  not too long ago, likely from the same situation, too much supine position BlackBerry typing.

So clearly, my soul’s message is this:

Find a way, no matter what I have to do, to have time on the computer, sitting upright with good posture and  good ergonomics and write, blog, journal. 

In other words: spend less time on my blackberry  and more really writing on the computer!

…Thank you body and soul for giving me that message. My mind has taken it in. Here I am.

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Scaring the #*% out of me

I sleep maybe 2 or 3 hours and then lay there with so many things going through my mind so I get up to get something done because there are many things to do.

Wednesday, less than one week ago, May 4,2011, my 52 year old husband of almost 17 years had a sudden unexpected major heart attack. 911, cardiac arrest at home, with Thank God, the medics at our house before he arrested.

Just thinking about it again puts my stomach in knots and my body’s anxiety response is to send everything out the other end!  This was not helpful when I arrived at the ER, having left about 15 minutes after the ambulance did as I waited on a friend to take me and my three children, ages 2, 9 and 13, and I had to run to the bathroom before I even asked about my husband at the front desk.  Not a time to be regular.

It is May 10 as I write this very early in am. and after he barely survived and then had 2 stints placed in fully blocked cornary arteries and finally getting out of CCU the other day, he will be going to the Cath Lab again this morning sometime to have one more stint placed in an artery that is about 75% blocked. And once again I am scared #%$#…. less.

It feels so good to write about this.  I am making myself write this blog and continue to keep blogging because I know I need that.  I always need to write about my life, journal or blog and have been “wanting to” blog more but now I am doing it.  Just have to.

It has been a whirlwind experience that began with shock that left me in a funky adrenaline hyped up state of crazy calm.  I look back on those first hours and wonder why I wasn’t crying my eyes out, I didn’t even cry at all…I think until I was driving back to the CCU the next morning at 5:45am alone in the car with my kids asleep at home with my parents.  Seams crazy every time I think about it.

My husband is my best friend and soul mate and has been since we met over 18 years ago, March of 1993 at a Catholic Singles dinner and night club outing.  We got engaged in November of 1993 and married May 14, 1994.  Almost exactly 17 years ago.  Which is the last time he was in the hospital and only time other than when he was born.  He had some kind of food reaction on our honeymoon while we were on one of the San Juan Islands off the coast of Seattle and because there is no hospital on the island, they helicoptered him to the hospital, leaving me on the island to take the first ferry the next morning to see him.

His brothers had all gotten sick on their wedding, honeymoons and we joked he was just trying to out due them.  His 3 older brothers.

There is so much I need to write about and say and I tremble writing this, wondering if my kids will wake up and nervous because I want them to all be asleep when I have to leave at 6am to drive the 30 minutes to the hospital where he is to be there before he goes back into the Cath Lab.  I know the Cath Lab saved his life and his wonderful Cardiologist (he never had one until this) yet, thinking about going back up to the Cath Lab waiting area makes me cringe.  It’s like bringing it all back again.  And once again,  my body’s anxiety response is to send the %$&* flying out of me.