It’s Super Bowl Sunday and I’m warming by the fireplace as I watch the birds flit around in the freshly fallen snow. The trees just outside the den windows are filled with them as they forage in the cold for seeds. I’ve not written on our blog since 2013 but today I feel so blessed, I must write.
Christmas is a bit of a blur and so is the dawning of 2014. Events occurred slowly, but yet in some strange way quickly, events that led to John undergoing open heart surgery on December 27. John experienced chest pains in early October that eventually led to an ER visit. After clear EKG’s and good blood work there, John chalked the chest pains up to reflux but he still felt uneasy about his symptoms. Thankfully we found a new doctor…after a symptom-giving-interview with John and a quick check-up, this experienced Doctor said, “I”m seventy-five percent certain you have coronary heart disease.” That followed more stress tests and EKG’s that once again indicated that John’s heart was okay, but the new doctor then ordered a calcification test. As he instructed his nurse to make the appointment for this CAT scan, he was adamant about when it was to be done, “No matter what that clinic says, I want that test done today.” That test saved John’s life. It showed high levels of plaque build up. In fact a normal score was 0 to 400 and John scored 3,200. Our new doctor told John he’d have to have a heart catheterization to determine the degree of blockage. By December 20th, John’s records were sent to a Coronary Specialist. The earliest available appointment with the holidays was the end of January. In the meantime, if John exerted himself slightly, he had chest pains. We were scared. We canceled our planned Christmas trip to Phoenix and opted for another ER visit…this one on December 26th. Had we not seen our new doctor, the one who ordered the calcification test, this Super Bowl Sunday might be a very sad one indeed because the results of the heart catheterization the day after Christmas showed all arteries almost blocked. In fact, the Doctor who performed the heart cath said, “You guys are very lucky that you came to the ER when you did.” Triple bypass surgery followed on December 27th. Not exactly the Christmas holidays we’d expected, but our hearts are filled with Thanksgiving that we are here together to enjoy 2014. Lucky? I think not! Thank you, Lord, for the series of Your Tender-mercies that saved John’s life.