ADW Diabetes, Charlie Kimball and our partners and supporters would like to congratulate Brian Harris! Brian will be joining us for Charlie’s championship race at the Miami-Homestead Raceway in October!
Tuesday, May 3, 2005 started out like any other day.
I woke up to the country music on KIX 101.1 and drug myself out of bed. I woke my kids up. Joe grabs his usual Pop Tart, Smores. Krystal and I argue over whether she is eating breakfast now or at school. Then, does she need a snack for the bus ride. My left hand is hurting, so I let her have her way today.
Tina is up by now, and packing a lunch for Joe. I get myself a fourth cinnamon roll, power food!!! My hand is hurting more so I go and lay down with a heating pad for awhile. Tina gets the kids off for the bus and goes to play her favorite computer game.
I complain about my hand and start to feel sick. THERE GOES THE CINNAMON ROLLS. After that, the pain moves up my hand and into my forearm. I also start to feel a poking in my chest.
The pain is getting worse. I mention to Tina that if she wanted to take me to the ER, I would go willingly. This is very much unlike me, she leaps to her feet.
We get to the ER and when I say “chest pains”, they prioritize me. The nurse runs an EKG, the doctor says it was “blurry” and runs one himself. He doesn’t see an immediate problem, but there is “an irregularity” and wants to fax my EKG to a colleague. After a moment, he comes in and says, “his concerns were not unfounded.” If I am required to see a Cardiologist, where would I like to be referred? I say’ “Des Moines,” thinking it would not amount to anything.
They want to run blood tests, and check a few things. As they draw blood, I go dizzy and pass out.
Next thing I hear is some one yelling “CLEAR”, about the time it clicks what that word means BAM!!!!!!
I feel someone tugging at my jeans; I can tell they are wet. Had I pissed my pants? I arch my back to help them remove my pants. I hear them chuckle and say “Thank You” After the third ZAP, I hear clear again, I cry, “Please God No”. With the fourth zap, I pass out again.
Next, I wake up, I can’t move. I am strapped down. I hear a “Whump, whump, whump”. A woman in a helmet leans over me and tells me I am in a helicopter going to Des Moines. I pass out again.
Next, I wake up, 6 hours later, in the Cardiac Care Unit of Methodist Hospital. My Wife and a nurse are over me. I am told I had a massive heart attack, two blockages, 100%. I was shocked more than 25 times. And I have two stints and a small balloon holding my heart open.
I am told I am Diabetic (blood sugar over 490 – damn cinnamon rolls) and that that and stress levels were most likely the cause of the “infarction”. My wife tells me that Most of my family is in the waiting room. Bare in mind, Des Moines is 2 hours from most of their homes. My family members come in two at a time. I can see the concern in their eyes. It scares the hell out of me. My Father had been through this, did I look in as bad a shape as he did?
I went through cardiac rehab with men and women twice and three times my age. I was on a restricted diet, and checking my blood 5 times a day. We were financially strapped before this. I was told to take it easy and not stress over things. It’s been four years, I have been struggling to keep jobs, money has been tight. I am finally at a desk job I think I will be able to do without getting fired. Pay is decent, benefits are good.
Just remember, that no matter how bad things may seem. It could all end tomorrow. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Enjoy the little things life has to offer.
Take this from some one who has. Live your life as if you are dying in the morning. You never know you just might.