So I made it through the surgery just fine. I have very few memories of anything in ICU until the next morning. The only item I do recall is the ventilator tube still being in, just like they told me. Fortunately it was pulled after only 2 hours. The doctors were able to repair everything, even the mitral valve. But nothing to worry about, the atrial patch is made of bovine pericardium, (cow tissue) so I am happy to say I am now, officially, a human/cow hybrid!
This first week has been rough. Day three everything felt just horrible. even hot flashes! Those sent me into bouts of nausea. Throwing up with new stitches holding my chest together is not something I want to experience. I now have an even greater respect for all you women out there going through menopause. NOT FUN! Day 4 was not much better, but day 5 began to be much better.
Nobody came to wake me up and give me pills or take my blood pressure last night! Still only slept 2 or 3 hours at a time, but much more comfortable in my own bed. The tricky part is getting out of bed. I can't simply push myself up. I have to log roll, drop my legs over the side, then slowly raise up until I am sitting. getting dressed, using the bathroom, everything is VERY slow going. I can't stretch out my arms or lift anything more than 5 pounds. I am so grateful to my wife for all of her help and patience as we get through this.
So now, we need to assemble toilet risers and a shower chair, and get me eating and resting. I will continue this blog next week to regail all of you with tales of week two. Thanks for listening.