They want to put a balloon in my femoral artery to help my heart pump blood. That’s the stopgap measure until I get a new heart. The thing about this gizmo is, I will be bed-bound as long as it’s in me. I will have to lie basically flat, no bending the leg, no sitting up (although they will be able to tilt the whole bed to create the illusion I can stand up.
I’ve been in that position before, short-term. After catheterizations in he past I have occasionally had to lie flat for 6 hours or so while an artery clotted off. It wasn’t pretty. I tried eating; I would wind up with more food on me than in me. I peed. Have you ever used a urinal while lying flat on your back? If your arms aren’t long enough, or if *you* aren’t long enough, backflow is a problem.
Ah, the warm feeling of urine speading across your belly.
I have never had to use a bedpan while lying flat. Not that the need hasn’t presented itself-I just refused to do it. You can’t refuse to shit for three weeks, though. If you try, you turn into Mitch McConnell.
All scatalogical issues aside, I am an antsy guy. I have spinal stenosis. I find it impossible to hold any position for any material length of time — standing, sitting, lying down — my legs start jiggling, I bounce on the balls of my feet, I swivel my head around, looking for something new to light on. If I am denied the ability to do any of this, I start feeling pain. My muscles cramp up, my bones feel like they’re being held down by force.
I honestly don’t know if I have it in me.
The alternative is to go home. To wait at home, live my life as best I can and wait for a heart that nobody else fits. Or wants. Or I wait until I get sick enough that it no longer matters what I want or what I think I can do. There’s always the chance I get so bad I wind up back in the hospital in a “get a heart now or dead before the week ends” kind of situation.
Do I have it in me? Is my fear legitimate or am I being a little bitch? I really don’t know. I suppose there’s only one way to find out. Try out the pump. Cowboy up, grit my teeth, and strap in for the duration. Or until I fail.
I have been giving myself the pep talk. You know, the 21st Century, Tom Brady, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Don Lemon “failure is not an option” pep talk.
My god, what pure, unadulterated bullshit. Failure is not an option. More stupid words have never been spoke. Of course, failure is an option. Ask the warriors at Masada. Oh wait, you can’t. They’re dead. THEY FAILED. Nevermind, ask the 65 teams that won’t win this year’s NCAA baketball tournament. They all failed. It happens.
That’s what scares me. Will failure be the option for me?