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When I left you at the end of Part II, I was on the way to down the halls to an emergency triple bypass surgery.

I was “out” for the most part for several days. After my surgery, I suffered respiratory failure resulting in my being on a ventilator and having a balloon pump assisting my heart. Since then, I’ve never actually had a real explanation of what the hell was going on but I made it thru it.

I remember briefly waking up several times and being asked if I realized that I’d had my surgery. I remember being unable to speak with the vent tube down my lung pipe. I think I vaguely remember being moved to another room in the cardiac ICU.

After I was off the vent and balloon pump and they allowed me to stay awake my memories get clearer. I was slow to respond to their desires for me to get up and sit and walk. As a result I got labeled as “combative”.

I also got tired of them pushing me to have a bowel movement at a time when I’d had no solid food for seven days. The folks who work in hospitals must have suffered terrible potty training experiences as children. They are so obsessed by BMs. I finally satisfied their yearning.

I also began walking around and pushed them to let me go home. I literally didn’t sleep for 3 nights in a row except for brief snatches caught in between being rousted for blood draws, BP checks, etc. I wanted to get home and be left the hell alone to sleep and rest.

My nurse agreed to put me in a different room, leave me basically alone all night, and recommend my release if I (a) Filled a urinal overnight to a specified level and (b) Had another bowel movement (again that obsession).

I complied and true to her word, they moved me to another room, apparently one they used for patients about to fly the coop.A tech came in and removed the drains in my chest. I asked him about the urinary catheter and he said he wouldn’t go near that. Another tech came in and removed my intravenous line from my shoulder. Then a different tech came in and removed my urinary catheter. After the quick flash of pain, it felt great to get that damn thing out of my pecker.

An occupational therapist visited me and checked my ability to dress myself, questioned me about my home environment, etc. She gave me tips about taking care of myself. Then my case manager met with me, criticized my combative nature, and told me he might have problems getting a cardiac rehab place to accept me as a client. I personally think he was an asshat.

The occupational therapist returned with supplies so I could wash my face and hair and shave. After that I finished getting dressed then sat and waited for Jean to come and get me.

–To Be Continued–

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