Thanksgiving Debrief

That moment that I found myself in the hospital the week before Thanksgiving and it finally hit me; ‘I can’t do this’. So, I made an executive decision to cancel Thanksgiving meaning that I could not possibly host those we’d invited.

My husband has an international travel component to his job as a software engineer which over the last 70 days, he has been home with us only 35 of those days. He was off Thanksgiving week. When he is not traveling, he works from his office in our home.

I would love to tell you that it was glorious having him home for two weeks; however, it was absolutely ESSENTIAL that he be at home as I developed a fever and was hospitalized that entire week. I was discharged on Friday, 11/16, after having a Peripherally Inserted Central Catheter placed so that I could complete a 14-day course of IV antibiotics at home. I give thanks that I am a nurse practitioner, thus a home care nurse didn’t have to come in and out every day of Thanksgiving week!

The great news is that we enjoyed our Thanksgiving just the 3 of us and I am done with the antibiotics, I was seen by my MD on Monday [and] the PICC line was pulled. I return in 2 weeks to have blood cultures drawn to ensure the bacteria has been cleared from my blood.

Episodes like this come with heart transplant life; it’s a reality. A fever has to be fully investigated in case there is an infection that needs to be addressed. Our family has been blessed beyond measure that we’ve only had 3 of these episodes in the 10 and 1/2 years since my transplant.

We are thankful.

My husband left yesterday for a business trip and will return on Saturday, so things are getting back to normal around here. I am still recovering stamina-wise which always take longer than it seems it should. I’ve learned that I can’t rush healing and I must listen to my body. Thus, today is a day with no scheduled activities except a special visit with a dear friend.

Presently, my days are anchored by school drop off and pick up with large doses of rest in between; I have been mindful to pace myself around the house and have run a few errands, but only one required that I get out of the warm car.

You may be reading this and thinking that I sound so calm and content despite the fact that our family life and Thanksgiving didn’t resemble anything we had planned. I believe that each of us has a choice as to how we respond to unexpected episodes, events and I strive to choose gratitude and joy even at my greatest moments of frustration when life gets interrupted.

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