December 19, 2021

December 19, 2021

Dear Goddamn Diary;

I don’t want to to wait for our lives to be over
I want to know right now what will it be
I don’t want to wait for our lives to be over
Will it be yes or will it be sorry?

Where was I? I didn’t actually post on Facebook about this on the 19th – I didn’t post about any of it until the 20th because I was trying to get in touch with a couple of family members to tell them before they saw it on Facebook.

Wait, no, I lied! Oops! I did post something on Facebook on the 19th –

I have much to say – I did not know that within 20 minutes yesterday of me posting “make today colorful” that’d I’d be wanting to get back on screaming “BUT NOT THIS COLORFUL”. Most of the story will need to wait until I’m at home and can type it up on my laptop rather than peck it out with two fingers on my phone.

The short version is a medical emergency, but Tim Conyers is recovering well – trust me, I would not be posting if I didn’t feel positive about the outcome. If you are a close friend or family member, please text or message me rather than him – he needs as much rest as possible, so please, please, please go through me. And for the curious and nosy (I mean, aren’t we all? There’s fuck else all to do these days, right???) I will do a long post about this tonight or tomorrow.

Then we have what I posted about both this day and yesterday (I already posted this the other day, but have it here again for continuity)…

I’ll skip most of the hospital stuff — this is already long, and I’m sure you can all imagine anyway. Let’s just get to the end result, the diagnosis. Tim, who can never do anything half-assed, had two small strokes at the same time. I KNOW. I was like, MY DUDE. THIS IS NOT A HOSPITAL BINGO CARD GAME YOU ARE TRYING TO WIN, NO EXTRA POINTS FOR MULTIPLES. He had a small stroke on both the right AND the left side, which is relatively unusual; we had some answers yesterday and we’re undergoing some more tests later today to try to get to the bottom of all of that. But the important thing is that the TPA did it’s magic, that we got to it in time to get the TPA, and that Tim is so goddamn lucky right now I can’t even contain the enormity of it. He could be paralyzed. He could be unable to speak. He could be paralyzed FOR LIFE. And instead, he’s up there, reading a book, listening to some podcasts, complaining about the hospital food and wanting to just be home already, and making an entire new host of bad jokes.

So you look at me from across the room
You’re wearing your anguish again
Believe me I know the feeling
It sucks you into the jaws of anger
So breathe a little more deeply my love
All we have is this very moment
And I don’t want to do what his father
And his father, and his father did
I want to be here now

But this? This is what I was texting to family all that day.

10:16 AM

Good morning! Got here to the hospital just in time to see him packed off for his MRI – he’s sooooooo irritated, it finally just got through to him that he’s released from ICU after 24 hours, not from the hospital (it’s not really being here that’s pissing him off, it’s that now there will be a late fee on a bill he needed to pay today) (BOYS!). So, both his CT scans yesterday were negative, but they’re doing an MRI now and we’ll have those results soon after he’s done.


Still no MRI results, but speech and physical therapy people have been to assess him and say other than a slight droop/stiffness on the left, he’s fine. Not a 10; he’s got a slight slur on s-words and sometimes has to search for the right words, but they just want me to keep an eye on that. It may be from the stroke, or it may be confusion from all the beeping/jarring noises on the floor. Occupational therapy has not been here yet but will come some time today.

1:37 PM

OK – the doctor just came in with the MRI results. Our Timmy really went all out… He had not one but two strokes – right frontal, and left superior aspect of priopatal (? Spelling?). That’s pretty unusual, so the doctor thinks they came from the heart, crossed ventricles, and came up the artery to the brain. There is a chance of this happening again, so they’re going to hook him up with a cardiologist who may give him a devise to wear for 30 days. But overall, as long as his leg ultrasounds come back fine, we can step down to a “Gen pop” room and he can most likely get out tomorrow. Oh, and Occupational Therapy came by to review /test him, and like the others, says he’s not going to need much, if any, follow-up from them.

Okay, we’re probably moving rooms soon. Still no leg ultrasound results, but now they also want to ultrasound his feet (maybe they’ll find my missing kidney?).

They also said very vaguely that he has a node (nodule?) on his thyroid, and should follow up with his PCP. Hahahaha, as if he has a Primary Care Physician??? Well, he will, by the end of this week, if I have anything to say about it.

The cardiologist says: he should get a sleep study, for sleep apnea/snoring. Also that the imaging of his heart shows that the tiny hole between the two upper chambers of the heart that most of us are born with, never closed for him like they usually do for most others. So that hole needs to be closed, with a small procedure that essentially puts a little umbrella there. Lastly, he has to make a choice – wear an external heart monitor for 30 days or get a small implant that lasts for three years. Either of those options will monitor his heart for afib.

At this point, someone in the thread said “That’s a lot to absorb…”

Yeah, my head is getting pretty full – Tim is already glassy-eyed and has been for hours. I’d be surprised if he remembers much of this tomorrow. Heck, he hadn’t yet even come to terms with calling it a stroke, let alone everything else!

Definitely staying one more night, so he can get a trans esophageal (? Spelling?) picture tomorrow (a better picture of the hole between the right and left atria. He is very, very not happy with another night’s stay!


Okay; Tim kicked me out so he could listen to podcasts and fall asleep (and I can go tend to our poor, sad, lonely, long-suffering cats) (please don’t feel sorry for them, they are all monsters). He’s no no food/no water because of the esophageal picture thing tomorrow, so it wasn’t like I could sit around and watch him eat dinner anyway. He’s still in the ICU – he doesn’t need to be, he’s ready to go downstairs, but they don’t have any beds free, so they’re leaving him there for now. If they move him tonight they will call me with the new room number. Whew. What a long day!

Again, if only I knew how many times I’d be surprised at what a long day I was having.

The only thing I want to add to all of this is that the hole I mentioned up there? It’s called an Atrial Septal Defect, lots of people have them, so in retrospect they were hearing hoofbeats and thinking horses, not zebras. Unfortunately, the black spot they saw on the chart wasn’t an ASD, it was actually the start of a vegetative mass growing. Because the ASD was a misdiagnosis. It was the beginning of Endocarditis. Which they would have known, had they not let us out the next day, which was Day Three. The blood cultures they took, that would have shown Staphylococcus lugdunensis, take four days to grow. They let us out a day before they could have diagnosed him correctly.

So open up your morning light
And say a little prayer for I
You know that if we are to stay alive
Then see the love in every eye

Lyrics by Paula Cole
I Don’t Want to Wait

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