To the readers of my various scribblings:
I have made references to my failing health before in these Authors Notes; I feel I need to let you know just what is going on and the reason I have not been updating the stories.
For the past few months, my memory has become very faulty due to some of the medications I have been taking. It has also affected my energy levels. This last Wednesday, July 9, I went to the hospital emergency room for admission to care for an infection in my left leg called cellulitis. While there, my blood pressure dropped to a low of 75/40 and I suffered a major heart attack. I was air-lifted to a more capable medical centre 40 miles away, where I was poked, prodded, injected, and more or less tested to the point where I thought I was being nibbled to death by ducks.
The upshot of all of this is that I now know that my heart has quite a bit of dead tissue, I have two arteries that have 100 percent blockage, and a leaky heart valve. The hospital I was in believed I was not a good candidate for surgery due to the higher than average risk that I would not wake up after the operation, at least not in this plane of existence. I have therefore made arrangements to send my medical records to one of the premier cardiac surgeons in the U.S. at Northwestern University Medical Center in Chicago. He is supposed to look at them, then call me in for a consultation.
Twenty-one years ago, my mother faced the same decision, to have bypass surgery with even worse odds than what I am facing. When she was told by the surgeon that she only had a fifty percent chance of waking up, or that she would only live a short while under very poor circumstances as a heart cripple, her words to the doctor were: "Swing for the fences!" For you non baseball fans, this means to put your all into your time at bat and try for a home run. Unfortunately, he struck out and she died on the operating table. Had she survived the operation, she could have had 10 or 15 productive years.
I am 50 years old, I have a 13 year old daughter, a 9 year old daughter, a loving wife of twenty years who still fills me with wonderment and joy every time I wake up next to her in the morning. I also have three grandchildren I have never seen. I can do no less than my mother did; I shall also tell the man with the knife that he should 'swing for the fences'.
This does mean that I will be taking the time prior to my surgery to put my affairs in order and spend every available moment with the people I love so much. If anyone would like to adopt any of these stories, I would like to see them finished. Should you like to take over a story, just send me a personal message or look up my email address on my profile.
Thank you and God Bless,
Jack, aka Hamilton Wrye