Monday, June 09, 2008

Updates

I just got off the phone with my sister in law and have decided not to try to go down to Portland today to see Buz. She tells me he will not be really conscious for several days and wouldn't remember that I was there, even if he opened his eyes and saw me. So I'll go next week when he will be much more lucid. I'm relieved not to have to make the drive but I also want him to know that I was there. I feel vaguely uneasy that I'm not rushing to his bedside immediately.

The surgery took many hours, probably about 12, because he had had an LVAD implanted last fall and all that hardware had to be removed. But the heart was implanted in the afternoon and started to beat properly, though he remained on the bypass machine while they took out the LVAD hardware. Now he will be in ICU for several days while his body adjusts to the new heart and they regulate the anti-rejection drugs, but he will be a new man, almost literally, when he is recovered.

His doctors have told my SIL that Buz is the ideal candidate for transplant, because he is young, strong, and determined. He's also smart, in that he is willing to follow the doctor's orders and not take risks with his health.

I admire my brother for his determination and his will to live. Over the 25 years of this ordeal with heart disease, he has refused to give up, to cut back on his commitment to public service, to draw into himself in despair. He has explored every possible treatment in an intelligent and comprehensive way and has been willing to try just about anything to survive. He feels strongly that God has a plan for him and it doesn't include dying young.

In other news, my congregation was so sweet to me yesterday! They produced a birthday cake during coffee hour, with cards and flowers, and even took me out to dinner at the Chinese place after church last night. It was just perfect, not too much hype, just enough.

Sixty-six ain't such a bad age, I guess!

15 comments:

Earthbound Spirit said...

Sorry to come in on this so late! I'm glad to know the surgery went well, and will be holding Buz (and YOU) in the light. All the best to all...
And Happy Birthday!

Pam said...

Hello, Betsy. It's been a l-o-n-g time since I talked to you, but every now and then I check your blog. The post today hit me like a brick. I am glad to hear that Buzz is doing well, but sorry to find out that his health is such that he needed a new heart. I will keep him in my thoughts and check on him in your blog. Take care, Pam

ms. kitty said...

Thanks for your kind words, EBS, and your thoughts of light.

And Pam-----my word! Are you the Pam who is the sister of my sister's former husband? Or another Pam I haven't yet thought of?

Pam said...

The sister of your sister's first husband. I know, it's been forever.

ms. kitty said...

Aha! You were the only Pam I could think of who would call me Betsy!

Joel said...

You gotta have heart... all you really need is heart...

Mile High Pixie said...

Marvelous news indeed! I'm glad to hear that your brother is doing well-ish in recovery. And I'm so glad to hear that he's a good candidate--it makes me feel better to hear of a man who listens to doctors and takes care of himself. My best to you and your peeps!

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, Pixie, and I'm really proud of him too, for his will to live.

Jim said...

Betsy...another voice from the past. I am the younger brother of your sister's ex-husband and I went to WSU with Buzz. I have lost track of him as we have made our way in the world, but heard about the surgery from my sister, Pam. Please convey our thoughts and prayers to Buzz when the opportunity presents itself. Tell him we're thinking of him out here in Kansas.

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, Jim! It's great to hear from you and Pam after so many years.

Masasa said...

Glad to hear that all sounds well, and that your brother is on the road to healing with his new heart!

Miss Kitty said...

You, your bro and SIL are all in my thoughts and prayers. :-)

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, Miss K.

Every 7th Day said...

Love you, girl. Keep making your age look chic. I need the encouragement. Glad to hear about your bro. Hope all keeps going well.

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, AC. I appreciate your kind words----and what you've been doing in NOLA to improve the world.