Eight weeks ago last night I had a long sleepless 8 hours at UCLA medical center in the cardiac ICU. It was impossible to sleep with chest tubes, central lines, IV’s, a catheter, beeping machines, compression stockings turning on and off and perhaps the most irritating thing, an little oxygen sensor attached to my finger like a leash. I couldn’t move much because of the pain and all the attachments. If I did dozed off for a few seconds, a machine would beep, a nurse would come in to change an IV or take my blood sugar or perhaps it was time for the 4AM x-ray!
It’s a far cry from my surroundings last night and the deep sleep I had at the Las Vegas Hilton in preparation for attending the first day of the largest Diving professional trade show of the year. The Diving Equipment and Marketing Association (DEMA) gets underway today with over 10,000 industry professionals hitting the large floor at the convention center.
Eight weeks has been the magic number for all the medical people. On Monday, just one day shy of 8 weeks, my cardiac rehab nurses finally allowed me to work out my chest on a rowing machine. Literally each day I have gotten stronger and after carting around my luggage yesterday I think I will even be able to pick up my little 20 lbs buddy when I return to Saipan next week.
It’s truly unbelievable to me that I'm preparing to network with everyone in the diving world today when only a few months ago I wasn't sure if I would ever be allowed to dive again. I’m a little torn about feeling so good however, because in the back of your mind you want people to know what you’ve just gone through yet on the other hand I’m extremely happy there are no outward effects of having open heart surgery only 2 months ago! I need one of those buttons again!
Here goes. Stay tuned for nearly live updates and looks at this convention.
For those of you coming into this little open heart surgery discussion a little late you can find all the posts easily by clicking on the Open Heart Surgery Labels at the bottom of this post or by clicking on the links under open heart surgery over on the right hand side of the blog. Those ones are listed in chronological order!