Friday, May 4, 2012


I have needed to get this all written down for quite some time just to have it in writing. However, it has been 41/2 years so a lot of the information is jumbled, recalled wrong, or just plain forgotten. But better late than never.
Ana Jain woke me up because she was hungry. As I sat in the living room, nursing her, I felt fine until she was nearly done.  The night before I had commented to Robert that the ache in my neck that had been going on for over a week was seeming to be lessening. So that morning I was finally feeling great. Then, just before AJ was done, I started feeling dizzy. Only a tiny bit at first, not concerning in the least. Then it got much worse very quickly. So I would not hurt her, I put AJ down and started heading for my room.  That was very difficult because my legs were not really working and the dizziness was so bad that I had to hold on to the railing, furniture, and walls just to make the very short trip. Once there I woke Robert and told him that he needed to finish feeding AJ with a bottle but first I needed help getting up on my bed. At this point I was thinking that this was just like what happened at WalMart and it would go away soon. Still no worry. After getting into bed I looked at the clock and thought that it would be 15 minutes at the most, and then I would be fine.  After only a couple of minutes, though, I couldn't seem to swallow so I called for Robert to bring me a towel. .  Then I got really sick and started throwing up. 15 minutes were long gone. I knew something was wrong.
By this time, Robert had given up on the whole feeding thing and was sitting on a chair in our room. I told him to call 911. I don't remember all the words but he said he THOUGHT we needed an ambulance.  Neither of us were totally sure and I even felt a little embarrassed about calling. My next thought was that we needed a sitter so I asked Robert to call our neighbors, the Stallings. I thought he was much braver for calling them so early than he was for calling 911. Both Scott and Karen were in my room in what seemed like an instant. I figured it must be  bad if they were both in my room and seeing me in my skivvies.  Scott (a doctor) immediately turned back around to get his bag but before he could get it, the paramedics came. By this time I was totally unable to move and in and out of conciousness.  Robert dressed me and then I was asked if I wanted to walk to the ambulance. Seriously? I can't move, am drooling, and am only slightly concious! When I didn't answer, one guy grabbed my legs, the other my pits, and carried me out. No gurney. Aleq, awakened by all the noise, ran down the hall just as I was being carried out. I think I mumbled something about everything being fine. Then I remember the cold air and then nothinng.
They took me to the nearest hospital, Davis.  I see now why it is refferred to as the place you go to die.  Seriously, their reputation is quite chilling but we had no idea.
From here my recollection is only short bits and pieces. Roberts parents were up from St. George for my baby shower that same night, and I remember Papa and Robert giving me a blessing. I also remember the ER doc saying he had "no idea" and I should be admitted. No tests. I am told that I complained of my head really hurting, though I don't remember. Then I recall being in a room and my family being there. They were trying to be quiet but any noise was loud and I wanted them to SHUT UP! I remember hearing something about some disese that took about 2 weeks to run it's course and thinking, "I can't  be away from my family for that long!" My next recollection is in the MRI machine. I was thinking that it was too long. But I was only awake for a moment or two so I don't know what my problem was. Then it was a few seconds during the spinal tap and a lady telling me that it was almost over. Thats all I remember.
I am told that after arriving at the hospital shortly before 8 that morning, I sat for a bit in the ER before being transferred to the floor. There, A couple of doctors stopped by and even brought up and quickly dismissed a stroke because I was too young and healthy. So I just lay there and deteriorated until I got so bad that they had to move me to the ICU. After a bit there, my brother was led (by an angel of a nurse) to radiology where he threw a mild tantrum (gasp! Not in my family) so they finally agreed to do the MRI that was ordered STAT hours before.  The time stamp on the film is 6:15 p.m. No teast were run and no life saving treatment given that whole time. When I finally returned to the ICU after getting the MRI, Robert overheard the doctor on the phone but could not understand all the language so he went and got Scott to translate. But then he heard "Stroke" and didn't need to hear more.
I am told that by this time quite a crowd had gathered in the waiting room. Roberts parents were at my home with the kids but my mom, brothers and sister and their spouses, my niece, my Bishop and 1 or 2 counselors, and Scott Stallings were there. My sister and Robert were in with me and I started signing "Hurry" and then coded.  They called a code blue and tried to get everybody out of the room, but Robert refused to leave me. He wanted to hold my hand as I died. As they heard the code and saw people running, my family was crying, praying, and panicking.They were able to get me stable and then decided to life flight me to the University of Utah Hospital.
When I got there, a couple of doctors checked me and were at a loss as to what to do for me after so long with no treatment. Thankfully, another doctor was just gettin in from LA and was coming right from the airport. When she got there, the whole place was hopping! She demanded such respect!! She was yelling to people to unhook me from the wall even as she was unlocking and moving my gurney. She took me directly in for an Angiogram, where they go in through the groin and thread a tiny camera up to my head to find the clot. They repeatly shot clot busting drugs in there but the clot had so damaged the artery that when one clot would move, another would start to form. It had been too long.  Then she (Dr. Skalabrin) and 2 other doctors there, came up with a plan to string heart stents up through there. Heart stents have been used for strokes before but never in this certain way. It was experimental and a serious long shot. She had Robert sign consent, and then told him and my mom that if they had a miracle in their pocket, they should use it. My mom went down the hall to where the crowd had gathered again, and told them that we needed a miracle and to make it happen. So my Bishop led a prayer and Robert and my mom  waited anxiously. She finally came out and told Robert, "It's over." Not a good choice  of words. She meant that the procedure was over and it had worked!!I wasn't out of the woods yet but I was alive!!!!!!!
I was sedated and they wouldn't know more for 24 to 48 hours.

There is a whole bunch more to the story but that's enough for now. It IS after midnight. I will do more later.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Jod, I remember this day... I had been working at Davis for only a little over a month and I had only met you and Robert a handful of times at family get togethers. I remember seeing Robert in the ER and thinking how familiar he looked. I tried to place him in my mind and couldn't but I could tell by the look on his face that whoever he was there with was in some serious trouble. Later that evening I was upstairs and you coded. When I finally heard the name Jodi I knew it was you. The Tech that was training me was frantically making up meds and I was the runner, taking them down as soon as they left the IV room. When I ran down the hall I saw Robert again but this time I recognized him and knew that it was indeed you. Even though I had only met you a handful of times I was shaken and I began to have tears running down my face. How could this be happening to such a young person? What had happened? She has such a young family? Should I call Ann - I know she's like a daughter to Ann... I can't call, I can't even tell Trev. What If I get fired from my new job(HIPPA)? Everyone else in the Pharmacy had no idea what was wrong with the new girl (me)who had walked away crying. Usually when codes go on that long without being called "all clear" your mind jumps to the worst possible senario. Mine did and I had to walk down to the ICU to make sure you were still hanging on,you were. When I got off work that night Trev told me that you had an emergency. I was thankful that Ann and the girls were in the loop. I couldn't have kept it in for very much longer. I knew they loved you too much and needed to know.

    So, even though we didn't really know each other that well at the time your story really had an affect on me. AND I'm greatful to know you 'Wolf girl'.