First of all, I want to take this opportunity to thank my friend, Sharon over at Technonana. I came up for air yesterday and gave her a call. I knew she would get people praying and I so appreciate her writing such a sweet post on our behalf. I will begin at the beginning.
Last week I had to go to San Antonio on Wednesday for a meeting for my job. We had a speaker Wednesday night and after the meeting I went up to my room and tried to relax. I am not a fan of flying and I just wanted to prepare for the next two days. I received a call at 5am and didn't think a whole lot about it because for over 20 years I have been called at all hours of the night with my job. This was my daughter, Jolie, on the other end of the line crying hysterically. She said her daddy had a major heart attack and was in intensive care. They were getting up and getting ready to head to Atlanta where he lives. She didn't have many details as his wife was so upset and just said he was exercising and came in and said he had started having chest pains and needed to go to the ER and then collapsed. She called 911 and then the ambulance couldn't find their house. They live out in the country and off the beaten path. During all this time he was down and not breathing.
The EMTs intubated him and got him to the small hospital closest to them. He suffered another cardiac arrest there and the staff decided to send him to a larger hospital in Atlanta. Trent took Avery to school and Jolie got her shower and started getting ready for the trip. Jolie and her Daddy haven't been close since she was little. They love each other, but she's stubborn and he's stubborn and you can read between the lines. When she got there the doctor told them that they would put him on a cooling blanket to rest his brain and then take him off to warm him up and see if he would wake up. I knew I was coming home Friday so I said if they are not doing anything until a day or two I'll come home as scheduled. I tried to get an earlier flight, but it's spring break out there and all the flights were overbooked. I had left the meeting early on Friday and so I had to wait in the airport for 4 hours. I read and reflected.
I never knew how I would react to a situation like this. Paul is my ex-husband. We dated for two years. We were married for 22 years and I really grew up with him. So many thoughts and memories have flooded my mind in the last few days. He taught me how to drive. He took me to my junior and senior proms. I followed him around the world when he was in the Army. We went to so many car shows and motorcycle shows that it would make you dizzy. After his father died suddenly he went into a depression that lasted for several years. I felt like I was being pulled into a pit and my own mental health was suffering. It's not an excuse and as a Christian I should have tried to accept it and live my life. I had prayed. We had gone to counseling together and separately and I couldn't continue.
He met his current wife about 7 years later and they were married. He's been happy with her and they moved up here to Atlanta several years ago. I got to the hospital Friday night and Jolie had waited for me. We went into his room together and I couldn't believe it was him. He has a volume overload and is so swollen it's unbelievable. They have been doing multiple tests to check on his brain activity. He had a balloon and stint put in his heart. He has never woken up. This morning I got a call from his best friend and he said the doctor came in and said the EEG showed that he had brain swelling and they would be making decisions. Jolie, Trent and I drove up to Atlanta in two cars and Mark took Avery to church and her little cheer leading awards banquet.
The doctor did some tests while we were there and I knew he was checking for brain activity. He told us that if he took the ventilator off he would not breathe. He asked his wife if he had a living will and she said she didn't know she would have to look. Then the doctor said, "Well, we can wait another 24 hours and then make some decisions." His wife got all excited and said that would be wonderful. I could tell Jolie was hurt with the decision, but she kept quiet. She said she wanted to step out and I went with her. She told me she could not stand to see her daddy look like that any longer. She was seeing him day after day deteriorate and she believes, as I do, that he is no longer with us. Because his wife is the decision maker she didn't say anything, but told me she would not come back until the funeral.
I went to tell his wife and she seems to be in denial and is still holding out hope. I know that God still does miracles, but he would be in a vegetative state now and his body is shutting down. I hurt so bad for Jolie and for his wife. I hurt too. I love him, but I am not in love with him. He would not want to lay there like that and I pray that tomorrow, Monday, the doctor will go ahead and say enough is enough.
His Sunday school teacher was in the waiting room and I got to meet and talk with him. He was telling me that in SS this morning they were discussing Paul and one of the other men has an incurable disease in the class. He doesn't know when he'll go and everyday he wonders when. Paul was always healthy and they were saying how ironic it was that now Paul is lying in intensive care and this other gentleman is still with us.
We don't know when we will have our last day. Please know you are right with the Lord. I don't mean to sound preachy, but I want you to stop and think that this day will come for all of us. No exceptions. I thank you for all your prayers and support. I will find out more about Ali tomorrow and let you guys know what's going on.
Mark is being very supportive and someone he works with asked him why I was so upset about my first husband. He told him that we were married a long time and had a daughter. The guy still acted like it was strange. We don't care what people think concerning that. We have not had a hateful relationship and I wanted the best for him. He was there for me when my mother died and my world fell apart. We helped each other through many things. I feel sorry for his wife, but I especially feel sorry for Jolie. He told her on their last visit in January that he was proud of her. He has never told her that before and she turned 37 two weeks ago. She needed to hear that and I'm so glad he told her. Life is complicated, but God has a way of taking care of our needs. He's our Redeemer!