Blood Donation Saves Lives

Not My Time to Die

I've said it a number of times that I am the one that had it
easy the first few weeks in the hospital.  I blacked out before I
even hit the ER the 2nd time and didn't wake up until 3 weeks later. 
I was in my coma and for the most part, completely separated
from the emotional stress happening around me in the real
world.  I could not imagine how I would have managed if the shoe was
on the other foot and it was my wife in the hospital.   I
would like to think I would have been as strong as she was while supporting our
daughters, Hailey and Samantha.  I am very thankful to have my beautiful
wife, my amazing parents and all of my friends who helped me through it
all.  It's been over a year now since I've made my full recovery
and can still remember most of the dreams I had while induced
in the coma and being slightly sedated.  It amazes me
how my mind stayed active while I was in these different states of
mind.  If you haven't had a chance to read my other "notes,"
please check them out.  I know that I came close to death and given a slim
chance to pull through after my liver bled out.  For my friends, family
members and doctors I can't imagine what a horrible emotional roller
coaster that everyone was going through while I chilled out in my
bed.  Again, I don't recall any of this so I had it pretty
easy compared to everyone else.  My mind and body were working
very hard to keep active and absorbed everyone's support, love, prayers
and embrace the magic the doctors were performing on me.  I am still
amazed by the dreams I had and how many of them I remember.  In some of my
others stories I talk about hearing some of my family members talking to me and
then immediately placing them into the dream I was having.  I also talk
about creating these crazy dream based on what my body was experiencing  in my bed;  one of those dreams I thought
there were people hiding in my mattress messaging my legs.  This
dream was caused from doctors putting special socks on me to improve blood
flow to reduce clots.  I wasn't able to walk in many of the dreams I had,
somehow knowing in real life I was confined to a bed.   I am
still blown away that my dreams mirrored what I was going through in real life. 
I firmly believe that this is a result of hearing and knowing the basics of what
I was going through, even though I was induced in a coma and lightly sedated
for a number of weeks.  I don't know how else to explain it. 
The fact I heard certain voices leads me to believe I also heard some of the
conversations my family members and doctors had in my room while I knocked
out.  After pulling through my bad weekend and slowly coming out of the
coma the doctors kept me slightly sedated and I was placed on a
ventilator.  My uncle described seeing my chest rise and fall as
the ventilator pumped air into my body through the breathing tube that was
inserted down my throat.  From what I gather, the sound of
a ventilator as it pumps air into a person is a noise that you
don't typically forget.  This brings me to my personal
battle and the moment I truly thought I was fighting for my
life.   Knowing that my thoughts and dreams were creations from the
environment around me, the ventilator and
breathing tube placed in my throat forced my body to respond in
a negative way.  The breathing tube caused me to think that I was
suffocating and knowing I couldn't move was a bad combination.   The
tube down my throat forced me to try to scream and holler to get
someone's attention but no one was coming.   I knew people were there
but I couldn't scream loud enough to get their attention for help.  I
wasn't able breathe and I struggled to catch a breath.  It felt like
I was trapped in a room full of smoke caused by a fire.  Not being
able to yell or scream for help caused me to instantly panic. 
I remember thinking about my wife and kids and really thought my time
was coming to an end.  This was a life or death moment for me. 
I couldn't move, couldn't breathe and was unable to scream to get anyone's
attention to help me.  I thought I was going to die.  I don't
know how I was able to find the strength, but I was able to reach up, find the
breathing tube and rip it out of me.  I remember the overwhelming
sense of joy when I finally got the end of the tube out and was
able to breathe again.   Naturally this set off alarms causing
an immediate visit from many people.  Hearing the nurses and doctors
in my room put me at ease, knowing my support team was there.  I heard
that the doctors debated about putting the breathing tube back into me,
but they eventually decided against it.  They were planning on taking the
tube out the next day anyway and figured this was the way my body was
saying that I didn't need the breathing tube anymore.  I am very
happy they decided against putting me back onto the ventilator. 
This was the scariest moment in my life.   The fact
that I was able to have the ability to elevate my arms, locate the
breathing tube and found the strength to rip it out amazes me.  I
lost close to 50 lbs , couldn't sit up or even hold my iPad
because it was too heavy when I woke from my slumber.  The thought of
losing my family gave me the strength to reach deep inside to
find the will to live.  My beautiful family is what I
live for, and during this traumatic experience they are the ones who kept
me alive.