Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Tough Little Erin

I was able to visit with Erin today.  She is currently in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit at Sacred Heart Hospital in Spokane.  Last night, her team fitted her with an external pacemaker, which has greatly improved her heart to a more steady rhythm.  Erin said she could feel a difference between yesterday and today with regard to her steady beat.  It is unclear what exactly caused Erin's seizure, but the team is continuing to investigate.  Currently, her cultures have all been negative and a clear answer has not been achieved thus far.

Due to her heart condition, the team is limited on the medications they can give Erin.  They did give her a heavy dose of IV fluids to combat her dehydration and to hopefully help increase her blood pressure.  She was doing well with that today.  A side effect is that she is a bit puffy, still stunningly beautiful, but a touch puffy.  She notices it most in her fingers and toes, which also give her trouble with tingling, loss of sensation, or coldness.  Luckily, she has loving family and friends by her side to take shifts as her personal masseuse.  If her night goes well tonight, she could possibly move out of ICU tomorrow.  It is unclear how long her hospital stay will be, but probably a few more days. 

When I walked in her room, I was encouraged to see her eyes open a bit and to hear her hello.  Her boys were there and visited for a bit with Mom.  It brought tears to my eyes to watch their Daddy lift them both to hug their Mom on their way out the door.  I am so glad they got to see her.

Erin amazes and humbles me constantly.  As we were talking, she told me I needed to get home to my family, always worrying about others over herself.  I told her they were with my husband and not even home yet.  She asked about my start to this school year (I'm a first grade teacher) and wanted to know all about my students.  She asked about some other stressful things in my life and showed that through it all, she will always be our special, sweet Erin who has a pure heart of gold.  As her dad was dozing in a chair, she was talking about ways to convince him to go home.  She pushed her mom to return home to rest, promising to call if she needed her.  I cannot believe her strength, her compassion for the journey the rest of us our on, and her positive outlook.  Erin, this is just one little reason why so many people love you so, so much.  To her family and friends, thank you.  Thank you for watching out for Erin.  Thank you for letting me invade her room.  Thank you for calling 911 and getting her help immediately.  Thank you for putting the needs of her children so high on your list.  Thank you for updating me and allowing me to publish the details on here.  I am so humbled and grateful.

P.S. I forgot something pretty cool.  Last night, when the team was in to see her, she was educating them on her rare heart condition.  She couldn't even open her eyes, but she was telling them which websites to visit to learn more and where to find lists of meds she could not have.  I cannot believe her strength.  Amazing woman.....  Now she has to let me shave my head when she loses her hair.  Time to encourage her!!!

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