Monday, January 31, 2011

Remembering Days Gone By: January 31, 2003

Trials!!!! January 31, 2003 at 9:06pm was the day of my husband's first grand mal seizure after a 23 year absence of them. This was the first of many as they continued until 2008 and I stopped counting after 25 the first year. That is not how many happened the first year that is just when I stopped counting.

Our lifestyle was so different back then. I had finished my MA in counseling six months earlier and had been working in my new field for for almost four months. Things were settling down for us. We had no children yet so we were enjoying a relaxed time together and doing things there had not been time for while I was in school and working. I remember telling Vic just a few days before this date that this was the best I could ever remember my life to be.

It didn't last for long. I went to work on Friday, January 31, 2003 just like any other weekday. I got off work and Vic and I went out for pizza. We found this little pizza place in Nashville and we really liked it and thought we might go back there. Vic was driving us home to our little apartment when just before the interstate exit we lived off of he told me that he was having this strange ringing in his ears (soon we would learn that ringing was significant as it happened just before his grand mal seizures). He didn't like it and it made him uncomfortable. He finished driving us home. We had been home approximately 5 minutes when at 9:06pm he started acting strange. His eyes would roll to one direction and he would not be able to hear me talk to him. The reason I know it was 9:06 is because he had a clock in his hand when it started.

I walked into the kitchen and called a friend of mine who was in medical school and asked what a seizure looked like because I thought Vic could be having one and I had never seen one. Then I heard a grunting sound in the bedroom so I went back and Vic was lying on the bed convulsing. Yep, no doubt now this was a seizure. I felt like time stopped for a minute then I panicked. I didn't know what to do so I asked my friend on the phone who said call 911. So I did.

I remember being so afraid that Vic would vomit and choke to death (why that came to my mind I am not sure) so I was trying to hold the phone with the 911 operator and keep Vic on his side. I was not strong enough to continue this so the 911 operator told me to stop trying to hold him on his side. Then I had to tell the ambulance the code to enter the gated comunity we lived in and then the ambulance got lost in our apartment complex. It seemed like hours before the ambulance got there, but it had really on been about 10-15 minutes since the seizure started. The ambulance came and took Vic to the hospital. I drove myself to the hospital the ambulance crew told me to get a friend to do it, but I was so frantic to be near Vic and know that he was okay so I drove myself. Now that I think back that probably was not the smartest move, but the Lord protected me because I made it to the hopsital without incident.

Seizures became quite common place after awhile and I did not have such an emotional response to them after a while. Eventually I had the attitude "Oh, Vic just had another seizure." Then went on with life. Others around me did not have my response though and often were freaked out or scared. Vic had grand mal seizures in all sorts of places the living room floor, in bed in the middle of the night beside me, sitting in the passenger side of the front seat on Pennyrile parkway in KY on Thanksgiving night, at a gas station at a busy intersection right in the path of traffic, when being first time visitors at a church (Trust me everyone knew who we were), I could go on and on with this list. Our lives literally became held hostage by seizures. We lived life with the constant awareness that one never knew when the next seizure would come.

At our house we want to remember now to always be grateful that God delivered Vic and our family from that life of bondage to seizures.

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