For obvious reasons, as I think back on my husband’s heart attack last weekend, I choose to focus on the funny parts. I did plenty of crying and screaming already. Now, laughter seems like the best option.
Memory #1: I arrive at the ER and am led approximately 2.5 miles through endless, winding corridors to a friendly person who lets me know I’m in the wrong place. I’m then led back to where I started and given a new guide who walks me another 2.5 miles through a different maze of corridors to an empty waiting area where I’m told to sit and await further instructions. I sit and think, Well, I guess I live at the hospital now. Because I will never find my way out of here.
Memory #2: A friend I texted earlier calls while I’m talking to the cardiac surgeon. When I check the voice-to-text interpretation of her voicemail, part of it reads: “It’s just a glitch, and his wife is dead.” I am? I think. Sheesh. What a way to find out. [Note: She actually said, “It’s just a glitch in his life, and…yeah.”]
Memory #3: A nurse is sent to collect me from the waiting area and bring me to JR in the ICU. He introduces himself, explains he was part of JR’s surgical team, then asks, “So, can I call you Mrs. Fox?” I want to tell him he can call me Mrs. Fox if he really wants to, but my name is Kelly Wolf. Instead I say, “Kelly’s fine.” He just helped save JR’s life, after all. He doesn’t need to be subjected to Mrs. Fox’s snarky attitude.
Memory #4: I reunite with JR in his hospital room. He’s pretty freaked out but also on lots of drugs, so he’s in relatively good spirits. There’s a nurse in the room asking questions, and while she records his answers on a computer, JR asks me if I’ll go get us burritos. I don’t reply. He then asks the nurse if I can get us burritos, and she gives me a stern look, as if it were my idea. She then provides a lengthy lecture about the heart-healthy diet JR needs to follow from here on out, which should *not* include burritos. [Pft. Whatever. That woman clearly didn’t know who the hell she was talking to.]
The nurse concludes her battery of questions and leaves. A few minutes later, another nurse comes in, and JR asks him if he can have something to eat. The nurse says he can probably dig up some graham crackers. He then says (and I swear this is true), “But later you may want to have your wife go pick up burritos or something. The food here is really bland.”
But the funniest thing by far, out of all the absurd circumstances surrounding this traumatic event, is the sign posted in the dance studio where it happened:
I guess some folks take that guidance literally.