Monday, June 15, 2009

Today's Thoughts

Just a bit of a change up on the post for today. I've been gone for a few days and thought I'd take this opportunity to let you know what's been happening.

My last post was on June 10th, early in the a.m. I reported for work just like any other day and went about my duties. We had an 11 a.m. department meeting/lunch and I left at 1:00 p.m. to go to my last unit library. I experience some physical difficulties going on unit. My heart was racing, I felt as if some one had wrapped an ace bandage tightly around my chest and breathing was labored. I made it across the yard and into the library.

I sat there wondering about the symptoms and decided it was probably nothing more than my allergies kicking into overdrive and developing into an upper respiratory infection. I continued working. I realized a bit later my jaw was aching and thought, "hmmm, the TMJ acting up, am I clenching due to stress?" We women are such wonderful Queen's of Denial - just call me Cleopatra, Girls!

By 4:00 p.m. I lock up the library and attempt to walk back across the yard to exit. Twice on the way out I have to stop and sit down, I am so weak. On the final sit down, a female Sergeant asked, "Ms. Swerline, are you OK?" I told her I wasn't feeling well. She advised the Lieutenant and they contact the Medical Unit. Two nurses arrived, took my vitals and said I wasn't leaving unit I agreed to either go see my doctor or to the ER. I opted for my personal physician and said I could drive. They informed me I couldn't drive, someone had to take me or go by ambulance. I opted to let an officer drive me and my vehicle there.

By 4:30 I'm in the doctor's office explaining the symptoms to his nurse, he steps in and says they're going to do an EKG and steps back out. The nurse provides him with the data and he steps back in and says, "Get dressed, I'm driving you to the ER!" Now, how crazy is that? My own doctor driving me there?

All things being said and done, blood tests showed I had a cardiac event. I was life-flighted to Tucson Medical Center via helicoper and had a cardiac catheritization the next morning. All things being said and done, I had excellent care and treatment and a lot of time for reflection of and on my life style.

I've been a smoker for a number of years and all of the health symptoms listed above have been self-imposed. I have done this to myself and there is no one else to blame.

On May 30th of this year, we had our ladies Bible study here in our home. One of the things we talked about were the things that kept us from the Lord. I felt it was time to share with my Girl Friends about my smoking and how I didn't want that to seperate me from Him any more. What a wonderful time of sharing and praying we had. Barely 10-days later God interviened in a way only He could!

Not smoking in a hospital when you are "interfaced" with all sorts of electrical monitors is one thing, but coming home to the same routine is yet another. Some changes are needed.

This morning when I awoke, I prayed and said, "Lord, how I am going to do this?" Immediately this verse about the cost of discipleship came to mind:

Matthew 16:24 - Then Jesus said to His disciples, "If anyone wishes to come after
Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me."

And denying myself is the cost… for all He has done, I can take up His cross and this cross daily, hourly, moment by moment. Amen!

In the meantime, I'm wearing a rubberband around my wrist and snapping it when I want a cigarette. I have welts... And the new lofat/lochol diet/losodium diet - the motto is, "if it tastes good, spit it out!"

I'm still here, I'm still kicking and God is still on the throne!
Yours, because we're His,


  1. Sadly, this time I did have 'cause to pause' about you, but now better things are getting going!

    You described the exact same symptoms that happened to Michael six years ago when he was diagnosed with CHF. This was before meeting me.

    For a year he radically changed his eating habits, but did not stop smoking. He quit when he found out I was allergic to smoke.

    Although his eating is better, if he had his way it would revert back to horrible, so it's a good thing I like to cook and cook healthy!

    You have some challenges, but you have HIM on your side. I will pray for you too!

    Thank you for sharing and for the good example you are being!

    blessings and hugs,


  2. I came across your blog through another, and I'm glad I did!

    I wish you well in this trial. I know it's not going to be easy for you.
    Just because you know you are doing the right thing doesn't make it any easier. I will remember you in my prayers.
    Stay strong! You can do it!

    "I can do all things in Him Who Strengthens me"
    All the best,

  3. Marcy, Eileen - thanks for your support, prayers and encouragement!

    I may stumble, I may fall... but through all of this, may He be glorified.

  4. When I was struggling through quitting smoking some 25 years ago (THANK YOU, GOD!!!), I got some loosely-strung beads and flicked them along the string whenever I wanted to smoke. I wasn't Catholic at the time, by the way...

    When my husband quit, he would click a ballpoint pen over and over whenever he wanted to smoke. Clickity-clickity-click - almost drove me crazy, but it worked.

    Just a few thoughts that may be helpful!

  5. Sue, great idea! I like it and may have to "string some beads"!


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