The Anatomy of an Aneurysm or how life can change in a moment

30 Oct

My surroundings have changed and so has my life since October 19, 2012.  My husband, son Matt and I were looking forward to a road trip to Elkhart, Wisconsin for an endurance car race with another car dealer and his son at Road America.  It was something that we had looked forward to since July.

We left Minnesota around midnight to travel the seven hours from our home to the track on Thursday, October 18, 2012 so we would arrive early in the morning in Elkhart.  We got there a few hours early before could check in at the track.  We gassed up the truck and starting looking forward to finding a nice place for some breakfast.

We hadn’t traveled far when I was struck with the most intense pain in my head I have ever felt.  My husband pulled the car to the curbside as I opened the window and then the door and collapsed onto the grassy curb.  This was the last image I remember of the day.

According to my husband and son they called for 911 and my son began CPR on me.  They loaded me up in an ambulance and took me to the Sheboygan hospital and then planned to airlift me to Milwaukee but couldn’t because of the weather.  They followed to the Sheboygan hospital to be met by the chaplain thinking that I didn’t make it, that I was gone… They then loaded me in another ambulance and transported me to Milwaukee, Wisconsin to the Froedtert Hospital.  I don’t remember any of this other than the grassy curb where I collapsed.

I woke up in Milwaukee to find out that I had a hemorrhagic stroke but they weren’t sure it was an aneurysm yet they would have to let the blood be reabsorbed before they could do an angiogram to try to find the aneurysm.  They did the study last Friday and found two veins that the need to stint and an aneurysm to coil before I can be released.  That is set for this Friday.

It has been a wild ride of pain, pain meds, treatments and not knowing what is next.  It is hard to be seven hours from home but my children and extended family have made the trip to visit.  They say that I am in one of the best hospitals for my condition and for that I am thankful for especially since I had contemplated stay home from the racing weekend which would have left me alone all weekend and likely to have received the quick and great care I received.

Just the week before we left home my husband made the comment that he was ready for one of those vacations where you go somewhere long enough to actually get bored and want to go home.  While this is not a vacation I am definitely bored and ready to be home.

I don’t know that I will look at each new day differently but how else can I in recognizing the gift of life that I have been given.  God is Good.


Posted by on October 30, 2012 in aneurysym, Family, health, Life Happens


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37 responses to “The Anatomy of an Aneurysm or how life can change in a moment

  1. pattisj

    October 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    Yes, God is good. I’m so glad you are still with us. Being bored and ready to go home is a good sign to me that you are doing well, under the circumstances. Godspeed your healing and journey home.

    • flyinggma

      October 30, 2012 at 9:54 pm

      Thanks Patti Looking forward to the rest of my journey

  2. Booksphotographsandartwork

    October 30, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    Oh thank God you went with them! I am so sorry to hear that such a terrible and scary thing has happened to you but so glad to hear that you are alive. It sounds as if you have great care and will pull through this with flyers colors! Hugs to you and wishing you the speediest recovery.

    • flyinggma

      October 30, 2012 at 9:54 pm

      I am truly blessed beyond measure.

  3. nrhatch

    October 30, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    Wow! I am so glad you weren’t Home Alone, Jeanne! Hope that the stints and coil go well and that you are HOME again soon. thanks for letting us know. Peace.

    • flyinggma

      October 30, 2012 at 10:00 pm

      Thanks Nancy. Looking forward to the healing process kicking in soon.

  4. Joe Clark

    October 30, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    I can’t believe this happened to you! Ardis and I are keeping you in our prayers. Get well soon!

    • flyinggma

      October 30, 2012 at 10:02 pm

      Thanks Joe. I have a hard time believing this is my life right now but God is good and I will be home soon with family. I’m at a great hospital for what is going on right now.

  5. Thomas Stazyk

    October 30, 2012 at 11:18 pm

    So glad you are OK. We are beaming you good wishes from the Southern Hemisphere for a quick recovery. All the bes.

    • flyinggma

      October 31, 2012 at 8:42 pm

      Thanks Thomas accepting all the sunshine coming my way.

  6. sunshineinlondon

    October 31, 2012 at 3:23 am

    Wow, Jeanne, it’s amazing how everything happens as it should – the list of ‘what ifs’ is endless and you see God’s hand in all of this. So glad you’re ok. Strength and blessings to you, speedy healing and much love
    Sunshine xx

    • flyinggma

      October 31, 2012 at 8:43 pm

      Thanks Sunshine. God has us exactly where we need to be for my surgery Friday. Missing home but we will get there soon.

  7. harrisonjones

    October 31, 2012 at 6:21 am

    Jeanne, you will be in our prayers and we wish you the speedy recovery that you so richly deserve.

    • flyinggma

      October 31, 2012 at 8:44 pm

      Thanks Harrison…Waiting for your next book!

  8. Meanderer

    October 31, 2012 at 7:24 am

    Wishing you all the very best with your recovery, Jeanne.

    • flyinggma

      October 31, 2012 at 8:45 pm

      Thanks Meanderer. I was hoping to take some fun pictures while in Wisconsin but only a couple from my ICU room.

  9. barb19

    October 31, 2012 at 8:06 am

    So glad you decided to go on the road trip, otherwise you would have been alone at home when you collapsed – I dread to think what might have happened to you.
    Glad you are being taken care of, and it was good that your family came such a long way to in hospital. The fact that you want to go home and being bored is a good sign!
    I wish you a speedy and full recovery.

    • flyinggma

      October 31, 2012 at 8:46 pm

      Thanks Barb. I will have plenty of time to be bored. They told me no work for a month after my surgery.

  10. nrhatch

    October 31, 2012 at 8:19 am

    Jeanne ~

    Hope you’re in good spirits today. If you are bored and want something to focus on, you might enjoy this Halloween contest.

    If you win . . . 5 shiny new autographed children’s books for your grandson!

    You can find the details, and my entry, here:

    Your story must be 100 words or less and Susannah gave us the first 3 ~ witch, bat, and “trick or treat.” Be judicious. Slash and dash. It is Halloween after all!

    Get well soon!

    • flyinggma

      October 31, 2012 at 8:49 pm

      Thanks Nancy. Maybe if I feel up to it tomorrow I will check it out. Am feeling much better today but met with the surgeon and am a little apprehension for
      Friday but not having the surgery is not an option.

      • nrhatch

        October 31, 2012 at 8:59 pm

        Glad you’re feeling better today. Feeling apprehensive about surgery is understandable, especially after what you’ve already been through.

        Sounds like you are in the right hospital, surrounded by the right doctors, with lots of good vibes and prayers winging your way.

        We are all wishing you the very best!

      • flyinggma

        November 1, 2012 at 7:42 pm

        Surgery tomorrow am at 7:15. Looking forward to the trip home soon and done with surgery.

  11. nrhatch

    November 1, 2012 at 10:42 pm

    Best of luck, Jeanne. Hope your surgery and recovery are smooth sailing. Our thoughts are with you. xxx

  12. nrhatch

    November 3, 2012 at 7:43 am

    Morning, Jeanne . . . when you feel able, please give us the thumbs up so we know you’re OK.

    Speedy recovery!

    • flyinggma

      November 6, 2012 at 5:33 pm

      Hi Nancy and BFF. I am blessed and thankful to say that all went well with my surgery on Friday and they moved me from the ICU on Saturday. I was discharged from the hospital yesterday morning and we made the long drive home yesterday so I could sleep in my own bed last night. I am very tired and have some headaches but other than that I am well and should improve daily.

      • nrhatch

        November 6, 2012 at 5:39 pm

        Yay! That’s even better than I expected. I didn’t think you would be home so soon after surgery.

        Please take care of yourself.
        Be a lady of leisure and allow others to wait on you hand and foot.

        If you need any tips on getting others to do your bidding, let me know. 😉

      • flyinggma

        November 7, 2012 at 9:46 am

        Thanks Nancy. Doctors say no work for a month until I have my follow-up exam in Milwaukee. It will definitely be a change for me. No problem getting others to help, plenty of offers all around. We have such a wonderful small town filled with many friends and family close by. We came home to find that the local lawn service company came and completely cleaned our yard up from all the fall leaves while we were in Milwaukee. They also cleaned up the yard at the home we bought to renevate as well. So blessed!!!!

      • nrhatch

        November 7, 2012 at 10:37 am

        I’m so glad that your doctors took you out of work for a month. That should eliminate any feeling of “guilt” for doing less than normal.

        And yay for your neighbors and friends for raking up the leaves.

        If there have been any quiet things you’ve been postponing, maybe now’s the time to pursue them. Relax, heal, get well. 😀

  13. pearlsandprose

    November 26, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    Oh Jeanne, I thought you had stopped blogging, but decided to check in, just in case. Wow, you are so lucky!! A lot of people don’t recover from this. So very glad you are alive and well. Hope you’re back home by now and taking it easy.

    • flyinggma

      December 30, 2012 at 9:44 pm

      Sorry it took so long to respond Carole. I am doing well and with no ill effects from the aneurysm or surgery except a low energy level which is slowly improving. I will be returning to Milwaukee for a follow-up angiogram on January 17 and hopefully everything will be as my surgeon expects it to be and I can resume life fully. Hoping to get back out taking pictures soon.

      • pearlsandprose

        December 31, 2012 at 5:03 pm

        No need to apologize at all, Jeanne. I’m just happy to hear you’re OK. What a scare that must have been! Surgery really takes your energy, I know. Just take it easy until you’re ready to get back in the swing of things. I hope everything goes well on the 17th. Happy New Year. 🙂

  14. Greg Brown

    December 29, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    Sorry to hear this happened, Jeanne, but I’m mighty glad you’re doing better!! All our best to you! Greg & Jean

    • flyinggma

      December 30, 2012 at 9:41 pm

      Thanks Greg. I am happy to report that I am doing well. The headaches that I suffered from before and after my surgery are gone and daily I am gaining strength. I am back at work full-time and have resumed most activities except flying. Hope you had a blessed Christmas and wishing you both the best in the New Year.

  15. klassikurvz

    January 18, 2013 at 6:49 am

    Dear Jeanne. I hope all went well with your follow up visit. Sending you much love and sunshine to help you to awaken with renewed vigor and energy to do just enough each day. Keep stretching forward to the things ahead knowing that love is the bond that propels us to reach for the stars. May the love and support of your friends,family and community continue to strengthen and uplift you.

    • flyinggma

      February 16, 2013 at 8:39 am

      Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. Things went great at my follow-up angiogram on January 16. The doctor took me off the Plavix and said all I need is an aspirin a day to keep the doctor away. Blessings to you!

  16. klassikurvz

    February 19, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    Thanks for the update. Keep smiling.


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