My friend and training partner, Debbie, was supposed to be at the Uechi tournament to watch. I was surprised she didn’t show. Unusual for her, especially since she did some good training rounds with me the week before. She was excited about watching the tournament again and was going to bring one of her TKD friends along. I noted her absence at the tournament but was too caught up with my own stuff. Then I headed out to Maine for the remainder of the week…
I got a call today that Debbie was in the hospital. She’s been in the neurosurgical ICU for over a week. Last Saturday, the day of the tourney, she had been in TKD class when she was struck by a spell of dizziness and nausea. She sat out the rest of the class, hoping to get over whatever overcame her. Instead, she ended up in the bathroom vomiting. Thinking it was a bout of food poisoning, she went home to bed. The dizziness, vomiting, headache and pressure on the back of her neck persisted into the next day. She skipped a family dinner and stayed in bed. He mother called and persistently told her to get to the hospital to treat the “food poisoning.” (You have to know, Deb… She’s a tough one and likes to “tough” things out.) She finally agreed to do so to appease her mother So, Deb drove herself to the hospital. The hospital staff did some preliminary stuff around possible food poisoning but her symptoms were not “normal” for that. More tests and then a spinal tap which found blood. This led to a CAT scan that showed she had an aneurysm. An artery bursted and miraculously closed on its own. To ensure that the artery does not open again, the doctors inserted some wire device through her artery and cauterized the weakened area. Deb’s other option would have been more traditional – that is to open her skull and cauterize the afflicted artery.
So, Deb sounded okay today… As good as can be expected. She’s wondering, why her. She keeps herself fit, watches what she eats, etc., etc. Despite the seriousness of what happened to her, she was fortunate, very fortunate… As the doctors said, less than 5% of folks stricken with what she had are not left dead or permanently incapacitated.
While she ponders and questions the “Why?” as any would do in her situation, in time, I hope she comes to appreciate fully, as I do, that she is still here. For the Grace of...I am grateful that I still have a friend and a training partner around for however long…
[This message has been edited by david (edited May 30, 2001).]