Pip's NDEs

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The 1st 2 blackouts I remember with any clarity happened on 15 & 18 Jan 08.

The alarm went off at 04:20 (both days) as I had to be into work no later than 06:00. I slapped the off button and next thing I knew, I was on the floor chewing the carpet about 1 minute later. I had a burning sensation across the back of my neck both times, 2nd time I got a rug burn on my forehead, which left a scar, the abrasion was so deep.

1st time, I got up, took my shower, dressed and went to work as usual. I did, before saying hello to Anita, call the doctor for a physical when I got home that evening. When the 2nd one happened, I called off sick and went to see the doctor as soon as the clinic opened.

All the testing, including echo-cardiogram, MRI, blood work and a stress test (maximum speed, elevation and time, better than average heart rate recovery) showed me to be very healthy for a man my age (almost 51 at the time). The stress test techs were surprised to find out that I do not exercise; they thought I ran at least 2 - 3 miles every day.

The electrical fault I have in my heart seems most active either when I am sleeping or soon after I get up.

Thinking back, I had an episode the previous July while I was alone in the outside storage yard at the Lowe's where I work. I didn't pass out, but I had a slow motion collapse, thought I'd slipped on something.

When I had the episodes, that got me to the hospital (15 Apr 08), I was sitting at the computer in our living room about 09:30 checking emails before leaving for work.

1st one, I just passed out...when I woke up, told the wife I'd had the same sort of blackout I'd had in January. She said she'd heard me make a kind of growl, thought I was just grumbling at one of the cats.

2nd one happened within 10 minutes, while we were discussing what to do.

I awoke and stopped her from calling emergency services, got her to take me to my doctor, who I saw by 10:30.

By 12:00, I was on a monitored bed in the emergency room...many of the same tests performed in January, save the stress test.

By 14:00, the attending physician (think Antonio Banderas channeling George Clooney when he was playing a doctor on ER for the pose and voice) comes in and gives me the same answer I got in January...you are perfectly healthy for a man your age (I am 51 now). This concerns me, you should not be passing out, I would like to admit you for overnight observation.

A course of action to which I immediately agreed.

By 16:00 I was on a bed in the Cardiac Care Unit, just the heart monitor at this point.

About 17:30 they brought me supper, a cheeseburger and fries, ice tea to drink, as there were no restrictions...

I drifted off to sleep after such an exciting day between 19:00 and 20:00...

Next thing I knew for sure, the ward nurse was waking me up, about 05:30...asked me if I remembered 5 people and the crash cart being in my room. No, says Pip, I was sleeping. She explained how one of episodes was 28 seconds long and fomented a "Code Blue." They were charging up the paddles, but I came out of it on my own before they were able to apply the defibrillator.

The nurse told me that there were 13 flat line episodes in all...

I recall waking up a couple of times and paired with my memories of the other blackouts...that's what they were, fades to black.

Kind of like an accelerated fading of the sun on a warm summer night, when the moon is new and the stars are hidden in a faint haze, a good feeling of laying back on a comfy bed of grass.

No bright lights, no tunnel, no otherworldly figures...

As I wrote in the thread, I still believe that there is a life after this one, I do not know...

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