Friday, May 6, 2011

Praying for HIS Endless Mercy 2

The monitor in ICU
It was really cold there in the ICU but I was too weak to bother to look around my surrounding. They had to send me there because the equipment needed for my new treatment was only available in the ICU.

Once I was transferred to the ICU bed, the doctor kindly asked my husband to wait outside the room since she was going to start the procedure immediately.
All the tubes on both of my hands and my spine had been taken off, not because I don't need them anymore but they would be replaced and inserted in one place. In my neck.

The doctor explained to me about my situation and the steps that they are going to take involving new medication, another bag of blood and more fluids. Again, their main concern was my heart. My long term anemia had caused some 'damage' to my heart, as shown in my ECG, and my body was not responding well to the treatment so far. The tumor that had been removed were quite huge, one as big as a baby's head, another one as big as a tennis ball and few small ones. Once removed, they left huge opening and that's how I lost the excessive amount of precious blood.
My BP was still fluctuating, from the amount of fluid that had been transfused, the same amount were sent out by my body as shown in my urine bag. Apparently my body failed to retain the fluid, hence the BP remained way below the normal level.

The new procedure involved inserting an intravenous tube through my jugular vein in my neck that would be directed straight to my heart. Blood, fluid and the new medication will be transfused through this one tube.
As the doctor prepared for the procedure, I tried my best to keep calm and control my anxiety.
It was anesthetic was used. The nurse who stood beside me looked with sympathy and she held out her hand to me. As the doctor started injecting the needle to my neck I held the nurse's hand tightly and plead to Allah, The Most Merciful...
A verse from the Qur'an kept coming to my mind,
"We verily created man and We know what his soul whispered to him, and We are nearer to him than his jugular vein" (Qaf:16)
Allah..He is near, very near, nearer to me than the vein in my neck. And only He knew how I felt at that time.
May Allah grant me forgiveness through these pain..
May it become a compensation for my sins...
The doctor tried her best to be extra gentle, each time updating me with what she was doing.
Tube inserted to my neck
"I am going to inject you now, it's a bit painful.."
"I am sorry madam.....I am done with that..okay.?."
"I am going to insert the tube to your vein now..."
"...sorry..sorry...I know it's painful.."
And she joined me in calling out to Allah.
"Ok now...Allaahuakbar..Allaahuakbar...", the tube went in slowly.
A painful one for me, but a very delicate and difficult one for her.
"It will be over soon...okay..are you okay?.."
"I am almost done..sorry...just another two minutes.."
But it wasn't two minutes.
By the time it was over, the strain and discomfort remained. Later I realized that the tube had five different openings, one for blood, one for fluid and one for the special medication for my heart. The other two were spared for injecting anti-biotic and painkiller.

That night, I tried my best to sleep but despite being on painkiller, my back was aching. My hands and feet were stiff and it's no fun having a tube in my neck. I was afraid to move my head.
In my mind, I believed that those who knew about my surgery had been praying for me, but at that time I felt that I needed more support.
I gathered all my strength not to cry and requested my husband who was sitting beside me to make a special du'a for me, "Please pray that I'll remain strong...I am so tired right now...."
I was at my lowest moment and on the brink of despair. I closed my eyes, still trying very hard to sleep.
Then I saw my husband raised his hands and prayed quietly. Almost immediately my strength came back... Alhamdulillah...thank you Allah...
I fell in and out of sleep in discomfort until the doctor offered me sleeping medication which I willingly took. I woke up three hours later at 5.30am when the nurses came to clean me up.

That was two weeks ago. I stayed one day in normal ward preparing for surgery, one day in HDU after the surgery, two days in ICU due to the complications and another two days in HDU before being discharged.
Alhamdulillah now I am home, recuperating.

I am writing this as a remainder for myself.
That, life has it's ups and downs. And for everything that happened, as long as we keep our trust in Allah and keep remembering Him, we can always feel His presence, His mercy.
I felt and saw Allah's mercy everywhere.
I felt it in the gentle hands of the nurses and doctors.
I felt it in the presence of my beloved husband, my siblings, my families, my friends and everyone who came to visit me.

As I pray to Allah to heal me, I know I am praying to The Most Merciful.. Ar Rahiim.
The One who provides comfort and peace, As Salam.
Al Muhaimin, The Giver of Protection, Al Haleem, The Gentle.
But I must remain patient and strong, because He will grant me the recovery in due time. It's like the changing of days and nights, I can't expect to see sunlight when night time had just begun. The night will become darker and darker, then, when it is time, the darkness would lessen and slowly the sun will rise and another beautiful day come to greet us. I must wait patiently.

My darkest moment in the ICU is over and now as I am recovering, the sun is slowly rising.
I must be thankful to Allah for the sunshine, the continuous mercy descended upon me.
I must continue praying for His endless mercy.
And I hope with all sincerity that His mercy would never ceased especially on the day that I finally meet Him, the Judgement Day.
Amiin..Ya Arhamar Raahimiin..

"Who has created me, and it is He who guides me, and it is He who feeds me and gives me to drink. And when I am ill, it is He who cures me. And who will cause me to die, and then will bring me to life (again). And who, I hope will forgive me my faults on the Day of Resurrection" ( As Shu'ara': 78 - 82)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Praying for HIS Endless Mercy 1

"Your ECG is not normal"
"Did you have a heart attack before?"
"Any chest pain?"
"Difficulty breathing?"

"We'll do a heart ultra sound tomorrow morning. If you heart is ok, then the surgery can proceed. Otherwise we'll have to change the plan"

The brief conversation I had with the cardiologist the day before my surgery left me bewildered.
Heart attack? How is that possible?
Ya Rahman..Ya Rahiim...

Alhamdulillah..all praise be to Allah.
My ultra sound the next day showed that my heart was functioning normally.

The surgery lasted about two and a half hours. I woke up feeling tired with slight pain.
Instead of the normal ward, I was placed in High Dependency Unit (HDU). There were tubes on both of my hands, my spine and lower abdomen. Wires were attached to my chest, there was a clip on one of my fingers and a device to measure my blood pressure(BP) was attached to my arm. I was given some blood and fluid through the tubes. The wires were to measure my pulse, heart beat, BP, oxygen level, and..something else which I am not sure of.
I was told that my BP and hemoglobin level were extremely low because I had lost too much blood during the surgery.
The nurses and doctors kept asking me, "Any pain anywhere?..."
I didn't feel any pain, just lethargic and sleepy. I don't remember much of what happened that day.
It was at night when I began to feel uncomfortable. I vomited three times in between sleeps.
My abdominal muscle(where the wound was) contracted while I vomited and it was really painful.
Somehow I could sleep relatively well that night. Alhamdulillah...

The next morning I was allowed to take some fluid orally and I chose to take a sip of zam-zam water.
The surgeon came and told me that the surgery was a success, the tumor had been removed. He explained about what had happened during the surgery and upon checking on the wound he said I should be able to be discharged as early as the next day. Alhamdulillah...
But there were four doctors in charge of me, and the cardiologist was still very concern about my BP. He was puzzled why it didn't respond well to the blood and fluid transfusion that was performed since the day before. I had been given two bags of blood and bags (I didn't know how many) of fluid but the BP was still alarmingly low. His concern was about my heart.
I think it was then that my husband started keeping record of my BP reading that was shown in the monitor above my bed. It kept fluctuating with the lowest recorded at 78/53mmHg (normal BP is 120/80)
By late afternoon when the cardiologist came to check on me again he told me of a new plan which he had discussed with the anesthesiologist. I listened quietly as he explained the new procedure.
I was not afraid, neither worried, I just felt really weak and my mind just went blank.
I remembered the prayers that I made in the holy land, and the plenty of tears that I shed. It was in preparation of this day.
Ya Rahmaan...Ya Rahiim..
Give me strength Ya Allah..
I was then wheeled to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).