I had just received the ok to go ahead and get ready to be discharged from the hospital when I started to think about time. It consumed me. I changed into my clothes and left the hospital within an hour. I did the math in the car, it was going to be 720 hours until I had a follow up appointment with the Surgeon/Doctor. I was anxious. 720 hours until I get to have a full explanation of what the study really meant. 720 hours until I find out my appointment to go see the specialists in Dallas.
Seven hundred and twenty fucking hours when there is a known bleed in my brain and no one is running around like a mad man trying to get me into the appointments as fast as they possibly can.
All we ever think about is time.
Ricardo and I had lost our patience. We have currently have 384 hours until we are given important news that we shouldn’t have to wait this long for. In the mean time, we spend our time enjoying all of the time we have left. “They found a fucking bleed in your brain and they schedule your appointment for a full month later?!” Ricardo yelled. Not to me, but he yelled. I understood why he was so angry, and it’s not even his own brain. I looked at him and said “Look, people have been waiting up to a year to see this guy.. and I’m not saying I disagree with you. I feel the exact same way. I don’t think it’s right that it’s not a bigger issue.” I couldn’t hold eye contact with him. I didn’t want him to see how upset I actually was. There we were, 399 hours after the news and I’m back to having the same symptoms I was having before my hemorrhagic stroke. Pounding headaches, bruit (whooshing noise), and nose bleeds.
Ricardo paid the check and we walked out of the restaurant to our latest purchase. A 7 Series BMW. I grabbed his hand when we were at a stop light when I started thinking again. Maybe I needed to make more out of my time. What if my time on earth is nearing.. the car started moving as the light turned green.. I guess that was God’s way of snapping me out of those thoughts.
I had 432 hours left when I got a phone call from our HR department at my place of work a few days ago. I answered the phone and received the news that I had to be placed on leave of absence, and that I had no choice because I had already maxed out my light duty term.. which under this company’s policy is 8 weeks. I took a deep breath, asked my questions and then placed the HR person on hold so I could get my boss on the line and have her tell him the bad news. For weeks I thought I would be ok because, the ADA law mandates that a company must make reasonable accommodations for its employees. I am not allowed on a ladder because I could have a seizure, and I cannot heavy lift or stoop for more than 4 hours because, hello, I just had brain surgery.
I value my life and my brain, and I wondered why my work didn’t want to do the same and work with me.