I'm finally back home. The mile high air smells sweeter, the sunsets appear brighter, and it feels sooooo good to be back in my own bed, unencumbered by the assorted wires and tubes that had been attached to various parts of my body.
As Bill had mentioned in an earlier blog, there were some complications that kept me at the Mayo Clinic longer than I'd first expected. Specifically, my body had stopped producing red blood cells and I had a couple of episodes of irregular heartbeats.
I have such a deep respect for the medical staff at the Mayo Clinic. Dr. Thoralf Sundt was my surgeon, and his team was augmented by Dr. Enrique Gongora (his resident), Dr. Naser Ammash (a cardiologist specializing in congenital heart disease), Dr. Rajiv Purithi (a hematologist), and an incredibly competent, professional, and caring nursing staff, into whose hands I placed my life. The Mayo Clinic is so well organized that as issues arose, world-class experts were brought in immediately for consultation. It is wonderful that such an institution exists, and its reputation is well-deserved.
I continue to be amazed by the ability of the human body to heal. I still have minor aches and pains and my endurance is far from where it was before the surgery, but every day I get just a little bit stronger. My doctors advise that my recovery will take around eight weeks. I can't drive, I can't lift more than five pounds, I don't yet have the focus to sit in front of a computer, and the simple act of sneezing is a painful event. Therefore I'm doing something I've not done for about thirty years, namely, taking a summer vacation. So that my body and spirit have time to heal properly, don't expect to see me reengage in work until late summer.
I want to offer my thanks to the many people - some of whom I know, many of whom I don't - who held me and continue to hold me in their thoughts and prayers.