Friday, September 25, 2009

Catching Up

Many of you know this story already, but I thought it would be helpful to take a quick look at the circumstances that got me started on this blog.

September 4th (three weeks ago today) I had a "sub arachnoid hemorrhage" (SAH) -- a brain bleed -- that came on like lightning, out of the blue. (I was leaning over to pick up a pen off the coffee table when it happened, so I don't think it was the strain that did it!) A terrible headache, vomiting, and profuse sweating were enough to convince Julie, my wife, that we should visit the ER in Princeton, MN. From there I got to take a helicopter ride to North Memorial Hospital in Robbinsdale, just outside Minneapolis, where I spent the next two weeks -- a day and a half in ICU and the rest of the time out on the floor.

Statistically, a SAH kills about a third of the people who get it. Another roughly third are seriously debilitated by it. And the rest are pretty much unscathed. I am very blessed to be in this latter third. I never lost consciousness, and never had any "neurological deficits" -- memory loss, weakness, loss of cognitive or physical ability.

So basically I had a pretty harsh wakeup call. I've always tried to live with the knowledge that my existence in this world is not permanent. The last three weeks have brought a new sharpness to that reality. I had lots of time in the hospital for sitting and reflecting. (I know many of you have followed this experience on my Caring Bridge site.) Now I'm home, and I have another couple weeks of restricted duty. So I still have lots of time for sitting and reflecting.

Partly because I'd been thinking about it for a long time, and partly because many of you encouraged me to do it, this blog seems like a good way to share some of that reflection time with others. Physically I'm pretty much recovered -- though for another week or two I'm still at some higher risk for a random recurrence, so that's a little weird. This seems like a better venue than the Caring Bridge site as a place to share my thoughts. While I'm on restricted duty I have time to play with this, and as life goes back to "normal" -- whatever that is -- one of my goals is to make this part of the new routine.

Hope you enjoy it -- and if you like, you can comment on these posts (as so many of you have done on Caring Bridge -- thanks!)


  1. Jeff,
    Welcome to the blogging world! I look forward to reading/keeping up with you via your blog. I have been so inspired by many of your postings to your other site and I so look forward to continuing to be inspired. You have blessed me more than you'll ever know!

  2. Awesome! You have an amazing ability to teach and inspire. I miss the pastor chats we had on Kingdom talk.
    I am so happy you are home now and on the mend.

  3. Looking forward to seeing you on your blog!

  4. Glad to see the blog. It is so awesome to read your writings. We are willing to help out also, let us know what you need.


  5. I'm looking forward to keeping up with you on your blog. We are praising God with you on your continued recovery!