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We All Need Support at Some Time

May 27, 2022

The other evening I gathered my family for a ZOOM call to share the news of my angiogram.

It came on the heels of a day that began with a call to go to hospital at 7:00 am.

Owing to a number of emergency patients ahead of me and other complex patients, the procedure for my angiogam was late in the afternoon. Recovery another 2.5 hours.

Although mildly sedated, the doctor walked me through the findings while still on the table. I had to convey those findings to my entire family.

I didn’t want to have to repeat myself multiple times. Once would be difficult enough. Hence the ZOOM call.

With Arlene beside me, I broke the news.

I have three blocked coronary arteries. One about 95%, another at about 75% and the third about 60%.

There is quite a bend in the most blocked artery making it a poor candidate for angioplasty or a stent.

That means open heart bypass surgery is required to address the problem.

The meaning of this wasn’t lost on my family. Although the prognosis is good, it remains the most dangerous of interventions to get there.

I am short listed yet again, going from urgent procedure to urgent procedure. I again can get the call to go to hospital at anytime.

In the meantime, no activity. No driving. The concern being a heart attack. So far, I have been fortunate enough to avoid that.

Oddly enough, I can continue to work.

Sitting at a screen, meeting and talking with people, is not the kind of activity that can create a problem.

However, not knowing when I may be called, it isn’t good service if unpredictable and disrupted.

I will be canceling appointments and because of at least a 6 to 8 week recovery, I will take off the entire summer.

Some choices are thrust upon us. The choice then is less about what one must do and more about how one goes through the process.

I seek to go forward with both eyes open and taking care of myself. I seek to do so so as to minimize stress upon myself, Arlene and my family.

Support matters. With that, I am blessed.

Beyond my family, there is you, extended kin, closest of friends – my adopted family members, friends, colleagues, and those whom I haven’t met but who share space with me virtually.

You all matter to me.

I will continue to post.

Transparency matters. Owning one’s issues matters.

Therein we can gather the strength of others to ease a difficult journey.

It was a long day yesterday.

Many more lay ahead.

Thank you for your support.

Do take care of yourself too. You matter.


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I am Gary Direnfeld and I am a social worker. Check out all my services and then call me if you need help with a personal issue, mental health concern, child behavior or relationship, divorce or separation issue or even help growing your practice. I am available in person and by video conferencing.

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Gary Direnfeld, MSW, RSW

gary@yoursocialworker.com
www.yoursocialworker.com for counseling and support

www.garydirenfeld.com – to build your successful practice

Gary Direnfeld is a social worker. Courts in Ontario, Canada, consider him an expert in social work, marital and family therapy, child development, parent-child relations and custody and access matters. Gary is the host of the TV reality show, Newlywed, Nearly Dead, former parenting columnist for the Hamilton Spectator and author of Marriage Rescue: Overcoming the ten deadly sins in failing relationships. Gary maintains a private practice in Georgina Ontario, providing a range of services for people in distress. He speaks at conferences and workshops throughout North America. He consults to mental health professionals as well as to mediators and collaborative law professionals about good practice as well as building their practice.

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