Published: Jan. 4, 2012
Updated: Jan. 4, 2012
Back when I was born in 1974, I had open heart surgery -- transposition of the great vessels. Since then, I have been going about once a year for a check-up, and everything has been fine.
I have refereed basketball and umpired baseball for about 20 years. I am 37 now, married with two healthy kids.
Well , on December 10, 2011, I went to referee basketball -- four games in a row. After the fourth game, I knew something was not right.
My heart rate shot up to 236 beats per minute and would not slow down. I was rushed to Wake Med and, while on the way to Wake, I was just as calm as I am now. I told the paramedics my history (medications, surgery, etc.), and they could not believe how calm I was.
Wake was ready for me when I got there. They had doctors and nurses waiting. They tried meds to slow my heart rate down and that did not work. So I had to be shocked. Let me say, that hurt bad! I was awake and calm when that hit.
Wake transferred me to Duke due to my history. I was at Duke for eight days.
The nurses, doctors, food service, house keeping, and any other department I dealt with was beyond amazing!
I have made so many new friends. I hated to leave the place. Duke was the best place to be.
Rebecca, Joel, and Angel are my three favorite nurses but closely followed by the rest! Everyone was amazing. Dr. Andrew Wang and the interns with him -- Christopher Swan, Kevin Shah, and David Lerner -- were super!
I will miss Dr. Lerner a lot. He and I formed a buddy bond. We joked and had a great time. Swan and Shah are amazing doctors and will be in practice for a long time.
Dr. Wang , is the best in his field. He treats you like a family member, not a patient. Dr. Brenda Armstrong, Dr. Michael Carboni, and Dr. Ronald Kanter are by far some of the most amazing people I have ever met. Their love for heart medicine is like no other. They love and care about everyone. Dr. Jon, the stress therapist, was fantastic.
My eight days at Duke will be remembered forever. I love all you guys and will miss everyone of you. God bless you all.