The Recovery room in CCU was a hot box that I shared with 3 or 4 other guys that also were lucky to be alive.One Poor SOB had a tracheotomy and a Heart surgery of sorts,so he was forced to communicate via a push of a button. So, every few minutes,I would awake to the sound of a Nurse scurrying over to his bed side. Another one of my roommate's also survived an Aortic Dissection. However, he suffered from a stroke soon after being admitted to the Emergency room. In the relative scheme of things,I was flying high.
The room was a cluttered hot box with the five patients and the Nurse's who were assigned to each one respectively. This being the case, a 1 visitor,per patient at a time rule was implemented. To make the set up even more crowded,I was attached to and kept alive by over two dozen Wires and Tubes.
The heat,chaos and discomfort of the situation made me appreciate what injured Soldiers of both THE CIVIL WAR and GREAT WAR endured while in Triage. IT was around this point in time that fragments of songs from my youth and adolescence were floating around in my head,keeping me sharp and reflecting on the severity of the situation I survived. In other words, the music of FISHBONE ,BAD BRAINS and SUICIDAL TENDENCIES are partially responsible for keeping this boy alive and kicking.
On my back in the Cot of a bed,I made a pact with myself that I would do my best to work cooperatively with all the Doctor's ,Nurse's , their aid's, Technicians and anyone who was tending to me. I started by passing gas,belching,urinating and other basic bodily functions,besides sleeping. Next I was drinking,eating and walking around. All the while, I was telling the Nurse's,Nurse's Aids, and Doctor's,"LET ME HELP YOU, HELP ME"
My first morsel of food was a piece home made Challah Bread that was baked from the hands of the Matriarch of the family of a Orthodox Jewish man,who also had a residency on the ICU Floor of BELLVUE HOSPITAL. Spending so much time together in the ICU waiting room, my family and Moishe's family quickly became friends. And nothing brings Jews together quicker than food and kibbutzing at the expense of a visit to see a sick family member.