Warning. As a Schultz, I learned grossly inappropriate humor at an early age. Today I’m pulling one out circa 1982 that’s about a 6.5 on the inappropriate scale. It may not even register on the funny scale.
But what can I say, it’s late, I’m tired, my son needed CPR for a minute or so in the cath lab, doctors brought up heart transplant for the first time today, and I don’t have much in the tank.
Indian guy (Elizabeth Warren-style) in full head dress walks into a bar. Goes up to a girl and says flatly, “Chance.”
She says, “Is that a greeting? Don’t you mean, ‘How?’”
He says, “I know How. Looking for a Chance.”
Erica and I talked a lot about Chance tonight. Chance brought us together, as it does with everyone, I guess. Chance found us trying to have a baby for a good year or so, and finally getting pregnant.
Then Chance decided that baby was not meant to be. We had a miscarriage.
Chance was a pain in the ass at this point.
But I kept looking for all the Chance I could get, and we got pregnant again! This time with Ari.
As we know, Chance was not done throwing curveballs. He sent us to Children’s with a challenging diagnosis, an uncertain future, and a difficult decision: fold or play the hand.
Call the bluff?
Take a Chance?
We went all in.
So here we are in cardiac intensive care, dancing with Chance.
Sometimes in life it feels like Chance is the puppeteer, and we are the puppet. Things happen, and we react.
It struck us today, however, that one night last October, when we decided to press on with an uncertain future, we started dealing the Chance instead of receiving it.
That night nine months ago we grabbed the deck and dealt Ari a Chance at a life.
Which brings us to where we are now: back where we started.
Schultzes walk into the bar and say to the cardiologists, “Chance.”
Cardiologists say back, “You have a Chance. Unfortunately, we’re not sure How.”
This afternoon in the cath lab, Ari was again “delicate,” “fragile,” “perplexing,” and “unusual.”
Why does he have pulmonary hypertension? Why is it a little better than it was last week, but still so stubborn and unreactive? Why is his left ventricle so stiff?
Why, when trying to balloon his mitral valve, did he need CPR and other measures for that minute before they “recaptured” him and got back on track with, you know, continuation of life.
Why doesn’t really matter right now. At the moment, we care more about how.
How are we going to proceed? How will we get him growing and thriving? How can we avoid continuing the discussion about the possibility of a heart transplant that we began for the first time tonight?
It soon became clear, and, as well, fairly straightforward.
After the cath we talked to the doctors about all the options that, at first, seemed overwhelming. It felt like we were in a car dealership learning about all of the cars we could buy. Big…small…fuel efficient…suped up…stripped down… and on and on.
But by the time we left, we were told, “In the end, the only car available to you is this one right here, and you have to buy it if you want to leave the dealership.”
This car is a mitral valve replacement and more EFE resection, most likely within the week.
It’s imperfect. It may not last long. It may fix the whole problem, part of the problem, or none of it. Nobody really knows, but guess what…
It’s the best Chance he has, and we’re taking it.