Storm Weathered
Back To The Stars


So while I was worrying about a stupid house, my sister-in-law was rushing my brother-in-law to the hospital. He was experiencing the worst pain between his shoulders and back that he had ever had. He thought it was a cramp; my sister-in-law knew it was not.

The hospital in Cumberland found the problem: he ruptured two of the three layers of his aorta. Yes, his aorta; you know, the biggest artery in your whole entire body.

Not only that, he had an abdominal aneurysm that was ready to burst.

And his blood pressure was through the roof: 240 over 180.

The doctors in Cumberland did not have the expertise to treat this type of injury, so he was transferred -- during the height of the hurricane -- from Cumberland, Maryland to Winchester, Virginia. While he was there, the nurses and doctors worked to get his blood pressure under control. They also discussed his options, which included stabilizing his blood pressure and sending him home to wait for the inevitable end, cracking open his chest from neck to groin and fixing the rupture and aneurysm, or sending him to Johns Hopkins Hospital for advanced, minimally invasive surgery.

He's at Johns Hopkins now. He arrived by helicopter earlier this week; the surgery is Tuesday. His surgeon is this man -- he wrote the book on this type of vascular surgery.

We went up to visit today, and he is stable and comfortable and joking around like his regular self. We took my sister-in-law and niece out for lunch; they and the rest of their family are holding up pretty well.

The outlook is good, but any light, positive thoughts, prayers, chants, healing spells, and anything else you can think of couldn't hurt.

And please -- tell your friends and your family that you love them.