The Day I Almost DiedI'll try to keep this short.
I had been living with a serious medical condition for a few years. My doctor was monitoring it, but didn't want to risk surgery as long as it was stable. One day, I started having chest pains for the first time in my life, nothing too intense, but strange and scary nonetheless. I decide to call 911 just in case this was the big one. I started getting worse in the ambulance, then had a long scary 8 hour wait in the ER while they tried to diagnose me.
I'd been dreading this moment since I was first diagnosed, because it's so often fatal. Finally, they confirmed that I was in pretty bad shape and took me in for emergency surgery. I don't actually know whether the odds were in my favour or stacked against me at that point. When they were getting ready to put me out for the surgery, I really expected that those would be the last conscious moments of my life.
When I woke up, I felt like I'd been run over by a truck. It was awkward and kinda painful and I was stuck full of tubes and needles and electrodes almost everywhere they could find to stick something. I was pretty disoriented, but as I remembered what had happened to me and how I got there, I realized that the surgery had succeeded and that the doctors had saved my life. It was one most thrilling and inspiring moments in my life. After that, I didn't really care too much if it hurt a bit.
Later, I went for a few months of rehab to really get me back on my feet and back in shape. There were about 100 people in the group, mostly bypass patients. When the doctor asked us how many of us felt as though we had been given a second chance, practically everyone in the room put up their hands.
I've always looked at it as a wonderful experience.