Twelve years ago tonight...do you know where you were? Probably not, because for most people this date holds nothing of significance.
Twelve years ago tonight, I know exactly where I was. I was standing beside a hospital bed at St. Luke's Hospital, in Houston, TX, knowing that each breath he took might be his last. He was my hero. He had always been there for me, and now...he was leaving me.
It was the hardest night of my life. Without. a. doubt. I was SO not ready to let him go. And even though I knew that he would be in Heaven, and that I would see him again, I selfishly wanted to keep him with me as long as I could.
Twelve years is a long time. And we have missed him SO much! I think I miss him most when the kids do things that I know he would have loved. He was just a big kid himself. And I know he would be beyond excited over the newest member of the family, who would have made him a great-grandpa.
He had the best heart doctors and was at one of the nation's leading heart hospitals, but he was put on a medicine that needed strict monitoring. He took this medicine, without ever being warned of the terrible side effects, for five years. The medicine is a wonder drug when used and monitored properly, but used incorrectly, it can kill. And it did. It killed my daddy. He had all of the classic warning signs. But we did not even know to look for them. If we had, we would have caught it months before. But the "life" of the drug in his body would have continued to do it's irreversible damage for months.
If you or a loved one is taking Amiodarone or a generic form of Amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone) for heart arrhythmia symptoms, I strongly urge you to speak to you doctor about the dangers/side effects. I would suggest that you call your doctor, today. I thought my Daddy's death was just some random thing, until a few years ago when my friend's father was suddenly very ill and in the hospital. With every update we received, it sounded more and more like my Daddy's sickness. My friend's father passed away as well, and sure enough, he was also taking Amiodarone. So was her mother. Her mother talked to her doctor, and got off of it as quickly as possible.
I have since learned of other deaths from the same drug. From what I understand, it is a fantastic drug, and does a super job, but it is not something you should be on for any length of time. My Daddy was on it for five years. FIVE. YEARS. And no warning from the doctors. Some of the best heart doctors in the United States.
Nothing I do now, will ever bring my Daddy back, but it might just save the life of someone you love. If you or someone you love is taking this drug, please check with you doctor as soon as possible. Tomorrow will be the twelfth anniversary of my Daddy's death, but it doesn't have to be the anniversary of your loved one's death.