Black Dog and Tell-Tale Heart

Silbury Hill Day After Pics 011

Just over a month ago, I awoke in the night at about 1.30 am and I knew something was badly wrong, although I couldn’t speak. I was lying flat, but I felt terribly dizzy to the point that I was soon violently sick. After an hour or so I was vomiting blood, so I was taken to hospital here in Exeter and subjected to a battery of tests as the night passed.

I was conscious throughout little of this, but in my waking moments I learned that the consensus of opinion among the doctors was that I’d somehow contracted a viral infection that had affected my balance and made me so ill. I was put alone into a sideroom and given barrier nursing because of the possible risk of infection, but all this and more remains a blur.

The next night, I remember getting up and thinking something like “Thank God that’s over” before losing my balance and collapsing again, while the rest of my conscious hours of that night pretty much define my perception of my illness. It is impossible for me to describe how ill I felt, because it was as if I had a burning fever along with the inability to balance or look after myself in any way.

I was seated in a chair, vomiting continually and sweating profusely, feeling so bad that I wished that I would die and it seemed never-ending. Throughout all this, I was attended by Theresa, a Spanish nurse and by Tamsin, an English nurse, who kindly looked after me when I was at my lowest point and I wouldn’t be here without them, so as I wrote earlier, this terrible sickness is all I can think about as far as my illness is concerned.

The doctors at the hospital in Exeter were far less interested in this viral infection than in other matters that manifested themselves as a result of all the tests I’d had. It appears I have had numerous heart attacks that I’m completely unaware of, so after a little while, I was transferred by ambulance to the Royal Brompton Hospital in West London for surgery, something that filled me with dread. Not long before I was taken to London, I learned that Blueboy had died, something that would otherwise have added to my burdens by filling me with intolerable sorrow, but I don’t feel he’s ever left me for a moment.

I can write very little more because I’m so shattered. Last week, I had open heart surgery and a triple bypass, along with grafts and more drugs, needles and intrusive procedures than I’ve ever had in my life. I feel fragile and emotional, so it’s going to take me a long time to get back to my usual dynamic self but I’m still here and I distinctly remember whispering “Not Today!”, instead of numbers when I was put under. My family have told me of every phone call, every card, every inquiry and every good wish, so while it’s been impossible to acknowledge these and will be for a good while yet, thank you all so much for your kindness and may a thousand blessings pour down upon your heads.

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21 Responses to Black Dog and Tell-Tale Heart

  1. corvusrouge says:

    Good you are still with us, I’m glad to have heard from you (though “glad” isn’t the word what I would use to describe what you’ve gone through). I have some immediate thoughts about what happened to you reading this, but I won’t post yet as they can be for a later time. go well my friend and heal well.
    Neil

    Liked by 2 people

  2. ONY says:

    Dennis, i’m so very sorry to hear that you have been so terribly ill. I know your family posted updates online but of course we had no idea exactly ‘what’ was wrong, only that you were ill and had to have surgery. Even seeing those updates saddened me more than you’ll realise. I’m tearing up as i read this post and as i write this. I’m so thankful that you have had the surgery needed and i wish you a full and speedy recovery my friend. With regards to Blueboy, my heart goes out to you. I know he was your faithful friend, as you were to him. RIP Blueboy, run free sweetheart. Dennis my thoughts are with you and your family in what is clearly a very worrying time with regards to your health and a very sad time with your loss of Blueboy. Stay strong and your health must come first.

    Ony
    xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Julie Bradley says:

    Really sorry to hear this Dennis, we didn’t realise how ill you have been! So pleased to hear you’re on the road to recovery. As for Blueboy we know how heartbreaking it is to lose a pet/companion but he was clearly adored and had the best life possible. Take care of yourself xxx

    Julie and Ian xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Bart Schroeven says:

    What an ordeal! Rest and heal, and take comfort in knowing that apparently your journey in this lifetime isn’t over yet. Still more things to learn, share and experience, it seems. Peace and blessings to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Robin Melrose says:

    Dennis, I was shocked to hear about your ill health, and I hope you fully recover soon.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Chris says:

    I would like to add my warmest wishes for your recovery Dennis. What a terrible journey you have been on, and by the sound of it for a long time. Take good care – the world without you would be a dimmer place.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Here’s hoping that you recover to good health Dennis

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Dan H. says:

    Very nice to hear you’re somewhat better; I did wonder why so little had been heard from you in recent weeks. Let’s hope you recover quickly.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Brian Edwards says:

    Here’s wishing you for a speedy recovery Dennis. So very sorry to learn about Blueboy too, we went through this 18 months ago and it is such a testing time. Thinking of your loved ones also in these difficult circumstances. All the best, Brian

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Yvonne Whiteman says:

    Dennis, I was wretched to hear what you’ve been through – but thank God you’re ALIVE! So sorry to hear about your beloved old four-footer Blueboy – not what you need at this moment. But now you’ve got through this, you can survive anything. Brave of you to get it all written down. Very bestest of wishes, Von.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Robert Fore says:

    It has distressed me to no end to know that so many medical and personal issues have laid you low. I know how important family and friends are to anyone recovering from such a traumatic happening. You are blessed form all of the messages I have read, to have an exceptional number of friends that truly value and are concerned for your well being. And you also have the support of your wonderful wife and kids. That certainly in my mind provides more than sufficient reason to keep your spirits up, and to fight the good fight on your path back to good health.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. heritageaction says:

    Dennis, please accept my very best wishes and those of everyone at the Journal for a speedy return to better health. Thinking of you. (We even quoted you at length this morning!).
    Nigel

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Austin Kinsley says:

    Hope you make a full recovery and get well soon Dennis, my thoughts are with you.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Neil says:

    Godspeed and best wishes, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. eternalidol says:

    My faculty with words has temporarily deserted me, so all I can do is to thank you all very much for your kind words and wishes, which I greatly appreciate.

    Like

  16. Angela Lake says:

    Hi Dennis – Have only just dropped in to see what news there is after a long absence, (moving house, etc) and stunned to hear what you have been through. You and dear Blueboy will always have that incredible link and it seems more than coincidence that you experienced such trauma as he passed. I only met him once, but he was a lovely dog. Please get well soon, and try to rest from now on. What a wonderful health service we have. All the best to your loving family.
    Angie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • eternalidol says:

      It’s true, Angie – I have had a very, very rough time, but I’m a lot better than I was and I’m being exceedingly careful about how I proceed and how quickly, because it’s a lot more complicated than meets the eye. Anyway, it is always great to hear from, so thank you for writing to me in such a kind way and love as always from Dennis xxx

      Like

  17. Liz Abbott says:

    For a long time I was unable to find the eternalidol website, but I was over the moon when I found you again, then saddened to hear of what you have been through and the loss of Blueboy. Don’t rush your recovery Dennis, take your time, we all want you to make a full recovery and return to the best of health. No doubt Blueboy will be around to give you a nudge if times get tough. From my own personal experence I know our animal companions are never in a hurry to leave us even though they have left the physical plane. Stay positive, stay strong, we’re all behind you – thinking of you………

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hope Morrow Glidden says:

      YES YES Dennis I know for a fact our PETS NEVER leave us, They are sent from GOD to care for us, Get Well Soon.

      Liked by 1 person

      • eternalidol says:

        Thank you so much for this, Hope, and thank you also for your other comment concerning my book. I try to respond promptly, but as I’ve been out celebrating my birthday [on the 26th], I’m a bit tired and slightly the worse for wear, so I’ll respond properly as soon as I can.

        Like

  18. Angela Lake says:

    Hi Dennis
    I do hope you are progressing well in your recovery, and enjoying this lovely weather we’re having?
    Have been away for 3 weeks travelling and, while in Lancs visiting my older brother, I bought a newspaper where I read this moving article (.. obviously thought of you and Blueboy – Monty and Rubes were favourite viewing for me.) See:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3601259/Goodbye-star-best-friend-TV-presenter-Monty-Halls-rescue-dog-Reuben-stole-shows-writes-heart-melting-lament-loyal-hound.html
    [Hope that comes up ‘clickable’ for you!]
    Take care.
    All the very best
    Angie

    Liked by 1 person

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