The Birminghamster
Lowe Knows




by Mrs. Lowe


Mr. Lowe doesn't know though. Only I know. I know because I live and breathe knowing 24/7. I am all about knowing. I guess you could say, I just know. I am all knowing. That's what my daughter says anyway. (and she should know).

I know that there is a God and that he performs miracles every day. I know this because he just performed one for the Lowes on October 7.

Bill was stricken unexpectedly with an abdominal aortic aneurysm upon returning from a visit to Atlanta and points beyond with our daughter and her significant other and his parents. It was sort of a "get to know the other side" sort of visit with a little Alpine Helen Oktoberfest ambiance. It was a wonderful day -- always is when we are with people we love -- and we drove back to B'ham, arriving home at 10:00 PM.

The gentle giant got one huge boot off and called out in pain that his chest felt like an elephant was sitting on it. I gave him an aspirin and called 911. Actually, it was my son who was all knowing at that time. He grabbed the aspirin and insisted I call 911. I was just sure it was nothing to worry about. See, I didn't know! They were here within 5 minutes and after testing to their capabilities, decided that he probably was not having a heart attack but needed to go to the ER anyway because of all the pain. Off they went to Brookwood, our hospital of choice, with Ruby and I bringing up the rear. She loved it, I can tell you. Kept remarking about how lovely she must look to observers in close pursuit of the red fire truck and rescue squad ambulance! Her only regret was that SHE didn't have a siren to wail like the big truck. I am thinking of getting her one for Christmas.

The ER doc called in a cardiologist and after doing another round of various tests, they also ruled out a heart attack and the cardiologist went home! But first, she had ordered a cat scan of the chest and abdomen just to have it ready for the GI docs to look at when they arrived. By this time it was about 3:00 AM, he was still squirming in pain despite near fatal doses of morphine and I was beginning to think that his kidneys had finally just shut down. You see, I did NOT know and the panic had set in. When the radiologist read the cat scan, he found the problem. A Cardio-Thoracic surgeon, Dr. Lamberth, specially trained by God and one of His own angels to be sure, was called in and assembled a top OR team, no easy feat at 4:00 AM on a Sunday morning.

But ya'll, I didn't need to worry and it was OK that I didn't know this time because my God was in control and HE knew everything that needed to be known. Still, I didn't actually KNOW how serious it was until nurses and other people knowledgeable in such matters told me, to a person, what a lucky man Bill was. One nurse, in absolute awe, said the event had the whole medical community at Brookwood buzzing because literally, he was seconds away from death. They clamped it off just before it started bleeding out!

Now, I ask you, dear readers why is he here? Do any of you know? If so, will you write and tell us? I loathe to admit it but this time I truly don't know! I know I learned a lot of things about people I thought I knew all about. I learned who my friends were again and why. I learned my children were strong and good and that they make good choices, good decisions about important things. I learned how much my Mother and Brother love me and what good neighbors I have. I still don't know what the Big Plan is but surely, God will let us KNOW. He obviously has a really good reason for this life to continue.

One thing I thought I knew but found to be untrue was that hospitals are bad places. See, I have a great deal of experience with hospitals. My son was in and out of Brookwood numerous times after his wreck and subsequently at Health South as they were putting him back together and repairing what they could. Bill has been in and out of Brookwood for years with various medical conditions. My Mom was a virtual revolving door at St. Vincent's for many years until my brother found the great cardiologists at UAB who do everything they can to keep her OUT of the hospital. So, you must agree that I can speak to this issue with great knowledge and experience, right?

Well, don't ever let me hear anyone sell Brookwood Hospital short again. They are professionals, ya'll. Real pros. I know Bill was in a critical care situation and surrounded by highly trained personnel. However, when I left that area and went elsewhere in the hospital, I have to say that I found the majority of the other employees and services to be on or near the same level of perfection in care and service. As my old boss would say, it exceeded my expectations and, honestly, I would have to say that we were completely satisfied! If a President's Award were given to hospitals, surely Brookwood would be Number 1.

Now for the real shocker! Even the food was good! The big man didn't have much of an appetite while there but a couple of things were so excellent, I am including a recipe. I ate a great Veggie Lasagna in the cafeteria and am plying them for the recipe as we go to press. If they give it up, you will see it posted here. Meantime, here is a tasty, low sodium, low fat treat. Try it sometime - you might like it.

Easy Italian Chicken

1 cup fat free Italian salad dressing
Olive Oil flavored non stick cooking spray