I was actually on the way to a country town where I was to be a guest speaker at an event. I had to change trains one hour into my trip. However, before I got to my first stop, I began to feel ill. I felt that I just had to get to a toilet, so I got off the train one stop before I was meant to.
I suddenly felt so much worse when I got off the train, and I headed for a seat. But I didn’t make it. Leaning against the wall, I slid down to the ground, then onto my side.
There I was semi conscious on the ground, dressed in business clothes with a brief case beside me. I remember seeing feet walk past me, but no one came to my aid.
Finally two German tourists came up to me and asked was I ill. I managed to nod my head. One went for the station manager and the other stayed with me. The station manager and these two kind souls helped me up and escalator and into a room with a bed. The station manager was able to ring my husband at work and he came to take me to the hospital.
I can tell you, this was quite scary. I couldn’t believe that no one offered any help; perhaps they thought I was drunk or on drugs. But dressed the way I was, they should not have thought that. Everything was fine in the end, however, the place where I was to be a guest speaker was not happy…but what could I do?
Another time when I was home I had an angina attack and had to place a tablet under my tongue. I was in a lot of pain and was hyperventilating. Bathed in a sweat, again I felt that I had to go to the toilet. My husband got me in a wheelchair, but before we got to the toilet, I lost consciousness. My husband was standing in front of me to stop me falling to the floor as I lurched forward.
Thank goodness we had a visitor at the time and between them they managed to get me on a bed. The paramedics were called and they explained that the tablet made my blood pressure drop dramatically and I lost consciousness when I sat up.
Perhaps the most unusual ‘collapse’ I have seen was while I was at a major public hospital for a check up following surgery.
Another patient collapsed onto the floor in the waiting room. As this hospital did not have an emergency department, they had to ring for an ambulance to take her to another hospital. One would think if you were already in a hospital when you collapsed, that you were in a safe place where you could get the medical care you needed. But in this case, the ambulance still had to attend.
Collapsing from a health scare always has a sense of fear surrounding it. You can find out my techniques for handling fear and coping with trauma, in my book ‘Thank God I Had a Stroke’.
Hints and Tips
Always carry information with your personal details and who to contact in an emergency. It is also a good idea to have a typed list of medication you are taking, your medical history (with dates) and any allergies you may have. This information makes it much easier for medical support you may need in an emergency. AND it is imperative that you are in an Ambulance fund and carry the card in your wallet.