Two years ago yesterday I left the hospital after having repairs. I had had a heart attack, with a 100% blockage of the Left Anterior Descending (LAD) coronary artery, a.k.a. the Widowmaker. I survived, which surprised hell out of the doctors. They put two stents in me, pronounced me good as new, or as close as they were going to get anyway, patted me on the ass and sent me home.
Two years — so far — of extra innings.
And yes, I feel great. Thanks for asking.
Such an experience changes you, however. Some things I was doing, like being an expert testifying witness in court cases, I decided were too high stress. So I quit. I finished out the one case I had, and I’m done.
I sold the 1978 Cheyenne 4×4 and bought a 2017 Sierra Denali 4×4. Talk about from the ridiculous to the sublime. I loved the ’78 Cheyenne. It was rough and tough and loud. And it was honest. But it was also not the best for creature comforts. I decided after seven years that enough was enough, and I set aside the rough and tough for the comfy.
The other thing that happens is that you develop a keen appreciation that life is not forever. All those things you were always going to do someday? Guess what? Someday is here.
I had always wanted to be a writer, to write science fiction like the authors I had read all my life. Maybe write some other stuff, too. But I always wanted to be a writer. After I got out of the hospital I realized that now was the time to do it or admit it was never going to happen.
In the past two years, I have written and published four books, and am writing another. The two novels I wrote in about a month each, start to finish. The memoir took about six weeks. And the reviews are good. Apparently I can do this.
So I’m a writer, like I always wanted. And I find I enjoy it.
If I hadn’t had that heart attack, I may never have done it at all.
Don’t wait for your heart attack. If there’s something you always wanted to do, go do it.