I remember a few weeks ago when I told y’all that I was going to have so many updates this summer and about all of the fun we were going to have together. I know you remember it too. Well then… life happened hard. I mean real hard you guys.
It all started one day when my doctor put me on medicine for some of my PCOS symptoms. It made it really difficult for me to breathe, so I went back to the doc and got switched to medicine number two. Well… shortly after starting that one my lip decided to quadruple in size. So after an urgent care trip and rapid administration of steroids and Benadryl, I went back to the doctor for a third medication. That one gave me vertigo like you wouldn’t believe. So I went back to the original medicine and tried to just take it at night so I could just have my “breathing episodes” at bedtime when it wouldn’t ruin my entire day. Well, fast forward about three days or so to me enjoying a Father’s Day movie with husband and my heart starts racing uncontrollably and I can’t catch my breath. Exciting movie!
The movie was not exciting enough for all of that. Like an idiot, I stuck it out for the duration of the movie by forcing myself to take uncomfortable deep breaths and closing my eyes and focusing on serene things during actions scenes so I didn’t get worked up accidentally. After the movie, I went home to take my vitals to help me determine whether there was cause for alarm. The blood pressure cuff gave an erratic reading, my pulse/heart rate was crazy high, but before any of that, I couldn’t make it up the usual three flights of stairs without stopping for a legit sit down rest to breathe.
We left for urgent care when it was evident that I couldn’t get through a short sentence without gasping for air and my resting heart rate wouldn’t decrease from the high 130’s. Urgent care sent me to the ER after I failed some test that shows whether you have the potential to have a heart attack or not – even though they didn’t think I was at risk for a heart attack.
The ER was a whirlwind of tests and people poking, prodding, and asking me questions. It took them a solid 45 minutes to get an IV in my arm (there’s a nasty bruise left behind from that), and after the 4th nurse blew a 3rd vein, they got an ultrasound machine to guide them in. Pregnancy test (negative), CAT scan (negative for heart issues), and on and on we went. Two different ER doctors independently stated that they didn’t believe I was even at risk for a heart attack, one even said, “you don’t have a compelling story for heart attack”. But the problem was, my heart rate wouldn’t decrease, my blood pressure was dipping and spiking all over the place and nobody had any idea why.
The ER had me admitted to the hospital (cue mobile transport AKA non-emergency ambulance ride!) for overnight monitoring, which turned into multiple night monitoring. By the time it was all said and done, I’d had over 10 EKGs, a CAT scan, 2 D-Dimers, a standard stress test, and a nuclear medicine stress test (both of which came back abnormal), and a few ultrasounds of my heart. Finally, I was sent for a cardiac catheterization. Talk about scary.
In the end though, it turns out I was totally fine, and all of the doctors who were just sure there was nothing wrong with my heart – and TOTALLY SHOCKED every time a test came back abnormal – were completely right. After the cath I was told that my heart is the healthiest they’ve seen in anyone my age (34) and that there’s zero chance of me having a cardiac episode in the next 10 years at least.
So what the hell was I there for? Oh you know, probably just a run of the mill anxiety attack. Cool stuff.
Anyway, that’s the long version of why I haven’t don any of that updating I promised. I have been quite down and way out for the last few weeks. I’m back up and running now!
And just for some fun: Here I am possibly dying…
… and here’s a sampling of the slop they feed you when you’re on cardiac lockdown. I’m not entirely certain how this is considered healthy, and we can talk about them force starving me then feeding me this later, but… yuck!
Sigh… time for summer to officially begin again!