Monday, August 21, 2006

Join me for some heart failure!

I have no idea why, but that title has been going through my mind all morning. See, through no fault of my whole-wheat-high-fiber-low-sat-fats self, I have heart problems. They started years ago, when suddenly my heart would throw a hissy fit and refuse to beat properly. It would start and stop in fits, and be very unruly. Not enough to kill me outright, but enough to make me blue, or shake (you could see my chest squirming from underneath, talk about gross), or just feel pretty awful for a little while. Then it would get over it, beat normal again, and life would go on. Doctors were not perplexed, they understood what was going on. However, keeping it from happening or explaining why it was happening - not so much. At that point since it was not deadly, they figured I could live with it. Dropping to ones knees in Walmart, and making ones mate drag them to the front door while you are clutching your chest, turning blue, and screaming "Don't let me die in Walmart!" is 'living with it' - in case you were wondering. Those episodes have, in fact, slowed down. Unfortunately the problem has been compounded and now I have an "odd" heartbeat. Odd enough that when I try to have a stress test (physical or chemical) I fail immediately and they cancel the test. Four times, this has happened. I wait months for the appointment, spend an entire day in waiting rooms then in a hallway while wearing a paper gown (alongside several other people with the same dazed look also in paper gowns), get covered in electrodes, then immediately fail before they can even start the treatmill or give me a shot. In order for them to do the test they need to do to find what is wrong (and how to fix it) I have to complete a stress test (pass or fail, but they have to actually start the damn test). But the technician refuses to complete the stress test until I have the OTHER test to determine if it is okay for me to do it. Did you catch all that? Good. Because I had trouble paying attention while standing half naked, covered in little round stickers, freezing to death in a paper gown. But once again, since it doesn't seem to be killing me outright, we have chosen to stop trying and just wait for something else to happen. Another shoe to drop, as it were. Well, the other shoe has dropped. My blood pressure was elevated so they raised the meds for that. Since starting the higher dose, while the headaches have stopped, I am now having chest pains that radiate across, down my arm, into my back, and up into my jaw. This is not good, folks. And because of that, and because I can't even try for another stress test for at least a month (insurance woes), I have to go into my Doctor's office each and every morning so somebody can take my blood pressure, test my blood sugar, and listen to my faulty heart beat. I get to wear a monitor for a few minutes, and they measure certain extremities to watch that I am not collecting fluid (which could indicate congestive heart failure). This morning I developed a short, dry, and very annoying cough. I don't know what it means, but when I told the PA, she ran and got the doctor right away so he could check on some things. The final decision was we will "keep an eye on that cough, and if it persists longer than a day or so we might consider Lasix". I do believe that is what people refer to as a 'water pill'. I am beginning to wonder if I should start calculating the calories I consume in pill casings over a day in my daily food totals. To keep my mind off things (and to avoid working on TWO ponchos now) I have started yet another Christmas project. Another scarf. This time for DH's cousins wife (got that?). She adores purple, she adores scarves, I think this makes the perfect gift for her. Bulky yarn, it's only fifteen stitches across so it works up fast. But the pattern is mind numbingly boring. I am impossible to please! Easy patterns are boring, complex patterns crash up against my short attention span, inability to follow directions, and need for results NOW. But that is neither here nor there. Nor is it news LOL. My only complaint, is that the ribbing somehow makes the scarf want to fold in on itself so it looks thinner than it is. I might have to add a crochet edging to stiffin it up. I almost thought about an I-cord edging, then realized what I was saying and laughed like a loon (note to self, when the dog looks at you like that, consider toning down the hysteria). A person who complains that a 15 stitch two row repeat pattern is boring should NEVER even say the words I-cord. There is a picture, but blogger isn't letting me upload it today. I will try again tomorrow. I have also started collecting cans. Large cans. Coffee, baby formula, that sort of thing. My plan is to cover them with paper, have DD help me decorate them, then use them to pack knitted gifts in. Sure, they won't hold a sweater, but nobody said I am knitting sweaters for the masses anyway. They are perfect for a hat and mittens, or scarf and gloves. Smaller cans can be used to hold socks or slippers, that sort of thing. Now that I think of it, if I decorate them nicely enough, the cans can continue to be storage when the items are not in use. Sounds better than trying to extricate a scarf from the heap of stuff at the bottom of the closet, methinks. Then again, I wonder what would happen to damp mittens stored in a coffee can. *shudder*


latibug said...

Thanks for the laugh...I needed that!!!!

Anonymous said...

Dances, FWIW, my Aunt Charlotte's bp meds made her cough. Wonder if that is a side effect of yours?

Hang in there.