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Energy Chips- June 26, 2009

August 26, 2009

I heard from the new cardiologist a couple of days ago, but haven’t shared anything yet. I guess I just needed time to process what he said, not that he said a whole lot. I really still haven’t processed it either. Maybe writing about it will help.

He said that yes, the stress tests was abnormal. It showed some ischemia in the apex. His recommendation was that I go back to the new vascular surgeon and allow him to try to restore more blood flow to my legs. Then, if the vascular guy could open those femoral arteries to the point he could access them, he felt he could do another angio from there and reach the blockage affecting the apex. He also said rehab was pointless because my legs don’t get enough blood flow to tolerate any exercise (surprise, surprise)…and I need the exercise to improve the heart function.

That conversation left more questions than it answered. I checked heart anatomy, and the supposed remaining two blockages aren’t in arteries that feed the apex…what was ejection fraction this go round?…. the vascular guy said he didn’t want to do anything while I’m on plavix unless blood flow tests showed I really couldn’t wait without risking losing one or both legs…I didn’t call the vascular guy till today for another appointment. Will call new cardio and get copy of stress test results.

I’m trying to get in habit of requesting copies everything the day it’s done, but forgot with the stress test, remembered with the blood flow tests (haven’t received yet though). I’ve been waiting for weeks now for records from two hospital admissions, just got a call from them…it’d be $145. I’ll pay it, but I sure don’t like it. My daughter tried to get my grandson’s records a couple of years ago…he was in hospital first eleven months of his life…she never got them as the fee was in the thousands.

I guess what he said validated the other doc’s decision to not try to open those other blockages right now. But, the other doc wasn’t going to address the legs at all right now. It makes no sense to me to do nothing…it felt and still feels that doing nothing is just waiting on death, giving up if there is an option out there. He told me it didn’t look as if my heart had suffered any damage…but with aggressive disease (which I do believe can be stopped) blockages, and the resulting ischemia, that won’t last forever.

So, I feel hopeful and comfortable with this early plan, so far at least. I do love that it’s not that hurry up, wait, then emergency all hell breaks lose scenario. This is much calmer.

My daughter took lots of pictures on Sunday. I don’t know if many folks would recognize me. I seem to have aged twenty years in the past six months. If I was someone else seeing a picture of me now, I’d know that woman had gone through something serious and medical…I clearly have that look. But in every picture I’m smiling, and it’s no fake smile for the camera.

Along with looking older, I’ve noticed I’m a different color. None of my make-up is the right shade anymore. It’s not just being pale…I have a diierent tone, I don’t want to call it gray, but it really is. But this morning, I bought new foundation, powder, blush and I feel like I sort of have my face back. Oh, the simple things!

I was thinking yesterday, It’s like every morning when I wake up, I have these energy chips in my hand. Only so many for the day. Before all this, I thought and believed I had en endless supply. Not now, just this handful each day. I spend them carefully. I spend them being fully present with my wonderful spouse, or my beautiful daughters or my adorable grandchildren. I know that what I do and say with them is always enough. I spend very little of my precious energy currency on those, even family, who are inclined to feel that what I do or say is not enough; that I need to do more. It blows my mind to think of all the precious heart energy I spent on things and situations and people who mattered little to me, leaving little or nothing left for those that were so important. Or the energy I wasted trying to fill a bottomless hole of need in others. Maybe I too have lived long enough to spend my chips exactly where I want to, on who I want to. It was a pretty dramatic way to get here, but my life has always been pretty dramatic.

I had carrot sticks and hummus for lunch…I think it’s time for dessert.

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