That Time My Heart Broke. Literally. – Part 13 (Recap/Coming Back from the Tangent)

July 4, 2012

lines by circle with tangent and secant labeled
The story is in here somewhere (Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons (I think…))

It’s Wednesday night, so this series continues.

Picking up from last week

I’ve been going on a tangent for a bit…

To recap for anyone lost (or anyone new):

June/July 2009 – Started feeling really sick – sicker than any sick I’d been before
August 2009 – Saw a doctor who said give it time. Waited for a follow-up.
October 2009 – Passed out in class. Taken to an ER. Abnormal EKG. Diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White. First (unsuccessful) ablation.
Later October 2009 – Back to the hospital, the dosage of medicine I’d been given seemed too high. Kept for overnight observation.

And that’s where we left off – October 30, 2009, spending the night in the hops.

While I was there, I complained about my stomach hurting, but didn’t make that huge of a stink. Though, if you’re polite and meek about it, I don’t know that people really blink an eye at your stomach pain when they’re working on your heart problem.

I got out of the hospital on the 31st, and headed to New York. On November 1st, I started work bright and early on America’s Got Talent. They easily forgave me for missing a day. This wasn’t like the theater that “forgave me,” while actually being pretty (understandably) unhappy (having to scramble to get someone to sub in for me).

(The only bit of comfort I can take about missing a show, is that I guarantee you, at the time, I was angrier at myself than anyone could’ve been at me.) At AGT, they had more than enough people and a back-up list if necessary. Surprisingly, there honestly didn’t seem to be any hard feelings whatsoever (even if I was holding a fair amount of guilt).

Since I was in a situation with my heart where I knew the problem, but not the best solution yet, some co-workers gave me great advice on getting second opinions and what to do if anything happened again.

Both times I’d been in an ambulance thus far, the drivers asked me where I wanted to go – which I remember thinking was such an odd question. What is this, a cab? The hospital. The hospital is where to go.

Cartoon ambulance driver)
Where to, miss?
Um, the hospital?
(Photo credit:

There are a bunch of hospitals in Boston. I guess you get your choice, if you have a preference.

I’d started to do research, now that the hospital was something I actually thought about in my day-to-day life. (Weird, right?)

After reading a fair amount, it seemed as though Mass General was the place to go.

I guess this is common knowledge to pretty much everyone but me. Anyone I ever talked to knew that MGH is often referred to as “Man’s Greatest Hospital” (instead of Massachusetts General Hospital).

So much for being prepared for my first ambulance ride. How was I to know (and be prepared for that situation)?

I loved Tufts, and there were a lot of great things about it. But since I had such a rare condition, and since I just wanted it to be done and over with, my co-workers convinced me to look into getting a second opinion at Mass Gen.

I put that on my to-do list, though I really had no idea how you go about getting in with doctors at a specific hospital. This idea of cardiologists and health problems was way out of my circle of knowledge. But, it’s okay. I’m smart and have the internet. I’m sure I can figure it out.

However, I never had to figure it out. I could barely concentrate on anything after I got home from New York. My stomach pain was getting way worse. I pretty much hadn’t eaten for the past few days, and the idea of eating was becoming progressively more repulsive with every day that passed. I couldn’t make the stomach pain go away.

And this is where I’ll pick up next week.

I'd love to hear from you! So whaddya say?