That Time My Heart Broke. Literally. – Part 15 (Don’t You Dare Try to Stop Me/I’m an Idiot)

July 18, 2012

Homer Simpson in a boxing match in black and white with Moe as his coach
Still fighting (Photo credit: Fox and Matt Groening (The Simpsons))

It’s Wednesday, so this series continues.

Picking up from last week

Hmm, how to even tell this chapter… because let me tell you, it revolves around me being an idiot.

At this point, I was still fighting. I wasn’t letting it sink in that I suppose this was a serious issue, or something.

I was (maybe still am) super crazy stubborn, and I did not want to stop my life for a second. I was all “You can’t make me stop running! My life will not be controlled by anything or anyone.”

So, on Wednesday or Thursday I decided to go out for a jog. I had been super sick with my ulcer the previous week. I’d quite possibly consumed a total of around 900 calories over 5 days.

The best time to go for a jog is probably not soon after you haven’t eaten a normal meal in a week, or after you’ve somewhat recently had a little hole poked through your heart during an ablation, or after you’ve been on medicine that lowers your blood pressure beyond the threshold that keeps you upright.

When I put it in writing, it seems pretty self-explanatory that it’s not the time for running. It sounds as though only an insane idiot would go our for a jog. But you have to remember that at the time, there were all these emotions intertwined with everything.

I was at the beginning of feeling all this stuff. The illness (I guess I can call it an illness – not to sound so dramatic or anything) was beginning to take over my life. I had been forced to miss work, and do things I didn’t have any desire to do. It was the beginning of my loss of free will. (Again – not to be so dramatic about it.)

I still had free will in the sense that even when we’re feeling trapped, we can always control ourselves and how we react. I could’ve had that positive attitude about it. But no. Problems with my heart were starting to determine for me things I could and couldn’t do. And I wasn’t ready to just sit back and take it!

Bart Simpson not facing us, turning around a bit, wearing a dunce cap
I was being a dunce. (Photo credit: Fox and Matt Groening (The Simpsons))

So, I went out for a jog. Not surprisingly I passed out. Duh. When I started this story, I forgot that this super embarrassing chapter was part of it. But I can’t really skip over it…

I don’t remember precisely what happened that morning. I think I made it home and then passed out. I’m pretty sure it didn’t happen on the jog itself. (I probably would’ve been a good deal more injured if I’d fallen mid-run.)

Either way, I passed out most likely because I was an idiot (please forgive me), and not because I had a heart condition. Back in the ambulance I went.

This time when the paramedic said, “Where to?” I said Massachusetts General.

Tufts was a great hospital. The doctors there were the ones with a keen enough eye to spot my heart problem on an EKG. The nurses there took exceptional care of me. The food was some of the best food I’ve had in my life. Nothing against Tufts.

But now that I knew I had this rare, pesky condition, MGH just felt right.

In the ER, I told them I was a moron. I confessed right away to jogging with no nutrients running through my system. Of course, that fact didn’t change the other fact – that I had a heart problem. The doctors went ahead and ran an EKG, which was of course abnormal.

Basically the consensus was, “We agree that you easily could’ve passed out from poor exercise and nutrient choices, as opposed to your heart problem. But here you are in our ER with a heart problem. Though Tufts is a great hospital, and we trust them – now that you’re with us, let’s see what we can do for you.”

And I was admitted to Mass Gen.

This is where I’ll pick up next week.

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