Thursday, June 28, 2012

See you on the other side

No time to blog properly because my mom's here. Tomorrow's the big day. I'm sure I won't be blogging for a bit, but follow along on my Twitter if you're into that sort of thing.

Thanks for the well wishes! 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Sacking the Tach: Part 2 of ?

Oh, this? This thing bulging under my shirt? Just a heart monitor. Don’t mind those wires, usually they’re tucked down my pants but they must have worked their way out somehow. Yes, that’s a neck strap that says “LifeWatch” on BOTH SIDES. Sometimes I wear the monitor on an extra sticky patch stuck to my abdomen instead of on the telltale neck strap, but I don’t really like doing that ever since the leads started to do THIS to me(!!!!):


PS -The first TACH ATTACK!! I’ve had since wearing the monitor was yesterday, right when my friend was showing me a picture of the cupcakes topped with giant chocolate penises that she made for a bachelorette party. We laughed for an hour. Of all the moments to have heart palpitations...


See also:
Part 1 of ?
Part 3 of ?
Part 4 of ?
Part 5 of FIVE!!!
Stuff I Distinctly Remember Saying During the Operation
The last post about my heart (I promise this time)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Sacking the Tach: Part 1 of ?

The short story: My nice doctor will be making my heart go from this:

To this:

on Friday, June 29th.

The long story: I developed and was diagnosed with supraventricular tachycardia six years ago. Doctors call it SVT for short, but I call it super-tacky because it’s more fun. It’s an arrhythmia that causes my heart to misbehave. Most often, I experience a sustained racing or irregular heart rate that comes and goes as quickly as flipping a light switch, but sometimes it feels like my heart does a split-second backflip. Other times it feels like my heart quit beating until I check my pulse and feel a faint, rapid fluttering. I got so used to it that it started to feel normal – that it seemed weird when I’d go a few weeks without having one. Sidenote- would you believe that I only JUST YESTERDAY invented the perfect expression for these episodes?? TACH ATTACK! As in, “I’m having a tach attack!” Now I only get a couple weeks’ use out of it :( Anyway, I could always control the tach attacks by using these little maneuvers my doctor taught me – either pushing on my eyeball or massaging my carotid artery. (There’s a third technique, too, which requires you to “bear down as though pushing out a BM,” but I, obviously, wasn’t a fan of that one.)

In the last several months, though, things with my heart have become less predictable. A few weeks ago I had a racing heart episode that lasted more than an hour, despite all my maneuvers (yes…ALL). I’ve suddenly blacked out and ended up on the floor twice (once in public!), and had an incident in a movie theater where I started to black out before my heart even started to skippety skip. I didn’t end up on the floor that time (sweet tender mercy - think of the years-old gummy soda spills), but I was sufficiently freaked out. What if that happened while I was driving?? If I know one thing for sure, it’s that no one wants to be that guy that plows his car through a farmer’s market.

It took about an hour of Google searching to even figure out what type of doctor I needed to see. Super-tacky is caused by a rogue electrical pathway in the heart – the atria and ventricles communicate with each other through electrical impulses but sometimes there’s a connection where one shouldn’t be. That’s where TACH ATTACK!!s come from – a misfired electrical current from one part of the heart to another. Subsequently, I made an appointment with a cardiac electrophysiologist and last Friday was my first appointment.

I was so nervous OH MY GOSH I WAS SO NERVOUS!!! I learned, on WebMD six years ago, about an operation (I’ma call it a ‘procedure’ from here on out) they can do to fix it and I’ve been living in fear of that thing ever since. I knew deep down that when I told my doctor about these incidents where I blacked out that he would schedule me for this procedure. And he did.

Before I explain what will be done, though, just know that I am so, so, so thankful that he went this route instead of the other options. As nervous as I am for the procedure, worse outcomes would be A) going on medication for the rest of my life, or B) having a pacemaker put in. Instead, I’ll be getting what’s called an “ablation” which is a cure, not just a treatment, and is 90% successful. It’s safe with minimal risks and my doctor does them all the time. I’ll only spend one night in the hospital and since I’m having it done on a Friday, I should be good to go back to work the following Monday or Tuesday. But just thinking about what he’ll do makes me go all shaky and queasy.

They’ll make incisions on both sides of my groin and feed ….I don’t even know, lasers? all the way up my femoral vein into my heart. Then they use electrical impulses to force my heart into a TACH ATTACK!! so that they can map where the arrhythmia is coming from and burn the hell out of the problem area (you’re allowed to swear when preparing for your heart to be burned). I actually didn’t realize until a couple of days ago that they literally cauterized it, I just thought that they used electricity to gently redirect it. Silly me. I’ll be lightly sedated for all of it – they don’t like people to be in too deep of a sleep or else the heart doesn’t react to the electrical impulses, and then they can’t map the issue, and then they just sliced up your femoral vein and fed lasers into your heart for nothing.

So that’s what’s going down in two weeks. My mom’s flying in to keep me company/hold my hand, and my excitement to see her almost equals my terror of the impending hospital visit. We’ll watch lots of movies while I convalesce (“Probably not funny movies, though” –my mom).

In conclusion, on Friday my doctor sent me home with a heart monitor. He’s hoping to catch a TACH ATTACK!! before the procedure just to have as much information as possible beforehand. I’ll be wearing it, and baggy clothes to work, for the next two weeks. He instructed me to hook it all up right when I got home, then call the 1-800 number to activate the service. I showered, per instructions, dutifully laid out the manual, snapped the little connectors together, stressed over the exact placement of each sticky patch, then called the number only to be told that I wasn’t in the system because the office forgot to tell them I had it!!!!!!!1 They were closed by then and I’d have to wait until Monday.

This was my reaction, as I angrily pulled the wires and sticky patches off:

See also:
Part 2 of ?
Part 3 of ?
Part 4 of ?
Part 5 of FIVE!!!
Stuff I Distinctly Remember Saying During the Operation
The last post about my heart (I promise this time)

Saturday, June 09, 2012

Texts out of Context: Episode IX

[Brief explanation and all previous installments here.]

Tell her hello! In her good ear, of course.

Did you add a pickle

Thanks for knowing everything!

Proverbially yes

I’ve decided that my baby is built like a can o beans.

Goin to yobar

You better cause I have nice kneecaps

Omg. Jon’s pants.

Dogs are a ridiculous chore

I’m stumped on that yogurt trivia question…you better give me another clue!

Me neith

Dad called me Anthony in a text and I said at least it wasn’t as bad as Jerry.

Duh! I’ve been looking for girl scouts like a kidnapper lately and I would even accept free dog poo because I love anything free so much. Probably.

I started a random game and sort of panicked when I saw it. It was a wallet.

It is crazy outside.
Penny hates it.
Got hailed on.
It hurt real bad.

Haha gessie.

I did not sleep well and I am all farty and bloated dot com

How’s your job (yob) treating you these days??

That container you brought home smells like a gym bag, woof


Exactly. We already call it the dump bathroom. Will improve our marriage.

Is your super-tacky acting up?

Get this – my dad almost wore a tie that had tiny “u’s” and tiny screws on it. He thought it was just a pattern, not that he’d be implying screw you to everyone he talked to. [I know this is 'texts out of context', but this one is exponentially funnier if you know that her dad is an LDS area authority.]

I have not made a real spelling error since nineteen eighty six.

His pants fell down.

[Aaaaaaand my favorite in this installment...]

Why the eff am I getting emails from the church book store

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Photo Dump

First up, two things I screenshotted from Facebook:

A picture of my niece Ada with accompanying comment from one of my sister's friends...

And this stranger's reaction to my cousin's status update:

Next, a heads up that when given the option, I will always draw an animal, regardless of point value:

Why aren't you playing me, btw? jessiejensen

Next, a picture I took outside of my aunt's house. THIS CAR IS PARKED!!!!! I've never wanted to leave a "You park like an a-hole" fake ticket under someone's windshield wiper more:

Next, I spent upwards of fifteen minutes yesterday taking still frames from a video of Penny biting water. This is the best one, side by side with an old picture of me getting trashed by a wave for good measure:

Last, this: