I always thought of blogs as being narcissistic, business related, or as my sister's, a way of keeping in touch or memorializing.

But, by necessity, I am learning a lot about myself. I find I need to get my thoughts out, and it helps me to know that someone else will read them. So I have created this little space for myself, to express the things I have trouble saying (be it emotional or physical trouble), to share what I'm going through, and what I'm learning through it.

I absolutely welcome comments. It's nice to know how people relate to what I'm saying.
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Thursday, 25 August 2011

Heart Tests

My visit to the Toronto General Hospital today for a tilt table test turned into oh so much more. It turned into a day's worth of testing and waiting, and testing and waiting, and testing and waiting. I have been hooked up to machines things today than in every day of the rest of my life! I even brought one home with me.

Yes, as I write, I am wired into a holter monitor - basically a portable ECG. Ok, first, this is so super cool! Second, man the stickers and tape all over me are itchy. Third, I hate having this thing strapped to me - I feel like I'm still wearing my purse! And fourth, I am concerned about how sleeping is going to work.

The staff at the hospital was lovely and helpful and friendly. All of them. I know, right, incredible. But true. First I had the normal ECG done. And it was so fast, that I was 30 minutes early for the Tilt Table Test. Now this was an experience. The tilt table is basically a hospital bed with a footboard, and a ton of straps to hold you up when (as the name suggests) the doctor tilts it up to a nearly vertical position. They do this to measure blood pressure and heart rate when lying and standing. Fun, fun, fun. My arm was extended for the cuff monitoring the pressure in my fingers, so my Dad, who watched the whole thing, said (and no offense is meant by this at all) that I looked "half-crucified."

It was a very odd feeling indeed, to be strapped down to this table, like when I had my C-section, but fully dressed, with a pressure cuff on one arm and pressure cuffs on the other hand, and then WHOOSH, just like being on a ride, the table tilts up and my stomach lurches, and suddenly I'm almost standing, and yet still strapped in at my shins (thank-goodness, because by the end my knees were buckling) so my balance is not really there, and I'm leaning on this bed behind me... very odd feeling.

Results-wise, as usual there is nothing extraordinary. Surprise surprise. My blood pressure was nice and even throughout the test. My heart rate, however, went up a little bit more than is considered normal. So lucky me, I got to have an ECHO done, which was also not much fun - having the technician poking around my ribs and breast to get images of my heart, and now I get to wear this fun thing for 2 days. Plus I get to go back for a stress-test. Oh joy!

In other words, we have no idea why I have trouble staying upright, because the usual cause does not apply. Sigh. And why would it? This is me we're talking about.

So here I am crashed out again, on top of the crash on top of the crash, and I'm wondering how long until I start to regain some of the ground I've gained. The simple tests that were supposed to be done by 2 ended up keeping me at the hospital until 3:30. So much for resting today. I'm going to miss my son's soccer game tonight, but there's no way around that one. Not only am I exhausted, but the last thing I want to do right now is deal with questions about the wires sticking out from under my shirt.

And even though I'm exhausted, and I know I need to rest, I'm also wired, which makes it that much harder, and that is a really solid signal of a stronger crash to come. Let's hope it doesn't hit too hard!

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