Monday 18th March 2019:
The chest pain had been gone for more than 24 hours and I really felt alive on Sunday morning…high on good vibes. I’ve got this, I thought. I’m now bed blocking. They’ll want rid of me.
I spoke too soon though, didn’t I? The hot flushes came over me again…up to my head like it had been filled with warm honey and then an oozing sensation down my legs, followed by that odious racing heart rate.
The attacks are exhausting and attempting to stay calm while they are happening is tiresome too. Constantly watching the monitor while deep breathing and willing down those numbers feels like a game of wills, me against my broken heart. The enemy within.
It’s hard not to think of it like an opponent. After all why is it failing me? I’ve treated it well and given it regular work outs. I’m bloody angry with it if I’m honest. I feel like a ticking time bomb even though in reality I’m not. But still I’m baffling the experts.
The cardiologist has now stopped the amlodapine tablets for angina in case they were the cause of my palpitations. The trouble is, now the chest discomfort has returned so the GTN spray has been administered. I naively hadn’t considered the side effects of medication and a “perfect fit” still needing to be found for me.
I’ve had another heart ultrasound and am awaiting the results of that to discover whether or not I will be sent back to Taunton for an MRI. There is now some thought that the cause of my heart attack could have been a viral infection. That old chestnut. Mind you it would probably be the most welcome outcome as it would suggest there wasn’t much I could have done to prevent it. And maybe one day I can learn to love my heart again.
The good news is I’ve now been moved out of acute care onto a general heart ward as my other observations have continued to read well. I no longer need constantly checking. One step closer to the exit, if I’m lucky.
The bad news is I’m now in with a load of old ladies, some of whom have been here for several weeks, who constantly complain about the food and chat as though they’re on a social outing. I guess it beats the mixed accute ward though where last night I stumbled upon an elderly chap…let’s call him Bill…who had forgotten to lock the toilet door and was taking a leak in the dark as I went in to brush my teeth. “Nice pyjamas,” I said.