A week ago I was in my doctor’s office, the result of chest pains and anxiety. It’d been going on for several days, maybe a week or so; and I knew that if I was feeling poorly on the weekend and not just at work, something was not right.
A week ago my doc ordered a bunch of tests; EKG, Stress Echo, blood work. She also ordered me to be out of work for two weeks. After the appointment I went to the office to tie up some loose ends and let folks know that I would be out. I hadn’t eaten or had much to drink the prior 24 hours or throughout that day, feeling too tired and nauseous to eat or drink. By the time I got home I could barely walk up the three stairs to my kitchen and the arms of my husband.
A week ago I found myself on the bathroom floor, being propped up between the tub and sink with my husband saying, “what happened…are you okay…can you feel this…?” As he went to call 9-1-1 I thought, “This is it, I’m having a heart attack.” I’d seen the Elizabeth Banks video that shows her as a harried mother, wife, neighbor, worker, who even as she’s having a heart attack, wants to clean up the house before the rescue arrives. I felt like I had all the signs and symptoms.
A week ago I was in the emergency room with IV’s dripping and nurses and docs asking lots of questions. All of the tests my doc had ordered earlier in the day ended up being done in the hospital. I know now what it’s like to have a “head CT”, a “chest CT with contrast”, an x-ray of my foot, an ultrasound of my carotid arteries and my heart. EVERYTHING came back clean. Thankfully, no heart attack, or any issue with my heart for that matter.
A week ago I was helped by: the fire department that got me out of the bathroom and to the hospital, nurses Betty and Joe in the ER, the incredible ER doc who was so thorough, all the techs who did ultrasounds and CT scans, and the CNA’s who made me comfortable. I can’t say I’m entirely “better” one week later, but am quite grateful for care I received while being treated.
I urge any of you who read my blog to not wait until February’s Go Red for Women event to be aware how women and men’s symptoms differ. And, while I am not happy to be on this forced vacation but I will take full advantage of it so that I don’t find myself here again!