November 16, 2013
Yesterday, things didn’t go so well at the gym. I have been feeling really go about going. The first few visits I was pretty cautious about how much I exerted, how hard I pushed myself. Gradually, I experimented pushing myself harder and faster. Now by that I mean harder and faster by my standards.
The Wellness Centre is an excellent facility an indoor track and dozens of various pieces of exercise equipment. The indoor track is, I suppose quite small. On the inside walking lane one lap is about 200 steps. When I first started I could only make it about 1/2 a lap or about 100 steps. After a few trips to the gym I started to think this is silly. If I just dig down and just push on, I can make an entire lap, I mean it is only another 100 steps. I see now became a pattern, continually digging down pushing harder and harder. I pushed up to 3 laps after which I was a gasping, panting sweaty mess.
Yesterday, it all caught up to me. I got a stabbing chest pain that stopped me in my tracks. Thankfully, I was but feet from a rest stop. I always carry my nitro spray with me, plus I wear a nitro patch. I gave myself the spray under the tongue which did dull the pain. Procedure is with the pain you give yourself a spray under the tongue right away. If the pain isn’t gone in 5 minutes a second shot under the tongue. If required a 3rd shot again 5 minutes later while you are calling the ambulance. OK, the pain is dulled but definitely not gone. It is getting close to the time for the second spray. I realize I am in a medical facility attached to a hospital, maybe I should tell someone what is going on. Wow, talk about response time, I had a nurse at my side in maybe 30 seconds. Long story short. I took that second shot of nitro and everything settled down. I was banned from the track for the day, sent home to rest. That I did got in one of my 6 hour naps.
As it turned out it was a nothing event but I am glad it happened. In my 15 or 20 minutes of recovery time I had the chance to really talk to the nurse. Doing that extra pushing is not always a good thing especially if you are a heart patient. I have less than 60% of a functioning heart! the medications I am on (one to control my heart rate, left by itself it seems to speed up even up into the 200 beats per minute) controls my heart rate so that no matter what it will not beat faster than somewhere in the 80’s. For me pushing it should not go beyond what would be considered low to moderate for others. Taking a few days off but I will be back.
November 3, 2013
This past couple of weeks have been tough, emotionally draining. These are times I really need to sit back and focus on the big picture of my life. I am a very blessed and lucky man, I have a good life.
I have been dealing with this whole dying thing for 9 or 10 years, it wears away at you. I at times need to sit back, reflect to recharge those batteries.
Over these years I have done a lot of reading and writing on this whole dying experience. I have come to realize how difficult and confusing it can be for both patient and care givers. It can almost be like we need to add words to our language or have some sort of a code or something. It can be confusing for both sides. I think I may have written before about the definition of feeling good.
As humans we are very adaptable. We are able to adjust to our circumstances. By this I mean as your health declines you adjust to what is becoming your new normal way of how you feel. It gets to the point where you forget what feeing good felt like in the past. You base everything on what is your “norm” of today. A care giver can ask how you are feeling and you can honestly answer good. The care taker hears you are feeling good and can easily interpret that answer as based on their own definition of what good feels like. In fact those 2 definitions of feeling good can be miles apart.
Here through the blog I have met a number of terminal patients. Some things are easier said in a more private setting and we revert to exchanging emails. There is always the understanding that NOTHING exchanged in those emails will ever make it to the blog, without my receiving prior approval. I have that approval as long as name and location is not revealed.
The story relates along relates to terminology, language as I am writing about. I may have written about this previously. Hey, I am memory guy. There is a huge difference between being at peace and being OK with what you are facing. His decline has been a lengthy one. He and his family have been blessed with extra time (as have I). He has done everything he can to ease the burden, the worry for the family. He feels the family is to the point as they believe, based on what he has always told them, he is OK.
Now this next part I can personally relate to. There is a huge difference between being Ok with facing your own passing and being at peace with it. I am at peace with what awaits, I have my strong belief system in place and am comfortable with that. When my time comes I believe I am ready. None of that though means I have to like it or be OK with it. I have a wonderful life and just don’t want to give it up. Language again at peace with something doesn’t mean you are OK with it