So, I guess I haven't been getting enough attention lately, what with all the signing of contracts and going to the Romantic Times convention and all. So this past Sunday, I decided to have a little heart attack.
Let me back up.
I came home from RT with bronchitis. I think everyone did. I got my Z-pack, a steroid shot, stayed home a few days from work, and started to feel better.
I'm a generally healthy person. I'm a good fifty pounds overweight, and I don't get enough exercise because I have arthritis in my feet, but otherwise, I'm healthy. I suppose there is maybe a little stress in there, but... I've got a full-time job, three kids of my own plus a couple of extras living in my basement, two dogs, a travelling husband, a budding writing career...but nothing CRAZY. I'm not diabetic, I don't have a family history of heart disease, I don't smoke, blah blah blah. Okay, there's a minor caffeine habit, but hey! I'm a writer. It's kind of a job requirement. But I don't even DRINK ALCOHOL, fer chrissakes!
So this past Sunday--yes, that would be Mother's Day--I spent a few hours at my brother's house on the other side of town. Very fun, I like my family, no drama. I left Mr. Stanley at home to talk to India about his issues with Windows 8.
On the way home, I felt this weird...lump of ick in my chest. Kind of a tightness. Kind of...like how they describe heart attack symptoms. And my left arm hurt. So I thought, "Gee, these are classic heart attack symptoms, but I'm a woman, so it must be indigestion. I could stop here at this hospital...or this next one...or the one after that, but I'd probably better get my kids home, because since it's just indigestion, I would be getting them all stirred up over nothing."
So I came home and told Mr. Stanley about it, and maybe we should go confirm that this is, indeed, indigestion (I ate a LOT of that bagel dip at my brother's house).
So we went to the Emergency Room, and after a grueling fifteen second wait, was ushered into the triage room, where I sat for an interminable thirty seconds describing my symptoms and rolling my eyes at myself for over-reacting.
And then, suddenly, I was in a room, being bled and injected and fed nitroglycerin and covered with stickers that held electrodes, and tweeting #tweetsfromtheER, because, you know, it was kind of funny. Until Dougie Howser's little brother came in and told me I was having a heart attack, and they were just waiting for a bed in the ICU.
WAH!? HUH???? I'm only 49 years old!
I think there was some morphine added to the situation at this point, because it gets a little fuzzy for a while. The brick of undigested bagel dip got a little bigger and started trying to strangle me a little more, so there was some more nitroglycerin and some more morphine (I really liked the morphine part. Totally made the whole experience worthwhile).
So, Blah, blah, blah, Doctor visits, IV's, blood draws, Angiogram, Echocardiogram, blah blah blah, here are a bunch of prescriptions, good luck keeping all of this straight, and by the way, you have to stop taking your arthritis medicine.
Forty Eight hours in the ICU, and I'm home. No blockages, just some narrowing of one artery, some meds, and significantly less caffeine.
So I have a new crusade. Watch that video above, but don't forget the "usual" signs. And don't worry about over-reacting. I got a lot of pats on the back for coming in right away and not ignoring the bagel dip feeling.
Do you think I'll get kicked out of RWA if I can't drink real coffee anymore?