So much beeping- 11/5/11

Sigh. I'm tired. But for my public, I will carry on! (Oh, I do love the thought that I have a public)

It's been a very long few days but thought I would share a little about what's been going on since I've been a little sketchy with the details. Sorry Mom!

School has been going well- hitting the books hard and heavy. And this week was the start of the real challenges. Our first midterm and 24 (ok, not 24 but it feels like 24) other assignments.

Well, in the middle of all this, on Wednesday, I started to feel lousy. My blood pressure was tanking, my chest hurt (mildly) most of the time, and I was having weird heart rhythms that reminded me of v-tach. (V-tach, you'll remember, is when my heart starts quivering instead of beating and if it goes on for more than a few seconds, I pass out and Sparky shocks me back to a normal rhythm)

So I decide to go to the ER on Wednesday after talking with my doc and Nick. Nick was going to meet me there, and since I was feeling better by this point, I was going to drive myself over.

Ok, here is where I get the tongue lashing. Yes, I should have called someone to drive me. I do have lovely friends who would help me in a heartbeat. But I get really sick of playing the resident Golden Girl and needing rides to the hospital. So I took the bull by the horns and hopped in the car.

I got about 5 minutes down the road and I started feeling super dizzy. I felt my muscles jerk and I pulled over immediately. I thought maybe I'd had a Sparky shock, or at least been paced out of a bad rhythm.

So I pulled into an Ethiopian grocery store parking lot and called 911. The fire truck and ambulance arrived and took me on a fancy ride to the hospital. I like to make an entrance you see.

So the docs check me out and after some tests they determined that my heart wasn't leaking those enzymes that signal some more heart muscle has died- whew. They also determine that I didn't have a Sparky shock, but I did have some really short runs of v-tach. So in order to figure out why that's happening, they checked me in.

By now, I am a regular pro at this hospital routine. I know the docs and nurses and techs on the heart floor- 5NE is my wing! Kind of like my 'hood. I'm popular. I show the new folks around. But this trip, 5NE was full. What? I thought "Hey man, Jana Morrelli's in the house, clear the decks!" I guess they thought "patient # 4343592 needs a bed. Where can we shove her?".

So I got shoved to the "ICU Overflow Wing". Sounds glamorous doesn't it? Picture it- 6 beds lined up , divided only by curtains. In the belly of the hospital, not a window in sight. Beeping. Oh, so, so much beeping. Bosnia-esque I would imagine.

Suffice it to say I was pretty offended that they would dare put me (ME!) into this hobo healthcare situation. But after some pain meds and sleep deprivation, I decided that it would do just fine.

Well, the morning came and I realized I was being a world-class snoot. The nurses that ran the joint were amazing. They knew my medical history backwards and forwards, they watched my vitals like a hawk, and waited on me hand and foot- generally treating me like I was Kim Kardashian. It was awesome.

So the docs ran me through a battery of tests to make sure my wimpyness was not the result of some super serious thing. It wasn't. They did another ultrasound of my heart and ejection fraction (how much blood my heart can pump with each squeeze) came back at 17%. It was 35% last time.

So I freaked out and the docs furrowed their brows and whispered and after a while they said that even though the number was way less, the images looked almost identical to last time, so they think the reading was off. Whew. 17% is solidly in heart transplant territory. So I dodged a bullet there.

It seems that the achy heart and irregular rhythms are just going to be par for the course. They tweaked my meds and hopefully that will ease those symptoms, but probably not completely. Rats.

After all the testing and poking, I ready to blow that joint by Friday. I had tickets to see a comedian (Kathy Griffin!) that night with my girlfriends Stacey and Liz and I was NOT going to miss the show. So I told the docs that we needed to get me out of there by early afternoon. That is no small feat. Remember, hospital time is like football time. 5 football minutes means 20 and 1 hospital hour means 6. But everyone banded together and got me out in record time.

It was honestly so sweet. Doctors were calling in favors to get tests rushed, my nurse stayed through her lunch break to type up my orders, and the pharmacist called in my scripts for me. It was incredibly kind and I appreciate it so much!

So now I'm home (and the show was great!), resting on the couch. Figuring out how to merge school, health stuff, and a splash of a social life is proving to be a juggling act, but I am really happy. Life is moving along and it's not going ahead without me. I like it. : )

Much love,

1 comment:

  1. You are quite the trooper, Jana! Your public adores you :) You seem to have your three priorities balanced much better than I...I continue to be in awe of your positive attitude. Here's to a happy and healthy 2012!