Thursday, June 11, 2009

Before I write anything of general interest: a tedious health update!

I'm 33 now (my birthday was yesterday)--and apparently it's starting to show.

I had a doctor's appointment this morning--just a routine check-up, but I wanted to ask about a few other things while I was there. First off, I have apparently gained 10 pounds this year. I'm still in the normal range for my height (and honestly I don't know where I've put those 10 pounds, though I do feel a little squishy some days), but this is not a trend that I like. It would seem, therefore, that the halcyon days of a high metabolism that kept me at the same weight no matter what I ate or did is over. No crisis exactly, but heck, I have to start going to a legitimate gym, it seems, sense the yoga options in these parts are so meager. I did some running a few weeks ago, and that was all right, but I have some knee problems (which I asked about today: tendinitis! Good news, actually, compared to the irreversible damage I thought I had), so I'd rather do something gentler, and the pool is closed for repairs.... This is a boring topic, though, so on to the more exciting health news!

I also asked about these heart palpitations that I have occasionally had for all my life, basically. My mom has them and is on beta-blockers, but it's not life-threatening or anything, so I kept forgetting to ask doctors about it until today. He was pretty unfazed, said that it was likely either a totally benign thing or a pretty common and non-worrisome thing for which it's a good idea to take the beta-blockers, and set up an EKG and some blood work. Ho hum. An extra thirty minutes in the office, I figure, oh well.

Two EKGs later, my heart is Not Normal. Whatever it is that's going on is probably no big deal and I've probably had it all my life, but blockage . "What's the worst case?" I asked him, and he gave the answer all in a rush but there was the word "fatality" in there, although he hastened to say that it was EXTREMELY unlikely that that was what was happening in my case. So now I have to have some echocardiograms and a stress test and wear a continuous heart monitor for thirty days, then see a cardiologist when I get back from France to discuss the results.

This was, I admit, a little upsetting.

But on the bright side, at least I'm getting it checked out, right? And it's probably something I've had all my life (it could be congenital, he said, which seems very likely since both my mom and my grandmother have/had similar palpitations, and neither one has ever had any heart problems other than that). But one does not want to have a doctor come into a room with an EKG report, shut the door, and tell one that anything is "not normal."

Between that, and our first pre-marital counselling session today (which was pretty cool, really, but lasted two hours), today has left me feeling emotionally drained. I'm happy tonight--TM has been lovely and soothing, as is his wont--but I am going to just write it off, work-wise, and do some pleasure reading, maybe watch a little TV over the internet. Besides, it's almost 9. Clearly I am not doing work today.


Maude said...

happy birthday!! and welcome to your jesus year or your buddha year. i have found that 33 has been good so far for me. two miracles down, one to go, but i don't think i'll achieve total enlightenment by december. :)

i'm sorry about your knee and your heart, which generally, if the doctor is not worried, this is good because it's been my experience that docs like to freak you out first and then tell you later there was really nothing to worry about (i had a headache for a month, and the first thing out of my doctor's mouth was "brain tumor"! turns out it was a stress induced migraine. no overreaction there!). i've had knee issues for most of my youngish life--really since high school--to the point of having physical therapy, so it takes a while, but if you like running, it's still possible to get back to it once your tendonitis is healed. but walking on the treadmill at an incline is good, but probably the best at the gym for a low/non impact workout would be the eliptical machine. and the best thing to do for you knee, once you're healed, is to strengthen your quads and hamstrings because the stronger they are, the better able to take care of knee they are.

did you and the minister do anything exciting for your birthday? how are the wedding plans going??

What Now? said...

Happy birthday and I'm so sorry that celebration of that milestone may have been overshadowed by health stuff.

And yes, premarital counseling is a Good Thing but also draining.

Be gentle with yourself in the midst of all of these experiences!

heu mihi said...

Thanks! Actually, the tendinitis diagnosis (if he's right) is a good thing, because it means that it's treatable and not just the Wear and Tear of Age. I've had this same pain on and off for at least five years, and now I have some exercises that are supposed to help it out. So it's good news all in all.

The heart thing is probably nothing, but it's annoying to have to wait 6 weeks or more to find that out.

The birthday was nice--we went to South Ordinary City to take pictures of post-industrial wastelands, then had cheese fondue, then came home for cake with friends. Low-key and fun.

the rebel lettriste said...

Jeez, what a birthday checkup!
I concur with you that tendonitis is a good diagnosis, in much the same way that "food poisoning" is too. It means it'll go away.

Nonetheless, happy birthday!

It's been a bitchin' year, no?

Phul Devi said...

Happy Birthday!

As for the heart thingy: it could be something like a small heart murmur. I have one, have had since I was in my teens. Nothin' to it.

P said...

Happy Birthday!

The waiting is the hardest part. Seems more than less likely that the heart condition is related to what your mother and grandmother has. As for the slower metabolism: such is life. I've got a few years on you, and FWIW I was in the best shape of my life at age 34!

Belle said...

Yikes indeed. Once you get to a certain age, they find things they've not noticed before. Been there, done that. Usually it's something they're not even sure why they're just noticing. I was 35 when the eye doctor noted that now that I was middle aged, I'd soon need bifocals. Gag, sputter. I surely didn't consider myself middle-aged. Sure 'nuf, few years later I was in bifocals and darned grateful for them.

I'm going to Paris too; when will you be there?

Dr. Virago said...

One of my students had something similar going on with his heart, and it turned out to be totally treatable and manageable with drugs and exercise. So here's hoping you're no worse off!

medieval woman said...

Argh! Happy Birthday - I'm glad you got it checked out and that you're being proactive about treating it (of course) - but what a cruddy thing! I, too, am sure it's nothing that isn't totally treatable, and I'll be thinking good thoughts for ya!

Sisyphus said...

Happy birthday of Age of Perfection!

I hope all your health stuff turns out to be minor, eek. (and as someone who's always loved food and had a slow metabolism I'm not going to mourn your loss of the Enviable Metabolism of Awesomeness.) I hope that this won't mean that you avoid the chocolate patisseries! Ooh, or wine! My friend just came back from a tour of the Rhone region and visited all the wineries --- sounds so fun!

Good Enough Woman said...

Heu Mihi, hang in there! I, myself, have gone through some of those things since I have a Mitral Valve Prolapse. Did your doctor throw that diagnosis around at all? I have the palpitations, all that jazz. Was diagnosed first at 21, then again a few years later by a doctor who was suspicious of the original diagnosis. The symptoms definitely act up more when I'm stressed. There are some good books out there if this ends up being your diagnosis.

The monitor thing is a drag. I had to do that, too. Hope you don't have to wear it on your wedding night. You'll have a lot to record in your little monitor journal! Tee hee . . .