Saturday, April 18, 2009

My sweetHEART

So my hubby has been going through a few minor health issues, but in the midst of all that has been going around us, and the fact that it involves his heart, there has definitely been an elevated level of anxiety and - and maybe this is the reason for all of increased level of appreciation. Chris learned he had higher than ideal cholesterol three years ago when we did our life insurance tests when I was pregnant with Brady. It was not "high" in Chris' mind so he didn't take it that seriously...of course, I did! In a recent physical - about a year or so ago - he found out it had gone up some 250...then I got all over him about how serious that continue to rise at his young age (34 at this point). He didn't understand it based on his weight, exercise routine, lack of family history, diet, etc. but genetics are what they are.

Fast forward to a month ago when my sweet friend from MOPS suddenly lost her husband to a massive heart attack at almost 39 years old in the middle of the night...these tragic events so often are major eye openers as I reminded Chris that he was supposed to have his 6 month follow up at our doctor to see if he successfully lowered his cholesterol with diet and exercise - in January!! It was mid-March.

A week later, Chris's Dad went to the doctor for what he thought was gal bladder issues and discovered it was his heart and was moved to ICU after a heart attack and then later had SIX bypasses...again none of the typical warning signs...not high cholesterol, not high blood pressure, not a high heart rate, not family history, not overweight, and a non-smoker. This really opened Chris' eyes as he thought about how this put him in the "family history" category now. He called our doctor once we returned to Birmingham to have his follow up and his cholesterol rechecked. while hew was there he told Dr. Gilstrap about his Dad and his blood pressure was elevated for the first time. While Dr. Gilstrap was certain this was probably just anxiety based on what all had happened, he felt like with three factors - blood pressure, cholesterol, and now family history - it would be wise to schedule a stress test. So on Wednesday, April 8th Chris returned to Dr. Gilstrap's office for his stress test. He found out while he was there that he had lowered his cholesterol on his own from 250 to 207...which is GREAT. The stress test appeared to go well and they were impressed how long it took him to get his heart to its maximum rate on the treadmill. He was scheduled to come back a week later for his follow up to see what the stress test revealed.

On April 15th he returned to the doctor's office for his stress test results. He was told they found an abnormality and had scheduled him to see the cardiologist on Friday morning the 17th. SCARY!!! So all along as he has had anxiety during some of this with the "what-ifs", etc. I have been thinking things are fine, will be fine. The doctor is being thorough and we are being responsible...that is all this is.

And then the day...I hear "they found an abnormality in my heart they have scheduled my appointment with the cardiologist for Friday morning." WHAT??? an abnormality...a cardiologist appointment for my 35-year-old husband????? and they didn't say "we think you should follow up with is his number." they made the appointment for him for two days later!! Okay, what goodness and I am due to give birth in 3 weeks!!!! During this week we also found out that Chris' Aunt Robby's best friend lost her husband to a heart attack as well.

So Chris goes to the cardiologist on Friday morning. They drew blood, ran an EKG and decided they need to do an arteriogram on him on Wednesday. The abnormality on the stress test showed the tracer did not run through the bottom chambers of his heart completely/efficiently/sufficiently. Was he not positioned well for those pictures of his heart, does he have narrowing arteries, does he have a blockage already at 35??? that is what the arteriogram will tell the doctors on Wednesday. They will sedate him and catherize him. He will need to be driven home and, depending on what they find, he may have to stay overnight. If they find a blockage, they will either do angioplasty or put a stint in his heart while they are already in. Hopefully after Wednesday (2 1/2 weeks before my baby boy is expected to arrive), my hubby will be all clear, have a clean bill of health and be home feeling well with nothing for us to worry about anymore...that is our prayer!!

With this going on....something affecting his heart...I think of his heart, his sweet heart that is the best Daddy in the world, that is a giving spouse, that is a loving son, that is a loyal friend, that is a devoted son, that is a faithful servant, that is a concerned member of society, that is my BEST FRIEND and I think: "How can something be wrong with his sweet, sweet heart?" I have also had the thought: "how can I do this life, raise my boys, without him?" I know - with GOD - I can...but I want to scream: "I don't want to do this life thing without my sweetHEART!" He is great...not perfect, but perfect for ME!


Bobby said...

Hang in there!

Heather H said...

prayers for you Kat. i feel certain it will all be fine and this wil be a distant memory.

we will be praying here. please update when you can.


Laura D said...

My prayers are with the 4 of you tomorrow as I know all will be well. I love you all so very much and will be thinking of you. Keep your faith as strong as you always do and you shall overcome this challange with the strength and dignity as you have through all your challenges in the last year. I love you call me while you are waiting.Give Chris a big hug for me.

Heather H said...

would love an update Kat.