I’ve been feeling pretty shitty lately and luckily had an appointment with my cardiologist today. I thought it was a case of my congestive heart failure giving me trouble. But it wasn’t. Instead, I was treated to some pretty unwelcomed news.
Firstly, my shittiness has been caused by A-fib, which I’ve apparently been in since July 30th. I couldn’t tell by any fluttering or anything; just been totally fatigued. A-fib, while fairly common, is just scary to me. Not the least of which is because it increases my chances of having a stroke.
Secondly, the battery on my bi-ventricular ICD is about to die. It’s been 7 years. The doctor said the low battery COULD also be contributing to the way I’ve been feeling, because, in order to save juice, the pacemaker may not be working quite as hard as usual. That needs to be replaced ASAP. Like, within the next week or two. Which is overwhelming in and of itself.
The kicker is… they have to replace my ICD before treating me for the A-fib. That treatment, by the way, will be an electrical cardioversion. This requires them to knock me out and then, using paddles, shock me back into rhythm. And, hopefully, it doesn’t take many tries to get it to happen or else I’ll have to live with it and take even more medications.
This is a good time to remind you that I am self-employed. So, on top of all this, I don’t have the luxury of paid time off nor the luxury of a decent health insurance plan (but thank you, ACA, for existing so that I can have SOME coverage) – which means I’m probably going to have some pretty large bills that won’t get paid off for another 10 years.
This demonic little device inside of me… I wish I could just have them rip it out forever. My doctor says that if I think I feel bad now, I’ll feel much worse if I didn’t have it. But it’s never treated me well. It’s completely messed up my brain, my life… just everything. I hate it. And I hate that I have to now get it replaced with another one; a newer one, which my irrational fear tells me is MORE dangerous because it’ll have MORE technology in it that makes it MORE susceptible to failure. The device that caused the anxiety disorder is now causing me to be afraid of its replacement.