Friday, January 12, 2007

Adventures in dorkhood

Hi everyone:

Patty continues to be fever-free, although the extent of her fatigue is at times unsettling. For example, I ran an errand with Patty to Home Depot, and had to rescue her because she was becoming overwhelmed by the weight of a 12-pack of toilet paper. At moments like this, I feel bad for Patty, because I know she's embarrassed and frustrated at such limitations. However, when we choose to look at such situations in a sunnier light, I find myself imagining the "Marris" character from Frasier. We're planning to take things easy tonight, in the hopes of having some energy for a kid-free weekend.

When we retired to bed last night, Patty experienced a stretch of breathlessness and heartbeat irregularity that was quickly becoming frightening; I was convinced she was going to get a shock from her ICD. There seemed to be no stimulus for the event. Had the problem persisted, I would have insisted on a trip to the hospital; fortunately, it seemed to settle down on its own, and we settled into a decent night of sleep.

When Patty's heartbeat is irregular to the extent it was last night, I alternate between feeling for her wrist pulse and putting my ear against her chest. I have somehow convinced myself that I can detect anomalies, and should therefore have up-to-the-minute stats. In reality, I'm sure I am hearing things that aren't there, and missing things that may have meaning. Each time I listen through her ribcage, though, I keep having this mini-phobia that the device is going to fire with my brain just inches away. In response to this fear, I sometimes listen in two-second increments, in the belief I am reducing the odds of leaving my head there for a shock. Alternatively, I sometimes half-rest my ear on her chest, so that if I sense a need to make a split-second escape, I'll already be partially in flight mode. I am such a dork.


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