Monday, August 15, 2011

Not running for now

  I just deleted a big old boring recap of this year so far instead deciding to curb my crappy attitude and remember that I am working on my stress reduction.   I have not been running much at all and it bums me out. 

  The chest pain has been going on since late January.  I had been treating it like an ulcer however after having a stress test done and finding that there were issues with my heart the onslaught of tests began.   One test revealed that I have a wonky artery that is a bit different than what normal is however they were not sure that this artery's placement was a problem.  The tests so far have not shown that there was any restriction of blood flow through my anomaly. My heart looks fabulous from the results.  No plaque, no cots, not damage.  The only one that was disconcerting was the stress test and it doesn't match up with the others nor give any answers as to why my chest hurts.
  Now I am scheduled to talk with a surgeon on Wednesday and was told about another stress test to try when I was speaking with the nurse practitioner on Friday when she was going over my list of test results.  I am talking with the surgeon because my cardiologist suggested I get his perspective as well.

  Basically they don't know why I am having chest pain.  I am famous in the Iowa Heart Center.  I am all the buzz. Fitting for this bee.   They all seem to have a theory and can't agree and don't know.  So for now I am taking a very small dose of beta blocker and stopped taking just about everything else.

  Through some introspection and my dear husband helping me figure this out I discovered that I have become a damn pill popper.  This is pretty typical behavior but not what I want to be. Benadryl at night to sleep. An anti-anxiety pill for just in case I feel a panic attack coming on, ect.   How was I ever going to figure out the issue if I had all of these variables.  I didn't know that Benadryl is a vasoconstrictor.  I didn't know it and was taking two every day.  I didn't know because I didn't bother to read up on what I was taking.  So I have stopped taking most of what I was taking.  Crutches that allowed me to stay the same.

  The night before last I lay awake reading an entire book while I struggled with chest pain that radiated through my left arm and into my neck.  The more I lay there the more it hurt.  If I were to go to the hospital they would inevitably tell me I am fine and give me some pills just in case.  Last night I was able to sleep more.  I still woke in the middle of the night not able to turn off all the thoughts but I didn't have insomnia like the night before.

   Yesterday I discovered through my brilliant superhero husband's suggestion that I try and consciously relax the pain in my chest.   I have practiced conscious relaxation before but its been a while.  Its hard to be still.  I was feeling so stressed that it was difficult to quiet my mind without wanting to break down but after a while I let it work.  I did let it work and have been practicing and doing some yoga since.

  I still have a bit of chest pain and it seems to get worse when I eat but I can control it for the most part.  I don't know when I will try running again but I have accepted that this year is going to have to be a chill out year.   No New York City barefoot run trip.  No Des Moines Marathon and maybe very little more running.

  I must say that this limitation has made me really appreciate running.   Its one of our theories that long slow long distance running might help at some point and thats just fine with me. 

  We are homeschooling all four of the spawn this year and I am really excited about working with Milo and Medes and having more freedom to keep Jupiter in the programs that are working for him.  Life is good.  I am off to go do some relaxation and breathing and maybe some lite yoga.


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I provide Bradley Method childbirth education, doula, belly casting, placenta encapsulation, and post partum doula services.
I serve families in Kitsap County, Bainbridge Island, Poulsbo, Bremerton, Silverdale, Kingston, Port Townsend, Bremerton, Port Orchard, and the greater Seattle area. email me with any questions you might have