Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Pain in my Heart Space

As you know, dear readers, this intrepid blogger was to have run a 5K last Saturday.

This did not occur.

You see, I thought doing so might have killed me.

No, seriously.

I started having mild chest pains on Thursday, while still at work. I didn't think too much of it. Maybe I had overextended myself while helping move some boxes around the office? Maybe I had overdone it cleaning around the house? By Friday I was hurting a bit more and by the weekend I was in pain. Not like, ooh-maybe-I-sprained-something pain. No, honest-to-goodness, could-only-lay-down and couldn't-take-deep-breaths kind of pain. By Sunday night I was *slightly* freaking out.

Compounding all of this was the fact that I had (have?) misplaced my iPhone and, in case of emergency, had no way to contact anyone. I was chatting online with my sister late Sunday night, attempting very hard to relax and not worry. She helped calm me down, seeing as how she's had her own share of chest pain over the years, and I managed to get a fitful night's sleep.

By late Monday morning at the office, I was in full-on panic mode. My left arm had shooting pain and tingling in my fingers. I felt like my vision was blurring and my back was hurting, too. Was this the precursor to a heart attack?

The look on my face must have said, "Something's terribly wrong," because when I calmly walked into my boss's office and casually inquired about the nearest emergency facilities, he wasted no time walking me over to the HR department.

Half an hour later, I'm hooked up to an EKG machine and two hours after that I'm being discharged from the ER. Turns out it wasn't my heart, or my lungs, but a case of costochondritis, an inflammation of the cartilage that connects the ribs to the sternum. It often mimics the symptoms of a heart attack.

So I was fine. Or fine enough. I mean, the pain was real, and a couple more days and several dosages of Ibuprofen later, I'm still having a bit of discomfort. But all in all, no reason to panic.

This experience did, however, really make me stop and think about how I'm treating my body. It's not just about working out, or running a 5K, or eating better. It's about ALL of that and about treating myself with the respect I deserve.

I'm actually kinda glad I had this experience. I found out that I'm in good health, and that paying attention to my body is never a bad thing. Now I can move forward, keep on working out, and actually make it to the next 5K. Better sign up soon!


marlie1971 on July 10, 2009 at 6:47 AM said...

Your mind and body thank you !!

Anonymous said...

This is why it's so important to maintain a healthy lifestyle from a young age. I know this is a challenge Em, but imagine how much harder it would be if you were 40 or 50?

Feel better and get back out there mama!

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