Heart Stuff,  Lake life,  Musings,  This Life...

Sunday Snippet: Heart Update # Ummm… Whatever…

Good Sunday morning, mes amis, and I hope you’re enjoying this long holiday weekend. It’s the weekend when we honor all those soldiers who died in service to our country. I am so grateful to anyone who fought and currently fights for the security of the United States and to protect our constitution. A smile and a salute today to all those brave men and women who died fighting for to keep America and the world safe and free.

Now, to the update: As you all know, although I try not to dwell on it here, I am in heart failure–Heart Failure with Reduced Ejection Fraction–HFrEF. Don’t you just love those little medical acronyms? Anyway, I had a 6-month checkup on Thursday.

I’ve been pretty good, although I confess I’ve been struggling with my weight–I’ve plateaued, and I’m not thrilled about it. I’ve also been dealing with feeling tired and craving sweets, which I finally decided (after consulting Dr. Google) could be a slight B12 deficiency since I had stopped taking it several months ago when my B12 was back into the normal range. Apparently, I need it, so I’m taking it again to see if helps. But my weight–a couple of pounds either direction–isn’t the issue really…the chest pain I’ve been having is.

Yeah, I’ve had a couple of episodes of left side chest, back, and arm pain–bad enough to make me worry and to make Husband keep an eye on me while trying very hard not to appear as though he’s keeping an eye on me. I hadn’t really thought I’d tell the cardio doc about the couple of episodes because they subsided and I was fine. But part of throwing your lot in with a cardiologist is confessing everything that is happening in your body that feels like it could be heart-related.

So I told her about the pain episodes and about the occasional breathlessness that is happening when I walk up hills and inclines. I’ve noticed it more since we opened the lake cottage because the roads around the lake are a little hilly–not crazy–but they do incline more than the streets in the ‘hood where I usually walk.

Dr. B is a kind and wonderful cardiologist whose scientist mind just fascinates me. You can see her scientist brain working as she clicks through my chart and asks pertinent questions … it’s comforting to have her in my corner because I know she’ll get to the bottom of what’s happening. To that end, I’m scheduled for a PET CT MYOCARDIAL PERF (Yeah, I copied and pasted that from MyChart), which is basically a look in my heart.

It does involve 30 minutes where I “lie on a narrow, padded table that slides into the part of the scanner that looks like a doughnut hole.” The scheduler asked if I was claustrophobic. Ummmm…I cry when the dentist gets too close to my face… yes, I am claustrophobic. “You may want to have your doc prescribe something to relax you for the procedure,” she suggested. I called Dr. B’s office and asked. She complied.

So…that’s where we are. I’m all good, mostly, and after the PET scan, we’ll be reassured that my heart is doing its job to the best of its ability, which I grant you is not the greatest, but I’ll take whatever it’s willing to give me. The 4-drug protocol has kept me strong and doing well for the last year and a half. Walking everyday keeps me moving. Eating right and drinking lots of water keeps me as healthy as I can be, so whatever this scan shows, I have to keep the faith that I’m doing the very best I can. Hold a good thought on June 3…

May be an image of 3 people, clarinet, brass and trumpetGratitude for this week: The peonies are blooming–all pink and white and gorgeous. One of my very favorite editing clients is writing again after some time away–I’m so pleased! Nice afternoon with sis for mani/pedis and a scoop of peach ice cream. My poppies are blooming all throughout my office garden–they’re lovely, but somehow they scattered seeds all over last fall so they’re popping up everywhere. Grandboy’s 6th grade band concert was the highlight of our Nanny&Poppy hearts. 

Stay well, stay safe this holiday weekend, be kind always–you never know what someone else is going through, so kindness is always the best option, and most of all, mes amis, stay grateful!




  • Meg

    Nan, I’m sending entire poppy gardens of good thoughts your way. Getting old sucks, but getting old with the grim reaper trying to nip at your heels makes it even harder. I hope the test results are positive and that life continues to hold an abundance of mani-pedis and peach ice cream. It sounds like you have a wonderful doctor, so that right there is reason to celebrate. Doctors that listen are a rare commodity, unfortunately.

    • Nan

      Thank you for the gardens of good thoughts. Getting older sure as heck ain’t for cowards, is it? Hugs, dear one!

  • Mary Cooney-Glazer

    Keeping weight fluctuations under control is a challenge for some of us, Nan. I’m in that group. You’ve got this. You’re doing everything right. Wish you the best.

  • Glenda M

    Sending prayers for you Nan – including for the ability to relax completely during the Pet Scan. (It’s always hardest to hold still when you have to do so for a medical test.) It sounds like you are doing a good job of following doctors orders so that will help. 🙂

    • Nan

      That’s going to be huge for me, Glenda–I’m so stinking claustrophobic. Ack! Dr. B will give me something to help me relax and after that… well, everyone’s prayers will help me stay still. Hugs galore!

  • Kimberly Field

    Nan, will be keeping you in good thoughts and prayers as you go through the Pet Scan this week. Glad you talked to your doctor. I had my annual echocardiogram on Thurs. I do not see the doctor for a few weeks to go through everything, but I am confident it will all be ok. Enjoy your weekend. I am watching the Indy 500,which I understand they are letting you guys watch live for the first time.

    • Nan

      Kimberly, sure hope your echo shows all is normal in your big, wonderful heart! We need your heart in this old world. We didn’t watch the race because we don’t have a TV in the lake cottage–it’s our nod to being away from it all…no TV, radio and books only. It’s worked well for 12 years. 😉

      Hugs x 1000,


  • Kathleen Shaputis

    The heart is such an incredible organ – and I’m grateful you followed up and “confessed” to the cardio dr. Healing hugs and positivie thoughts for June 3rd! Do let us know what they find.

    • Nan

      Hugs, back, Kathleen–my heart is still amazing even if it doesn’t work quite as well as others. I’ll keep you posted!

  • Barbara Ankrum

    Sending you healing hugs Nan. Hope the Petscan goes well. Fun fact: the guy who invented the pet scan was the dad of one of my daughters pre-school friends 40+ years ago! So glad he did so that today a friend benefits from it! ❤️

    • Nan

      Thank you, Barbara–that is so cool that you know the guy who invented this scan! I’m not sure why that feels reassuring, but it does. Hugs!!

  • Liz Flaherty

    I’m glad you’re so comfortable with your cardi doctor and so intent on compliance! Take care. See you soon.

    • Nan

      I truly am–she is a blessing. I’m not always totally compliant, but I do try harder. Can’t wait to see you–let’s make a work day plan! Hugs, bestie!