"You're not having a heart attack." Those aren't words I thought I'd hear, especially at the ripe 'ole age of 35. If you follow me on either Instagram or the twitter, then you saw this yesterday:
Yep, I'm wearing a heart monitor, or a holter, as my doctor calls it & it's not fun. Back story: in July, I started having heart palpitations. They actually started the day I got my first full paycheck in 8 months & had waaaay too much caffeine. I cut back on the caffeine, but the heart palpitations didn't go away. They actually got worse. I was having them pretty much all day, every day. And I didn't feel stressed. In fact, I felt relaxed because I finally had a job, albeit a temporary one. I felt like I could finally take a breath & relax for awhile. My body, clearly, was not as relaxed.
One afternoon, I was at work, totally relaxed, reading a book & they (they being the heart palps) got really bad. I panicked & called my mom, then called my doctor. I spoke to the nurse, who assured me I was not having a heart attack. Then she asked me something that changed the whole landscape of this, she asked if I've ever been treated for anxiety. Ugh. Yes.... But not in a long time. I was still a month away from having health insurance, so I made an appt for a full physical & tried to chill the eff out. In the almost 2 months since this first started, I've gone off the caffeine (sucks!) & started doing yoga twice a week. It's definitely gotten better, but it's still there.
My physical was yesterday. They did an EKG & it came back normal, but she still wanted me to wear a heart monitor for 24 hours just to be safe. So I'm wearing it until 2pm today. I can't work-out or take a shower & I look like a robot. I have 5 electrodes taped to me & then their long grey cords are everywhere, eventually reaching this box that looks like an early nineties beeper, that clips to my pants. It's super uncomfortable & awkward & I'm really not looking forward to going to work today wearing it.
My doctor doesn't think it's my heart, she thinks it's anxiety. She thinks I'm having a delayed reaction to losing my job last November. This actually isn't the first time this has happened to me, so she's probably right. For whatever reason, my body has a delayed physiological response to stress. Regardless, it's frustrating.
She gave me a prescription for Xanax with directions to take as needed, but if I feel like I need it every day, to call her. I don't know how long it will take to get the results of this weird thing I'm wearing today, probably next week, but I'm curious as to what those results will be. Regardless, I'm just going to continue looking for job & trying to stay moderately relaxed. I really do think I'm at the tail-end of this. If I could just find a stupid job....
To be continued.