chest

The Pericarditis incident

On Sunday, November 3, 2019, I had just finished lunch, looked at the clock, and saw that I could fit in about an hour of work before the Broncos game started. I was looking forward to see how Broncos’ quarterback Brandon Allen would do in his first career start.

A minute later I had severe chest pain. At first I thought I was having an allergic reaction to lunch — Wolfgang Puck’s potato soup, which I’ll never eat again — but I quickly realized it was something heart-related.

So I eventually got myself to the hospital. Because of the way the pain instantly came on I was guessing blood clot, but the doctors think it’s something called Pericarditis, as explained in this image.

(The last song I heard before going into the hospital was Someone Saved My Life Tonight, and while the lyrics don’t fit the event, I was hoping the title would be a good match.)

Chest waxing at the hospital (40 Year Old Virgin)

June 2, 2016: I don’t think my chest is as hairy as Steve Carell’s, but I got three chest-waxings at the hospital last week, and it is really, really painful. (They put the heart monitor leads on, take them off, put them back on, etc.) Someone told me Mr. Carell did this for real for the movie. If so, wow, that’s dedication.

Pay attention as if your life depends on it

I really like this quote about “paying attention as if your life depends on it.” One night last spring I laid in bed, unable to move because of severe pain in my chest. Any time I tried to move the pain got worse, so I laid as still as possible. I was laying on my right side, looking at a bedside table, and all I could do was breathe and look at that table, what was on the table, and see the light coming in from outside. At the time I was going through tests to see if there was a hole in my heart, and at that moment I thought I was going to die, so I can tell you, I’ve never ever focused on my breath like I did at that time. I kept that state of mind until I passed out.

This quote comes from a book titled, “Mindfulness for Beginners,” by Jon Kabat-Zinn.