Showing posts with label Heart Health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Heart Health. Show all posts

Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Hat, The Heart & 2012 Thoughts

"Hailey, do you want to be the Hat?"  Me, I liked to be the Horse.  Tonya, she liked the be the Shoe.  Oh, what memories that brings for me.  We have my sister's girls this weekend while she is on call at the hospital.  The kids have so much fun when they get together.  We have a few things planned but for the most part they just play.  On our way home from getting the girls, we stopped at Wally World.  I felt like the mother of a large family with five kids in tow.  I did hear something about a "tribe of kids". 

Advent was somewhat sad for me, until I met with my Spiritual Director.  I thought I had failed miserably but He helped me understand what I should have been looking for, what I really did receive and how to accept those graces.  To slow down, take time to reflect.  During our conversation he showed me how God had worked through the people in my life, the support I received, all the grace I'd been given.  I too often overlook this.  I need to see the miracles of grace in ALL things, right there for me.  It is, by the grace of God, that I listened to the whisper in my ear nudging me to make that call a year and a half ago asking for spiritual direction.   Thanks be to God {and SD to his Yes}!

During Advent I wrote about heart troubles I was having.  I am very happy to say that mechanically everything turned out fine.  I unexplainably, regularly, have PVC's and some PAC's??  And I can hardly believe the results of my lipids.  I really wondered if they were my results.  This is great, however, it's not a green light to eat bad.  I am still going to eat more fruits and vegetables.  {I'm very bad about this for myself, what can I say, I like sea salt potato chips.}  I'll be watching animal fats, switching oils, limiting cholesterol and focusing on better foods in general.  I hope to be posting more about what foods that will be.  For example, I've heard time and time again one teaspoon on cinnamon a day is great for your heart.  I've added that with my coffee {1/4 tsp is about all I can do, but it's a daily start}.  We don't eat terrible, but definitely room for improvement.

For a matter of record here are my lipids:

The first number was taken in November 2010, the second in December 2011 {I'd also like to add for the record, I am on the low side for my weight range but my BMI is still high.  I'd still like to shed eight pounds to be at an optimal weight.  This is what you'd call family history.}

HDL Cholesterol:  58/50
LDL Cholesterol:  164/125
Triglycerides:  144/112
Blood Sugar:  NA/92
Total Cholesterol:  251/197

Now, somehow, I need to work on my blood pressure as that is high.

I'm making lists, or rather still formulating on how to shape the next year.  That sounds funny, like I have control or something.  Really what I mean to say is that I am deciding on what books to read {somewhat}, how to spend my time {somewhat}, what bad habits I'd like to try and break, what good habits I'd like to start.  In doing so, I've been hearing the words of my SD and then read a great article that gave more insight.   More on that later, I still have a few hours to form this all up!

Time to get crack-a-lackin'.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Confessions from my Heart

Last Friday morning, I woke a little earlier than my normal rising time, I had to get the girls to a friends house by 7:40 AM, drop Henry off and leave his school by 8:00 AM in order to make it to my echo cardiogram by 8:30 AM.

I've been having chest pains for awhile now.  It's really hard to explain them.  The chest pains were usual becoming usual to me, which can't be a good thing can it?  Then a few weeks ago I was very sweaty and had different kinds of chest pains.  I sat down, started formulating a plan in case these pains didn't go away.  I sat for five minutes, then was fine.

A week and a half ago when my Mom was here I was having chest pains again.  Adam & Tonya (my sister) said I should go in.  I decided it was a good idea and it worked out perfectly because my Mom was here and I could actually get in right away. 

{I had an emergency c-section with Henry.  After his delivery and I was closed up, I was immediately taken to be monitored for PVC's.  I had never heard of this and was very worried about all that was happening to me.  My husband didn't know what to do, where to go, with me or the baby?  I urged him to go with the baby.  I was monitored for an hour and that was that.  Nothing ever really came up with it again.}

I figured these heart palpitations were from the PVC's.  My sister said I don't really drink very much caffeine so I should get checked.  I agreed for that reason and the pains the day I had to sit down were a different.  I have also been thinking about running a marathon June 2012, so I figured it would be a good idea to make sure all checked out.  I am actually taking advice from the marathon trainer to make sure I am heart fit before this undertaking.  I've had high cholesterol, family history and basically, I am older now.

At the doctors office we talked about the pains, family history, my blood pressure {sadly this has been creeping up more and more...ever since I was on bedrest with Pre-Eclampsia with Henry}.  He listened to my heart and did hear the PVC's.  I had x-rays, a blood draw {can't remember what for} and an EKG while in the office.  He talked about a few possibilities and suggested an Echo cardiogram next and then we'd go from there.

There was one week in between the two appointments.  During this time I thought about what I eat, what I don't eat, how much I really exercise and my life in general.  Talked with my Dad, learned more about his heart health.  I did some research on-line, found some things ideas on how to change things.

On my way to dropping off my kids, I felt ever so grateful to our Lord for giving me these precious babies.  Tears I hid from their innocence.  I wondered if things would be so drastically different when I picked them up or would I get a chance to correct some of my slothful ways?  I would be so grateful to feed my kids better, feed my husband better, care for myself better, and run.

I dropped them all off, and prayed the Sorrowful Mysteries, asking God to let this cup pass over me, if it's His will. 

I wasn't sure what to expect other than what I knew from a pregnancy ultrasound.  It was much the same but in order to get a good picture of the heart he had to get my lung out of the way.  This meant a lot of exhaling all the way out until there wasn't anything in my lungs, inhale or exhale and stop when he said stop.

The appointment sheet said that the results would be given to my doctor.  I was hoping that the ultrasound tech {seems odd to say tech because I am sure tech isn't a deserving enough title for what he must know} wouldn't make me wait.  I was able to see a few pictures, in color, but really, it didn't mean anything to me.  And he did say that structurally my heart looks really good. 

He asked if I felt the PVC's {I did not} and that I have them regularly. I also had PAC's.  Both being singular, begin and that I stay in sinus rhythm.  He couldn't answer my why this was happening.  A cardiologist would review the information and send it to my doctor. 

My doctor mentioned that this could all be muscle-skeletal and simply wanted to rule out the other things from the echo cardiogram. 

I also had my lipids checked and my fasting glucose tested.  My lipids were high a year ago.  I wanted an accurate bench mark for my new heart healthy life-style. 

In addition, I've been asked to monitor my blood pressure for two weeks.  I haven't been having the best results, according to the American Heart Association.   Yesterday I did have one reading in the 120's.  Promising?

I do wonder about sharing so much, as normal I don't think that I do.  I have decided to share as I want to keep a record of where I am and where I am going.  Plus, if this helps anybody else along the way, all the better.  And this is one of the things currently on my mind and what I hope to be some major lifestyle changes.

So, I will most likely be sharing some do's and don't I learn along the way, recipes I adjust, running I hope to log, and stats of my progress.  I should be getting my results any day of all the tests.
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