Thursday, June 14, 2007

How can you mend a broken heart?

I hadn’t mentioned here that there is one thing that I really, truly, and totally hate about Monsieur and about living with him, and it is this:
He does not get sick.
Really, and I mean never. This is frustrating, especially to me. I am beset by allergies, flus, viruses and the occasional heat rash. I get sick like clockwork every November, usually the 1st or 2nd week before Thanksgiving. I get the grass allergies in Spring and the mold allergies in December.
Monsieur, the mutant that he is, does not even get chapped lips.
For this, when I get a cold, I despise him and am forced to listen to him walking around and smugly not being sick while he wraps me in blankets, takes the day off to teach my class, and is generally so wonderful I feel like putting the toe of one of my Skechers straight up his genetically perfect ass.
A couple of weeks ago, he decided to do what he called a “cost-benefit analysis” of his life insurance, and consequently my health insurance, and see if he could pay a little bit more for a lot more coverage, and to start planning to use that policy to sock away a bit for the boys’ higher school.
I don’t know why, but I was thrilled. It made me feel like it was more real or something. I swear, once the seduction is complete, the way to keep hold of a woman’s heart is through including her in a regimen of sound financial planning. Try it sometime, guys; open up your portfolio to your lady, name her as a beneficiary, and see if you don’t maybe “get a piece of the rock” or two in exchange for it. If you know what I mean.
And of course, the extra coverage required a health exam. I’d just had mine last year and besides the colds & flus I mentioned above, I don’t have any health problems, so I wasn’t worried. I don’t smoke, I hardly ever drink anymore, and the last illegal drug I ever did was a hit off of a joint five years ago, and it put me to sleep faster than watching “The McLaughlin Report”. Monsieur, of course, chops firewood with a putty knife, lifts 14-point buck deer over his shoulder and can bend iron fireplace pokers with his bare hands, so I didn’t think much more of that, either.
The insurance company had me set an appointment to have a medical exam. The gray haired EMT lady who came to do it was almost apologetic that she had to take my blood and my pee, which I had to provide into a cup and then pour into three little test tubes. I did okay with that. My blood pressure was normal and all. I’d get results back and find out later. I still haven’t actually heard from them about that.
Monsieur had the whole work up at his regular doctor, since he is over 40. I don’t know that he has gone to the “regular doctor” in the whole time I’ve been here. I was actually surprised to hear that he had one. He had to do not only the whole blood/pee ordeal plus full medical exam, which I presume included the prostate (a gloved finger up the booty! you guys are so lucky), but also the doctor had him take an EKG.
Well, it showed he had this irregular rhythm. Specifically (and I heard this a few times) he has an “atrial flutter”.
Monsieur says it’s not a big deal and a lot of people go their whole lives with that sort of thing and it doesn’t affect them and often, like Monsieur, they show absolutely no symptoms at all.
His doctor referred him to a cardiologist, and the cardiologist had a specialist look at him, and he had to wear a little monitor for a day with wires taped to his chest, to record his heartbeat and see if it was a regular thing or just a freak thing.
Nope, said the little monitor, it’s a regular thing.
So, he went back and the cardio surgeon says that the best thing is to try a (I’m looking at this report to make sure I am spelling it right) “radiofrequency catheter ablation” on him, and see if that fixes it right up.
I’m okay, I really am. Mostly. Then I get this panicky feeling, like, what if it doesn’t fix it right up? Before they do that they’re going to do a bunch of ultrasound tests to see if he has a clot somewhere that’s causing it. What if there is? Well, depends on where it is, but likely they’d do a different kind of catheter procedure, yadda blah blah yadda.
It makes me see things in front of my eyes and not any of them are any good. If something were to happen to him what would happen to the boys? I mean, I’d be their guardian; we’d signed that stuff with the lawyer a while back and I am their guardian in case something like that should happen.
But that’s just not right. I’ve seen heart patients down at the gym and recently, at the cardio’s office. Those guys are either old, really old, and they can’t get up out of their chairs without a walker. Or they’re clinically and morbidly obese, and can’t get up out of their chairs without a forklift and a bit of petroleum jelly to unwedge them from between the arms.
Monsieur mows an acre of lawn with a reel mower. The old-fashioned kind. Not because he’s an environmentalist so much, but for the exercise, he says. He doesn’t have a leaf blower; he sweeps the driveway (which is about a quarter mile long) with a push broom. For The Exercise. Most people cut firewood with a chainsaw around here, but he uses a hand saw and an axe. Like, a full cord of cedar wood. A full cord of wood is about the size of a travel trailer. Monsieur cuts that much. By hand. Again, (say it with me) For The Exercise.
His procudures are scheduled for next Tuesday.
It’s not fair. Let me explain my reasoning:
Guys with his abs aren’t supposed to schedule procedures at the best cardio facility in central Texas at the age of 44. Guys with his abs are supposed to go like his grandfather did, until they’re 98, full throttle, after a full life of fighting the Kaiser and the Nazis, the Communist Chinese and Singapore Pirates and the freaking Green Goblin, building a family and raising them right and seeing them all go off and do the same, and putting in a full day of work Every God Damned Day until their kids make them go home and give it a rest, because they’ve earned it after securing the safety of the Free World, the blessings of liberty and the welfare of their loved ones.
Monsieur isn’t worried, and I shouldn’t be either, he says. Well, that’s easy for him to say, because he’s a fucking super hero. I’m just an ordinary mortal, and I will worry every minute until Monsieur’s done with this thing and three doctors say he’s all better and his hitherto fluttery heart is not being all emo and fluttery, and instead is beating like Danny Carey’s bass drum (from Tool – that’s a band, for you old and/or country guys), and just to make double sure, I will require that he cut down a forty foot cedar tree with one cut from his big Japanese saber. Then I might stop worrying.


super des said...

"once the seduction is complete, the way to keep hold of a woman’s heart is through including her in a regimen of sound financial planning."


I'm sure M will be fine, but I understand your worry.

atlcatman said...

I, not be omniscient, can't promise M will be fine around this. Encouraging, aren't I?

But .. all those things you said are true regardless of what his fickle heart does. He is a strong man, physically and mentally, and it is very likely that he will be fine.

And you, too, are strong .. but being strong doesn't stop it from being scary. Ouch ...

Know that there are people outside your little corner of the world who are thinking about you both and sending energy your way. Reach up and grab some as it goes by.

atlcatman said...

And what is this Fscking Blog Owner approval crap?

My comments not good enough for you?

( ;-) )

introspectre said...

Aw, sweet pea. I don't know enough about it to tell you, "He'll be fine." I do know I've had erm.. whatever it is that makes your heart skip a beat now and then, since I was in my early twenties. Mostly during panic attacks. And it's PAINFUL. And my husband freaks out every time, because he can see me stop breathing, just from the pain of it, and hovers over me asking, "Is your arm numb?" and various other OhMyGodAreYouHavingAHeartAttack kinds of questions. Honestly, they used to scare me, but now I just wait, they pass, okey dokey then.

I am willing to bet, however, that he IS just fine, and the only reason they even tested him was because of his age.

When it comes down to it, having a preventative procedure done is a far cry better than having a post emergency kind done.

My grandpa's had a quadruple bypass, multiple strokes, a heart attack or three, and still is ticking along. Even after all of that. It's pretty amazing how resilient the human body can be. And your darling Monsieur, with his exercise just for the sake of it, is in amazing health.

Frankly, you should stop telling me all these things about him. I must confess I got a little hot and bothered by the time you got to the reel mower. I get worked up watching my computer geek husband in his kickboxing class.

*wistful* I had a boyfriend who chopped wood. I would watch him out there, in the snow, no T-shirt, his long hair in a braid, wearing his overalls and glistening in the dewy goodness of his own hard work. Lord, have mercy. I loved watching that man chop wood.

I gotta go get a glass of cold water or something. Sheesh.