As soon as our girls started to become very comfortable with us, my Heart problems began to get worse again. My weight had fluctuated some, but not more than 20 lbs. over the last 4 months. Unfortunately, I was back in AFIB once again. My Cardiologist and Electrophysiologist had concurred that I needed another Heart Ablation. According to my Heart Echo, I was misfiring extremely bad this time. Over the last 20 months, I had been in and out of the hospital over 25 times. It almost seemed like a revolving door. This time, my Aunt and Uncle from Vero Beach decided to come over for the procedure. My Aunt was a Nurse and she spent a lot of time working with Heart Patients. This made me feel somewhat comfortable knowing that my wife would not have to sit alone while I was having this Heart Ablation performed. My only worry now was our 2 young puppies had to stay home alone for longer than we liked due to me being in the hospital once again.
After the nurses began the IV drip which made me relax, I kissed my wife and Aunt and told my Uncle I would see them when I awoke from the Ablation. Once I was put to sleep, I didn’t realize how long the procedure was going to take. Once my Electrophysiologist was inside of my chest cavity burning different nerve endings in around my Heart, it took him twice as long to get me stabilized again. After this 4 hour procedure was completed, he went to the patient waiting room and spoke to my wife. He had a very serious look on his face. I know she was extremely scared. He told them my Heart was extremely large and he was very scared that it could explode on the operating table. He took his time getting me regulated once again. The biggest take away I got when I was in recovery from my wife, Aunt and Uncle, is he did all he could. It was now up to me to lose weight. If I didn’t take immediate control of my Heart Health, I could possibly be dead within the next 3-4 months. For some reason, these words stuck with me. Two days later, I was released from the hospital and had several follow-up visits with my Cardiologist. He too reiterated how bad my Heart was performing. The first week of October 2016, I was placed in Cardiac Rehab for a 2nd time. This time was a bit different. I had several monitors that I had to wear so my Heart could be monitored. They continued to check my weight before and after class. My insurance plan with my company was extremely good. I had already met my deductible for the year, so rehab did not Cost us anything. For the next 3 months, on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I religiously attended Cardiac Rehab at the 8:00 AM session. Once a week, my Cardiologist would pop in to check on me as he made his morning rounds in the hospital. At home, I told my wife I needed to get more serious about my health than ever before. I loved her dearly and now we had these two adorable puppies, Bella and Beignet. To be on the safe side, I wanted to start counting calories. I made sure I listed everything I put in my mouth down to the sugar free mints I ate along with the Splendas I used in my coffee. I was going to take this new Healthy Lifestyle extremely serious. I knew one day I was going to die, but I didn’t want it to be today. My wife prepared healthy meals for me each day. I got up every morning and religiously checked my weight to make sure I was not gaining. Between my Cardiac Rehab and the honesty involved with keeping track of my weight and calories, the weight began to shed once again. This time, if I gained weight, my life could come to an end. My Cardiologist was monitoring me weekly. He began to adjust my Heart Meds. I was placed on different Heart meds, one you probably had seen on TV known as Entresto. This was a fairly new drug that was helping Heart Patients with Enlarged Hearts and Congestive Heart Failure live longer. My doctor told me that my BNP numbers in my chest were still high. These numbers measured the amount of pressure that is required for the Heart to pump Blood from the Atria to the Ventricle. Over the next several months, my weight continued to drop. In a matter of 4 months, I had lost 40 lbs. and was back around the 300 lb. mark. This was good, but not nearly where I needed to be. The struggles over my lifetime with weight have been incredible. It has been a lifelong battle for over 50+ years. After my last Heart Ablation, I decided that I was never going to have another drink, smoke any Cigars, or eat anything that could possibly put me back in AFIB again. Just before 2016 ended, I received my graduation papers from Cardiac Rehab. I had successfully completed my 13 week course and was feeling so much better. I could actually walk over 2 miles a day without gasping for air. God had Blessed me yet again!! I was alive and had another chance at living a good life; this time, I wasn’t going to screw things up. Each and every day I hear those words from my Electrophysiologist and Cardiologist, we can not do anymore with your Heart, it’s up to you to live or die!!
Will to Live – Love, Patience, & Kindness – Part 86