So, it has been exactly four days since the doctors at Stanford turned off my ICD after one of my leads fractured. This was done to help me avoid the unpleasant experience of an inappropriate shock. That is the clinical name for a defibrillating shock that happens by mistake; when your heart is not really in a dangerous arrhythmia. By some handy programming and a bit of luck, I was able to avoid that experience.
I have had my ICD for three years. During that time, I have ridden the full roller coaster ride of emotions from fear, loathing, joy, relief, anxiety and anger. It has been with the diligent search of knowledge and the support of some really incredible people that I have survived all this. After all that, you would think that having the darn thing go silent for a few days would be a relief… it has been anything but.
I have long grown used to the little bumps and jiggles that are my heart. Even the breath stealing flutter of a NST doesn’t freak me out anymore. Or at least it didn’t until last Friday. Now every little extra beat is sending me through the roof. How funny that the thing in my chest that I have cursed and hated is now the thing I miss.
In my logical mind, I know they would have never let me out of the hospital on Friday if I were at severe risk of V-fib. But in the rest of my mind, it is freaky to feel my heart mis-behave and know that there is no back up in place. As I have gone through my days I wonder if people around me would know what to do if I suddenly fell over. I have been worried about being alone just in case something goes wrong. I never would have expected this feeling but I have to admit, I miss my ICD. I hate that I have to go through another surgery to fix it, but I can’t wait to get in all patched up and get back to hating it again.