It has been awhile since my last post and some interesting stuff has transpired since then. Over the past month or so, I started the questionable practice of randomly fainting. It happened three times and two of the falls involved me banging my face on something hard (like a granite countertop) on the way down. My face started to resemble one of the guys on the TV show “Cops” who decides that resisting arrest would be a good idea.
What was I talking about? Oh yeah, last week, things progressed to the point where I could only walk a few yards at a time without feeling light-headed. A trip to the doctor (in a wheelchair…how humiliating!) revealed that my blood pressure was dropping dramatically every time I went from sitting to standing. Since blood pressure issues are often heart-related, and since my issues were pretty severe, my doctor was rightly very concerned. So…I got to do my favorite thing…get admitted back to the hospital! Nothing says Happy Holidays like getting awakened every four hours for vital signs!
I was only “on the inside” for four days, but it was an eventful stay filled with tons of tests trying to figure out what was causing my issues. Here’s a tidbit to drop in upcoming holiday party conversations… you can get an MRI at 2:30 am…and don’t even need a open gunshot wound to do so. After all the testing, the good news is that my heart checked out fine and the culprit appears to be my adrenal glands which, among other things, secrete hormones that help regulate blood pressure. The thought is that my chemo regimen has damaged the glands’ ability to produce these hormones and therefore my blood pressure has suffered.
So, I’m now out of the hospital taking some pills to replace the things that the adrenal glands should be producing. I’m feeling better, and certainly glad to be out of the hospital, but am still moving a bit slow and hope to be back to my old self (whoever that is) soon. In other news…
- Remember the famous “wax on, wax off” line from the classic 80’s movie “The Karate Kid”?” In the Beaird house, our line is “cast on, cast off”. After Shannon had her cast successfully removed (and thankfully now with no trace that her arm was ever broken in the first place), another family member got a new cast. Our puppy, Kona, broke a leg while rough-housing with the kids. See photo below…at least it’s a festive holiday cast.
- It was nice to see the Gators pick up a win against the Seminoles on the football field (and an even more impressive win on the basketball court…not that I’m rubbing it in…OK, maybe a little bit). A one-loss season and a trip to the Sugar Bowl (mmm…New Orleans food), a great year after a disappointing one last year.
- Thanks to everyone for all the help over the past several weeks. Grandparents have come over to offer driving services (I’m not allowed behind the wheel) and have helped get the house decorated for Christmas, my brother took Aaron on a weekend-long Boy Scout camping trip, people have brought by all kinds of delicious food. Your help and support is truly appreciated. We are truly blessed to have such great family and friends.
- The biggest thanks go to my lovely wife who is truly the glue that holds our family together. I don’t know how she juggles my issues, kids and their school/extra-curricular schedules, a dog with a broken leg, and the holiday season all at the same time. We celebrated our 17th anniversary over the weekend…it’s amazing how fast the time passes. Jen, I owe you a nice anniversary dinner once my diet expands beyond soup and mashed potatoes.
I hope you all are enjoying the holiday season with your family and friends. Make sure you take time away from work, email and other distractions to truly enjoy this great time of year. Thanks again for all of your support, encouragement and prayers.