Tuesday, November 28, 2006

A thing you do not want

Also could be titled "Fiddling while Rome burns."

Yesterday afternoon, while have a fine lunch with some very fine collegaues and talking about holidays and children and other topics af intense interest, I began to notice that something simply was not right with my internal operating system.

To be more specific, it felt like somebody was trying to squeeze my esophagus out through my ears.

Very distracting.

As I am wont to do, I ignored this odd sensation and gamed on, conversing with my usual gusto, or perhaps with MORE gusto, so as to distract myself from the ever-mounting pain. After I time I grew quiet, ostensibly to let my colleagues have a chat without me interefering with my opinions and anecdotes, but really to begin an attempt to gauge the threat level to my overall health and welfare.

By the end of lunch I was at orange level. The squeezing in my throat and through my ears had spread to my chest, which did NOTHING whatsoever for my feelings of peace and goodwill toward all men.

In fact, I was starting a bit of a panic.

Naturally, I did what made the most sense.

I did NOT go to the health center a mere three floors below me! Tish tosh on that notion!

Instead, I googled "chest pain." Then I googled "causes of chest pain." Then "causes of chest pain in women," and spent the next 90 minutes in a full-on orgy of self-diagnoses, of which there can be many, depnding on whether the pain is crushing, burning, pinching squeezing, radiating, centralized, pulsating, steady, etc. etc. etc.

After a while, threat level red was achieved, probably helped along by the whittling down of the diagnoses to 2 things (to my oh-so-nimble thought processes): 1) esophageal spasm or 2) myocardial infarction. I could live with the first, the second might well kill me.

I began to feel clammy, which is another symptom of a heart attack. My heart began to race, yet another symptom. The pain intensified (centrally, no radiation, no crushing, no nausea), at which point I decided (brilliant!) to go to the wellness center and see the PA there, just to get a second opinion, in case my own expert diagnoses were completely off the mark.

Heck, maybe this awful pain was the result of work-induced stress, and I'd have a medical OUT of work! That would be sweet, (though not listed as probable cause on any of the thousand webpages I'd perused).

As I headed to the elevators, 2 things happened that were to change the course of the rest of the day: 1) one rather exuberant belch followed by 2) another of similar quality. I felt instantly deflated, my pants fit a touch more loosely, and I stopped perspiring for no reason.

By the time I'd gotten 3 floors down on the elevators, I felt somewhat better.

By the time I'd gotten down the hall to the med center, I felt markedly better.

By the time my systems were checked, I felt fine.

Stupid esophageal spasms. I was hoping for something much more dramatic, yet non life-threatening. Something that would get me out of work yet not hang like a Dementor over my sickbed. Something,,,,poetic, and only a little painful.

Ah well. Tomorrow is another day.

There was one golden moment. I was so CLOSE to being 100% right in my self-diagnosis!


Sometime yesterday I had my 10,000th visitor. I am thrilled by this turn of events.

No comments: