About Me

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Cedar, Leelanau County, Michigan (near Traverse City), United States
I am a 76 year old (born 7/4/1937) retired Public Radio Engineer from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin. Happily married to the love of my life, Teddy (nee Teddy Schlueter). Teddy is a retired Medical Records Clerk from Theda Clark Hospital in Neenah, Wisconsin. Two children, Michael and Lon. Lon passed away in 1994. Michael is married to his wonderful wife, Toni and lives in Appleton, Wisconsin. For photos click on link below or visit our photo site http://www.flickr.com/photos/igboo NOTE: Click on photos for full-size images.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Pacing my Heart


One of the problems of owning an older car is parts wearing out. If it is a part that you don't really need like a cigarette lighter or rusty fenders then you don't have to fix it; you can just ignore it and get by just fine. However, if it's your timing belt or spark plugs then you have to either get it fixed or junk the car to the boneyard.
Well, the same is true of the human body. For many years I got along just fine with all of the parts that I was born with but as time went by I began to discard several parts that didn't work anymore or I didn't seem to need. At first it was just small things, my tonsils, and foreskin were the first to go followed in my youth by my appendix. Then in my 20s by my wisdom teeth. After that for a long long time everything seemed to be operating as designed until 1994 when my prostate gland after many years of faithful service had to be discarded. And, of course throughout the years, hair follicles here and there but mainly on my head began to die out. Fast forward to 2006 and it was my right knee, in this case I had a new one installed as I decided that it would be difficult to get along without one. The following year, without warning, my gall bladder quits...so bye bye gall bladder. And a few years back, I disremember exactly when, my engine began to miss, something to do with my fuel injection system which my doctor treated with the fuel additives Sotalol & Coumadin. Well...things seemed to be progressing pretty much OK until Tuesday morning, February 9th when the ol' engine began to really sputter and I ended up in the local hospital here in Lake Havasu City.
That afternoon around 5pm my heart briefly stopped entirely for several seconds and then spontaniously restarted. It was really exciting to see all of the people running into my room with the "crash cart" and a bunch of other machines that go "BING"! Then, happily, (well happily for them as they got to see it in person) it did it again two more times. I, of course, sort of blanked out briefly during those times so I don't remember it all but I do remember that it was sort of like an episode of the TV show, "Greys Anatomy". Apparently clinically speaking, I was briefly dead for a few seconds a couple of times with no pulse. I didn't get to see any angels though as both sides (both up & down) rejected me and sent me back. Then that night and the following night my heart would slow down to 20 BPM and they would have to rouse me. I asserted that naked nurses might do the trick but then when they volunteered a male nurse I recanted. 
So... on Thursday afternoon my cardiologist Dr. Pareed Aliyar installed a shiny new Boston Scientific Altrua pacemaker in my chest. So now, I am home and happily beating along at 60 CPS right in tune with the house current.

Oh... I almost forgot, yesterday my other knee gave out so next summer... well… you get the picture.

8 comments:

bennie and patsy said...

So happy you are home and doing good.Thinking about you and yours.
Patsy

Diana said...

How scary! Glad you're doing well now, and you still have your sense of humor.

Chuck and Anneke's RV travels said...

Glad you are doing well. Your sense of humor obviously is not one of the AWOL parts. Best of Luck!

Anonymous said...

Hi Larry & Teddy - yes, your humorous account of a truly scary experience was amazing, and we, too, are glad you are home and humming along with the 'house current'.

Once again, it seems we will miss connecting with you for even a short visit in LHC ... when do you plan to leave and head north?

Take care & be well -
Leslie 'n Dave (full-timing in a 13ft, met you at Terrible's in Pahrump)

Larry & Teddy said...

Leslie & Dave, Nice to hear from you again. We are leaving LHC Monday, 3/1 and moving to Nevada Treasure RV Resort (http://nevadatreasurervresort.com/) in Pahrump where we will stay for the months of March and April. Will then leave for Traverse City, Michigan on May 1. If you should visit Pahrump in March or April be sure and look us up.
Larry & Teddy

Julia said...

I am right there with you losing parts at an alarming rate and for the last ten years suffering from blockages in the heart arteries now sport three stents and who knows how many more in the future. Knees are still functioning but grumbling about it so there on the future replacement list. The memory banks have had their problems nothing serious so says the Doc but I take it as a warning.
Glad they gove one of the best devices that company is famous they even know about them in southern Mexico ....so there

Wisdom Teeth Pain said...

You have a amazing experience..you are so brave...its good that you are well now..

Wisdom Teeth Pain said...

Pacing in heart is so scary... i pray for you that you still have a good healthy life