|A favorite picture of Larry.|
Long story short, all is well.
Yesterday started out just another Tuesday. Layout day at the paper. A busy day, a long day, but a normal Tuesday.
When Larry called me a little before noon, I thought he was calling me to see if I was ready for lunch.
“You doing OK?” I asked, without even thinking about it.
“Well, I don’t know,” he said.
“I know it’s your busy day at work, but I think I need you to take me to the doctor,” he said.
He had been to the Y, walking on the track. He planned to walk for 45 minutes. During minute 44, he felt what he described as a “thump” around his heart, got dizzy and felt like he was going to pass out.
He was able to lean up against the wall, then sat down for a while before going home. He thought maybe he needed to see a doctor.
I rushed home.
A little background. Larry has had several episodes over the last few months where he felt weak and dizzy. Sometimes he felt pressure in his chest, but he thought it was his hiatal hernia and heartburn. He wouldn’t go see the doctor.
I knew that if he was asking me to take him to the doctor, he thought something was wrong. Which meant, to me, that something really might be wrong.
I insisted on taking him to the emergency room. There was no need to take the time to go see the doctor, I said.
Larry wouldn’t let me call EMS. And he didn’t want me to speed. Regardless of how fast I drove, though, I felt like the car was moving in slow motion.
I got him to Lynchburg General Hospital in Lynchburg, and they took him right back. They immediately hooked him up to a heart monitor and did an EKG, then blood work. Then, because he had been exercising when the episode happened, they had him do a stress test.
Everything came back normal.
They don’t know what the “thump” was. But his heart looks good.
On the way home, Larry said, “Well, I guess I shouldn’t have called you.”
“I’m glad you called me,” I said.
It’s much better to have something checked out and be nothing than to take a chance, I said.
I think Larry was most upset because he couldn’t go as long on the treadmill during the stress test as he thought he should have. He was out of shape.
But they put it on an incline, and the technician warned him ahead of time that it would be hard. They needed to get his heart rate up.
I told him that it was perhaps a good kind of wake-up call. He hadn’t been to the Y for a few months. He needed to exercise more for his health.
Larry is doing fine now. He’s watching one of his favorite TV shows, “Justified,” right now. Chase Bird sits on his lap, then jumps down and walks around, then jumps back up.
And me? I’m incredibly grateful for good test results.
Have you had any wake-up calls lately?