It’s the start of a new week and I am feeling a bit better after a very odd weekend of sorts. On Sunday I ended up in the emergency room after having what in all likelihood was some sort of an anxiety attack smack dab in the middle of watching the new Spiderman movie at the theater with my husband. I was completely relaxed and enjoying myself and at one point 40-45 minutes into the movie, just felt my chest tightening so I sat up, hoping it was just a momentary annoyance. Well, that moment turned into over an hour with chest pain and shortness of breath, and feeling like my throat was constricting. I ended up sitting outside the movie theater for a while hoping that it would go away but ended up having to get my husband so we could go to the emergency room, as I was starting to get really panicked.
I spent about an hour and half at the hospital where they did an EKG, chest X-rays, and ran some blood work. Everything came out fine, and for all intents and purposes it does seem like what I had going on was an anxiety attack. I was prescribed an anti-anxiety medication and I ended up working from home yesterday per my doctor’s recommendation (and my husband’s insistence) and feel much better today. I’ve never had something like that happen to me before which is probably why it was so disconcerting. It was like a terrible feedback loop. The more shortness of breath I felt, the more panicked I became, and then the more constricted my breathing got. Scary stuff. I do believe that what I felt was a direct result of all the stress from last week with my grandmother’s deteriorating condition. I tried very much to just have my normal schedule as much as possible with a varying degree of success but ultimately it’s very hard to deny the emotional effects of knowing someone you love is very ill and that other people you love are there witnessing it and you’re thousand of miles away unable to do much of anything.
It’s now been a week since my grandmother has been in intensive care. She remains heavily sedated and intubated with a fever and bacterial infection. She still has pancreatitis and my family and I found out today her lungs are not functioning too well, as she has fluid in them. On the bright side, a lot of her inflammation has gone down. The doctors were possibly going to have her undergo dialysis but her kidney function has improved dramatically so that is off the table for now. When some of her pain medication wears off, she is more responsive, moving her hands and feet and seems to be aware of her surroundings. I gauge the situation mostly by the tone of my mother’s voice when she speaks to me on the phone to relay any update on her condition, and I’m doing my best to take my cues from her.
I’m taking positivity wherever I can get it right now and last night I finally felt much more like myself than I had in the previous five or six days. I actually felt motivated. So much so that I got up and loaded the dishwasher just because I felt this surge of energy in my body. I’ve been able to carry that through today for the most part which has been a very welcome thing. I did have a moment of beating myself up a little bit which is rather uncharacteristic for me this morning after I was planning to wake up earlier and have coffee with my husband before he left for work. Once his alarm went off, I was in no mood to get up and ended up sleeping an extra hour and a half or so. I actually woke up the second time in a much groggier state than the first wake up so that was frustrating. Once I got to work, I actually made quite a bit of progress on my main project so far for the summer, and I am so tantalizing close to being done using the microscope that I really do think that in just a day or two this more tedious business will be behind me and I can focus on the stuff that I really enjoy doing.
I was feeling tired once I got in the car to start my commute home but again, some of that motivation energy was still kicking because I actually went to the grocery store and bought some ingredients I needed for a dish I wanted to make tonight. My first home-cooked dinner in over a week, chicken tikka masala, was delicious and I made enough for both my husband and me to have for lunch tomorrow, a win-win. It may sound like such a small thing and in the grand scheme of things it is but just having a little more motivation and actually getting some planning done in the form of making a meal puts me in a much better state of mind. I’m going to try to seize this motivation wave for the rest of the week and see where it takes me.