Our Christmas tree!
So…when we wrote last week’s blog we were not planning on a Part 2 but the falling apart has continued. Ed went for his annual physical on Monday and everything was going well until his doctor listened to his heart. An electrocardiogram (EKG) then confirmed that his heart was beating irregularly (for you heart buffs, it was atrial fibrillation but he often has atrial flutter). A trip to the cardiologist followed and on Friday Ed’s heart was successfully shocked back into normal rhythm (cardioversion).
This same thing happened at Ed’s annual physical last year and the funny thing is that on both occasions, he did not realize that his heart was beating irregularly. He has been short of breath this year whenever he exerts himself too much but we have assumed that this was due to the medicine he is taking for his heart. Shocking your heart back into rhythm is not typically a long-term solution so we will be considering an ablation, where portions of the over-active nerves in the heart are destroyed to reduce the unwanted signals that cause irregular heartbeats. Ed is feeling fine and his prognosis is very good so we are confident we will be able to solve this heath issue. After all, we are moving to Asheville to hike and bike in the mountains so he is going to need a healthy heart.
We also went to the dentist last week—Patty had popped out a crown on one of her teeth and it needed to be fixed. It turns out the crown had to be replaced so we’ll be returning to Gainesville in a few weeks to get the new crown installed. Ed already had a crown installed during this trip so we are racking up dental costs, without any insurance. We may have to start considering other options—if we have missing teeth in future photos you will know we needed to cut costs.
After Ed’s heart-shocking last Friday, we flew to Washington, DC Saturday to start our annual Christmas trip. Our flight from Gainesville to Atlanta was delayed (as usual) and we almost missed our flight to Washington. Fortunately, we were able to run through the Atlanta airport (a good test of Ed’s heart, especially running up the escalators) and made our flight with six minutes to spare.
Of course, our bags did not make the flight but Delta did give us two small overnight bags with a tee shirt to sleep in, toothpaste, etc. The bags also included dental floss on a stick—Ed usually avoids using this because you have to pull the floss up between your teeth and it can catch on fillings, often causing them to come out. Needless to say, Ed used the dental floss on a stick and flicked out a filling or possibly a part of a tooth. We are hoping that this does not lead to our third crown this trip. On a positive note, our bags were delivered to our hotel before the next morning.
We don’t want to make it sound like the week was all bad–we did get to have a nice dinner with Ed’s daughter Amanda and husband Kevin, and visited with several of our Gainesville friends. We especially want to thank David, who let us avoid trailer life for a few days while we stayed at his home, and Steve and Jill who let us park our Airstream in their yard while we are up north.
Needless to say, we don’t have a lot of beautiful nature photos to share this week, but here are a few of this week’s activities.
Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow you’ll be cardioverted. Our former neighbors Jeff and Rick help Ed prepare for the next day’s shock treatment.
Patty and our former neighbors Debbie and Wendy drink to Ed’s health.
Ed after his shock treatment (the Propofol has not yet worn off).
Even after the few challenges we have faced the last two weeks, we feel very fortunate that our problems have been relatively minor. We are also very happy that we will once again be spending the holidays with both our families, and we hope that all our readers also have a great holiday season.