Friday, November 13, 2009

the latest battlefront

Fair warning... the next journal entry is long. It depicts the health issues Erik has been going through and goes through how we finally have a solution and a battleplan!! (YAY!)

So Erik and I finally have an action plan to combat the strange health issues he's been dealing with for the past five years. After multiple doctors' visits, a trip to the ER, many chiropractor and kinesiologist visits, way too many days of feeling horrible, we have a doctor who knows what's going on.

Here's the deal: When I met Erik, it had been three years or so at that point that he started dealing with shortness of breath, dizziness, and other strange symptoms. The biggest one was that every once in a while, usually when he did activity, his heart would go into a-fib (an odd beating pattern). At that point in time, no doctor knew what in the world was going on with his body or how to fix it. He even went to the ER one time when he was in a-fib and they had to shock his body with those paddle things 3 times at the highest level of electricity to get his heart to go back to normal.

They put him through so many different tests and rang up a nice huge bill for him to pay and then wound up saying, your heart's fine. We have no idea what's wrong with you, except that you went into a-fib and that's deadly because it can make your heart clot, etc.

That's nice, isn't it?

So Erik didn't know where to turn next - sounds like the lady with the issue of blood story!! He visited chiropractors and a few natural method doctors to see what they would say. Somehow they pinpointed it to adrenaline, but nobody really knew how to fix it. If they did have an idea, it usually wouldn't work.

So throw me into the mix right about this time: we meet, start dating, quickly realize we're going to marry each other, continue dating, get engaged, get married. And we do this all while my family is going through the craziest ride of their life!

Talk about stressful!

Erik's body kept getting worse; there was no knowledge of what was going on, except that he could kick into a wrong heartbeat at any moment and that would be deadly. It hasn't been fun to watch. Especially with my brother dying, I certainly didn't want to lose my husband that quickly!

So speed us up to August of this year. Erik's ready to take a week off work and go to Mayo and have them examine his heart and figure out what in the world is wrong with him--expensive and a lot of time off from work, but we weren't sure what other choices we had!

Erik's at a church event and is casually running and kicks his heart into an irregular beat. It takes 10 hours of him lying around hoping and praying for it to go to normal. But in the meantime, a nurse at the event checks in on us and tells us she knew people with a somewhat similar situation and told us they went to Mayo and had no luck, but there was this doctor named Katsiyannis in the cities who specialized in heart arrhythmia. (irregular/fast heart beating)

What a God-send. What if we had gone to Mayo, but found out nothing???

Our first visit to Dr. K. was a couple months ago. The first thing he tells us is that a-fib is not deadly. Erik's like, are you sure? And he's like yeah. In fact, he told us that we could trigger the a-fib 18 times with the heart monitor to get the information and that would be okay. (The problem is, it makes Erik feel like crap when he's in a-fib.) Some people live in continual a-fib - but they are usually older and because Erik's so young, he feels the a-fib intensely. So he wore the monitor for a month, triggered an irregular heartbeat once-a horrible, horrible night-and the doctor took blood tests.

Here comes yesterday's appointment. The doctor smiled at us and said, yep. You have atrial fibrillation. Here's how to fix it.

We come to find out he's a Christian and he knows God has a plan. He's not sure what the path to Erik feeling completely normal again is, but he'll help us walk through it until we get there. He's pretty clear about the fact that we can fire him at any point if he doesn't help us as we need it. He won't stop until Erik can run about and play like a normal 29-year-old will do. It was extremely reassuring.

The doctor also thinks that perhaps the dizziness, lightheadedness, and shortness of breath could all be connected to the stress of not knowing what your heart is going to do. All that to say, if we fix the possibility of his heart going into a-fib, the rest of his life will fall back into place because that unknown of dying from a heart condition will be gone.

All that to say, now Erik and I are on a journey to his victory. We actually have an end in sight. We have natural help with someone who knows what's going on. We are growing in our faith of God and His power. We know God has a plan for us and we will complete it.

Our outlook has definitely gotten brighter. We have hope that this can and will be taken care of. We're just not sure exactly how or how long it will take. Right now the road involves medicine - a good medicine without long-term side effects - and could potentially involve a surgery that's pretty simple (if you can call any surgery simple!) and effective. So it won't be the easiest road, but at least now we're traveling a road that has an answer. Mix that with God and His grace and healing power, and I think we're doing aok.

The stress level continues to lift as do Erik's spirits. Erik soon should be back to running around like he should be at his age. We go back to the doctor in 2 months to see how we're doing, but we're welcome to call if anything goes wrong and schedule an earlier appointment.

We're going to make it. Erik and I will grow stronger as a couple through this and have a testimony of God's faithfulness to share. Our faith is being tested and we will come out on the other side "perfect and entire, wanting nothing" (James chapter 1). Oh great, now I sound like Pastor Mac!! Heh heh

Well, it's Friday morning and off to start my day. It's going to be a good day, and I'm excited to see what God's going to let me do in it.

Blessings in your day!

1 comment:

  1. I'm so happy to hear that you have some natural solutions (I know that you guys already know the super-natural answers - but its good to put those both together!!)
    We will continue to pray for you and Erik and believe for his COMPLETE healing and restoration!! :)
    Love you guys!