I recently had a heart procedure. It’s one that had been brought up off and on for 20 years. But the risk never outweighed the benefit in my mind. It wasn’t bad enough to let someone play with my heart…until it was.
I had a condition called SVT…supraventricular tachycardia. (In faith I’m using past tense there on purpose. Hang on.). It’s where my heart would randomly speed up for no apparent reason. It was annoying sure. Sometimes painful. But usually short lived. I could mostly control it.
Until I couldn’t. A few weeks ago, right after Christmas, it took off. 150s-170s. I was sitting down literally doing nothing. Nothing triggered it. I went and tried all my tricks. 190s. After 45 minutes I realized we might be in trouble. (Nurse problems…lol). I was starting to get dizzy and all the things and afraid if I waited much longer I couldn’t drive. (I know. I don’t make wise choices.). So I called it and drove myself to the ER.
An hour and a half in the lowest we could get was 140s. The doctor said, “ever had adenosine?” No sir. “Get ready”. I’d seen it. I’d never experienced it.
For non medical friends, it’s the medical equivalent of turn it off and turn back on again with your heart to hope it comes back normal. I laid there watching the telemetry, feeling the insane chest to knees pressure as my heart was stopped. The next thing I know it was ticking along normally again. It was awful.
My perfect labs gave us no indication of why it happened and they watched me and sent me home to call my cardiologist. For the next two weeks I was terrified it would happen again. I had this vague pain in my chest always and I felt awful. But more than that my mental health took a dive because of it.
I finally got into my cardiologist who has adjusted medication but been out of town and he said it was time for electrophysiology. I’d been refusing EP for years. But the fear of adenosine made me agree. I was supposed to do that and a stress test.
The stress test never happened. EP called me that Friday and pulled me in Monday for an appointment. (which made me feel like I was gonna die or something. What’s the hurry?). Then he said we’ll do the ablation on Friday. (Like Friday Friday? 4 days Friday?). Do you have questions? Ya…how long am I off work? The answer was 4-7 days. My brain exploded. This was a terrible time to be off work. Staffing is terrible. People are sick. All the things. But adenosine…I agreed to do it.
My brain was shell shocked. As a type A planner, I had so much to do. I needed to find a babysitter for myself…maybe my dogs. I need to clean my house. I have to get a bunch of stuff done at work. So many things. And 4 days.
The first few days were fraught with worry. Am I going to die? Am I going to need a pacemaker? Am I going to have to stay the night in the hospital? (And if I do will they let me go to my office in the hospital? No for real lol).
By Wednesday I realized I had too much to do and not enough time to do it in. I had to stop my heart medicine so that my heart would act up but that also limited my ability to do things.
I remember talking to God on Wednesday. “God…I do not have the energy or the desire to have another breakdown and I really don’t have time to worry about all this cuz I have stuff to do so Jesus take the wheel. I’m out of capacity.” And then I went to work getting ready and stopped worrying.
I made an appointment to board my big dog and started to worry about the cost and then said “Jesus take the wheel on that too. I don’t have the time or energy for it.” My friend readily agreed to babysit me…or take me to the hospital and stay until I was good. I did all the practical planning…cooking, cleaning, all the things except worrying because I didn’t have the capacity.
Not that worry didn’t creep in every once in a while, like when someone would ask about it. But I would resurrender cuz lack of capacity is real.
My friend wise friend said, “maybe this is where you get your healing.” She has faith that I didn’t yet possess and I thought, ya sure. Cuz that really happens. I’m familiar with the “healing”. I saw it when I was 5 when God took my dad even though I prayed. Ever since then I’ve wrestled with one thing…God I know you can, but will you? And do you even like me?
But no capacity so Jesus take the wheel.
The morning of the procedure I did what they told me to do. I came prepared to spend the night. Sitting in the waiting room, my friends called me and prayed over me. There was no fear. Just a readiness to be done, whatever being done looked like.
I was supposed to be second. I ended up being first. It was supposed to take up to 4 hours. It took 2. My heart showed up and showed out and took him right to where he needed to go. On the right side. (That’s significant because if it was on the left they had to poke a hole to get to it and it became more complicated). He said he got it. I wasn’t sure still. But on the heart monitor I saw my heart rate sitting perfect. It had been 50 before in preop (because I’ve been struggling on both ends). Now it was sitting at a cool 70s and just ticking away.
Of course I wasn’t allowed to sit up for several hours but my friend got me the one thing I wanted all day…Starbucks. And I had snacks and a friend. I was good.
In the days that followed I was to monitor my blood pressure and pulse to see if I’d still need medication. I could actually be healed.
The first couple days tested my faith a little as my blood pressure was higher than normal but not dangerous. I started to think I wasn’t fixed and would have to still take heart medicine. But Jesus take the wheel…I’m too sore and tired…also I’m not allowed to drive yet.
Since then everything…blood pressure…pulse…have been perfect. I am exhausted and sore but underneath that I can tell I feel better than I have in years…probably 20. My heart isn’t doing the weird stuff that I’ve become accustomed to. I’m a terrible patient but once the recovery phase ends I think I will be better than I have been.
And I am in awe. Jesus took that wheel and he did more than I expected or imagined. I’m believing he did heal it. I thing I can say I HAD SVT. My heart is cured.
And with it my spiritual heart was cured a bit too. God asks me every so often “do you trust me?” My answers have ranged from NO! to the more recent No, but I’d like you to teach me. But the funny thing is he couldn’t teach me cuz I wouldn’t let go of my white knuckled grip.
I think when I finally came to the end of myself and realized I was powerless to fix any of this, he probably laughed and said FINALLY! I’ve been waiting all this time. You do too much. Your plans rarely even work out. Be still…and watch.
He showed up and showed out more than I ever thought he would. He even fixed the worry about paying for dog boarding as a bonus.
There is so much more to say but I know today that not only does Jesus love me, but he even likes me a whole lot. He doesn’t need my help to be good at being God. In fact my help is actually not helpful.
Even if this had gone another way, He’s in control. But I’m so thankful that it didn’t. Oh me of little faith. If you need me, I’ll be over here in the back seat enjoying the ride.