Recently I spent a few hours in the ER. I’m fine now, but I wasn’t. Two nights in a row, as I was laying down in the evening, just minding my own business and watching TV, I experienced a very frightening “episode.”
I consider myself to be in very good health. I work out three times a week, have lost extra weight and my last test results came back so good, even I was surprised. My blood pressure is an almost constant 118/70. It never really changes or goes up. So when I started to experience a quickening of my heart and a pounding in my head so much so that it startled me, I correctly felt some concern.
The first episode was on Wednesday night and the second on Thursday night, both near the same time and both while I was completely at rest. Weird, right?
Frankly, this second episode scared me so much I called into the advice nurse (alas, I waited on hold for more than 50 minutes – not useful). Then I decided to ask my neighbor to take me to the ER. My head was pounding so hard I thought I might have a stroke! My Fitbit told me I was in “cardio” mode and since I was simply standing still this was alarming! Additionally, I was very nauseous so wondered if I might be having a heart attack.
Since the symptoms escalated I said “we need to call 911.” In 3 minutes I had a plethora of very capable and delightfully attractive paramedics standing in my living room hooking me up to a heart monitor and talking to me. Thankfully, they confirmed it wasn’t a heart attack! They asked about my medications and if I was taking anything new?
Aha…! I’ve had chronic back pain for as far back as I can remember. I’ve done a tremendous amount of practitioner centered and self-healing work on this and I’m at the point where I mostly manage the pain. Sometimes it flares up and then it’s bad, but that’s another story. My pain management includes the use of prescription medication and frankly I do not like doing this. So in my quest to find an alternative, I turned to CBD. CBD is Cannabidiol and is a compound found of marijuana. I’m not going to get into the science of it; you can look that up. What I found was that it is supposed to be really good for treating inflammation and pain without the “high.” This sounded great! I had some in capsule form so I went for it. I took one in the evening and slept well and found that my pain was decreased. Yeah!! I took another the next night and didn’t find as much relief. By the time I took the third capsule, it triggered an allergic response only I didn’t know that’s what it was because it happened so long after I’d taken the supplement.
Now that I’ve stopped the supplement it’s clear that was the problem.
Here’s my awareness from this experience. First of all, I realized an allergic response can come days, weeks or longer after ingesting something. It happened to me a year ago when I took a different prescribed anti-inflammatory and the reaction occurred after 2 weeks. That allergic reaction caused severe muscle weakness and pain, plate hives (itching spots the size of plates) and affected my brain!
I guess I just thought that an allergic reaction happens immediately – and maybe it does sometimes – but that may not the norm!
The other awareness I got was that as much as I think I’m “immortal” my human body is not. The possibility that I was having a life threatening experience brought me front and center with my own mortality and frankly, it was an interesting experience.
While I am not afraid of dying, after all, I talk to dead people and I know what’s on the other side, I awake each day with the notion of living with purpose, love, and compassion and the intention to thrive in my own life. It is my focus.
Still, lying in the ER bed with a heart monitor and blood pressure cuff attached was a surreal experience.
So folks, beware of allergic reactions that can follow long after ingesting something. Know your body and don’t be afraid to call 911, if nothing else you will be surrounded by people who are completely there for your benefit and care and they might all be hunks!