The drugs are working.
The combination of medication has reduced my blood pressure (to a “perfect” level) and also reduced my pulse to under 60 while resting… “an athlete’s pulse” according to the community nurse… unfortunately an athlete on performance enhancing drugs.
The medication is laying the foundation for my recovery, and for my future health. Some of it reduces the work my heart needs to do. Other pills reduce the “stickiness” of my blood and the arteries, reducing the chances of plaque build-up and / or blockage in the future.
While a major component of my recovery, medication alone is not enough. I also need to get myself fit and healthy. The first goal has to be to get back to some sort of physical normality (whatever that means now?!).
Physical recovery initially meant small, slightly humiliating steps. “Little” walks, twice a day. Five minutes to start with. Under supervision. Wrapped in lots of rest. The bruise on my wrist, a constant reminder not to push too hard too soon.
So far, supervisors have been willing… well mostly! Our little walks have given us a chance to catch up on the events of the day, to get some air into our lungs, or to plan the day ahead, while monitoring my condition – breathing, heart rate, signs of fatigue or distress (none to report to date!).
We do a minute extra each day to build strength and stamina. This challenges us to find new, longer routes… how many times a day can you walk past someone’s house before it starts to become impolite?
I’m pleased to report that I should graduate from “little” walks to walks on Monday (we have decided 20 minutes is the official threshold). Hopefully the supervision will continue to be keen despite the exercise “upgrade”. I won’t need it forever… in time I’m hoping to be able to leave the house on my own… in time!