One year ago at this very moment, I was in the midst of a five hour procedure to zap those electrical circuits in my heart that tended to jump abruptly into episodes of atrial fibrillation. It was a very long day. Left for the hospital in Bea's taxi at 5:00 a.m., feeling happy that Obama won reelection the night before. I felt sure that Obama's win would have a direct impact on the state of my heart as I underwent the procedure. In the late afternoon, I woke and there was Roanne, who'd stayed in the surgical waiting room all day because, she said, someone needed to be there. Of course.I think they moved me too quickly from the recovery area on to a gurney and then intto a hospital bed. One of those cuts in my groin began to bleed, not a good thing. This meant I had to remain flat and motionless until 1:00 a.m. so that no lurking blood clot could move toward my heart or head. I still have a strong body memory of that motionless and acutely uncomfortable state. Probably the most difficult part of the procedure.
Two months in Italy showed I can drink modest amounts of wine and espresso without bringing on weird heart beats. Oh, I have a few erratic beats now and again, but afib is gone. My skin is clear. Who knew that fixing my heart would stop my burning skin rashes? Dr. Ray Luk saw the direct connection between heart and skin in his Chinese way of seeing the body. As he explained, "Heart is fire and skin is metal. When the heart is troubled, it burns metal." Makes sense to me.