After my brother had a health scare (a quadruple bypass) a few weeks ago, I went back to a referral, tossed aside, for a CT-CA scan, one that gives a “calcium score,” a measure of how much calcification of arteries I might have. A week and a half ago, the resultant calcium score of 591 (“moderate risk” is 101-400) sent me scrambling to obtain a triaged appointment with an incredibly busy cardiologist, and last Friday, he said it was possible he would give me bad news after an angiogram scheduled for yesterday.
By yesterday, I’d had a week to process a real change in my mortality prospects. Even for a fatalist such as myself, it was a turbulent time. I can’t say I had “come to peace” with the situation by the time the cardiologist threaded a catheter up from my wrist to examine my arteries closely. But it had to be done.
They don’t put you under for an angiogram, so I hoped to gauge the state of my heart’s arteries during the actual procedure, but I drifted away, so I was stunned when the cardiologist briefed me afterwards. Aside from one somewhat blocked artery, I have a complete physical all-clear. The entire week-plus had been a false alarm.
A friend messaged that I must see this as a “new lease of life,” and I cynically responded, “but will I honor that?” It struck me this morning that unless I make a conscious effort to learn from this episode, regret will haunt me. So today, I began thinking about a new blue sky and new resolves and fresh starts. Who knows where such reflection will take me?