My Future Flashed Before My Eyes

Friday night didnt go as planned.

Chad was in the hospital.

I was pacing my floors like a crazy person in an asylum.

My husband wasn’t coming home tonight.  The doctors were keeping him overnight for observation because his heart was in Atrial Fibrillation.

From the Mayo Clinic website:

Atrial fibrillation is an irregular and often rapid heart rate that commonly causes poor blood flow to the body. During atrial fibrillation, the heart’s two upper chambers (the atria) beat chaotically and irregularly — out of coordination with the two lower chambers (the ventricles) of the heart. Atrial fibrillation symptoms include heart palpitations, shortness of breath and weakness.

This is not the first time I have heard of AFib.  Chads brother has been suffering with it for many years, as well as his mother.  And very recently and tragically, Chad’s father passed away and they believe it had something to do with a form of cardiac arrhythmia.

But my husband, he has always been healthy.  Never been overweight, never a big drinker (well, excluding a brief period in his youth) and not a smoker.

He is so strong.  Stronger than me.  My rock.   The backbone of our family.

Chad at Hospital

(this was him on the phone to his brother that night)

When he called from the hospital told me how serious things were, I responded like a good wife should and we hung up. ( I couldn’t go with him to the hospital, one of my kids had a cough and I don’t have a regular sitter and didn’t want anyone else to get sick.  My neighbor Jessica did come over for a few hours *thank you Jessica!* and I was able to visit him.)

But then I lost it.  Tears flowed from my very core and couldn’t control it.

It occurred to me in that raw moment of fear… I had no future without him.

Every dream I have is with him.  Includes him.  Is about him.  He is who I want to be with and who I want to love.   He is the father I want my kids to have and person I want my kids to grow up and be like.

Chad and Parker

The thought of losing him had never occurred to me before, and this new realization that my strong husband may not be ok literally made me sick to my stomach.

I could not even begin to wrap my head around it.

After I saw him and got some more details, I realized we were not in the middle of a life threatening situation.  I also knew that the pain of just losing Chads father to a similar situation was weighing heavily on my ability to use any reason.  So with some prayer and quiet time, calmness was achievable.

The good news is, you can live with heart arrhythmia.  We are working on finding ways to manage it naturally, looking at diet, supplements and lifestyle changes.  Maybe no more coffee in our house, no drinking, no extreme exercise (I will especially get on bored with this one) and better ways of managing stress and sleep.

Chad and Kids at Pumpkin Patch

I have decided that we will try to make changes together, not just expect Chad to make adjustments on his own.  I hope that we can find a new normal, a new way to live with and manage something that is potentially life threatening.  I hope that we are able to lean on God and trust His grand plan for us.

After all, we are a family. One big, dysfunctional, happy family.  And I hope to keep it that way for a long, long time. :)

 

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  1. says

    hi Amanda, I don’t really have anything to add to all the comments above. No words of wisdom or revelation. I guess sometimes we can only trust and do our utmost. I’ve read and re-read and just want to let you know that I’m praying for you, Chad and the children. You and your family are in my thoughts x

  2. stephanie says

    Amanda, I came to your site today to see if you had any new posts as well as to wish you a happy early birthday and saw this post :( very stressing to hear. I am glad Chad is doing better and can be aware of his condition to help manage it & get help. I am praying for all of you for health and peace sweet peace. Psalm 4:8 I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety. Psalm 73:46 God is the strength of my heart. Jeremiah 17:14 Heal me Lord and I shall be healed.

  3. says

    How terrifying! Afib runs in my family (my mom has been living with it since her 20s) and everyone is still alive and kicking with it if it makes you feel any better. Will be praying for you guys! xo

  4. Genny says

    Praying for your family! Fortunately, it was just a warning sign — and now you can do something to help prevent something more serious. Wishing you the best!

  5. says

    I read your words, and they moved me so much. This is real love, I think.
    I hope your husband is feeling better now, and will recover soon.
    A prayer for you and your wonderful family. Big hugs from Italy.
    Andreina

  6. Patricia Calef says

    My prayers are with you and your family. I have been with my husband for 34 years and he is currently fighting immigration to stay in the states (despite being here legally since 1964 and has never left). I’m so afraid I will lose him. Your husband is young and he has your support so I know he will do well.

  7. says

    amanda, just wanted to comment – my dad’s had afib for as long as i can remember [he’s finally on a pacemaker now]…he’s now 83 years old and still ornery as hell. We just keep an eye on it…or a pulse on it…or whatever. :) His cardiologist is on my speed dial and i call him whenever we note changes.

  8. Christine says

    Hi….just to let you know that that I’ve been living with the same condition since 2001. I have exhausted all the heart medications. Have been cardioverted 15 times. Went to a specialist for heart ablations. The cardiologist found the problem last time and corrected it. I am now without heart medications (it takes a year to fully recover but you’re going about your daily activities). The next step is to get off the Coumadin. Please check Dr. Andrea Natale’s profile at St. David’s Hospital in Austin Texas. Check his credentials. He is the leading doctor for AT-Fib. I feel so much better and I have my life back.