Friday, March 23, 2012

Confronting Mortality

When you were a kid, did you experience being afraid of seeing coffins? How about staring at a dead body inside the coffin? Did you react fiercely when someone teased you about seeing you walking headless?  Then would you knock on wood three times believing that doing so would prevent the bad omen from being realized? Those were just situations that really measure our courage in facing our own fear…the fear of death.

Death can be terrifying. Death in any recognizable form is inescapable and unpredictable which makes us incredibly vulnerable physically and emotionally. This contradicts our instinct to remain a living, a breathing organism. So what do we do? We try to manage this fright. Generally, when reminded of our mortality and when the potential to experience existential anxiety is heightened, we are extremely defensive. I myself even ask those silly questions. Am I ready? Then why do I feel afraid when I experience sudden shortness of breath? Why do I panic when I experience sudden palpitations, or asthma attack? Just last month I was diagnosed with having a minor heart disorder. Based on the result of laboratory test administered to me at the Philippine Heart Center (PHC), it was discovered that my heart’s muscle is thickening, particularly the wall at the lower chamber on the left side of the heart (the left ventricle). I also have Premature Ventricular Contractions or (PVCs), or premature heartbeats originating from the ventricles of the heart as explained by my doctor. (Premature ventricular contractions are premature because they occur before the regular heartbeat.) I was again given another medicine for maintenance. My doctor told me that I could live and grow old with it provided I take extra precaution. Any form of infection should be treated right away; especially those, which affect the head and neck since they are, body parts nearer to the heart. Antibiotics should be taken prior to any dental procedure to eliminate possible infection. Now I need to increase my emergency fund to six digits in preparation for any untoward incidents. Stressful bodywork out is limited, but a 3-5 minute walk done regularly will be fine. I don’t want to run out of time so given the chance; I will live my life to the fullest until such time my body succumbs to rest.  I try to leave all my worries behind. Only God knows when we cease to exist. Take care of your health to enjoy life.


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