Sunday, February 1, 2009

Not Handicapped Anymore

My handicapped parking pass expired yesterday, and I did manage to throw it up onto the rearview mirror at 5:57pm for about 3 minutes of free parking in front of a sketchy sports bar in Pioneer Square, before the meters turned off at 6:00pm. But today, it's worthless. No going to Magnussen and parking right next to the dog park gate anymore. No free parking at the Locks when we take out-of-towners for a taste of classic Seattle. Now, if I park on the street, I'll have to get out of the car like most other people and go pay for parking, then bring the sticker back to the car. Sigh. What really makes me sad about losing my pass, though, is that I had the perfect opportunity to use it Friday evening and I totally failed.

I went out to dinner at the old spaghetti factory with a group of girlfriends who I'll call my "book" group, and cajoled M into picking me up. When we arrived at the factory, the entire lot was full, except for the two handicapped places.

But I had forgotten my pass in my own car, in the garage, at home. I am still kicking myself.

But the fact is, I'm really not handicapped anymore. Sometime in the last week, I checked my oxygen saturation levels and my heart rate, and my heart rate was 74! This is excellent news—even though my oxygen levels have been normalizing, my heart rate has continued to be alarmingly fast. Simply standing up, just over one month ago, drove it to 120. Even lying flat on my back in bed, for several minutes before checking, it rarely went below 88. So 74 is a relief. Also, last night I took the dogs for a walk, 14 blocks (not too far, but I'd spent several hours already yesterday painting at L&S's house), downhill and then uphill, at my former fast pace, and I tested myself as soon as I got back into the house (up about a dozen stairs). Oxygen 95, heart rate 137 (in the hospital, just walking 50 feet drove my heart rate to 170 and my oxygen, while I was on supplemental oxygen, into the high 80s). About a minute later, oxygen 95, heart rate 122. I went piddle, then oxygen 99 and heart rate 92.

But oh, I miss that pass.

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