Last week was a tumultuous week in my life and the end result as quite unexpected. It may come as a surprise to many of you but for the last thirty-five years of my life I've had a pacemaker implanted in the left side of my chest. Since nothing lasts forever it came as no surprise, on my last pacemaker monthly check, it appeared as if the battery inside the unit had reached the safety point and needed to be replaced. Many people are under the impression that they simply replace the battery in these things somehow and off you go. Actually the whole unit is replaced for two reasons. First the unit is virtually welded shut to prevent the danger of leakage and, Two, there are improvements made to these pacemakers all the time to allow ease of reprogramming, information gathering and better operation.
The last time I had my pacemaker replaced was in 1991 and twenty-three years of change and improvements has occurred since then. In recent years when I had office visits with the technicians, words like, "Oh yeah, you have an old unit in there" have been uttered. I was expecting a quick, ambulatory, in and out in a few hours procedure to replace it and here is where the plans came off their tracks. The wire that goes from the pacemaker to my heart is also twenty-three years old. No one mentioned to me or most of the staff that would be in on the surgery that it might also need replacing. I also had to stay overnight in the hospital. For reasons too long to go into, replacing the wire requires a much longer recovery period. Previously that period was a month. With more precautions to keep patients from hurting themselves or displacing any new implant wires, my recovery period will be, ready or this?, three months.
I'm not even supposed to drive for another week and working is off the table. I can only stare at the motorcycles for a little while and hope the weather holds.  This was not the way I wanted the season to end.