Hey All,

I'm 50 now and in very good health except for one nagging issue, Heart A-fib. All my life I've worked outdoors in physically demanding jobs: Military, Mining, welding etc. and still do. My current job requires a mix of moderate to strenuous outdoor physical activity and I feel it stressing on me once- in- a-while.

I've done the doctor thing and they've issued meds to control things, but I'm getting pretty tired of 'leanin on a pill'. 

I've been looking to get into another area of work. I have no degree, what I do have is experience. I may try my hand at a small welding business (garden decor, trailer repair etc. light duty stuff).

I guess my issue is trying to accept that I am not able to be the man that I used to be. Because of a recent divorce and this heart thing, I'm just generally pissed off.  I control myself around people but it sure eats at my innards to know that I'm going downhill on a slow train. 

So, how does a man deal with riding off into the sunset?

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You go for a walk every morning or every evening to get your head straight.  You are stressing out big time which will chew up your system.  You may need to find a group of people you can work through your head troubles with.

As to your leaning on the pills.  The other options are what?

Hey James,

A few questions for you:  Are you on beta blockers or calcium channel blockers?  Are you still experiencing a-fib?  Have you had an echo-cardiogram?  How’s you blood pressure, weight and cholesterol levels?  What are your blood sugar values?  Do you smoke, or drink?

 

A little background—in 2005 my wife experienced an episode of a-fib.  Fortunately, the attending physician was able to “convert” her back to a normal heart rate.  At the time my wife was a borderline diabetic and mildly obese; she had high blood pressure and high cholesterol.  She also had severe sleep apnea.  At that point we determined to change our life-style with the following results:

 

There have been no further episodes of a-fib.

She is no longer borderline diabetic (her blood sugar levels are in the middle of the normal range.)

She has lost 60 pounds

Her cholesterol readings are all in range.

She’s off the drugs.

She has been the most active and fit she has ever been—and the apnea is gone.

 

Believe me, you don’t have to “ride off into the sunset” 

Nothing you can do about the passing of time, it just is.  I turned 51 and it caught me completely off guard.  Basic exercise is paramount.  As mentioned by David F. , walking is great for de-stressing.  If you don't already have one, look into getting a bicycle, and sign up for some fun rides in your community.  They are usually posted in your local bicycle shop.  Get together with active people in your age group, as they can be uplifting in the area of moral.  You will be suprised at how your health tends to turn around for the better with even a little excercise.  Don't forget the importance of plenty of sleep!

Find something to take your mind off it.  Live in the now but keep healthy.  I too have A-Fib, heart murmur, high colesterol, and other "issues".  I still go to the gym, swim with my little one, take karate...  I am worried about the heart issues and I do need to see if there is something other than pills (not another one!) that can help.  I've heard of a 3D electro-cardiogram that they've discovered to help with the A-Fib.  Basically they locate where the erroneous signals come from and 'kill' that small area, which stops the A-Fib.

Thanks for the insight Men.

There are some good points for me to re-consider in your statements. I have done much of what has been recommended, and I'm still here so I guess there is value in these methods. 

I suppose that my sense of being a Man has come under full assault because of my divorce and this heart issue. I don't seem to have the "fire in the belly" anymore. The thrill of overcoming the odds, the Manly Camaraderie experienced upon achieving a glorious success, the satisfaction of knowing YOU are providing for and defending your loved ones, ( and all is well under YOUR watch). These are the elements that are fading fast in my mind. 

I suppose there is a reason out there for me to MAN-UP, but I haven't found it yet and I'm not sure what my health would allow anyhow.

Thanks for listening Gentlemen, 

Do you have children?

Perhaps now that you have done your duty cycle, you can transition to being the refined gentlemen? 

The other thing that might help is 2000 iu of vitamin D each day.  You may have also had a drop in your daily intake if you where an outdoors man for many years and now are inside much more.  I bet it will help with the mild depression.

Find someone to pass your knowledge off too.

There is nothing wrong with having to take a pill, esp if it keeps you active.  At 35 I found that I was going to spend the rest of my life taking 2 pills everyday, and I know there will be more to come. It is a pill, after that, I have my physical life back.  I would highly suggest you learn to live with the fact that while you are older and on a pill, you have almost half your life still to go. There is nothing to slow you down.

 

I like the idea of starting your own business. Funnel the frustrations into building something. Probably feels like everything around you has been torn down, is in dissarray, I couldn't possibly think of something more amazing than that thought of your own creation of a business and within that business continueing to create with your own hands. Even the repair is a matter of giving life back to something, and that power is right there for you to take.

 

There is no sunset for you, except at the end of a full day of work that you created to get some sleep and welcome the next sunrise.

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