It seems that my summer of discontent and illness is not yet over.
About two weeks ago I felt a sharp pain in my chest, like I had gotten smashed with a brick in the solar plexus. I let it ride, figuring as I so often do that that which does not kill me only makes me stronger.
As I predicted the pain went away in about three days. I even participated in a 5K race and generally ran around like a Banshee.
However Tuesday night the pain was back and back with a vengeance. Not only was I in pain I was short of breath and disoriented. Rather than walking across the park yesterday morning, I took the bus. That's how out of it I felt.
I finally got in to see my doctor around 1 yesterday. He ran, and what doctor doesn't, a battery of tests. He bled me. EKG'd me. Blood pressured me. And listened to me breathe. Breathing hurts right now. Like I said I feel as if I've gotten smashed in the solar plexus.
After the requisite poking he pronounced that I had pericarditis. To my ears that sounded like something I'd order at a Mexican restaurant. "Pericarditis with carne asado, por favor," I might say. But it turns out pericarditis is a swelling of the membrane that surrounds the heart.
It's more painful than dangerous. But it does wake one up to one's own mortality.
My doctor prescribed some meds--some of the same meds I was on during the summer, and hopefully the pain and discomfort will begin to ebb. But so far, I am running on empty. I made it to work through sheer force of will. And the 43 steps up from the C-train to the street were enervating.
The agency world we live in today is a cruel one. There is no compassion. No one to wish you well, to take it easy. When I was hospitalized over the summer, the agency sent not a single note. In fact, though my wife and I probably have 25 years combined tenure at Interpublic, there wasn't a thing, not a smidgeon of reassurance.
If agencies treat their employees this way (often while claiming to be in 'relationship marketing,') do we really believe for a second that they really give a rat's ass about a client's business outside of the money it generates.
No. These are cold, brutal and inhuman places who care nothing about the people who make them wealthy.