Tuesday, January 31, 2012

If it's Beating, I'm Breathing

I am not oriented toward the world of science at all.  My ability to regurgitate the information and facts I learn is an extremely difficult task for me.  I didn’t do very well on my first Psychology and Biology tests. (At least, not as well as I would have liked to do.)

It’s hard for me to focus on what is being taught and said, especially when it’s early in the morning.  Coffee doesn’t help at all, and I never get to bed as early as I want to.  Which means a lecture has to be sufficiently interesting for me to actually get anything out of it.

I’m a note taker no matter what.  Yesterday I was a vigorous note taker during Biology.

I was fascinated.  Absolutely fascinated.

My professor gave a lecture on the heart, and I was mentally present for an entire hour and twenty minutes.  I couldn’t believe that something the size of my fist could be so strong and enduring. 

To demonstrate, the professor had us open and close our hands to simulate the heart taking blood in and pushing it out.  Then he asked, “How long do you think you can do that?”

Most of us lasted 15 seconds until we could feel the burn in our forearms. 

There are so many things that impact the beating of our heart.  So many things have to happen in order for it to work right.  And somehow all of them do, for 24 hours every day. 

Blood receives oxygen in the lungs, flows through the heart, and flows to the rest of the body through arteries and veins and then capillaries.  Did you know working out too much is just as bad for your heart as being a couch potato and eating junk food all day? 

I was suddenly extremely in tune with the fact that my heart was beating.  I could feel it in my chest, in my neck, in my legs and my hands. I understood how it was working.  I was thrilled to be learning about something vital to my existence.  I now knew that the beating of my heart was due to the opening and closing of the semilunar valves.  (I feel like a bit of a nerd saying that.)

I was so excited I had learned about the heart I could have given an entire lecture on it during lunch.  However, I’m not sure my friends would have been as thrilled to hear about it as I was. 

I do have one more question about the heart though.

Who came up with this? à

It doesn't look anything like that.

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