Battery Operated: The Poetics of Electrophysiology

Battery Operated: The Poetics of Electrophysiology


A zine about life with a pacemaker.

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Having a pacemaker is a weird experience. Especially as a young person.

At 20 years old I got a pacemaker to correct a congenital heart defect known as complete heart block. 

Since then I’ve had two device replacement surgeries and having a new device put in still feels uncomfortable.

That discomfort stems from many places: trauma, old stories, physical pain and discomfort, the annoyance of physical adaptation after surgery and implantation, but also — and this is what I’m most interested in right now — the psychological *weirdness* of having an electronic device embedded in my chest for the sake of my heart.

Yes, I am grateful for the quality of life it brings me. But a part of me resists.

I will make friends with my device in time but for now, I’m doing what I always do when I’m in the muck of discomfort...

I tell stories. I write. I make art.