Saturday, February 28, 2015

A quick post...

I went to Dr. Lane the other day for my follow-up, and got pretty good news.  She reviewed my last Echo and said that everything looked ok.  She can definitely see the regurgitation, but she can't hear it.  The regurgitation hasn't progressed, so that is good.  There's no time table yet for future surgery, so yay.  My next appointment is in Oct, when I go back for my Echo, and this time, it'll be a stress one so she can try to hear the regurgitation.  Also, I'll have blood work a few weeks prior so that she can review that.  She also wants that stress Echo because she says my heart rate is still low.  It always has been, or at least, since I've been aware of my condition.

I explained my concern for the kids' hearts, and she is going to see them this summer.  She wants each of them to have an Echo so she can rule out heart issues for them.  So please pray that they get good results!

That's about all I have for now.  I'll update with anything else later...

Thursday, February 5, 2015

It's been forever...

Baby Avery went to be with Jesus on Jan 3rd.  It's been a very sad time for my family, but their faith really helps ease the pain.  I don't know how anyone ever gets over losing a child-as a matter of fact, I'm sure one never does.  

I've got my nails done (Jamberry-style) for Valentine's/Go Red Day/Month/etc.  Go Red Day is tomorrow, and since I'll be working and not wearing red clothes, the nails and my red dress pin will be my red...the heart walk is on Mar 7th, and so is the Heart and Sole walk.  I'm going to do the Heart and Sole, I think, for Avery and all the other little heart patients.  That's the plan.  Also, the kids are participating in Jump Rope for Heart.  They're collecting donations and jumping in memory of Avery.

Anyway, that's all I've got tonight.  I have an appt with my cardiologist on Feb 23rd, so I'll update then.  Night...

Monday, December 22, 2014

Prayers needed...

Not for me, but for my cousin's little baby girl, Avery.  She was born with Tetralogy of Fallot, (you can read about it here-  She has been in the hospital for the last 3-4 weeks, because she had to have the 1st surgery.  She's been on ECMO this entire time too.  ECMO is basically heart and lung bypass.  It's helpful in that it does the work of the heart and lungs when a patient is really sick, but it can also be harmful to be on it for too long.  She went in this evening to have another surgery.  She has to have mitral valve repair and also surgery to help get better blood flow in her left and right ventricles.  It's very serious, and I can only pray that everything will be ok.  I can't imagine everything my aunt, cousin, her husband, and their children are going through.  I feel pretty helpless, because I don't want to go to the hospital, but there's really not too much I can do.  I don't want to go to the hospital because I can't see her, and I don't want to drag germs from work, home, outside, the hospital, etc in to her parents, and then they take them in to her.  She doesn't need that.  So I told my aunt and cousin that I will continue to pray and if they need anything, don't hesitate to let me know.

I hate seeing a child having to go through something so serious, a matter of life and death.  Someone said earlier that it's a shame so close to Christmastime, but I believe that no time is a good time for this.

If you're reading my blog, and you're the praying kind, please send up your prayers for Avery.  There's no such thing as too much prayer, or just enough prayer.

And also, in case I don't get back on this week, I hope y'all have a very

Merry Christmas!  

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

There's not too much to update on...

Nothing, really...I went in last month for my annual echo, and I don't know the results yet, of course.  They're never allowed to tell you anything, until the doctor gets the results.  I'm going with the "no news is good news" thing, because I haven't heard back about it.  I'm assuming that if there was something wrong, I would have gotten a phone call.  I go back in Feb, so Dr. Lane can access it then.

I did get my flu shot.  I've been pretty adamant about it every year anyway, so it was bound to happen.  I've been feeling pretty good.  Sometimes, I get the pains in my chest, more on my scar than on either side, so I guess that's ok.  That'll happen for the next few years.  It's getting colder weather, so I'll start feeling it.  I hate when that happens!

I'm turning 33 on Thurs.  I was talking to David about it the other night, talking about feeling old.  I said, "I can't believe that in a few days, I'll be 33-I'm so old."  And David said, "hey, think of it this way-2 years ago, we almost didn't have you, so be grateful."  So I'm trying to think that way.  I should be happy that I'm getting older, because then, at least I'm still here.

Well, I'm not going to get sappy or anything, so I'm gonna go.  I'll update if I hear anything, or feel anything.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Cardiology appt

This past Tues, I had an appointment with Dr. Lane.  It was my 8-month checkup.  She is still amazed at how nothing catastrophic happened before I had surgery.  She said that my heart looked and sounded good.  In Oct, I'll go in for my annual echo, and that'll determine how much the mitral valve regurgitation has progressed since last year.  I'm hoping for good news from that.  I'm thinking that since I've felt pretty good, that it probably hasn't progressed too much.  My blood pressure was still good (I think it was 110/60).  Dr. Lane said that my venous reflux turned out just fine.  In case I haven't written about it, I'll do so quickly.  My legs have swollen on some occasions, and I really don't know why.  I went in a few weeks ago, and they did a venous reflux.  This is basically a sonogram of the veins in my legs.  Just the usual spiel:  lay off sodium (which I do), and wear compression stockings (which I do sometimes)...

Also, my scar looks horrible at the top.  Which sucks, since it's hard to wear some of my shirts without feeling self-conscious.  So she is setting me up with a plastic surgeon.  This should happen in the next couple of weeks, I think.

I'll go back to her office in Feb, when she'll give me the results from my echo, and hopefully, I'll remain healthy in the meantime.  

Friday, August 8, 2014

August 8th...

it's my 2 year anniversary of my surgery!!  It's kinda hard to believe.  I've had some obstacles along the way, but I'm so much better than I was before surgery (when I didn't know I had a problem).

Recent problems have been: swelling and pain...sometimes, I have random swelling.  It comes on at weird times.  It's not because I eat a lot of salt.  It doesn't have a pattern, at least, not that I'm aware of.  Pain-I'm going to have pain for a while, on and off...I think I may have strained my chest somehow because of getting carts at work.  It's my fault, I suppose.  I need to let someone else get them sometime...I'll try it tomorrow :)

Anyway, I did go to the outpatient clinic the other day for a scan on my legs.  Dr. Lane wanted me to get a venous reflux study done, which is fancy wording for "ultrasound on my legs"...she wanted to see if there's a venous insufficiency.  I didn't get results right then (naturally), but I have go see her on August 19th.  I think I also have my annual-not so annual-echo.  It was supposed to be annual, but with my last one, since she saw mitral valve regurgitation again, I had to go only 8 months.  So, I think I will know that day if I'm going to have to have it sooner or later.  I'm trying to not let it get to me.  I really don't want another surgery, less invasive or not.  I don't have much time to devote 2 weeks to surgery and recovery.

Exercise is going well.  I could do more, I admit, but I am working on it.  I'll get there.  Well, I've gotta get some sleep.  I have to be up early to workout and get everyone ready for school and work.  It's hard to believe I have 5th and 3rd graders.  They're growing up!!

I will update once I've had my appointment with Dr. Lane on the 19th.  Wish me luck, and keep me in your prayers please!  I'll pray for y'all too!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

It's summertime again...

which means that this is the time of year that everyone starts getting back into shape.  For me, it means the same, but it also means that we're coming up on 2 years since my surgery.

I constantly switch gears on my feelings towards the way we dress in summer.  I can't wear a turtleneck or scarf in summer, so with my current wardrobe, I have to show my scar a lot.  It's not pretty.  I put coconut oil on it every night before bed, and sometimes the next morning after my shower.  I don't have a bathing suit that can cover it up, so I basically have no choice but to show it off.  But I'm trying to make myself get over it.  I mean, it's not a hickey or other embarrassing mark, right?  It's what I had to do to save my life.  Still, when people stare, I want to tell them off.  The other day, I read where one little 3 year old girl's family were told in KFC that they had to leave bc her scars scared other patrons.  If this story is true, and I believe it is, it's unreal how people behave.  I  would've told them off if it were my child.

Also, I've started my exercising again.  Right now, it's only walking around the neighborhood a few miles.  It's tough, the hills are brutal, but I know I have to.  I feel like I'm gonna die!  My heart starts beating really fast (I'm sure all of ours do!), but I feel like I'm gonna pass out anytime.  When I was walking before, I'd feel like that and then just quit.  I would lessen the miles I walk, and obviously, the time that I walked.

I had a revelation yesterday.  I'm not saying I won't worry anymore; I'm not saying that it'll be easy, and I'm not saying that I won't want to quit.  But, yesterday morning, when my alarm went off at 7, I got up and went for my few miles.  I wanted to quit, but David was asleep.  What was I going to do, get around the corner and call him to come get me?!?!  Absolutely not!  I made it back home, and decided that from now on, I'll just let him know where I am.  I'll tell him my path, and if I'm not back in an hour or so, he can call me, and if I don't answer, he'll know I'm in trouble.  I always walk the neighborhood solo, but if I go somewhere else, like Savannah Rapids, I take someone with me.  I also live in a neighborhood where there's always someone around.  If I fall out, someone will see me.

I told myself when I was climbing one of the hellacious hills yesterday that I will take that "mountain".  I will get myself up it, even if I slow down, but I will do it.  I won't be alone, and if I do happen to fall out, I will be ok...I can't go around scared that I will fall out, and I can't (not) exercise, or else my heart will fail anyway.  The heart has to be worked.  It has to be exercised so that it can be healthy and pump like it should.  If I continue exercising, I will not only lose the weight that I want to lose, but I will build my heart's strength back up.  I will not let that surgery, the money, the worry I put on my kids' faces, and time be all in vain.

I am not a sedentary person anyway.  I don't just sit down all the time.  I work, and at work, I do my best to work hard.  I go get carts when I have to.  I walk around that store all day long.  I don't mind doing it.  I know that the work I do is not an intense workout, but I do move...

So, basically, I told myself that I will have times where I want to quit.  I'll have times where I'll feel like I'm dying.  I will do my best to be brave and I know that there will be times when I don't want to be brave anymore.  But how can I live like that?  All I can do is try.  I have to make it work.  And that is why right now, I have a sore booty!  The hills and I have a love/hate relationship.  I love that they work my booty and legs, but I hate the climb!