Holly Pomeroy posted a note for Jimmy that says:
Jimmy, I'm glad to read you're doing so well at two years! What a change in our lives post surgery! Thanks for your positive updates and encouragement. Keep chasing after those boys! I have three new grand-babies coming in the next 5 months!! Can't wait. Blessings!
Mitch Friedman posted a note for Jimmy that says:
You 'da man Jimmy. Way to go. So glad you got fixed so keep running after those boys. If you can't keep up, now it is just because you are getting older. Sorry Bro!
Linda H and Elsie posted a note for Jimmy that says:
Hey Jimmy, Congratulations on your second birthday. Glad things are going so good for you and your family. Love seeing pics of them on FB. You are right don't know what we would do without this site. It has meant a lot to me as well and I still look at it. Life is good. Until later friend
Chuck Holmgreen posted a note for Jimmy that says:
Congratulations on your two year anniversary Jimmy.I am thrilled that things are going well for you and remember when you were leading up to it.I agree that this site was very helpful in taking away the fear of the unknown. And like you I hope others are able to use it as well.
I am thrilled for you and your family, and pray that you have many many more years to continue to celebrate with your family.
Debbie JAeger posted a note for Jimmy that says:
After reading your post I see you live in Charlotte and used Dr Andrews. I am having ohs on September 16 with Dr. Chan dr. Andrew's partner. Was wondering if you can tell me a bit about them. I am new to the area and this all happened so fast.
Holly P posted a note for Jimmy that says:
Congratulations on little Ty! Somehow I missed that post. Glad things are going so well for you, and hope you are getting a little more sleep now!
You are a wonderful father, I can tell by your pictures!!
Shelly Poluka posted a note for Jimmy that says:
It is encouraging you are doing so well.
It sure helps other people going in for
surgery or in my case a spouse. My
husband is scheduled for AVR on July 24th.
He is anxious to move forward and put
his surgery behind. I find this site to helpful for anyone preparing for surgery.
P.S. The photos are touching, you have a beautiful family. God bless.
Ernie posted a note for Jimmy that says:
Just read your whole journal, and I'm very inspired and reassured. Thank you very much. I'm looking forward to a time where I can be called POST-op, and hopefully my new "normal" will be better than my current "normal", which would be better than great, because I don't feel bad right now except when I do something physically exerting.
Congratulations Jimmy! Only one more and you will have your own basketball team, lol! Good luck with the "sleeping". Glad everyone is doing well. I'm also doing well, just bought a new house and will be moving in a few weeks. I'm excited and looking forward to moving on. Take care of your beautiful family.
Linda THE Tiger, aka Linda Dixon
Awesome Jimmy! Hard to believe where we were a year ago. What a difference a year makes. It's gone so quick yet seems so slow at the same time. I wish you the best of luck always. Keep us posted on you, the family and the new child on the way.
You surprised me. I cannot believe it's been a year. I clearly remember when you went in, and when you started posting after. It really brings it home that in another month, it will be a year for me also!! Wow.
I am thrilled that your experience has been incredibly positive -- those boys need a STRONG role model and now you have the performance upgrades to really make that a reality!!
What's up brother!!!!!! Amazing what a difference a year makes. Sometimes I have to remind myself that we had OHS. Then, I come here after not checking in for awhile, and all the emotions come crashing back. Like I read your update, and it feels like it happened yesterday. All seems so real and so current.
Very psyched to hear all the hearts in your family are doing well. Hope your wife is feeling good these days. Wow, 3 boys and another one on the way. Maybe you two should stop trying and just adopt a girl! LOL.
All good with me. Scheduling my 1 year follow-ups, then will post again when I get the results. But, hey, I know I am good. Training for my second marathon (in March) since surgery. Life is good for us all.
Hi Jimmy! Good to hear the update and that all is going well. How exciting to have 4 boys!!! My thoughts will be with all of you as you approach the last trimester! I'm glad that the echo was okay, isn't it awesome what you can see with today's technology?! I, too, appreciate this site and the support and encouragement everyone offers. I keep coming back to it, we're like family!!!
Let us know when # 4 arrives!!
Hey Jimmy, So glad to hear all is good for the whole family. You were saying about your scars. My Grand daughter says my daughter and I are twins cause we have the same scar except mine is a lot bigger than hers. Kids are funny. Im doing pretty good. Still have a little pain, just the healing process but tolerable. Enjoying rehab. Will miss it when its done, but I guess we all do. Good luck on the new one coming. Until later.
Linda H and Elsie AVR 9/19/12
It is awesome to read your blog. I am flying from Denver to NC,Duke, to have AVR. I wanted to know how you decided on tissue valve and what was the average span they gave you before failure of it. I have been told in me 38 yo male average 7-10 years also was your aorta dilated at all? All and any help would be greatly appreciated.
Hey Jimmy, Congrats on the news. That is wonderful. Are the kids excited? It doesn't seem like it has been 6 months since your surgery. How time does fly and I am still here but getting a whole lot closer. Can't wait to experience the other side of this mountain.
Mooving on up
Jimmy, so sorry to hear of your friend's passing. It does make us so mindful of how fortunate we are that we could be fixed, so many are not. I will keep his family, as well as you and other friends in my prayers.
Linda Dixon, AVR 3/13/12
Hey Jimmy, Sorry to hear about your friend. I know exactly how you feel. We lost a friend not to long ago who had a massive heart attack and was waiting for a transplant. Well that never happened, he passed. It always makes you stop and think. My minister asked me how I felt about the upcoming event soon. I told him I was scared but if I wasn't scared I would not be normal. I just thank my lucky stars that if I have to have something wrong with me, its not something else that is so much worse. Thoughts and prayers are there and for you too.
Awesome update! I loved everything you wrote. I am so happy you continue to do so well. I knew you would, you did your research, had a positive attitude and loving family & friends to support you. Continued blessings of health, love and happiness sent your way. Janis Kielbasa
Thanks for your awesome post. A truly inspirational journal for "someone in waiting" (7/17/12) like myself. It is posts like yours that brought a "calmness" to my life after my diagnosis. I am no longer afraid....I am excited & ready to take my life back.....and like you....live better than ever...and enjoy each day with a new appreciation!
Thanks for sharing, Jimmy
Hi Jimmy and new facebook friend, Yes I am still hanging in here and waiting. Glad to see you are doing so good. I still have Charlotte on my number one list when this is going to happen. You wrote such a nice story. Oh Happy Birthday, but you know you do have 2 birthdays. Thats the way I look at it. So yes you are 20 days old, and I havent been born yet. lol. Isnt it amazing how we can comunicate for being so young? lolUntil later.
For the long haul
Oops! Typing too fast! I was told today to literally run my heart out. I've cried years of happiness all day. I just want to go home
And hug my husband and kids and be normal again. My new life starts today! Thank you for the inspiration and keep ticking. Steph
So weird I posted for the 1st time
In weeks and there you are feeling so great! What a thrill to read!!!!
I struggled for the last 6 weeks-my running was what I thought to be an issue. Kind of hibernated in disappointment. But that got my butt back to Clevlend clinic. I wa st
Jimmy, glad to hear the good news! It's helpful information to know that the ejection fraction can improve over a period of 3 months! I'm sure that was worrisome to you. I (we) worry about things like high/low heart rates, chest pain, flashes of light, exhaustion, and just need to remember that it takes time and everyone is different. It's easy to try and compare ourselves with others on this journal! Thanks for your story and keep on healing!!!
Just sent in a second response to an old guestbook entry and now I can't find either of them. So, please forgive the duplication, if indeed it is.
Went for my pre-ops last week (even though surgery postponed, they stayed with that schedule) and got to meet with Laurie. Wow, she is phenomenal! I think they called her the "cardiac navigator" and its a good name. I also told her you had spoken complimentarily of her.
Moo, right back at you brother! Great update. Glad you continue to do so well. Me too!!!! I am hitting it pretty hard with my workouts too.c rehab helped me get confident again, all I could ask for. Now I take the occasional map when I need it. Life is indeed good.
Hi Jimmy! Thanks for the added updates and information about what hurts! Maybe the catheter is worse for men..My big day is tomorrow. Pre-op today, just getting ready to meet with the surgeon one last time.
Glad you are doing better!
Proud of you bro. Today is 7 weeks for me and I too am blessed to have recovered so well. Still very happy with my Ross selection. I did catch a cold from my son and have been sneezing like crazy. Thank God I didn't get that cold at week 3 or 4! I love your slow down attitude and I feel exactly the same.
Glad to hear things are continuing to get better each day for you. Not sure if I caught this part or not but are you working full time again? Just curious but were you taking any meds prior to surgery? I ask cause I think I have been very luck to only be taking a baby asprin at this point.
Thanks for your updates they are always so helpful to those of us in waiting, I promise I too will pay it forward.
It sounds like you are doing great. My cardiologist doesn't do another echo for 6 months. I can't wait to hear how my valve is doing. I like sleeping on the wedge, its great for watching t.v. but I think my husband steals my pillows during the night anyway.
Keep up the great work.
Love the positive attitude Jimmy! Glad you are doing so well. Isn't it great to be able to pick up the kids again. My youngest is so happy, that whenever I pick her up, she is like velcro and won't let go of my neck. Keep up the good recovery work. I hope this week of work went well. Take care brother.
Hey Jimmy, Tell Mitch you did move the lawn right through the blades and where ever it lands, beside you or in a container lol. Hes from NYC and probably doesnt even have a lawn. Just had to keep it going lol. But really that is pretty good. Take care.
For the long haul
Good for you, Jim! Your doc is absolutely right. Most cardiac rehab programs are designed for bypass patients, and offer little to valve patients. I wasted alot of time and money on it. I should have used it to buy exercise equipment!
Hi JImmy, That is good news. My best to you. Sounds like you have a good boss that looks out for his people. Thats hard to find these days. Thumbs up to him also. Yes I have enjoyed being here and will be here for a while I guess. It helps me and every day I think it takes the scare out, so when that day comes I will be ready, can't wait. You take care .
For the long haul
Great update. Huge grin on my face after reading it. Way to go!!!!! I agree about your sentiments on this site. Totally amazing, supportive people, sharing and helping one another. Kuddos again to Adam. Take care of yourself and stay in touch.
You are a monster walker. Way to go! Keep up the good recovery work. One thought, if you haven't already, start increasing your pace, even if it means walking shorter distances. I went from 20 min miles to 18 to 16 to 15, now around 14 or less. I am only walking 2 miles at a time.
Hi Jimmy, Havent talked to you for a while. Glad everything is going real good for you. That is a lot of walking. You will have to buy some more shoes lol. I dont see why you couldnt go with some red wine. Dr Oz says red wine is good for the heart, and you are not on anything. Have one for me to. I love wine, just dont overdo it. Enjoy
For the long haul
Ok maybe someday I will be able to catch up to you. I do 1 mile in 30 minutes. Guess I am the snail lol. Someday I will loose my shell and do that too. That will be neat. Keep up the good work.
For the long haul
What a fabulous post. You sound so great. It was an honor to be part of your journey. You will only get better from here. I really, really don't ever think about the surgery unless I am on this site. I am hanging around for a very special person to have her surgery. I know your posts will help many in the future. The love you show for your family makes the reader love you.
Way to go brother!!!!! Sounds like all is going well. One question before you leave the guest room, is Blythe prone to night slapping???? I got hip checked by my wife the other day, after the shock wore off, I told her about Blythe giving you a smack soon after surgery. We both chuckled and felt your pain.
Jimmy, did you, or are you experiencing cold sweats? I feel really good aside from the sweats and associated flu like symptoms which are normal I'm told... It's really tough to sleep as a result. I'm 8 days out. So happy your doing well bro!
You go Big Jim!! Every day it gets better. You want to do more but your body will let you know that it is time for rest. My thoughts and prayers are with those who are having surgery today and also those who are recovering. You sound great! Take care
Wow, 2 miles already...way to go Jimmy. Or should I say "Rocky" since your humming Eye of the Tiger! lol. So glad that you are doing so well. I know sleeping is hard. I spent my night in lazy boy with a travel pillow around my neck. I don't think I was able to sleep in bed all night until week 6. It will get easier and things improve weekly. Continued prayers sent your way!! All the Best, Janis Kielbasa
Ouch!!!! It hurts for me to think about a punch in the chest. I bet Blythe did feel terrible, bet it scared her worse than you. Sounds like you are doing really well. Have you thought about getting massages to help with your neck and shoulder pain? I plan on going to my chiropractor when I get home and let him do the massage and heat therapy on my shoulders. It really helps with the sore muscles. Not too much, just gentle massage.
I guess that is a relatively small price to pay considering the major "overhaul" we get. If I'm breathing afterwards, I will be grateful, lol.
Keep up the good work, I know your boys are enjoying having you at home for a while.
That was why I used the neck pillow that I told you about. See, you should listen to the Jewish mother. No, it really helped with the neck, shoulder, back and chest soreness, even if I wasn't punched in the chest.
You sound like you are doing great.
Sounds like you are getting better with every step. Just watch out for that first sneeze!!! I find that walking will help physically and mentally. You can do a lot of thinking when you walk. Take care.
Each week will get easier. I found sleeping in lazy boy was helpful versus bed. Try and walk some each day, nothing crazy, remember the first few weeks are about healing and rest. I'm so glad you are doing well. Janis Kielbasa
Hi Jimmy, You are making this sound way too easy. I can handle grossing my kids out with a scar. I already have a big one, so I figure it'll look like I put lipstick on it.
I wondered about sleeping. You seem to be handling everything so well. Thank you for the 1 week update. SOOOOO encouraging.
Also, may I ask is it typical to have a homecare nurse? Is it for dressing changes? Thanks and AWESOME JOB! Steph Cole
Glad you made it home and are back with the family. Take it slow, but you will be amazed at how quickly you progress. Just don't push it, listen to your body and take lots of naps! It gets easier and easier, but that does not mean some days will still be harder than others.
One step, one day at a time Jimmy!! You are doing great! You can find the travel pillow that Jane was talking about at JC Penney. About $12.99. Helps support your head, goes around your neck like a donut. I know it must be great to be at home. Keep up the good work.
Its Jane again, did anyone tell you about the small travel pillow that goes around the back of your neck. I used that in addition to the wedge pillow and regular bed pillows. It allowed me to relax my sore chest and lay back. I used it for a few weeks. If you can't find it I can send you one.
You sound great. Remember you had major surgery. Take it one day at a time. I started out walking around my backyard three or four times before I hit the regular roads. You will cough and feel discomfort when you over due it. If you increase a little at a time (not necessarily every day) you will continue on this wonderful path to full recovery. I am so happy for you and your great family.
Hey Jimmy, Glad to here that you made it home. Bet it is hard to keep the children out of your lap. They are happy to see their Dad home!! Mom has built in helpers for sure. I had a mini also, but the pain is still there. But each day it gets better. You will surprise yourself! Take care.
25 laps bro. Officially "monster" status. You are going to be amazing us now with your prowess. Keep it coming and keep us posted. Just be sure you increase it a little at a time so your body's complaints will be small. Even at a 5% increase per day, you'll double in 2 weeks. Wow. -- DVB
Hi Jimbo. While you were " out" like a light my husband & ran off to the fla keys for some r&r. Doing great and coming up on 3 weeks post next Thursday. Doing our Walks & taking it easy in paradise. ( Islamoradafla). I'm so glad you made it thru without any majors ! Keep it that way. Please. Talk soon. Nancy Friedman. St Louis. (2/9. DONE)
I had no doubt that you would do very well. How great is it to know you are on the other side of this journey? You will feel better each and every day. Just don't overdo it. Listen to your body and rest when you need to. You just had Major surgery. Our bodies start to heal right away, but we must remember that our hearts were assaulted and need time to recoup.
So happy for you,
Yay Jimmy...gave me a little scare there buddy...but all is well, praise the Lord! Now, relax and heal!! You have 2 1/2 weeks to get to full speed before my surgery, lol! So happy for you. Blythe was soooo proud of you!!
Hi Jimmy, So glad to hear you are home and doing good. Three cheers to you. I will diffently keep your doctor and hospital in mind when that time comes. Right now I am on hold as when I saw doctor last Wednesday, he said not bad enough. The way I read the Tee test is it is still moderate and at 3.7. He said insurance wont pay for it until it gets worse. So I am here cheering everyone on until that time changes. You take care dont overdo. Talk to ya later.
For the long haul
Your legions of fans are wondering, what's up dog?
You on the road to recovery or did complications derail you? My bet, is you are walking so much you don't have time to write. Hope I am right. Let us know when you can. Many, many people are cheering for you.
A lap or two around the ward! Lovin' it. Just keep moving as much as you can. I was able to do 6 miles over 3 days before they kicked me out of the ICU after my mitral valve repair. The mild stress of exercise jump starts the healing pathways. Woo-hoo! -- DVB
Hey Jimmy, Good to hear that you are out and about!! Don't be giving rides to other patients, I don't think the nurses would appreciate it! I don't know if you have sneezed yet.. have the pillow ready!. I was 15 days post-op before it happened to me. Not too bad, I survived. Prayers are with you for continued recovery.
Wow thats great news. I think between you, Mitch and Nancy, you are all in a race. I feel like this is one big horse race we are all running. It seems like each one is a little faster than the other one and I am the last one saying wait for me lol. But that is ok although I do want to get it over with and get to the other side of that mountain. Take care.
Until Later Linda H
Hi blythe, Glad to hear the good news on Jimmy. I was thinking about you all day. My thoughts and prayers out to you both. Take care of yourself too,cause he will really need you a lot very soon.
Until Later Linda H
Blythe, thanks for keeping us updated. I know it is hard to see Jimmy the way he is right now, but the tube will be out soon, he likely won't remember it and the real recovery can begin. I hope you are feeling some element of relief. And, I hope you have eaten something today. You need your strength too!!!!
I am confident that you will get the best news ever. Try not to worry too much, but I know its hard. I was amazed that my husband and daughters (grown) went out to lunch while waiting. If I was waiting I don't think I could swallow.
I hope he is finished soon.
Hey Blythe, thanks for the update. I've been checking every few minutes for news. You are all in my thoughts and prayers, Jimmy is climbing his mountain right now, hope you are climbing yours as well...will soon be at the top and ready to slide back down the other side!! Hang in there, and please keep us posted.
Jimmy...relax as best you can and then confidently walk into this fight tomorrow. It will be over in an instant and you will start getting back to being you. You will be sore but you got this. You are going to do great brother!!!
Hi Blythe, thanks for taking over for Jimmy while he climbs his mountain. All of his fellow "valvers" have you and Jimmy in our thoughts and prayers. Tell Jimmy I forgive him for jumping in line in front of me, lol! Try not to worry, he is in great hands and is gonna come through this just fine. May God bless you and Jimmy, thanks for keeping us informed. It's amazing how we feel like we are "right there with you". You guys stay strong....you got this!!!
Sleep well tonight. Tomorrow is out of your hands and in the experts hands. You will be a happy man. We are all thinking of you and praying for you. You will be the one helping others before you know it.
Good Luck and God Speed to you brother. Tomorrow will mark 5 months for me. To quote the Grateful Dead..."What a long, strange trip its been..." You will do great. "Don't worry, about a thing; 'cause every little thing, gonna be alright."
Hey Jimmy, just stopping by this morning to say "go get em" tomorrow. I hope your anxiety isn't too high, I can't imagine the day before, but just know you have "all of us" thinking about you and praying for you and you will be just fine. Looking forward to hearing those famous words from you too: "waiting is the hardest part". Hope you have someone lined up to keep us updated. God bless, my friend. Go climb over the top of that mountain !!
Hey Jimmy, Well its almost here. I want to wish you the best of luck on your day. Hope everything goes ok for you and your family. Will say a prayer for you tomorrow along with everyone else. I am looking forward to how your hospital stay was as I was kinda of thinking the same place when its time. Its between two others as well. Good Luck
Until Later Linda H
I just realized what the date was today. The count down really begins now. You will be the happiest person when you wake up to the words "its all over." I will be thinking about you and wish you an uneventful surgery and recovery.
Wow Jimmy, your time to shine is almost here! I know you will do great, I look forward to hearing from you " yep, they were right, waiting is the hardest part". How are your nerves? I find that I am struggling a little as I get closer, am having trouble sleeping the last couple of nights, waking up with surgery on my mind several times during the night. I'm hoping that will get better as my time approaches, but I'm guessing that may not be the case. Try to enjoy your weekend. Hope you have someone to update us. Go get em!!
You will be in my thoughts & prayers over the next week. We are all with you! Keep strong. You will be GREAT.
Also, Thanks for going 1st! Would love some post-op updates!
I'll be about 2 weeks after you. Stephanie Cole
I can imagine all too well how real it feels my friend. Not looking forward to it either. We must draw strength from those that have gone before and have said its not as bad as we think.
Prayers for you on Monday. Love that song....When I was in the hospital after surgery....at least a couple of days later...I started singing "I feel Good" by James Brown. That song has come in handy a few times. Not long till you will be shuffling along singing it too. The pre-op can be a overwhelming but you are that much closer to having it all behind you and getting on the healing side of things. Blessings and prayers for Monday Jimmy. Jamie Todor
Good luck for monday! You will do great. I too sang "the eye of the tiger" to myself at the hospital - we are fighters. I am now 2 weeks post op and doing good. Everyday gets a little better and doing normal things just feels great. Positive attitiude is everything!
Before my surgery I pictured myself hiking in the rockies with my son. That trip happened 8 months after my surgery! Picture yourself doing some activity in the future with your boys.
Positive thoughts and prayers to you!
Jimmy, Have you in my thoughts and prayers. Don't worry you will do great and be great! Remember, we are the blessed ones who can be fixed/repaired. Soon surgery will be behind you and you will be on the road of recovery. Janis Kielbasa post op 7 weeks.
My goodness Jimmy...your pics remind me of my family so much when my boys were little. The most precious creatures on the earth!!!
This is why we get our hearts fixed, so we can live a long life w/ our families.
Take this challenge head-on...great way to show them how to confidently take adversity head-on and refuse to let it keep you down.
You are going to do great Jimmy!!!
Yes, it is real. But, yes, you are ready. I see the kids running after you down the street as you complete your final training run. Go Rocky Go. Ain't gonna be no rematch. In the end, you will be the champ, and YOU WILL BE FIXED!!!!
Enjoy the next few days, cry when you must, hug your wife and kids. Then go in there head held high and show them how this is done.
You take care and get better. Sure wouldnt want to put off anything that you have been waiting for so long for. Keep us all posted but in the mean time take 2 aspirn and call me in the morning. Good luck. Linda H
Make sure it's not strep throat. Hope you feel better. I have a sick grandson today, his mom asked me to keep him for her, told her I will, but she's gotta take him to the doctor to make sure he's not contagious. Can't let anything avoidable postpone my surgery. Let us know what the doc says.
I suspect you will be fine as you still have plenty of time. Like they say for the kids in school, once they are fever free for 24 hours, send them back. So, get really sick now, get better by 48 hours before and you should be fine. Good luck. -Mitch Friedman
The Coumadin is no biggie. I have a home INR monitor and test weekly. The mechanical valve was the way to go for me. My surgeon told me a tissue valve would not last 10 years in a young active runner and tennis player. I believed him and opted for the "ticker". My kids think its funny that I sound like a wristwatch. I pretty much eat whatever I want and just keep an eye on the INR.
Brother, you rock!!!! Seems like yesterday you did your first post as a nervous newbie. Now you seemed the experienced sage pro. Awesome job on tackling this head on. Way to show your boys how things are done, What an impressive example you have set for them.
You will continue to do great. Before you know, you will open your eyes, surrounded my friends and family, and gain awareness that you did it. That is a truly special moment I can't wait for you to have. Stay strong when you can, cry when you must, and lean on on everyone you can. We are all here for you!
- Mitch Friedman
I like what the other Jimmy says below. We will ALL be better people for having gone through this. I am already looking at life differently. You will do great Jimmy and I can't wait to hear how good you did. I will need your play by play afterwards. I am going March 7th. Did you see how good nancy is doing already? She is amazing and so are you!
You will do great. Remember, we are the lucky ones who can be fixed/repaired and go on to lead full long lives. Success rate 98%. You are young and in good health, you'll recovery faster than you think. I'm older, out of shape and I'm walking a mile a day at 6 weeks post op after a full sternotomy. Holy crap, I'm awesome!! You'll be awesome too!! Don't worry, all will go well and you will be fine, infact, you will be better than before. Plus, you have all of us sending good thoughts and prayers your way! Soon, you'll be done with surgery, recovering and posting your accomplishments. Love, Janis Kielbasa
Take it from another Jimmy, it doesn't pay to worry. Worrying never accomplishes anything. You have to answer the bell when you hear it. And you will. Recovery can be a long, strange journey. You will be emotionally exhausted at times. Good times come soon. I am a better person for having been through open heart surgery. I look at life today. I don't live for tomorrow and I damn sure don't think about next week, month, or year. I never leave the house without kissing my kids or my wife and I live a slower pace. I AM a better person. You will be too.
I was like you and tried not to think about the surgery and recovery itself, instead I tried to plan things that I would do after the surgery and after the recovery was at a certain point. That really helped me get through those last few day's before..Good Luck, you will be in my thoughts!
You have such a great attitude toward this whole journey. That attitude will help you so very much. The nurses will like you as well. As we have all said the waiting is really the hardest part. I found that when the day came, I was actually calmer and to some degree excited (as silly as that sounds). Keep up the positive attitude.
Hi Jimmy, I just read your last journal entry and let me say "ditto". Try to imagine what we would be like now if this site didn't exist...not a pretty site on this end! We all have family and friends that understand to some extent...but not really, they can't unless they have been through exactly the same thing. For now, I am trying to put myself in my daughter's place, the future caregiver and don't talk much about the surgery or being afraid, etc. I save that for you guys! I'm trying not to worry about the surgery, saving my energy for recovery, at least I have some control over that. So...I guess we will count down together my friend.
Hi Jimmy, I think you told me that I can do it, well now its my turn. You can do it. Your kids will rally around you and help in any way they can. I will say a prayer for you also. I know your will be gald when this is all over and we can look back on it like it was a night mare, but listen to me the biggest baby and chicken ever and I am just starting the tests etc. Good luck to you,my new friend. Linda H
You might be the biggest baby of them all, but your wife will be so happy your surgery is over she will be thrilled to take care of you. Your sons will rise to the occasion and give you gentle hugs and kisses. I have 5 kids of all ages, and they make everything worthwhile. You will do great.
We are all praying for you.
Hi Jimmy, yes, you are right, those little ones do make us put things in perspective. Sounds like you are getting ready, are you doing okay emotionally? I find myself going back and forth between okay and a little weepy. Maybe as the day gets closer and ONCE I DECIDE ON THE VALVE I will be less anxious. Enjoy the game today, it's the last one for a WHILE!!!
Still waiting..Linda Dixon
Yes, focus on the kids. I found it helpful. I also made sure to eat healthy and excercise extra. Everyone seemed to indicate that would helpcmevin the long run. Good luck, you can do this! -Mitch Friedman (from ICU)
Well aren't we all bright & early Sunday morning. ? Jimmy great idea on getting the house in order I am havin my d-clutter lady come over to get my house In order. No kids. But the dog toys and husbands " stuff" are pretty much the same. Lol
I'll take good note for you jimmy.
Nancy. 2-9. Coming . Verrry soon.
Jimmy, Thinking of you and have you in prayers. Your boys will help you with recovery but tell them no funny jokes, hurts like heck to laugh first week or two. LOL. You will do great and soon be on your way to recovery. Janis Kielbasa
Thx jimmy - & thanks for going to the telephone doctor site. Small world isn't it. Call centers is one of our specialities.
Would enjoy chatting when I'm "done" with this & relaxing & healing at home.
I'll contact you for sure. Thx for speedy replies.
Know what would be fun to see o this site - under the pix of the person. . Is the date of the persons surgery.
Or a place to put it on frot page of our journal so we could identify with the pre. Post time. N
Anyway. Thx again. N.
Jimmy. suggest getting. PATIENTS CHECKLIST by Elizabeth bailey. I got mine at Barnes & noble. Abt $15. Very important info. Minor duplication of others and great new stuff. Well worth it. Glad I got it befor 2-9. Actually 2-8 is cath. So count Down is on
Speaking in new Orleans Sunday - super bowl day. But early - so wont miss it. Lol.
Besides we taped it. Be well. And hope umget that book. Nancy Friedman. St
Louis. Avr. 2/9. N
Doing okay, hanging in there anxiety wise. Feeling a little emotional about our friends in surgery today, amazing the friendships that have developed thru this site.!
Hope we will get good news soon!
(If you haven't noticed....I don't especially like waiting, lol).
Hi Jimmy, I too am just starting all of this, I have the same as you but with an anuersym. This Thurs I go for an ultra sound and next week is a Tee test. I will be following you and wish you the very best as well as everyone else. Linda H
Jimmy. Hi & thx for your good post. I have. Cath wed feb 8 & then the big V DAY is next day 2-9. So in between Mitch and u ! Gret place to Be. I asked Mitch to take good notes.
I orig was more concerned about the cath than the surgery. However posts like yours sure do help !
I'll be thinking about you. But first me ! Then you. Ha ha. And waiting to hear about my non cuz Mitch !
Warm regards. Nancy Friedman. St Louis mo.
I'm really excited for you buddy. You are a blessed man with an incredible family. I'm not that far behind you and have been in routine contact with another friend I've met on here, Jeff from Orlando, who is in a very similar situation. We are indeed a group of brothers and sisters sharing a scary but positive experience here. I too have lots of questions and hope I can bring a sense of calm to people after my procedure. As so many have told me, "we're the fortunate ones" in that we can be fixed. Like Linda said, the heart cath was no biggie. You may be a little sore but that's about it.
Hey Jimmy, yes, I have had 3 caths over the years and there's nothing to it. The absolute worst part is having to lay without raising your leg or head afterwards for a couple of hours. The only pain (and its not pain) is the needle stick for the IV and also for the xylocaine to numb the groin. You don't feel the catheter at all! And I have been able to watch every time and it is really fascinating. There is a time during the cath when they inject contrast media where they will tell you that you will feel like you are wetting yourself. That did not happen with my last cath because apparently it takes place after they cross the valve and they were not able to this time. But with the previous caths I did feel that and it's like "I know I am wetting this bed" but you're not. So...don't worry a minute about the cath. It's a breeze!
That is exactly the right attitude Jimmy...bring it on! It's a mountain, but I am climbing this damn thing and I will not stop until I am in the valley on the other side! Plus you getvto show your boys how you deal with adversity...take it head on.
You are going to do great and I cant wait to read your posts afterward.
Will have surgery on Feb.6th. The days are closing in, but I know its time. Being positive, prayer, and facing it head on will be the most important thing we can do to close a chapter and open another. Say a prayer for me as I will for you.
I wish you the best and love the attitude. I'm right behind you as well. I have two more surgeon consults next week, then we'll make a decision and set a date. I'm hopeful I'll be done by the end of February.
Well Congratulations Jimmy...but I have to tell you...now you're on my "not fair" list too! Just kidding, but all the "newbies" are getting fixed before me!!! NOT fair! Guess that's what I get for going so far away.
Anyway, yes I know your hospital is top notch. Had a member of my church just had a liver transplant there a few months ago. Glad you liked your surgeon, and I don't blame you if you reschedule your businss trip, I would want to get it over with as soon as possible myself.
Good luck with the next couple of weeks...wow...that 's close. Yes you can do this!!! I can only imagine how the "nerves" may pop in and out, mine do now, but I pray each day you will be filled with a calmness that only increases as the day gets closer. I know that is my prayer for myself.
Thanks for the update, put it out there, whatever you may be feeling...you will find someone who has been there and will help you along. I'm counting on you when my time comes!
Well Jimmy, I'm guessing you are sitting in the waiting room as I am writing this. Hope your visit with the surgeon goes well and leave feeling very confident in him and have a sense of relief. My situation is a lot different since I am traveling to Cleveland from SC for my surgery. I sent all tests results to CCF back in December and my surgery date is scheduled, but I don't actually meet with the surgeon until the day before surgery. So I'm sure I will have a little anxiety before then, although I have heard nothing but "great" things about Dr. Gillinov both as a surgeon and a person, so I'm sure that will go great. (I guess it better, huh?) lol.
Hi Jimmy, great to see you are getting so much out of you HVJ. That is what it is for! Keep asking and posting. As you get further into this, more questions will arise. Seems like folks here have all the answers. Good luck with everything. - Mitch Friedman
Jimmy, I totally get it. I also have known I would probably eventually need my valve replaced, I also do not have any symptoms, or at least I did not think so until just recently when I had the thought "maybe I have, maybe when surgery is done I will realize I have felt not up to par in years and just chalked it up to age". I am 63, much older than you. I have tried the last several months to exercise more to be "ready" for surgery, but have also been reluctant to push it. I don't have surgery until March 13th, and the waiting is really hard. I'm fine most days, but every once in a while, if I think too much about it, I get a little more anxious. Having this journal outlet has helped. You can tell all these fellow "valvers" how you are really feeling and they understand because they have been there or are there right now.
Wishing you good days, I guess the little guy in your picture is your son, he is a cutie!
Your friend....still waiting...Linda Dixon
My name is Sean Murphy. I had my aortic valve replaced in July 2010, I was 33. My kids were 8, 5, and 5 months. It was very stressful but well worth it. I have been doing things that I never knew I could not. Life is wonderful and you will feel so much better after it is done.
Jimmy hello , my name is roger I just had a st Jude's mechanical aortic valve , with aortic root graft done November 30 th dr pae Hershey med center in Pennsylvania . I'm 50 yrs old ( male ) to tell the truth
It was a piece of cake. Not at all what I imagined. If you have any questions just e- mail me. Maybe I can help. ( try not to worry ) They know what their doing !
I've had my heart problem since I was four yrs old.
Lots of unnessary worry !!!! God bless :)
Jimmy...first of all, I am also a father of 3 boys...are they fun or what?!!! I am about 9 years older than you, so my boys are now teenagers...we have so much fun together, as I am sure you do also.
You have come to the right spot....I was exactly in your shoes just about 4 months ago. I stumbled upon this site and it has made all the difference for me in my researching, obtaining great advice from other valvers and just the overwhelming encouragement you get...amazing.
Do your homework, ask questions, research, ask more questions and make the decision that is right for you. Once you do, be confident and take this challenge head-on. Its a great way to show your boys how to overcome adversity and to get back on your feet when you get knocked down. Get your body in the best shape you can prior to surgery...it will help speed your recovery. In recovery, push yourself everyday to get better...even when you don't feel like doing anything. You will be back to yourself faster than you think.
If you ever get bored, you can read my journal. I had full split due to my aortic aneurysm, but hopefully you can get by with a less invasive procedure. If not....just know that you can do it no matter what.
Take care and feel free to ask any question you want...we are all here to help.
Well hello Jimmy Johnson!! Oh wait....never mind, guess you are not THE Jimmy Johnson, lol. Well...you are THE Jimmy Johnson for your family and now THE Jimmy Johnson for the HVJ site. Welcome to our community of "broken" and "fixed" hearts.
I can't offer much advice, haven't had my surgery yet, scheduled for March 13th, but I can offer this much:
1- Great decision starting your journal.
2- If you haven't done so already, get Adam's book and read it---great information.
3. When deciding on surgeon for your repair/replacement....always get a second opinion and always, always go to someone who does these procedures frequently, like hundreds per year, not occasionally.
4. You will get lots of information from the people who have already been through every thing you are experiencing now and the support and encouragement are amazing!
5. And one more time: ALWAYS GET A SECOND OPINION!
6. Share your feelings, concerns, fears, questions, humor and anything else you feel like sharing in your journal. It really does help!
Hang in there, you have lots of support.
Your friend, still waiting....Linda Dixon
Jimmy, welcome to HVJ!!! I was in exactly your shoes about a month ago. I have the same condition, been tracking it for 10 + years, have no symptoms and was told by my cardio 'it is time' in mid-December. I am 47 and have surgery on Feb 2. Check out my HVJ, it might help you.
I have found great comfort from the people on this sight. I strongly encourage you order Adam's book today, read some journals of others and post often. What you get back from this community is nothing sort of amazing.
Good luck and we are all here for you.