Hey Guys! Well, it's been over 6 months since my last Heart procedure and things are better. Yeah, I still need Oxygen 24/7 at altitude, but I've lost some weight. feeling a bit stronger and my pain is the only thing that keeps me from running out that door!! AWW, it's not too bad. My new diet is helping me reduce a BUNCH of medications, and that's a good thing!
To all the folks heading into surgery Best Wishes and peace of mind, and to those on the other side---Welcome! May you all heal quickly and have healthy days ahead!
🌸💕Summer!! I’ve loved living in the mountains ⛰ mountains for so many years, but being at high altitude is taking it’s toll now😑. After my 51/2 hour Catheter surgery was done to close the hole in my heart all was going very well-at sea level! I was tooling around the floor as best as my bad feet could go, all without supplemental oxygen. The view from my window was of the Golden Gate Bridge and the bay, I wanted to get out there, it was a gorgeous day. But they kept me there doing all sorts of tests until my discharge at 7:30PM. We got to our hotel and it felt so weird to go to sleep without my oxygen on for the second night. It was great giving Dave kisses though without this dumb plastic tubing for once AND not losing my breath!😄😄💕We packed up and drove back home and, being really tired I dozed, and then fell asleep at home while Dave unpacked us. I awoke gasping for air, my head pounding, my heart pounding. My O2 level was 87!
Not good for an old gal with right heart failure! So, back on with the oxygen. I cried,a lot. 😢 I felt very,very 😳 stunned. And,knowing how long I was in surgery it seemed it was just a waste. I felt truly hopeless- not a place I like being. Even Dave was quieter than usual. I likened the feeling to when we had a miscarriage, oh guys..years ago! But the feeling was the same. We had been SO happy, and then it was gone. So, I had to readjust again my expectations of what I can and can’t do. But, in the mean time, I had to spend two sleepless nights with my groin incision bleeding, trying to stop it, calling the paramedics for help, going to the ER twice b4 FINALLY after a seriously ridiculous comedy of errors someone got the right idea and it was stopped. I spent two more days on rest then tried to bounce back but found myself exhausted! Dang it this extra weight on me! This being fat does not make for my quick recovery! Also, I guess I am just going to be more tired because of all that stuff, the pain, the drugs, the heart meds. So, going for a follow - up in two weeks.. when I am at sea level..NO oxygen. So, I’m going to get to the 🏖 beach! Just for some deep breaths of sea air and a walk. No, the Dr’s promise of being off Warfarin did not come to pass (I didn’t believe her anyway!😆) and they added Plavix and soon another drug for pulmonary hypertension (which I didn’t have AT ALL b4 my OHS, but have an increasing problem with the last two years) I will be back and forth to SF until Fall, but hope to have some less stressful days in between. James is an awesome little dog (this week was his two year adoption day!) 🐶 and he has become such a sweet little part of the family😉. He almost caught a squirrel today he’s so, darned fast! Dave is doing great and we are dealing with all this crazy. And we have hope. And Hope does not disappoint. 💕🌸💕 Thanks friends💕💕💕And to All who finished this post, 💕 healthy days ahead🍃🌸🎀
Barb’s Catheter went really well today! They were able to close the “PFO “ shunt in her heart and she needs little to no oxygen at sea level and at rest. It was still a long day of course but she is on the cardiac step down floor ( our home for 6 weeks a couple of years ago) with the anticipation of going home tomorrow! She will update you all later when she doesn’t have IV’s sticking out of both hands!
At a surprise birthday 🎂 party for ME! My sweet friends spoiled me!
Two year mark: decisions,decisions 😎
Journal posted on March 30, 2018
March 30th 2016. Hmmm. Changed my life a great deal. If I could honestly say,”for the better” I would, but, I am alive and I am very grateful to the good Lord for that! Went to UCSF last week and discussed once again my oxygen issues (the fact I can’t seem to get enough of the stuff😄😄)
Via Catheter they want to close the hole in my heart , using a ballon, hang out for twenty minutes, see if my O2 improves and then decide what to do from there. Close the hole permanently If improvement occurres, pull out if not and end the procedure. Sounds simple, but it’s not. Most of the old rank and file from 2016-2017 know why, it’s my crazy ❤️ heart😄! One cardiologist thinks it’s worth a shot, the other isn’t so sure. My very long story being the reason. So, my emotions say, heck no! Putting fear aside, is it logical? So, I’m going to go back to the lung doctors for more talks, and no doubt function tests to see if it will help us decide. Two years ago we did all this, I was a nervous wreck and we finally said yes. I was okay with it, it had to be done. Two week and two OHSs later I awoke to a very different life. Very. So, this isn’t a MUST procedure. I’ve been exercising and in the last 6 months my right heart has had no further improvements, and won’t likely (so says my very smart doctors). But, I’m keeping up the strength I have. Lord willing I’ll have it for awhile. I’m on 24/7 oxygen. I’m ALIVE 💕👯♀️👯♀️ And Dave had been and always will be my Knight in Shining Armor. We had a very rough road that started two years ago tonight. As an admitted pessimist I don’t see a great deal of carefree days ahead. But I do see deepening faith in Christ Jesus, deepening relationships where it’s been hard to communicate before. And surely I’m being pruned spiritually to conform me into the image of God’s only begotten Son.
This being a day that, this year, falls on “Good Friday “ it seem appropriate to be pondering 🤔 my first open-heart surgery. It’s been what feels like hell. But Jesus suffered way more than I can imagine, let alone ever will. Should the disciple not follow in her Master’s footsteps? Didn’t Jesus tell me to die to myself, pick up my cross and follow Him? It’s the faith that I have that He has seen me through my whole life, He will surely see me through the rest of it. April 1st is resurrection Sunday. We Christians celebrate (as we do every Sunday!) the resurrection of Jesus, the Messiah from the dead. April 1st was my second and last OHS After which I improved daily until today😄 A lot because of MANY of you! Thank you for your prayers, kindnesses and thoughts. I hope we make the right decision on the Cath. Chime in on that if ya feel like it🤷🏻♀️
Love you all...💕💕To all the upcoming surgeries.best Regards and prayers for health and good outcomes. 💕
Today is the last day of Awareness for Women's heart health ❤️❤️❤️
😄😏 Okay, don't quote me, but some of us are getting older, and I KNOW my friends, you are all servant hearted.. so remember to take care of your health, and here's a big hearted squeeze ❤️❤❤️from me for all you lovely friends and family who have served me in prayer and deed as I've tried to make sure I take care of what God gave me, another season of life to love you back and share the Joy of the Lord with you. 🌹
I’ve been looking back at the last 18 months with amazement, sadness and gratefulness.. how did I make it through So Much??? Well, you know my answer always starts with The Lord Jesus! Ahh, but He used a ragtag team of unlikely suspects to encourage me along the way..most of you right here on HVS web site😉😀😊 We had a quiet Christmas where we battled the well meaning(?) gifts of incredibly delicious food gifts from bakers and cooks all over our church. Bless their 💕 hearts. They seemingly don’t see that the heart patient and her husband are butterballs already!!
But, I’m happy to say we made it through enjoying bits and bobs and sharing the rest with younger people who can run the stuff off🤣. Dave is down the obvious 15 pounds while, after three months I am still only down 5.5lbs. Meh.. he can walk better. I am still doing Cardiac Rehab three days, but I know I need to walk more, and boy guys, that’s tough.
So, not a bunch of excitement, though I did get tickets to see Bill Engvall in May for Dave’s gift. And I did grab the grab handle in my shower only to have it come loose , that was an effort in trying NOT to fall out of the shower onto the concrete floor...which I managed, thank you❤️😄I wanted to mention my heart Sister Nicola, from HVS came to New York to visit and got to have a day with two of my sisters.. they did all the NY Christmas stuff people do, including a trip into Tiffany’s. I’m sorry I wasn’t there, but my sisters represented me well (I hope, they can be a bit cheeky!!) 2018 will be I hope, as Wanda put it, a year with no hospital stays. But , whatever the Lord has for me, I owe you all a debt of gratitude for your prayers, kind words and encouragement. Thank you all for helping make 2017 bearable, by April 1st I’ll mark 2 years, how can that be? I feel like I’m just beginning my recovery. I promise to keep updated this year, and I’m sending you all a big, big hug.. Merry Christmas 🎄, and Happiest of New Years. To those looking 👀 down the corridor to surgery breathing is a really good option. I realized everyone’s different, but all of us should try to breath more😊 relaxing as best as you’re able helps. God Bless you all who are going in or are recovering🏝This can be a new lease on life. Take it! 💋 💋 MUAH. 💖🌿🌱 🎉
As always, If you’re new, pass this post by, it’s not going to help😄😄 No, really. I hate posting, because I can’t figure out how to only post to my subscribers, so, here we are, 7months since my last post, and I’m really sorry for being so, so terrible about not saying hello! 🌼 I’ve been in survival mode since my last surgery, trying to be positive while I worked myself hard to relearn how to walk without falling over! Or hold things in my hands. I’ve learned how to write and otherwise I’ve gotten way more comfortable doing regular things. But, my life can’t go back to “normal”. Once one passes a rubicon there’s no going back anyway. Dave had a hard working summer, so I needed to do the same, which was good in keeping me from being morose. God brought friends all the time to give us attention, and my friend, The Sue, to do a Bible study with every week, which is still going strong. Very good for me. Am I in pain? Only when I’m not asleep. So there’s that. I was thinking, reading some of the new posts, how I never had a “post op”, well, I wasn’t conscious 😄 They we’re taking out my stitches not long after I was really awake. My last follow up my San Francisco Cardiologist wanted to send me back to Cath-Lab to get heart pressures and try to temporarily close the hole in my heart. Friends!, Romans! Countrymen....... are they nuts?
Seriously, I was not in the mood to hear they wanted to “try” anything near my heart💕
After talking with my local Dr, I decided, yeah..no. No thanks to being a test subject right now. She wants to see if, by closing the shunt my oxygen levels would return to normal. But, guys, that’s waaay too big an “IF” for me right now. My heart needed two surgeries and a five day, open sternum rest just to survive.. well, for half my heart to survive. Really? Not ready. I will talk with my Dr in the spring. So, goals for ❄️winter❄️ Keep up my strength by going back to exercise class. Losing the weight I gained during last 18 months. (Massive undertaking🤭) keep up my hand Therapy and working on my feet, walking and balance and strength. My heart just needs to come along for the ride. I wasn’t the person for this friends. I write that even though I know God chose me, and mapped out this very path. It’s not that I want a different path, nay-no. 😐I just can’t see how I’ll overcome. 🤔💗I need to overcome fear, laziness, pride ,anxiety, depression,envy...just to name a few. Yet, God. So, “Brethen, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:13-14)
This has been a year, nay, almost two years, of grieving for me. Hmmm I know Dave would want me to be happy to be alive😌 I am. But I’m unable to shut down and not see how much I’ve lost. Freedom, well being, independent living. But I gain the knowledge I suffered so much for; dependency upon Jesus. Calamity may feel like it at the time, and then, let’s face it, really Barb? Calamity?? Not really. I’m thankful. I am. James is growing up and being ridiculously adorable, Dave is well, but I pray he’ll stop and smell the 🌹 roses. The Picture below was from my trip to SF doctors, my big sister, Dave and I went to the Japanese Tea Garden there, hey I got in free because it is not disabled access. But I used my walker up and down all the asphalt walks AND stairs, with Dave’s help.. walked my butt off! I floated on the lake one day, with my oxygen tank in tow. And I practiced and learned to put on my beautiful unbroken heart necklace on by myself.. that cheers me up immensely. My friend Gina still comes to clean my house once a week, she’s been a true friend, and lifesaver for me, can’t believe it’s been a year. See, I’m still so very dependent on the kindness of others! Finally, my meds haven’t changed, 59 pills a day🤪 I’m always so tired, yet sleep doesn’t really arrive very often. If I have to buy another bra it’ll break the bank😄 no really, I spent $$on good bra, but, dang, if I I get any fatter I’m switching to a mumu and going braless. 😄 It’s just that I get squeezed around and that tiny bit of tightness needed to hold up the ladies, squeezes my heart making it do quite the jig in there!!!🤨 I still sleep sitting up so my brain drains ... so Dave and I bought an adjustable bed, like two extra long twins. So no more propping up on lots of pillows. It’s been a couple of months, it has it’s good and bad days. I still have to be on Warfarin, but why, is the big question of the day. Makes me want to throttle someone. (See?Im not a nice person😇) But my doctor said I was on Warfarin for reason “a” now it’s reason “b”, no one really has a good reason, but okay. I’m so bruised all. The. Time. (James thinks I’m a trampoline) so I guess the purple tops I bought this summer will go well with my skin 😃
Okay, now I’m just rambling 🌱🌸🌿 It’s been too long since I said ,”hello” to you all.. hope all is well. Soon to be Thanks Giving 🦃🍁🍂🍁 Have a blessed Month and day. So much to give thanks to God. Love & Hugs 🍄🌿 Happy Days 🦋🍃 Alina, Wanda, Catie, Kate, Petey, Rita, Clare, Helen, Lisa, Yvonne,Lynn, And ALL God Bless. Best Best.
Hi friends (&of course family!). On Easter weekend my "Auntie" Barbara died, and then Sunday morning my Dad died. Though not related they were both battling cancer to the end. I went and got a new heart, just to have it broken💔 My whole family is grieving and your prayers are welcome. Last Thursday, the 20th, Dave and I were on our way to UCSF, when the Dr's office called to cancel. 90 minutes into our drive we turned around. Noting only a few hours later the power grid went down in SF, so we were rescued from that hassle and I was able to be myself when I later received the news of my Dad's passing.🌿 As you all may know, I've been unable to travel far since my OHS. That has been a painfully emotional reality in my life. But my family understands.
So, I am now typing to you from our hotel (I feel some sense of ownership ,what with all the money we've plunked into the place😏 But really, the staff ALWAYS ask about me, and pray for me, very nice people, nice rooms.). It's late and I'm lying here, foot propped up with a now MUCH shorter "big" Toe. Ow!! If you think you only "use" your toes for walking, you'd be wrong. Pain is a great reminder of what our muscles, tendons and nerves do! Yikes, I forgot, and it wasn't THAT long ago I was in that OR getting my other toes and fingers done. Well.😐
That's enough complaining. It hurts, but pain meds are on board, and Dave is here. He is my knight. I've lost so much, but Dave always fills in the cracks. Like the "Unbroken Heart" necklace I was given depicts: love just winds around what's breaking and closes the holes.
There's quite a list of friends I've met here, some of you are on the board, readying yourself for OHS. There ARE very straight forward routes OHS takes inside the hospital, the staff has a routine, the undressing and relinquishing of all your personal items for the "uniform" of surgery is a humbling moment, that last kiss from a loved one, the final checks and rechecks of lists. But nothing prepares you for you. You think you know yourself, then you REALLY know yourself. Some bits you like, some bits you're mortified about, but surly it all changes you. I really haven't met anyone here who had their surgery and came back blasé about it later😄🌼 We've cried, laughed and encouraged one another, and I KNOW, even if this experienced showed me my rather ugliness inside, it also showed me through others: love, forgiveness, grace and patience. I surely needed it!🍃
If you are one day, one week, one month, one year, or even eleven years out from your OHS, you are a survivor of an amazing process, you may feel utterly different, taken a path you may not have before, or learned much about yourself that just may save you.
It may just be a medical procedure that's saving your life, but it has turned into a life changer for many people. Hmmm.. I'm waxing not so eloquently 😄🍄
Well I'll be limping to the car in the morning, we need to be back down here for a one week check up! I miss James, and my own bed. You get it! 🦋🌱
So, I went back into the breech and I hope I'm now done for quite awhile. A summer of getting better would be great! I'm starting a bible study with a friend from church, and she will be great company for me👯♂️😊🌻
To all, Happy Summer..healing, blessing, success & Health❤️💕🌿
My FIRST date out with Dave I got tired, but well worth it to be with him!
One year tonight!
Journal posted on March 30, 2017
In five days it'll be my 56th birthday. But today began a journey I never thought I would take, let alone share with so many lovely people❤☀️
Thank you Helen for the lovely tea roses, two of my favorite things in one beautiful 🌱 plant! Then another box arrived today, on my heart birthday, a GORGEOUS necklace pictured below, an Unbroken Heart, the details are stunning. I have a smile ear to ear, thank you my friend Alina, a truly lovely heart felt gift. I then received a call from Lilly, who is shopping for me and making sure I'm okay. Gina is here working her heart out, making sure my house is clean until I can do it my self again.. golly, gang.. a year??
I'm okay gang. My heart is still chugging along, God's will, as Christ holds all things together. I will be back down to UCSF for another surgery on my left big toe, the result,of my OHS where that big toe, along with the others went necrotic. Well, a small portion near the tip never healed and the bone is sticking out and needs to be fixed!😄Ah, well. That toe has so much nerve damage I am not in any pain🦋 Hopefully all will go well.
Otherwise I suppose I've had to deal with what is and not what I wish (If wishes were horses!) I fretted over the fact that it's been a year and I am no where near well. Well, well, well...its as if I want to be some place else, and not living where I am now. 💐And dear me I've had so much love and support, prayers and kindnesses.
The Christian life isn't immune from tragic events. God changes us, but we are still in the physical world, subject to all the laws of nature, and the fallen state it is in now. But we all, those who believe and don't believe the same as I, can gather under one roof of the unbroken heart❤
Knowing we have gone through something amazing but difficult, painful but thankful.🌷 Whether we are in the spring, summer, autumn or winter of our lives I've not seen one person here gave up,🥀🥀but by supporting each other there has been a reviving of spirit and body🌹Thank you everyone who has been there to cheer me on, to pray with and for me and to remind me to allow tragedy, yet never to stop trusting in Him with Whom we have to do. For it is in Him we live and move and have our being. I am grateful for all your faithful responses, and grateful Adam Pick saw fit to get such a great website up and running. For those who have your surgeries upcoming, may your surgeries go well and may you be on the road to recovery soon..
God Bless everyone!🌿🍃Best, Best, Best! ❤Barbara❤️
Hi all! Any newbies to my journal can skip over my post, it's for your own good😊!!......okay, now that they're allgone...😄😄😄 Well, today marks my half way point for Cardiac Rehab, well, actually a bit more than. I think I only have 9 days more to go according to Insurance, but they cut me 12 visits short, because of their creative math! Ah well, in three weeks Dave won't be able to drive me there anyway, (😏) so I'm not sure complaining about that will matter. Yes, we have multiple feet of snow here, (just shy of the amount of snow the Donner Party received, and no, Dave DID NOT gnaw off my fingers and toes, the surgeon did that, cheeky for you to think that!! 😄😄🤣🤣) but we are high up, close to the sun and it will melt fast enough I suppose😉(Flooding stories will no doubt ensue on the news!) I'm doing fine in CR even though I only go on one machine since my balance is poor and my ability to go from one machine to the other while using a cane and dragging my oxygen tank isn't great, takes me forever😄 I look like my grandmother who had tiny feet but was so unsure about her walking she shuffled everywhere! I too shuffle, but my toes don't yet have purchase, my feet are still so swollen. That's my gripe of the month. It's been almost a year and my swelling still isn't relieved. Now "they" tell me it may be more than a year, more like two years before swelling goes down and mobility might return. I'm working very hard at the zillion exercises each therapist gives me. When you are in a spot like mine you begin to long for the days when specialists were far between and others would learn a holistic approach to therapy. But no. So, I go to CR, OT PT massage for my feet, massage for my hands. And, last but not least..neck! I'm pooped.
My biggest "worry" is getting to my appointments after Dave has to be at work full time again. It's true.. his employers, (they are lovely) have given us SO SO SO much. And Dave can be very flexible as well. He trys to give then more than 💯🌀Percent because they support us in so many ways, but Dave does have to make sure he's there for them and get all his work done. I'm sure it'll be good for me to work out how to be alone more often and do the things he usually would be there to do.. thank the Lord I can still depend on Gina, our cleaner, to clean up after my two fellas.. they are a messy duo!(of course I never make a mess!!😄) (James the puppy goes to work and comes with us to therapy too.. he's fitting in more and more).
Basics: My heart is what it is, getting another Echo in May(?). Otherwise I've had some stuff show up at Rehab, but nothing serious. I do get short of breath, but they will never be able to tell me unless they go back and try to close that little hole in my heart.. then, if I'm still needing O2 They'll know it's my lungs for sure. Well, that's just great. Not in the mood for another operation right now, ya know? I'll let you know when I know😉❤️
My lungs: I still need 3 liters a minute all day ❣️24/7❣️ More when I exercise. But, I can exercise! so, there's that. There wasn't any help from either my pulmonary specialist, or cardiologists. So, it does impede me , but keeps me alive🤣Ya just can't make this stuff up!
My feet: ..still very painful, nerves may or may not regenerate and begin to behave normally, but it may take my lifetime for that to happen. So, you can assume I am in a great deal of pain constantly,though I take many types of pain relievers. Think molten plastic stuck to the bottom of my feet with shards of glass mixed in😐 I just hope the swelling will go down.
My hands are not as painful, and I work hard to get more mobility back so I can do more things. It'll be awhile. I'm working on getting my strength back too so I can maneuver my oxygen tank or bottle around better.
Well, what can I say? In 17 days I'll mark a year since we walked into the hospital and sat in the waiting area with a few nervous parents and kids. I was at the Children's hospital, and, as soon as they called me in, and I got dressed into the hospital style of clothes I later would wear for weeks on end, I kissed Dave goodbye and remember nothing until April 15th or so. I guess that was Dave's story to tell. It's taken me months to get him to tell me what I needed to know to figure out all this grief. But, how much grief can I keep raw and open? My wounds in my leg, arms, chest, tummy, toes, fingers and neck have all healed, now I've noticed I'm slowly healing emotionally too. Maybe it's just that I have more to do, that I have to get things done for myself? YES, there are days of immense self sorrow, but grief can be woven into our lives in a way that Joy can overlap it and surround it.. I know I felt my own body had failed me throughout my life, but I have learned my body is not my own, but belongs rightfully to its creator.. and in the end I don't want to grumble against Him. So, This Is Me.
I may not be doing any 10Ks....well...ever😄😄 but, no matter my condition my goal now is to do what I should be doing to grow faithful, to the Lord, my family and friends, to be as well as I can, and to enjoy the life I've been given. I hope everyone here has a successful outcome and if it's not what you dreamed it would be, I hope you'll be able to shift your thoughts to positive, thankfulness to be alive, no matter the outcome, faster than I did!! I admit, without Dave to be a grace filled caregiver and husband, I don't know if I would've survived! But, all was put together by God for my good. I again, as is always on my heart, to thank my lovely family, my friends and you all here on HVS for all the love, prayers, concerns, notes, emails and gifts (yay!) for me! And finally, to my Mom: I DID make it home from the hospital, finally....🎀I love you❤
God Bless you all, those heading into surgery now (i told you not to read this!!😄) praying your surgeries will be uneventful. 🦋To you "old timers" THANK YOU. ❤️your replies and notes have really boosted my heart. To Nicola, my ❤️sister since she and I have the exact same heart condition...hugs and squeezes!! Wanda, Alina, Rita, Phyllis, CatieB, Kate, Paula, Terrie, Sophia,Yvonne, And all.. thank you! 🌲🌿🍃🍀Well, Its not quite one year, but, since I'll have so many mile marks (as you all do) I'll just finish by writing🌹Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your path. ❤️ Happy Spring! Best Best Best, Barbara🌹🦋
I love that people still ask how I am, Thank you! ❤ The weather has been challenging so, we are buried in snow❄️😐 So, getting to and fro has been a challenge, but my trip in December to have my right fingers debridement surgery went very well, I left within several hours after surgery and slept at the hotel, then Dave drove me home the next day. It was bad weather. Then, we had a quick trip down just before Christmas for follow up and my left thumb and pointer are healing and my right fingers were healing, though owies were getting me down🙁, we had a lovely Christmas,friends from church visited on the Eve and it did me a WORLD of good to see an old friend and have some laughs and some new friends and their sweet boys to keep my spirits up. James was in heaven as boys are a little dogs favorite thing!🤣
After the new year (and a ton of snow) we took one final quick overnight trip to San Francisco for follow up and suture removal on my right hand. It went great, and my surgeon was happy.
So, now I've had two physical therapy appointments well, four. I see the hand therapist then a therapist for the rest of my muscles. Standing, walking, neck, arms.. I am starting from scratch , so it's tough. I do my homework exercises. My hands are the toughest. They told me it can take 6 months to two years for my brain to remap my fingers Like, how long they are now. I find the topic daunting. My pinkie is a little nub BUT it's still long than my left thumb😄 I mean, crazy.
We've had three more snow falls and so Cardiac Rehab has been cancelled until this week, Wednesday. I know the drill there, so I'm glad I can do PT along with it, since I can barely walk without a cane or walker I need a bunch of training. It's my feet, can't seem to know where my feet are and how to balance on them they are still very swollen. But they say this is the way my feet will be for awhile. So, I ran into a friend from church the other day at PT and she didn't even recognize me, I said,"It's me, Barbara Laurie" and her eyes lit up with recognition and we had a lovely chat, she could commiserate with me about my hair falling out.
I know Cardiac Rehab will be tough, I am not an exercising sorta gal. I'm lazy But I see it as my job to get as well as I can for me and my families sake. Especially Dave. So, all my surgeries resulting from that first OHS are finished, doctor appointments in SF don't need to happen until April. I have a tooth crown to replace (who doesn't?) and so, all focus is now getting the use of my hands back and getting my heart working stronger. Each step has its own unique challenges, such as diet, not just for my heart, but for my kidneys. And exercise that can challenge my heart without overtaxing my lungs.. I want my lungs to keep working and not get worse. The jury seems to always be out on the matter, need to wait to see how my heart does😄😄😄see? Nothing is easy.
So, if you see me on the street and don't recognize me, no worries, as soon as I say something snarky you'll realize it's me. In the mean time Dave and I are trying not to get cabin fever ( well Dave is, I've been stuck inside so long I'm now plotting my escape, if only I didn't need an oxygen tank and a walker😄😄)
If you got this far in my update I just want to say thank you to all who pray and think of me, who send notes, emails texts, gifts, food, and ❤love❤. I've really relied on all that just to survive something I originally thought I was prepared for, but wasn't. It's like anything in life. We can make plans and even brace ourselves, but God's Word reminds me that He has my days numbered, He knows it all and has prepared each day for me. He sent me here to help me get great advice, He gave me Nicola, from London, who has the same heart condition as I, and he gave me faithful family, friends and the rest of you lovely online friends to have my back. I'm sorry I wasn't the one to wake up the day after my surgery with good news, a bright smile and a scar selfie☺️ I have a pretty good scar, and several more. But my recovery is just seemingly starting, 10 months later., after a few more surgeries than I'd planned. Be prepared with your response ahead of time. It took me awhile to grieve the old me and I don't know how the new me will turn out yet, I just don't know how I will turn out😄 But no matter, I really had some meltdowns early on, but that's me, always getting my feeling out so a I can move on. So I can think straight. Right thinking helps me move on to the next goal. Sometimes I try on the self pity mantle, but it just doesn't fit. It's wasted time. I'm sure there are friends of mine who feel sorry for me, isn't that enough? I've assembled another A team and it's going to get done and I will be okay
I guess I'm just saying, even if certain outcomes in life seem bad, they can be overcome with trust in the Lord and an attitude of gratitude. I send my best Regards to those on deck for surgery, may the Lord bless you with a wonderful outcome. To those on the road to recovery. Positive thinking won't make the challenges go away, and if having a good cry (scream?) helps release tension, go for it, but then remind yourself that thinking rightly about the challenges and the tools you need to move on with a heart of gratitude wins out. Accepting myself not as damaged goods, but as a person that Dave still adores and family and friends love, well. That took this last two months. But, working with the PT helped. And just letting myself move forward. Baby-steps🐥
I've rambled, so, God Bless and just know I'm okay and getting better, slowly but surely🦋
Wanda, Alina, Catie, Petey, Kate, Cheryl, Paula ,Sophia Yvonne, Rita Phyllis Steven et. al. Thank you!! You may be in the ethers but your friendship of the ❤ won't be forgotten. (Next month is my 1yr heart valve journal 📓 anniversary 🌿) Good Night All. Barbara🌹
Helping me get well, team James, he's an entire circus rolled into one tiny dog!😄
Journal posted on December 4, 2016
Hey my friends! 💕I haven't been able to get a good typing rhythm going since my last procedure. But, things are moving quickly and I may not feel comfortable typing at all for a bit😄
Last November 15th I went to UCSF and Dr. Hansen and Dr. Reyzelman worked on my foot and my left hand. The surgery took about 2 hours, I was lightly sedated and had blocks done. My left pointer and thumb are now both partially amputated to the top knuckles. Making my thumb look rather tiny and pathetic. My pointer, meh. Not great. The surgery went well, and after a follow up last week the healing is going well. I was in excruciating pain for quite awhile, I was stunned at the pain. My hand was swollen and bruised, so was my foot. Which , you.. never expected it to get more swollen! 🤔But, left toes are also waaaay shorter! They are healing. Walking has become even more of a challenge, but.. who doesn't enjoy a challenge?
Dave splurged for me to buy UGGs so I can have a boot to traverse our snowy ❄️❄️Driveway.😄
They aren't very attractive, just practical..they don't call then UGGs for nothin'!
This Wednesday I will, Lord willing, have surgery on my right three fingers. Pinkie, ring and Middle.
I know the pain will be horrible, but gotta get this ✅ done! It's inevitable, so, why not get it all in before the new year🎉🎉?? As you know, all these partial amputations were necessary after the life saving events that took place during my heart surgeries back on March 30th and April 1st
The neuropathy in my feet and hands has not improved immensely..BUT.. a little bit😊With medicine I'm able to function. How I will fair learning to use my hands is a question. I worry I'm a old dog that can't learn anymore new tricks. I'm hopelessly left handed and the worst damage is to that. Oh, I have pics, but no sense scaring you all! I love you too much!! ❤️️❤️️
After many weeks of healing I will have cardiac rehab and physical therapy on my hands and I hope feet. You may wonder how my heart is doing. Well, so far, still have right heart failure ( that's their technical term) but I'm well. My kidneys are really getting their groove back.. just watching my diet as best as I can. My lungs show a small improvement, but Dr. doesn't want to change anything on that yet. I need all the Oxygen I can get to heal! I take vitamins I'm allowed like C, D three and Metanx, a vitamin B complex for nerve healing.
So, this new journey of getting bits, okay, like a third, of five fingers cut off is still hard, even though I knew it was going to happen. But. I know, before time began, God knew all of my days.
I hope as you pray, and I covet those prayers, that you'd pray I would trust God, and be a witness to others that, though we are fallen and hurt, weak and not strong in ourselves, sinners, not perfect.. we would proclaim God is Good all the time. Forever.
My iPad just glitched on me, so I can't get my emojis!!!
So, just imagine 💕 hearts 🌹 🌺 flowers, and ⛄️ ❄️ snowmen!! Oh, hey, there ya go.
Happy Holidays all.. peace and healing.. and big hugs!
Hey friends from all over🐰I've been quite busy being hauled back and forth to UCSF (that's San Francisco) by Dave to get my foot and fingers checked out. My second visit with Dr. Reyzelman went well. He took matters into his own hands and removed the necrotic tissue from my big toe, and, with cutting dikes and a scalpel removed half my second toe! Yow! Yes, it was uncomfortable. It bled a bit (warfarin!!) but, with pain meds I take anyway, I'm managing. But I'm finding that tiny stub not as easy to balance on😄 Next we met with Dr. Hansen, the microsurgeon plastics Dr. who will be debriding my left thumb and pointer first. I'm a lefty, so I thought to get it over with. As it is I pray I'm doing the right thing. I'm just scared silly now, no joke! So, we travel back on Monday for preop, then Tuesday is surgery with a 23 hr watch.. so that will be hell. It means I get to stay in a ward until forever, or something. But, best to get things done now while I still have insurance. Maybe someone just read all this thinking,"this lady's off her rocker! This is a heart valve ❤️️ Web page!!" So, to those someones I say," see my earlier journal entries!"😄 Anyway. Otherwise I've been taking care of a funny puppy 🐶 (James) and trying to do a bit more each day. But there never seems to be much progress! Well. Just going to trust the Lord that "He knows my name, He knows my every thought. He sees each tear that falls. And He hears me when I call". 🎶 that's a song. Dave is super weary, but hanging in there. I worry, but he is someone who digs in and works the problem. I doubt there's little he can't do without men, money and machinery. And he loves me (a practically bald woman!!) so very much! Besides, I love ❤️ him so very much too!😊 Anyway, Thanks to our Gina for her selfless appearance weekly to clean my home! To Lilly for her nurses care and the food! And to Lane & Helen for overly and abundantly caring for Dave and Me. They always blow me away. For all the prayers..Helen D. heads up on that list, but you all..so kindly pray, and that squeezes my newly remodeled ❤️ heart!! We are still surviving, maybe not quite thriving, but early days yet! I thought I'd be a year if all went well, so I'm guessing two years..and so, 17 months to go!😊🌻Best Regards all.. praying for that all goes well for your surgeries & recoveries! 💞❤️️💞
So, pouring ☔️ rain in San Francisco today, bleck 😐 But I was hopeful for news. Which didn't come in the way I had hoped. Nothing like tons of things happenening to you and nothing is how you'd think it'd be. At. All.
So, two docs looked at my sorry toes and told be how lucky 🍀 I was!
Funny. I wasn't feeling lucky. No, but really, Dr. was really nice and very certain my toes (tips et.al.) would, within the month, fall off. Well heck. Isn't this what I've been told for months... Super crazy. BUT finally, I feel like I've got the smart 🤓 person on my team, (as a matter of interest his fellow (who's now a real live doctor since May) helped Dave and I so much on how to ACTUALLY care for my digits, which we do.) So , anyway, he was 😎 cool and after a real life exam, peeling off my big toe nail (eewww) he was sure things were coming off naturally and that most of my toes would be saved. (Btw,I was grossing out over my big toe at this point and wondering why he was so delighted!!). YES, he's a surgeon 😷, who only works on feet. So, he only gave my fingers a tiny look. But, he was nice enough to give us his private office number to get another appointment there, so we can see the plastic surgeon on Nov 1st and him the same day. Guys, I have a feeling the plastic surgeon is going to say the same thing...... wait a little longer!!
So, it's very painful. Not the dead parts, but the living tissue around it all. It's not that I want to lose the top inch of 4 of my fingers, but I must. It's the watching it happen in slow motion that's killing me a little. But I'm oh so blessed by you all. A far away friend on her way to Israel texted me with these words" You're in my prayers every day. I will continue to pray His will be done in you and that you will be a mighty overcomer for His glory.....we're only here for a breath...all will soon pass, eternity with Him, our love, is our focus..... after praising Him and thanking Him, ask Him to show you in His Word what He would say to you every day....." It's these comments and your comments here that help keep me going, so thank you!❤️ And YES, I did ask the doctors about Maggots! I know! But I'd read they are for necrosis. But, and this is one of those Providencial moments I love, the doctor said she'd just given a paper and presentation on wound care using maggots🤓🤔And, she was like," no way do you want to use maggots on these toes, they are healing so well! " If you think I'm weird it's my sisters fault, she thought 💭 it up! So, two weeks of exercise even though my mind is wondering how I'll overcome so much pain to do it. Continue diet watch 2016. Why can't I just live on air and sunshine?? Dave said, then you'd be a PLANT!😄 And then I'm back to the Bay Area. La de da.
My ❤️ heart seems well, considering, but it needs exercise as do my lungs. My heart valve gradient is "borderline" . Just read that on my after visit paperwork. So, what does that MEAN?!?! Can the bio valve they put in there on my second surgery already be regurgitating??!
Ya know, we can put a man on the MOON, but spend $8,000,000 dollars 💵 and get bupkis!!! Going to ask DrFoster about that through the portal.
So, until my next check up, Happy Halloween kiddies. 🎃And Happy Reformation day to you big kids! ✨God Bless all.. especially you in recovery and those headed to surgery.. you're all going to do great!! ❤️🌻❤️
BTW James is becoming a doggie in his own right and is a sweet baboo!
It's very late, here back in San Francisco! Tomorrow I go to see a vascular surgeon who, I hope, will work with me for the debridement of my toes. Later I'll come back and meet with a plastic surgeon. They both are part of the wound care clinic here.
Hey!! I met with my Cardiologist here (Dr.Foster) two days ago, and after several people came in to visit with me, and I had an echo, she seemed pleased. My surgeon came in, even my anesthesiologist (James, who my puppy 🐶 is named for) All felt I was up to surgery for fingers and toes! I do have to maintain a heart and kidney healthy diet.. hard to do! And no general anesthesia, but sedation s/b enough, with lidocaine blocks to do the job.
❤️ Guys! My lung study showed I am at 60% just at the cusp of breathing on my own. Doing the math my Dr and her Fellow adjusted for my altitude (I live in the mountains) and felt I could do okay at 90-95% oxygen up there, and use the O2 when I'm walking. So, that's bad good news😄Since it'll take work to feel comfortable at those levels.. but I will. My kidneys are only at 47% and she was 😊 happy! I was shocked and said so, but she insisted a good diet and I will be ok! She is still pondering my need for Warfarin.. and wants me to try another pill like the sildenafil but I would cut to one, not 3 well, I enjoy getting my pill count down! Next week I get inserts for my shoes 👠 so maybe I'll walk a bit better. The neuropathy is awfully hard to deal with, very painful. But we have hope. And so I can fight the pain.
So, I need to get these dead toes off, and fingers, go to cardiac rehab and get back to church! Which reminds me to get my flu shot.! Yes, I'm still on oxygen..24/7 but I'm going to continue to lower it and do deep breathing techniques and MOVE , Yes, I'm in a great deal of pain.. I cry often. Dave is there. We try to deal.
We pray. Yes, I'm still in shuffle my feet mode , hard to walk normally. Yes, most of my hair fell out..very shocking. I'm bald with wisps of fine hair straggling around...it's humbling.
Dave says I'm His beautiful Wife with such sincerity I believe him, but when I pass by a mirror I'm shocked at all of my physical brokenness. This all almost broke me spiritually too.. but the Lord did not let me go and sent sooo many people, including you all, to keep me encouraged. My dr said,"Barb, the reason everyone has come in here and smiled is because oh look great and you are doing good."
So, moving on to my consult tomorrow and hopefully all will be positive.
God Bless All❤️️🌹❤️️ Love & Hugs 🤗 Barbara
Hi my friends, old and new😄 Well, Labor Day is over, the Autumn season is approaching and I'm still stuck in the waiting room of life. I did get my referral for lung study, but not an oxygen compressor to travel with, so I am going to try to look online for one. But, one night our front window did not get closed. At the same time the water sprinkler outside was not adjusted properly, my Apple laptop sits on my console under the window. Dave found the flooded console in the morning. I tried to dry what I could the computer is dead. I have insurance for it. Thank God! Now, got to have poor Dave drive it to Reno.
Dave went to urgent care on Friday. He's quite sick and could use your prayers, he's very worn down. He's on antibiotics.
My middle finger tip and nail fell off. The finger is super sensitive and deformed looking, unusable just yet, but, that's that. Four more to go.
My primary Cardiologst is going to talk to the plastic surgeon I was refereed to, no news yet. He also spoke to my nephrologist about my kidneys. They are still very much in need of prayer, my injury to them was worse than I thought, but thankfully they are still working🌻
I started stair stepping with my cane and Dave..ya know, that plastic stair step from Wal-Mart? I just do it until I poop out. My feet don't hurt as much.
We have been overly, abundantly blessed by a friend from church to take over house work. I finally have a cleaner that gets me!! 🎉🎉 She's fantastic, I'm very pleased. Now, if I can just rent a child to wear out puppy James every day Dave might get rest!! Otherwise, I am just waiting, learning to trust God in all things. Learning to give thanks for oh so many things, and remembering to pray.
I'm sorry I can't say I'm all well! But. I'm alive, balding rapidly, but alive. Learning to just be is so very hard for me. So, Dear Lord, help me to think of others more than myself and to trust You evermore than I thought I could. God Bless all.. Happy Autumn, may it bring you happy healthy days❤️
Whoops!! I forgot to write.. No I haven't found shoes yet that'll fit my bad foot. I'd ordered a pair of Padders slippers on eBay, but never received them!
My surgeon Face Timed me from the children's hospital with a few of my nurses and we chatted for awhile. They were all very encouraging to me and it was an uplifting moment. 💕❤️💕
WARNING❣❣❣Pre op HVS folks.. Everyone is different! Do
Journal posted on August 19, 2016
How can I keep a whole week of medical visits update short? I'll try. Monday was wound care clinic in Reno. Very good people. They saw my foot and hands and immediately got me an appointment for a vascular study and also one with the vascular surgeon. Tuesday I did the study, so back down to Reno. Poor Dave! Dragging me all over the place! It took Three hours. But hey, they had free valet parking!(I got my handicap placard😕) She checked every finger, toe, ...everything. Wednesday saw the Pulmonary Doc. He's known me for 20 years. So, we both "know" the little fluid..sorta, in my lung) isn't what's stopping me from getting off Oxygen. But we will go to South lake for a lung study so there's proof. It's a very long drive. Not my cup of tea. (My Tahoe friends are chuckling thinking So. Lake isn't that far, but it is😜🙄) today we went to the surgeon. He told me my vascular study was a big concern because it showed not enough blood flow to my far extremities, which I need if I want to heal after surgery, of course I do! I'm at risk and a very complicated person with all my heart, lung problems now, not having surgery wounds heal is bad.. But he did agree the mummified (his word) tissue has to be removed. He said, surgery, hyperbaric chamber and boom..all healed at the turn of a dial..okay, not instantly, but for sure. With the vascular study he thought doing surgery was a risk without hyperbaric therapy. All well and good... But the tank is a huge risk for me..because of my heart..think," putting a heart patient into scuba gear and pushing him off the boat"! So, that's the news. Yes, I need surgery to debride the tissue...but I also won't heal, need to figure how I can, need to get off Coumadin 💩 I have a tissue valve!!! Figure out why I still need oxygen, get shoes that fit my swollen feet. Figure out why my feet are still swollen...AND do it all with grace, mercy, kindness patience, love, self control, joy, peace,gentleness and faithfully. As the Apostle Paul once wrote,.... But God.." So, Dear God, please give me your strength to persevere and please help us to pray for one another!!❤️❤️❤️
We will see my Cardiologst next Friday and I am sure he will urge me back to UCSF. Oi! I hate that drive. With oxygen needs, I hate it more!
Today I went to the Wound Care Clinic and got the news. No way was I to wait, but instead I need to get to a vascular surgeon asap😐 So, the PA did some pleading and got me into St.Mary's Reno to do the vascular study tomorrow, and meet the surgeon on Friday. Wednesday I see a pulmonary Doctor, locally, who will help me address my oxygen needs. Hopefully he'll be able to figure out if my low oxygen is because of my lungs or not. If not,then back to the cardiologists. I don't know when the amputation surgery will be, but we think very soon, especially since the recovery will be long, the PA said. I won't have the use of my hands for quite awhile, so ,much prayer is needed and not taken for granted by me or Dave💕💕 I'll fill you in when I can, hopefully Dave will too when I can't type for a bit😏😟😳
I bumped my middle finger on my right hand tonight and part of the dead tissue lifted and yow! That freaked me out. Just asking those who pray to ask the Lord for the pain to decrease, that I can avoid infection and that I can mentally put up with this process of having parts of my digits come off for good. This event showed me how scared I still am.
Good Golly, I went in for open heart surgery and ended up in a strange place. Ah.. Well. Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers. The finger tip and nail bed isn't quite ready to come off.. But I'm praying now that it will soon. Then it will be, one down,7 to go!!! 💕❤️💕
I know my scars and wounds will heal, and they will change me in lots of ways, but here's a pic of the Barb that's still inside here somewhere😄 OHS changes us, but I hope, when we look back, we will just see the positives and be living out our lives he
Here's my newest picture!
July 13, 2016
What my hands still look like, this is my right hand and my left is similar. Thankfully most of my hands are okay, just the fingers are swollen, or have necrosis as well as nerve damage. I have 2 scars on the back of my hands that were quit deep wounds, t
My feet now, the bottoms are healing, but the swelling hasn't gone down, or the nerve pain..this is my left foot, my right foot only has swelling and nerve pain, no toes are necrotic THANK GOD ,though both of my feet bottoms had the skin removed. BY THE W
What my foot looked like three weeks after surgery, the bottoms of both feet had all the skin removed because they were totally blistered😳 Ouch.
Blessed, but at times depressed...
Journal posted on July 10, 2016
I've written before about the challenges I've experienced throughout my OHS(s) journey. If you are in front of your OHS , don't read my journal, because I don't want you to be scared, if your on the backside, I welcome you to read my story..it's not special, but maybe it will bring you a modicum of encouragement 💕 This last 10 days has been especially difficult, over the holiday weekend my feet and hands changed in the way I experienced the pain..from bad to worse, from the fry pan to the fire! Instead of somewhat walking I've had to resort to shuffling, and the pain so intense and constant I began to just beg for relief 😫
Now, don't get glum.. I got a good cry in, Dave's shoulder full of tears and snot, and James so worried I was crying🐶🐾🐶 and, then we prayed and I decided that, because there is room in the Christian walk for tragedy,there is also the resurrection to meditate upon and rejoice in the Lord. I won't ever deny the fear, pain and uncertainty that is everyday fare for me now. But, that's everybody's life, I guess. From one degree to another❤️ So, this week I was wicked depressed, but I feel better, even if my recovery seems halted, things are going on in my body I don't notice since it's tiny increments.
I still grieve for the outcome I had been hoping for, but it weaves itself in and around me and dissipates, or morphs into something like acceptance. Since everything is about my hands and feet now, I can barely address my heart/lungs it's all very weird. Still short of breath and having a struggle keeping my oxygen up... But working on that hourly. To you all who post on my guestbook, I'm even better reading your remarks and inquiring about how I am doung❤️💕❤️ It does me good, cheers me and reminds me of every one who has gone before me.. So thank you!
I am reading all my get well cards and letters, That has cheered me up a great deal. Otherwise, I am not living a normal life yet, long way to go, and I'll try to update a few times a month. Right, need to sleep now❣
Wanda and Alina, hope things are going okay and please God, you are both well.
I put that as my title so I won't scare any newbies, old timers know my story and have been so so supportive, so I wanted to update and tell you.. It's been hard, but hey, recovery from anything takes time!!
I've been home from my 11 week saga of hospital stay for 3 weeks, but for three days last week when I began to de-sat oxygen I am on 4 liters per minute 24/7 right now. It wasn't too hard to figure out something was wrong since I keep my at home devices checked out, so, after talking with my doctor off to the hospital I went. Last Monday evening. My Cardiologst took over, got me admitted and came in on and off all day Tuesday (his day off) to keep working a plan to solve what was up. Everyone at the hospital (my third one now) asked if I was a VIP since the dr was taking his day off to care for me and getting in early on his office days to work my case. Well, yes, after 23 years of care Dr Lombard treats me like well, a family member. He right away got on the phone to my Cardiologst at UCSF and, via computer she could see all my tests, even my echo and X-ray, I began a great treatment for my lungs (that left one that gave me so much trouble) antibiotics etc.. Breathing well now.
I received really good food there and Dave was only 15 minutes away. Best of all I got to see several times an excellent wound care nurse. She examined my foot, toes, and fingers, all is okay, no infections. AND I received a wonderful Benefit of talking out my concerns about surgery for amputation vs. waiting for the necrotic toes and parts of fingers to fall off (giving my body time to heal the skin underneath) I am very much into limb preservation, so Dave and I decided to wait and see and keep things dry, clean and infection free. My dr is sending pics of my hands and feet to THE plastics dr at UCSF he's already seen me, so maybe he has something to add.
My heart: is doing well considering the insult it took. Like many of you I hate being so tired and even short of breath. I resent having to sleep with my head and upper back up, a side affect of the Glenn procedure, since my superior vena cava has been shunted into my pulmonary artery all my blood above my shoulders drains directly into my lungs, bypassing my right ventricle...which is weak and still enlarged. WILD what these surgeons can do though!
Emotionally: I cry everyday. I'm no stoic and, though I do work hard, there's a sense of grief and tiredness that gets to me. Other times I cry because of the amazing husband God gave me, and I am utterly humbled by him and how he serves me, never complaining, kindly loving me.
RE:my scar. It's healing well, but it's been 12 weeks and I thought my central line scar, chest tube scars heperine shots cats, pacing wire scars and groin catheter scars would have faded, but, no! So, when Dave sees me in my birthday suit all scared up with swollen feet, necrotic tissue..and tells me how beautiful I am, and I know without a doubt he means it.. I thank my dear Lord for humbling me and making me see past the superficial. I have a lovely, Godly friend that always encourages me to "go deeper" with our Savior, Jesus.. These times I describe are moments that truly plunge me into His presence, when I've been humbled by the love of others. When someone I've never met types on my guest book "how are you" or I receive a card, email or text!! Just a quick.."hey, I'm thinking of you" lifts me up. Then there are the meals, the visits and the gifts (still guilty..I looovvvee gifts!!) all amazing examples of Christs love.
So, spiritually, still very weak..so He can be strong.. So, strong😄😄❤️
AND James, our new puppy arrived on Saturday, yesterday!! Oh my stars he is adorable.. So I'm going to post pic of Dave, my lovey, and little James, JUST what an old lady with 25 feet of oxygen tubing and feet that don't work well needs! But so darned cute. He begins my doggie training boot camp tomorrow 😄
So, I hopefully have updated properly..ask any question you'd like..oh yeah, my wonderful brother in law who is a ROCK Star, has offered to go through my struggles with my necrosis and amputation (natural or otherwise) with me. He is a double amputee and has had to go through many many struggles in the last 44 years, and so, wow, what an amazing support structure I have! My surgeon from UCSF still texts and is always available to me too..
So, I'm alive, my scars are nothing compared to the joy of living, and living the best way I can each day. I know it'll be a long road, but I'll take it!!!! ❤️💕❤️💕❤️💕❤️💕🌹🌹
SURPRISE!!!😊 Here I am at home, 4:00PM pacific time 😄💕💕
I told my nurse I wouldn't believe it until we were driving away and no one was chasing me!! Thanks for all your well wishes,prayers and kindnesses🌹Now moving to another phase of reco
Emily, Hi sweetie!! Yes, I will need oxygen for quite awhile when I get home. Patrick! Yes, a patience pill would be great😄😄And Kate, no, no dialysis now, not for many weeks. Since I was improving so well everyone agreed dieresis using dieretics to get the water off me would be the best way, to save my heart from more distress. It's worked, but I began puffing up in my legs (walking, gravity) so they want to keep getting that water off. Again, PLEASE don't take my case as normal valve replacement, it's NOT. Adams book helped me so much, and really prepared me, and I hope you all going into surgery will know everyone is different and be encouraged by everyone here on the site. God Bless you all for your uplifting responses💕❤️💕
Disappointed, but still doing what I can to get home!
Journal posted on May 31, 2016
I just finished my 9th week in the hospital. Now I know that's not a record, but it is for me!! And, though I was going home today, that's been cancelled. I cried. But now I just am going to go back to realizing the Lord is in total control, and my new numbers for my kidneys and heart are not at all stable. I'd rather have a cautious Dr. Than a reckless one! So, I keep learning to walk well, drag an oxygen tank with my hands, balance myself and all that jazz😊 . To those recovering,or going into surgery:set backs may happen...give yourself as many breaks as possible😉 I pray right now that all will go smoothly, and that you will heal and feel renewed health. For you all who remember me in prayer, please keep on keeping on😄 All your thoughts and prayers are a blessing and joy to my heart when I have to hear sad news like today💕❤️💕 Best Regards & God Bless you❣
Hi everyone I wanted to just let you know that I am walking better every day I want 1600 feet today and most of that was without holding onto anything and that's amazing after some Coumadin therapy I am going to get that stabilized and I'm hoping that I'll be able to go home on Monday the 30th. I still have a long road ahead of me and I'll be posting all the things that I've achieved so that you can be encouraged and you guys encourage me with all your post I'm sorry I can't write a lot of things right now but I really am thinking of you all and hope you're all doing well God bless you. ❤️🌹❤️☺️
I was able to lift my iPad and manipulate with my few working fingers to read through all the many many posts from folks waiting for surgery or are post op. Wow, I hate to have missed so much and Ihate I've not been here to help encourage you. I moved to an Ltac hospital and let's just say I have a lot of work to do! But I don't want any of you to get discouraged about your upcoming surgeries or your present recoveries. We always say, everyone is different, and this is my path to recovery😊 To all my friends who have kept up with me and care and wrote so many good encouragements, thank you so much. I'm praying and caring for you all. Best regards ❤️🌹❤️!
Looks like tomorrow we are moving to a Long Term Acute Care Hospital in Reno! Barb has made amazing progress and is ready for the next challenge. She will be traveling there in an ambulance, most likely a 4-5 hour trip. I will be right behind her to help her settle in to her new digs. There was some debate as to what level of care she needed, the physical therapists said she was ready for Acute Rehab but there is still some questions about the condition of her feet and hands. Her heart has been the least of our worries for several weeks. It is bittersweet, we've made a lot of friends down here but I'm ready to put SF in my rear view mirror. 6 weeks tomorrow, unbelievable. I'm praising the Lord for an understanding boss, encouragement from all of you and friends and family rallying around us emotionally and financially. We are graciously blessed beyond comprehension. We will continue to update you, especially about our new puppy "James" who will be joining us around July 4th! Warmly, Dave
Our friends Kent and Lisa and daughter Christianna visited today!
Cinco de mayo update.
Journal posted on May 5, 2016
Hello everyone! Lots has gone on the last few days and I'll try to catch you up. Barbs kidneys are working! No dialysis, no catheter, no "foley" (you know what I mean). Her kidneys are now cleaning her blood and making lots of urine! Praise the Lord! She has had to have a chest tube put in, hurt like a bugger, to drain some excess fluid from her lung but that's slowing down now too. She's loosing a lot of water weight and most of her swelling has gone down. You saw the picture of her standing (up to a minute) and she also can motor herself in a wheelchair. Her feet and hands are slowly, painfully healing also. Word on the floor is getting louder for her to be moving to a LTAC (long term acute care) in Reno soon. There for a while and then to Acute Rehab for a while too. Then home! What a journey! What a fighter! She is really pushing in PT and OT. I'm proud to call her my wife. Best wishes to you all from both of us! Dave