You go girl!! You really rocked this didn't you? Wow, I'm impressed! Can't keep a Carolina Girl down! So good to hear from you. Guess what???? It's over!!!! Now you are all fixed up.
I've heard the neck and shoulder pain is worse than the surgical pain. If you don't already have one, get someone to run to JC Penney and get you a "travel pillow" to go around your neck, helps support your head and relax your shoulders. It looks like a donut with an opening to go around your neck.
Take care and keep up the good work.
I'm getting really, really close. Leave for Cleveland on Thursday.
Jan, my daughter Tracie will be with me and she already knows how extensive her "journaling" duties are, lol. My thoughts and prayers will be with you tomorrow, I know you are going to kick some butt!! You should be sufficiently clear headed by the 13th to give me the low down for real!
Enjoy today, hopefully the weather will be better than yesterday, try to get some sleep tonight and go get 'em in the morning!!
Hi Jan, we have all been there with the 3AM wake-up. I am wishing you the very best on Monday. You have the easy job, just show up and go to sleep! Rest is upto your very capable surgeon. You can and will do this.
Hi Jan, just wanted to "stop by" and wish you well on Monday. I know you will do great. Also, by the way, love the new picture! Beautiful!
I won't be too far behind you, leaving for Cleveland on Thursday, but by that time you will probably be close to being discharged. I pray everything goes smoothly with no complications at all! Looking forward to hearing "they were all right...waiting was the hardest part" cuz lord knows it's been hard, lol.
Take care, be strong, hang tight...go get 'em!
Hi Jan - that big red braclet stays with you the entire hospital stay along with one mor you will get on Monday. That they will scan before doing any vitals/ test as well giving you medicine.
Yea the pre-op was so overwhelming with just the number of people that come in to see you.
Did you meet Laurie? She is the cardiac surgery navigator. I really like her and you will see her throught your week in the hospital.
When you arrive on Monday you will go to a staging room. If you have anyone with you they can join you in that room. There you will get a gown and some socks to wear. You will get a shot in the hip of something. That's also where they will do the shave down. From there you will be given something to rinse your mouth with and some will wipe your body down with some special soap wipes.
Then you wait and someone will come and get you and if anyone is with you they will walk with you until you pass they waiting room. This is will you will depart. Then they take to or staging area. Several people will come ask you a bunch of questions to make sure it's you and the procedure is accurate. Then I was in a room where they asked me to slide on a table where they were starting the IV's. The last thing I remember. was someone saying lets put this hat on and I was out. Next I was waking up in the ICU with everyone telling me to cough and then the breathing tube was out. The greatest thing in the world was the 1st time they gave me ice chips. Wow that was amazing. I was so thirsty. You rest well in the ICU.
Good luck and I will be thinking about you. Please let me know what questions you have.
Glad you like your surgeon and he answered any questions you may of had. So important in this process you find the hospital and doctor that is right for you. You will do great. Continued prayers sent your way. Janis Kielbasa
Oh my jan. I didn't realize you were up that soon. My bad. Ok. Get it together. Keep your sense of humor and know how good it's gonna be. Again pls call if you'd like. I'll give u the " skinny ". 314-276-1012.
If you can get on that BIKE. You can do this !
We are going to be going through this together! I just went through the pre-op stuff today, too. My surgery will be Monday because they couldn't squeeze me in on Friday after all, so they sent me home. I had a similar experience so far, love my doctors and nurses, got great education. I got a pre-taste of the hospital the last couple of days because I went to the ER Tues. night and they popped me in the hospital to do the angiogram right away. Sounds like you've known this was coming for a little bit. I bet that was nerve-wracking. I'm glad I don't have too long to think about it.
Jan that would be super to meet you. Please advise dates we travel a lot. (out speakng ) but you can bet if I"m in town we will meet cell is 314 276 1012 Pls log that downn. (call anytime, honest. ) What company are you with? here's my site: www.telephonedoctor.com
fun. hope we can make that happen.
nanc st louis.
Jan...get a playlist of your favorite music and listen to it often. It always helps me relax. These last few days will likely bring on the roller-caster of emotions, but find that toughness inside you to take this on with confidence. You can do this. I did it 4 months ago (same heart problems as you)...and I feel awesome. I did not mind the soreness after surgery because I knew I was fixed and I could then concentrate on getting better.
So...positive thoughts...be confident...listen to your favorite music and get yourself fixed.
Jan, Hope you an Eva had a wonderful day. That is such a pretty name. Love it! Just think soon you will be on the other side of surgery and recovering. You will do fine. Try and not worry. Sending you good thoughts and prayers. Keep us updated. Hugs, Janis Kielbasa
Hi Jan, the days leading upto to surgery can be the worst. We get all in our heads and imagine the worst. Do your best to get out of your head. And know this, whatever you are thinking about is way worse than the reality. I won't lie and tell you this is a walk in the park, but I will tell you it is very, very manageable. You can and will do this. And do it well.
Hi Jan, sounds like a great weekend for fun with your "babies". Try to leave some of the stress behind so that you can enjoy being with them. Notice I didn't say "all" the stress, I know it never goes completely away. I'm sorry the meds aren't working for you. I split my doseage and take .25 mg twice a day instead of .50 mg once a day. Seems to work better that way for me. I think it has a very short half life. I have not experience nausea, except occasionally if I don't take the meds. And I think it isn't really nausea, but my belly just getting the "knots" back. Maybe if you tell your doctor he can try something different. I have found the guided imagery tapes from Cleveland Clinic to be extrememely helpful with relaxation. I have not received the Peggy Huddleston book and tape yet, but Jeffrey says it is much the same. Maybe you can get that to help.
Anyway, try to have fun this weekend. Still have time to worry later, lol!
hi jan-read my journal the page i entitled-happy pills-i ordinarily am a very strong individual but this has rocked my world and not afraid to admit it - and i did get happy pills-lol,and they have helped. i am sure we will be fine. i see my surgeon on march 5th with hopefully if he feels i need surgery it will be scheduled shortly after. when i tell friends of mine or my co workers-i am an RN the reaction is the same-oh my god linda!!! not like we are having our appendix out-lol.as i said we will be fine and stronger than ever. may god bless us both and all of our valve friends-this website has been wonderful
Jan, know that you will be fine. Excellent doctors, 98% success rate, read other's posts and see how great we are doing. Then, keep yourself busy with distractions. Remember, we are the blessed ones, the ones who can be repaired and go on with full long lives. I did not have anxiety before...I did not want to be a walking time bomb so surgery was a good thing. Plus, you have all of us sending good thoughts and prayers your way. You will be fine and do very well. Janis Kielbasa
I think we all were so anxious the month before surgery.. I just kept thinking 'why me?' especially after always taking care of myself, etc. I mainly tried to stay occupied, get lots of rest, and not over do it. I also was praying every minute I think..lol. Just keep the faith that everything will be OK. Because it will be. I will be thinking about ya.
Love April Crocker
Hi Jan The first thing I learned here on this site is have faith and a lot of it. Say one great big powerful prayer and it will be taken care of. When I found out about the same thing you have I came unglued. In Sept I joined my church and at that time I felt a whole lot of nerves leave. Then In Nov I was baptized and it even helped more. So I do feel his presence around me. This website has helped a lot. It looks like you like to ride your bike, I would go someplace you really love to go and enjoy it get back to nature. I also find walking has relieved some stress also. But I will tell you, my doctor wanted me to loose weight so I joined weight watchers and got my 10%, so that told me I can do it BUT I have decided that I have been so good doing all of this, a couple days before this all comes down I am going to have a candy bar. Then go back to loosing again. So you can do it. Mitch is amazing and so is Nancy. I just hope I can do that good also. We can do it.
Good Luck LInda H
Hi Jan, this may be my first time signing your HVJ, not sure how I missed all your posts, but I did and I am sorry. All your feeling are totally normal. And, at almost 3 weeks post op, I can tell you the anticipation and waiting is by far the hardest part. Our minds make us crazy with every conceivable scenario and every possible moment. Try your best to keep occupied, and hopefully the next two weeks will be manageable. As you get closer, an eery calm sets in. That is when you know you are ready and you will be fine.
We have all been where you are. This stuff is big and it is hard. Hug your loved ones, cry when it feels right and do nice things for yourself.
It sounds like you are just like the rest of us before our surgeries. When we come to realize that we have absolutely no choice about this and have selected great surgeons we just have to trust. You are at the worst part of it. The waiting before is so much harder than the recovery. Keep posting you will get the support you need here.
Jane (11 weeks post-op)
Jan, just keep yourself busy and around loved ones. I was ok until about a week before then my mind ran away with me. I know its easier said than done but do believe that these surgeons do this on a daily basis - its routine for them. I had a few little problems after surgery and you know what they have a drug for everything! Im 3 weeks post op and i walked a mile and a1/4 yesterday. This will soon be behind you and youll be on you way again in not time
No secret, magic way to take it all away that I know of. Just know that the doctors are very, very good at this surgery and do it all the time. There is no pain going in to surgery or during...you will be asleep. You will awaken sore but fixed. The pain is manageable and gets better very quickly.
We have the same diagnosis and likely the same surgery. I am doing fantastic and so will you. Just listen often to the music that makes you the happiest and remember what Bob Marley says...."don't worry...about a thing...'cause every little thing....gonna be alright."
Hi Jan, ask you dr. for something to help with the anxiety. You don't have to commit to it for the rest of your life, but I think a low dose anti-anxiety med such as valium or xanax will help. When I feel anxious, I actually feel nauseated as well. Cleveland Clinic has some guided imagery tapes that they send their patients and I find it really helps. It is basically relaxation techniques. I have also ordered the book by Peggy Huddleston that Jeffrey recommended and it has some of the same things, maybe you can get that. But however you do it, you do need to try to get the anxiety a little bit better under control. It never goes completely away, but if I let it get a jump on me I can end up a basket case.
Don't try to do this without some help. We are who we are, God didn't make any mistakes, he just made us a little different. And he made drugs to help us when we need it!! Call your doctor!
Happy Birthday Jan, At least you already knew about your problem. On my 65th birthday last year is when I got the news of the same thing you have. Hope you have many more happy years to come.
Until Later Linda H