it's SO wonderful to see all the positive changes which have happened since before your surgery till now. you seem more in proactive and in control of the situation (like having a little talk with the anesthesiologist), and listening to your body, which is the greatest way to accomplish the rest of your journey.
Hi Judy! I just read your journal and have really learned alot. I too have mitro valve stenosis....for about 10 yrs now. So far so good. I get scared everytime I see my cardiologist......wondering when it will be my time for surgery. You seem to be doing so well. If I ever have any questions its nice to know someone whos been thru it.
May you continue to do well in your recovery.
Blessings to you!
Judy, It always seems to be something. I found out about my mitral stenosis at the beginning of January. Now I found out I also have pulmonary hypertension which makes surgery more risky. I'm glad you are doing so well and I am trusting I will also have a good outcome. Beth Graves
Oh Judy! That's so wonderful! I know you probably don't have 5 minutes left in your days, but you could really help some people going through the same thing. Heck, lots of people just reading your journal I'm sure are comforted as well by your having gone through this and come out on the other side.
Last week I had (another) friend have a heart attack and have to have emergency heart surgery to replace a valve and clear out blockage. He's only 39!! It really makes me think more about heart health and getting my checkups every year. It's gotten so common today, unfortunately, it's as important for women as a yearly mammogram or men's prostate checks. Though not fun, they're a must. Now I won't complain so much and whine to get my physicals each year. Thankful I have insurance, even if it's not great, I can get my checkups.
I SO enjoy your Ricochet FB page. You are so right on regarding how dogs think :) You are an inspiration so please keep it going. I have a dog that looks exactly like Rina too.......
Thank you again,
Tina in Santa Barbara
My name is connie campbell, I noticed all that you do for others and I wanted to say thankyou . I know that God has a special purpose for your life and for Richochet as well,your a good team together and I pray God will continue to bless you as you serve others ,Happy Easter !
Judy, I just found you on Ricochet's fb via another "non-commenting" fb page ;). I was so pleased seeing your work with special needs children. Your Charity work is Amazing! Now I am reading your Journal. Bless your heart, literally! I wish you continued strength and healing. You are a Blessing to so many. Thank you for all that you do. I am so glad that I saw Ric's "Easter cone" pic and found you guys. Take care!
You came thru it so well because you are a strong, tough woman... The fact that lots of people were sending you love, positive energy and payers didn't hurt ... but YOU did it! You rock! Sharon from NY
Happy Easter Judy, Hope you are feeling alot better.. We had 60 degree's today and Traci and the family are moving into the new house this weekend. Very busy. We love, admire and think of you all the time. Laura
Dear Judy...we knew you would come to this understanding. Having survived breast cancer twice (and the mastectomy) I came to the same end. EMPOWERMENT Glad you are well and keep ico and Rina on their toes. With love...Teresa
you have come a very long way and you did it with style! Now it is Easter and springtime- a time of new beginnings. May you & your beautiful girls enjoy your new life.
love & best wishes-
On this Easter weekend, this story so reminds me of another, where someone had to go through hell to come out the other side and then go on helping others. I am so grateful you were brave enough to work through this and strong enough to endure so we all still have Judy, because we were dearly in danger of losing you. As I said before, your work here is not done. I rejoice in you and your victory!! Power on Girl :) Much love, Carol Martin
My housemate got me a Surf dog Ric shirt for my birthday... I use Ric's videos in my classroom of students with autism. I want the kids to know that like Ricci, they are amazing.. "just the way they are" and that they can be proud to be themselves. This is your work coming to fruition through your work with Ric. The muscle may have been in need of repair, but there has never been anything wrong with your heart. Thank you, you're pawmazing.
Your "Journey" is truly AMAZING and INSPIRATIONAL (I know--you would say no--BUT-IT IS!!!!)
I am honored to know you and Rina and Ricochet (Long distance of course!!BOL!!!)
Praying always for you and looking with ENTHUSIASM to each NEW DAY you are Blessed with!!!
Judy...You are awesome...I had to read your story first, and my heart goes out to you...You have conquered every stone that the devil has threw at...God is awesome.. and them to wonderful dogs of yours make me smile every day....Love and hugs and Paws to all of you!!!
Judy I have been reading your journal and I am very happy that you have come through this procedure with flying colors. A lot of it has to do with your will power, spirit and determination. Keep going full force.
Again, you are such an inspiration!! As a human being we all have fear....you faced it, you walked thru it and you are on the other side. Congratulations to YOU. You have done a remarkable job and you have shared it. You have reached so many people...who will remember your words and walk in fear as you did knowing there is another side of this.
Have a wonderful day and thank you for sharing your story. Kiss those dog's snouts for me!!!
As I read your latest post I have tears in my eyes. Ric and Rina are not he only ones who inspire people. You have been so open through all of this and shared your fears with the world on FB. You will inspire and comfort those that are dealing with such scary situations in their own lives. I am sooo very happy that you are now on the other side of all of that. I am proud to call you my Friend and I look forward to seeing you at a surfing contest this summer. Val xo
Power to the peeps! Happy Easter, Judy, to you and the girls. Thank goodness you are on the up side of this journey. Thank you for sharing your most intimate, private thoughts of it with us. We all love you~
Yeah Judy! Thank you for sharing your journey with us all. My son Connor, has CP & difficulty getting verbal words out often. He uses ASL, guestures & a super fabulous IPAD app called Proloquo2Go to communicate. Think clip art, various screens can be set up & a a big picture word list as well as adding your own words & photos. I wish you & all of the patients had that available if only few interactions with the hospital staff to express what was really going on.
Happy Bunny day to you & yours.
P.S. Connor says...so wish you, Ric & Rina were closer. We are in NJ....hint hint we have an ocean. Also you need more video of the dogs. He & the sibs like to check it out.
Judy, Kudos to you.I have an expression I have used for years "That which does not destroy you, makes your stronger" It sounds like you are there! I went through open heart - yea the complete sternotomy back in 1984 when I will 40 years old - it was to repair a congential defect (small hole in the ventricle) that they put 2 stiches in (no patch). That was 26 years ago - I now have to have a mitrial valve repair for regurgitation - my arteries are clear they have already determined that - in fact complimented me on whatever I was doing to keep them clean (I eat right and exercise but you appear to have taken care of yourself too - I'm a little inclinced to beleive hereitity plays a part -
Anyway I have been impressed on how you have met this challenge and you especially concerned me when I read your experience in ICU - obviously that has gotten no better after 26 years - to me that was the scarest part of the whole experience. I too went thru the same experience back then. I was freezing, nurses were wearing sweaters all of them, I was feeling pain and thirsty - they completely ignored me - in fact I am not sure I was even talking now, maybe I was just talking in my head - it was such a helpless feeling, you are stuck and it seems no one cares. Other than that and on the 3rd day I went in afib and they did they paddles, but did not need blood transfusion (thank my good Lord) because HIV was in the blood back then. Arthur Ask had the same surgery the same month in Richmond Va and I was in Virginia Beach.
YOU are an inspiration and continue to help others by sharing here and giving hope and encouragement to the ones of us that still have this in front of us. GOD bless you Judy
Emilyrae Helfen Virginia Beach, VA
Judy, I am so glad you feel empowered now. It has been wonderful reading as you've healed & gotten stronger. Between here & facebook, I have been 'keep track' of you. You are a wonderful woman. Blessings to you.
Judy, you are indeed a brave woman to reveal the feelings that surrounded and filled you during those very traumatic pre and early post-op days. I admire you for your candor and your desire to share your feelings with others who may be facing similar surgery. Your many activities with Ric and Rina will now take on a whole new meaning, because you are a whole new you! Welcome!
Just got home and saw the e-mail that I had a new Journal entry from you, Judy! I always love to see that e-mail, even though I don't always reply, I love hearing from you! I'm so thankful you have come this far in such a short time (although probably an eternity for you!). Thank you so much for sharing this with us, and for sharing Ricochet and Rina and yourself and all that the three of you do for others! I hope you have a very Happy and Blessed Easter. Prayers and much love to you!
While I have never left a note in your journal, I have read every one of your entries during this journey of yours. Each of them touched me in some way, each for different reasons. However this last entry talking about empowerment especially touched me. Thirteen years ago, at the age of 40, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and subsequently had a bi-lateral mastectomy. A friend of mine was just recently going through a breast cancer diagnosis of her own, resulting in a lumpectomy. As I was comforting her, supporting her and encouraging her, I said many of the things you mentioned here. I shared with her my belief that there are blessings in every situation if we are willing to see them and accept them. I shared with her my belief that some of the blessings of a cancer diagnosis (or any serious medical diagnosis) are she would learn things about herself that she would otherwise never have the privilege of learning. She would arrive at the other side a stronger, wiser wife, mother, daughter and friend. And yes, once she reached the other side, she would have a sense of empowerment upon looking back at that which she had overcome. I also told her that mark my words, you will one day be sharing your story with another frightened and vulnerable woman and it will help her carry on and THAT will be yet another of your cancer blessings, just as my ability to help, support and encourage her by sharing my story
was one of my blessings. I believe as you carry on with this new sense of empowerment and having learned so many amazing new things about you and the world around you, one of your heart surgery blessings will be your ability to support and encourage another finding themselves at the very beginning of their journey. I believe this to be true. THANK YOU for talking us all along on your journey, Thank you for allowing yourself to be vulnerable enough to trust us with your thoughts and feelings during this most difficult time. It will, possibly already has, help many more. Peace and love to you and your sweet furbabies. ::HUGS:: Candace Melin
Right on Judy!
I drove 15 hrs. to care for, and support my brother in NV that was diagnosed w/cancer. His chemo trtmts, were "barbaric". I hardly slept for a month. Was pretty much a walking panic/zombie.
I told my brother, "You're going to have to go through hell to get to the other side." Anyway reminded me SO much of your latest post. You made it through, you are a survivor w/a will to live and help others. I SO admire that!
Please don't forget . . . call me for anything, including company, walking the dogs, or a good home-cooked meal.
Meg Jones xo
Just read your journal, you really should think about turning your journal into a book. You could really help alot of people who are ready to have open heart surgery.
Glad to hear you are coming along, you are a brave soldier and you went to battle with hundreds of facebook friends praying for you and with the love of your girls, Ric and Rina helping you heal.
God Bless You!
LOVING YOU FROM ONTARIO, CANADA! XO
Congratulations on the fundraiser. I am happy to hear that you were able to participate. I haven't had a chance to check out the photos from the event yet but I will this week. Were you able to get any photos of Ric doing lurecoursing yesterday? I'd love to see those too. :)