Thursday, October 2, 2008

Tick, Tick, Tick...

So a little update on the ticker--my achey, breaky heart. I went to see the good doc this week for a follow-up on my MRI. I knew there wasn't any bad-bad news, because the MRI was a couple of months ago. I am now going to specialists (i feel special) who specialize in adults with congenital heart defects (people born with heart problems--I was born w/a hole in my heart and had open-heart surgery at the age of five).

Basically what came out of this visit was that I'm leaky. Well, my heart is. I have a leaky valve. We've known this since the day I was born. But what has changed is that one of my ventricles is enlarged, to overcompensate for the leak. My heart is working extra hard. Eventually it will get tired, from working so hard. Comparing to earlier tests I've had, it seems that ventricle has gotten even larger...a symptom that I'm going to need to have that valve replaced. SURGERY! Now before you (I) get all panicky, it's not gonna happen right now (unless it is), but that and those "palpitations" I had way back in May, are all little warning signs. Plus there's like a number thingy (that I don't understand enough to explain--something about your body's blood flow and your body frame/weight, etc...) that tells them stuff too, and if your number is 180, you need surgery now. My number is 135, so I'm good, for now.

So I'm going to need surgery at some point. We know this now. The words have been said. It could be tomorrow, it could be in the next decade, or later. We're shooting for later, okay? I guess, if I can hang in there for another ten years, I might not have to have the big surgery, they can just do everything through a catheter (what?!). Technology is pretty cool.

For now I'm good. They are just going to watch me extra careful. I get an MRI on my heart every year now and if I have ANY new symptoms, I need to let them know right way. Sometimes things go awry before you have the symptoms. That is totally not going to help my hypochondriac self at all. So if I look a little winded (from running up and down the stairs about 500x a day to check for comments), or faint in front of you or have palpitations (in my quirky case, muscle spasms--Just A Little Update On My Thumper-- in the heart region) you know to remind me to call the good doc. No messing around.

Other than all that, I seriously feel just fine. I would seriously never know all that was going on if I hadn't found out. Let that be a lesson to ya...get your physicals. And squeak a prayer out for me...for the next ten years, k? ((thanks))


Mummy said...

Wow, that must be a lot to take in Sunshine! Still, it's a good thing that you are able to put the surgery off indefinately...if they were worried about you I'm guessing you'd be straight in and under the knife. Try not to dwell on it too much (easier said than done I know) and make sure you get lots of 'me time' to chill and relax. (((HUGS)))

Sunshine said...

Mummy--it IS a lot to take in. I don't know why, but I'm not really flipping out about it. I'm not scared, yet. Should I be? I think it's cuz I feel good and they gave me the whole 10 years bit.

I won't dwell on it too much, unless I have a hyprochondriac episode. Those are sure to happen. I'm a professional.

I like the idea of chillin' and relaxin'. I'm all for it. I need an island.

Liesl said...

Wow! I'm glad you're taking it well. I did freak out when I read it. You know, I've been hearing bad news all day today.
Well, take it easy. I'll keep you in my prayers!

Sunshine said...

Renata--Oh sweetie! It isn't bad news! It's informative and they can fix it (this is what I'm telling myself). Don't worry, but THANKS for the prayers.

Hope everything is okay over there. I don't like hearing you've been hearing bad news all day. Tell me what to pray for,girl.

careysue said...

You have a wonderful attitude!! So glad you had the physical.

Just a question, should you get a second opinion? Just asking because I have a hard time trusting doctors! And we HAVE to be our own advocate.

You will get extras prayers from me.

Take care and I'm sending you big HUGS through cyberspace!! :)

Hillary said...

Ok, I see you telling people not to worry, but ummmmm...if you're a professional at hypochondriac episodes, then I'll admit that I am an expert at episodes. I do try to chill and "cast all my cares" on the Lord. But my brain kind of works against that at times.

I will keep you in my prayers, for sure, girl. Wow. That's a lot to take in.

(((((hugs))))) Love you!

Lynn - the piggy bank painter said...

Here's some hugs and prayers coming your way....

Click here to win Petunia Pig!

Jennifer P. said...

You know me and my leaky valve are praying for you and yours. They keep telling me: "Rheumatic heart disease is no biggie--we'll just slap a pig valve in there and you'll be fine..." Yeah, whatever.

just take a moment to breathe deep and feel alive.

Love ya!

Dee said...

Oh my friend, BIG HUGS to you. Thats all I can say right now. I'll tell mum to add you to the prayer list - they have good results. So if your ears itch or something on Sunday,(or Saturday evening your time) thats them praying for ya.

Sunshine said...

careysue--**I** have a good attitude? YOU my dear are the one with the amazing attitude. I have good mentors. :)

The second opinion is a great idea and I'm on it. This is seriously like the THIRD doc I've seen since we've moved here a YEAR ago. And when we were in the military I was good about going and getting all checked out. It's amazing to me that I was going to "big" hospitals like Bethesda Naval to see my doc and no one thought to give me an MRI on my heart. I have found out SO MUCH MORE about myself (my heart) since they did the MRI. I've seriously seen three doctors at three different places since we've been here and they are in agreement. Should I go for a couple more? I mean, it IS my heart! ;D

Sunshine said...

Hill--I know, I *could* be a professional worrier too, but the hyprochondria is so consuming...ha ha...AND Hubb's ggma worries enough for us all. I've seen what that does to your body over the years. It t'aint good.

Thanks for the prayers. I'm all over the prayers. :)

Sunshine said...

((lynn))--You are so sweet! Thanks for being so good about coming over here and encouraging me! I always love seeing you! Thanks so much for the prayers.

Don't worry y'all! ;D

Sunshine said...

Jenniferp--Like two peas in a pod (these are the daaaays of our liiives)!

I know, cuz "pig valve" sounds sooooo incredibly reassuring, right?

I think it's starting to sink in. I mean, it's not like getting your tonsils out (which I have never had done, but I know there's icecream involved). It is my ((heart)). Okay...I'm good, I'm good. :)

Sunshine said...

Dee--thanks for hooking me up w/your mom and her church. I totally get the "connections" bit. I've always felt that my aunt (basically my real mom's entire family)and uncle have some serious connections. She hooks me up too! I am a huge believer in prayer though. We've seen miracles happen...true miracles. These are probably the things I should be blogging about--eh?

BTW--my ears are itchy...;D

Hillary said...

You are right about worrying being a bad news business. And truthfully I DO try to continuously give those worries to God, but I can't help but "feel" the worry from time to time.

I loves my "peeps" as some would put it. :) And I don't like anything messin' with 'em.

When GP was really sick...I wasn't in real good shape. Cuz I count him as one of my peeps...because hey...I take people captive in my heart with or without permission. :) Consider yourself my prisoner.