Oh, this day. It brings back so many memories, somewhat good but most of all just frustrating. From the needles, to the surgery, family and the diagnosis…it was all just a whirlwind of shit. I’m surprised I can still remember it!
About this time I was on an operating table, watching, feeling and listening to doctors run a giant tube down my throat and a cord up my leg. All I knew was that I had a hole in my heart, we needed to see how big the hole was and we needed to measure all the pressures in my heart. At first the idea of being awake during surgery threw me off but when I was actually in there I felt relieved in a way, knowing I would know exactly what was happening to me. Surgery was interesting to say the least. Its kind of thrilling listening to the doctors and watching your heart beat on a screen, but all that went downhill when my doctor shut everything off and said, “Haley there is no hole. We couldn’t find one, the problem is in your lungs.” He needed to speak with another doctor and left the room, as machines were turned off and nurses got me ready for my 6 hour recovery time. I was wheeled back into my hospital room where my doctor was waiting on me and told me that I had an incurable lung disease and we needed to start treatment immediately or I would die within two years.
I wasn’t as much disappointed as I was annoyed. Family came flooding in crying (the doctor had already spoken with them), asking questions and trying to explain things to me before I even had time to process what was said. I just wanted to be alone to sit back and think what had all just happened. I went into this surgery expecting them to put a plug into the “hole” in my heart and within a year I would be functioning at a normal pace. I even got a pair of hot pink running shoes and were saving them for when I was eventually “fixed”. I always wanted to go running and not feel a heart attack coming on! So this news told me that I would never be normal, I would always be unfixable and just a broken pair of lungs.
Well my my my, have things changed! I’m quite literally the definition of fixable because this is the most “normal” I’ve ever felt in my entire life. I feel younger and happier mainly because I can FUNCTION. I’ve definitely moved on from that bad outlook and It hasn’t been the most amazing road in life but I’ve definitely been blessed with an amazing Pulmonary doctor (Dr. Sahad – I love you so much just like a second dad!!) and a great recovery. Thank you to all of you who have supported me and pushed me further. Its been three years so I’ve definitely lived past my expiration date. I don’t even know how I’ve done it. I’m blessed.
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