If you know me, you know that I’m quick with the jokes. It has taken me a couple months to get to the point that I can have this conversation without laughing. What’s so funny? The ridiculousness of the fact that I could have a “cardiac event” before the age of 40. I mean really…me? No way, that’s just silly.
Well on June 22, 2015, I found out first hand just how un-funny heart issues can be. I woke up and was getting ready for work like any other morning. I ignored the weird pressure in my chest, a heaviness I was unfamiliar with. It was only when I had a head full of shampoo that I realized the shooting pain down my arm was something I should probably pay attention to. I threw on some yoga pants and drove myself to Sycamore. “DROVE YOURSELF?” you ask? Yeah, I realize that was a stupid move…but it was nothing serious, lol. The look on the ER doc’s face when she told me they called the squad to transfer me immediately to get a heart cath at Kettering Medical Center was what let me know with no uncertainty that this was serious business. After reassuring the EMTs that I wouldn’t take ambulance selfies, they let me have my phone so I could text a quick “I think I may be late today” to one of my co-workers.
While the sedation had me endlessly fascinated with the images I was seeing on the screen (that they wouldn’t let me Instagram) as they put a needle as big as an elephant leg (maybe a little smaller) in an artery in my arm, I was fully beginning to realize what was going on. I spent the next few days in the beautiful Schuster Heart Hospital at Kettering. I’m still a bit stunned at what an overall pleasant experience that was. Yes, really. Fortunately, I was able to walk out of there after a short visit with a new knowledge of myocarditis – inflammation of the heart that can happen to anyone, even someone as “young” as me. (Imagine a big winky face emoji there)
Have a heart
So here we are, a little more than a week away from this years’ Heart Walk and I am finally able to type all of this out. I am honored and thrilled to be part of Team Tutu, lead by my friend and heart transplant recipient, DonErik Black. He promised his doctor that he would wear a tutu when he got a new heart, and he promised us that he’d wear one if we raise a boatload of money. Since I am not one to argue with the wearing of a tutu EVER, I had no choice but to enthusiastically show you all this photo as motivation.
Please consider participating or donating this year. If not for the work that the American Heart Association has done to raise awareness of the symptoms you should look for, it’s possible that I wouldn’t be here. Scarier for me is that they would have found me with wet hair and no make-up and certainly no stilettos that you might know I’m so fond of.
My “why” is life, laughter & love for my children, family and friends. What’s yours?
So let’s do this!
Here are the details:
Where: Fifth Third Field
When: Sat, 26 Sep 2015 8:00 AM – Noon
As the signature fundraising event for the American Heart Association, the 5K Heart Walk/Run promotes physical activity and heart healthy living in an environment that’s fun for the whole family. Nearly 4,000 people will gather here in Dayton and raise these all important funds. Visit the vendor area before and after the walk/run for a health fair, free screenings, health tips, massages, free refreshments, a fun Kids Zone, and more! Walk or run with friends, family, co-workers, or strangers you’ll bond with along the way. Anyway you choose to do it, your heart will thank you for it!