Here are just a couple with small definitions of what is going on. Enjoy :)
^^^ My actual heart right when they cut me open down the middle of my sternum/breast bone. The two medal things held my chest and ribs back.
^The part of fake valve being sewn onto my aortic root after they cut the old part out. I think it looks like something from Star Wars.
^And again. Notice no blood? They had me on a machine that made none of the blood from my body reach my heart. My heart was actually completely stopped from beating for an hour and a half.
^Success! That is the fake valve in place of the old one they cut out. That little thing is what will be keeping me alive.
^Here I am right after surgery in the ICU. I dont remember anything from when I got out around 4, until about 2am. That breathing tube they had in me felt terrible though. I DO remember getting that gnarly thing taken out.
^Here I am the morning after, still in the ICU. They removed the breathing tube, but that was it. Still had to keep all my main artery wrist iv’s, stickers, gauze, patches, catheter (tube that went in my penis, into my bladder) neck iv’s, and wires.
^Here i am after about 4 days. The big white patch?! Holding in my pace maker (wires that went in my chest, see the two red things? And wrapped around my heart, to help it beat normal) And also my chest tube (a tube about the size of a dime, and around two feet long, placed inside my chest cavity, used to drain excess blood and other nasty stuff.)
On about the fifth day they took all of that out, and it was THE worst thing I think I have ever felt, pulling out the wires from my chest? Haha it was not pleasant. Specially the chest tube, when it came out, so did tons of blood and brain like stuff, it was nasty, and the tube felt like it just kept coming. But the tube they pulled from my “you know what” was worse. LOL my wife was standing outside when they did it and she said she could hear me go, “ohhh ahhhhh” haha, it was quite the experience.
^Here I am the day I got home. The opening starts at the top of the anchor, and goes all the way down to where you feel your breastplate end, and stomach begin. It looks gnarlier everyday.
Now I just have to sit, walk for 45 minutes a day, keep doing my breathing exercises on my machine, and get back to normal. My chest bone won’t be okay until about 8-10 weeks from now. I’m on literally 9 different medications a day. Some for pain, some for my heart, some for my brain, some for swelling, etc. My wife keeps me in line with taking them even though they make me feel terrible. Now its just a waiting game.
Wanted to say thanks to everyone who has been wishing me so many “get wells” and “good lucks”, you all are the best. Reading your letters everyday makes me so happy and appreciative to have amazing friends and fans like you. Keep them coming! I will continue to write back soon, the past 2 days home I’ve barely been able to move. But I’m being taken care of, my wife is a great nurse, she should take it up as a living, and God has been healing me more and more on a daily basis it seems. Keep being rad, and stay tuned for more updates from me! I love you all! Seriously, through out everything the support has helped me pull through more than you know. These are rough times but you all make it so much better <333