Monday, January 26, 2015

Acceptance and the Bright Side

I started a post for today talking about my recovery and giving a few highlights so far.  Something about it felt wrong and I think it’s because there are so many people in such worse health situations than me.  Leading up to major surgery, I think it’s normal to worry that the worst could happen, but you have to quickly push that out of your head.  I’ve thought a lot about Lauren Hill these past few weeks.  She’s a young girl with terminal brain cancer who has raised well over one million dollars for research and has a contagious positive attitude.  I’ve thought if she can stay so positive in her situation, then I can easily make it through my surgery and recovery.  So instead, I decided to write about a slightly different topic.  With this surgery, there are things I have to give up.  I’ve decided to put a different spin on this and instead think of each thing in a way as something I’m gaining.  Here are a few examples.

We have two beautiful children.  The valve I got this time around is mechanical and requires me to take blood thinners for the rest of my life.  Because of this, it is highly advised that I do not get pregnant.  We hadn’t decided if we wanted to try and have more kids, but I know I didn’t want my doctor to be the one to make that decision.  We struggled for three years to have Aiden and Audrey came as soon as we started trying.  I can now see that this happened for a reason.  There are so many families who wish and pray for a child and I know we are lucky to have our two precious babies.  For as long as I can remember, I’ve said I want a boy first and then a girl.  I got what I asked for, what more could I want?

Aiden & Audrey

I will always be sober.  Also because of the blood thinner medication, I can only have 1-2 alcoholic drinks at a time.  Ok, so not a huge deal but it is weird to think that I will forever be the designated driver and one glass of wine will be my limit at weddings.  As a friend said when I told her this…at least you had your fun in college and the few years after!  So true.  I haven’t had many alcoholic drinks the past 5 years with trying to get pregnant, being pregnant and pumping.  I’m used to it and it is nice.  There are MUCH worse things in the world to give up.

At a wedding, obviously a few years ago.  How are my teeth so white?
Tick Tock.  If you’re in a quiet room with me and you hear a ticking, don’t worry it’s not a bomb.  It’s my valve clicking away.  Andrew can hear it on a regular basis, but I have yet to hear it, which is fine by me!  An older couple at the hospital visited with my family while I was in surgery.  He had the same surgery as me and got the same valve.  His wife said the ticking is a comfort to her because she knows he’s still okay.  I like the way she thinks.

Besides a few other small things, I will eventually be able to go back to a restriction free life.  Pretty amazing when you think about all that happened. 

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