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"CARDIAC BLUES"

  • 1.  "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-25-2019 00:47
    Hi everyone!
    I'm 14 weeks post op and these last two weeks I think the "cardiac blues" have been creeping up on me. Anyone else experience this? I never realized this recovery would have so many ups and downs. There are days when I'm feeling pretty good physically and emotionally and then a not so very good day will be thrown in there. Trying to stay positive, does anyone have any suggestions? I'm not one to take pills so hopefully this will pass. Thank you : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------


  • 2.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-26-2019 00:52
    Hello Michelle, you are normal.
    i had quadruple bypass in 1996 and one more in 2010.
    I also had 3 stents placed in my illiac artery and my right leg so that the blood would flow properly( perifial sartery disease and then a defibrillator and pacemaker 5 years ago.

    I went through the blues more than once.
    keep a positive attitude always and laugh as much as you can.
    Discuss this with your doctor also.

    Marvin Keyser
    Mended Hearts,Inc.
    National Vice President
    marvk01@gmail.com
    Weston, Fl.

    ------------------------------
    Marvin Keyser
    Weston FL
    (954) 384-3176
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-03-2019 16:38
    Hi Marvin,
    Thank you for your reply. I like this, "keep a positive attitude always and laugh as much as you can."
    I think things are looking up for me, I forgot one very important thing with this recovery...time. I was reminded in my rehab everyone's recovery is different and not to get discouraged if I have a setback. I'm going back to work next week so I think that will help as well. Thank you again  : )


    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-03-2019 16:54
    When in doubt smile





  • 5.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-04-2019 09:25
    Good Morning Marvin,
    I just want to say thank you, this put a smile on my face. I had a bit of a rough night, so much chest discomfort.
    It's a new day, I'm healthy and alive! I'm going to enjoy this beautiful, sunny day, sore chest and all : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 6.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-04-2019 09:16
    Dear Michelle
    as i read all the responses to your concerns, i am thinking how amazing and wonderful this technology is, to provide this opportunity .. that so many people "strangers"  are sharing their reactions to their heart recovery experiences with you.  We are not really strangers ... just friends who haven't physically met .. giving you and each other support.  So much of what has been written rings true for me.
    Thank you to Mended Hearts for this forum.

    Gradually you will become interested in doing activities outside of surgery recovery.  Now is the time to take care of your needs so you will be well enough to take care of others ( charity, family, making the world a better place etc )  you will discover why you are here,  why you were "saved", a new purpose for you ..  this will help ease and erase the "blues"  ( notice the the blues is in small case )

    Definitely i agree with Ira that time is measured "before and after heart surgery."  For  5 years ,I was in aggressive post op exercise ( 360 minutes a week) then i had knee surgery and got out of the "exercise addiction".   This month is my 7 year Heartaversary ... life is moving on around me.
     Other things are happening: 3 grandchildren born since then. With time other things will take more importance in your mind.
    Right now, i live in "before and after My mom died" last December. Taking care of my 92 year old dad has become a priority.

    ------------------------------
    Marilyn Rosenhouse
    Dallas TX
    (214) 850-0219
    ------------------------------



  • 7.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-07-2019 09:48
    Good Morning Marilyn,
    Thank you for sharing your story with me, and such kind words of encouragement : ) It really helps  to know I'm not alone, and with time things will get better.
    Yes, technology is a great thing! This group has been a life saver for me. Everyone on here is so thoughtful and kind : )
    I love the fact that we don't have to be on social media to be a part of this group. I think it really hit me about ten days ago, I deactivated my FB page to focus on my healing. I've never felt any of these feelings before, not only physically but emotionally as well. I couldn't understand why I was feeling so down when I have so much to be thankful for. I didn't want to feel like I was complaining or "poor me" so I kept pretending I was okay. I guess it took a breakdown one day in rehab for me to open up. I now have a whole new understanding of feeling the "blues" and have so much compassion for people that live with these feelings day to day.
    I'm having more good days now so I think things are looking up for me : )
    I've started getting out more, and will be returning to work the week after next. I've never been more excited to go to work hahaha!
    HAPPY HEARTAVERSAY!!! Yay for you : )
    Congrats on your grandchildren, they;re the best!  I have 2 little grandsons, one is turning 2 on Monday.
    You are a true blessing to your dad. He's very fortunate to have you to take care of him.
    Thank you again for your reply. Enjoy your weekend : )
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 8.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-26-2019 07:11
    Hi Michelle,

    Healing physically from open heart surgery can take a full year or longer.  I made rapid progress during my first three months post-op, but the progress became more gradual after that.  I am now eighteen months post-op, in excellent physical condition, able to do everythingI used to do at the gym, but still am not as strong as I was pre-op.  Some days are better than others, but every day feels like a gift.

    Mental healing doesn't really have any timeframe.  I never suffered from post-op depression.  I was filled with gratitude every day just to be alive and still feel that way.  Despite that, I have experienced and continue to experience a vast emotional, psychological and spiritual change from life prior to my heart attack and surgery.  I still find myself recalling life events and categorizing them as pre-surgery or pist-surgery.  It is as if what happened before my surgery occurred in a prior life.  I also find myself uninterested in certain things that I regarded as important pre-surgery, and committed, instead, to interests that I never made much time for before but had always wanted to pursue.  I very much more live in the here and now these days.  I celebrate the anniversaries of my heart attack and surgery as my Alive Days.  I always preferred solitude, and that preference has gotten stronger post-surgery, even as I appreciate the company and assistance of my family and friends more.

    I will never be the same, but that's okay.

    All the best,

    Ira

    ------------------------------
    Ira Reid
    Hoboken NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 9.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-03-2019 16:52
    Hello Ira,
    Thank you for your reply and sharing your story, it gives me hope : )
    I'm halfway through my rehab now and am starting to have fewer restrictions, which is helping me feel better.  I'm still having some discomfort in my chest but as I'm learning that may take a while to fully heal.  I finally got the all clear to go back to work so I'm thinking that will help as well.
    Thank you again for your reply : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 10.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-26-2019 08:14
    Michelle, Try to understand that you will have good and bad days. Stick to what you have said about not taking pills (Quack meds etc.) as best you can. Once you get started on that path it ultimately can lead to more difficulties. Not saying to absolutely abstain,just know it should be a last resort. I personally struggle with depression that was manageable and mild for years,until I became a heart patient. First go around ok, 12 years later,this time it became overwhelming. Get a good support system, and put faith in the Lord, if you have not yet done so. Keep at it each day,do not isolate. Stay active it helps a lot. Blessings, Jim .





  • 11.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-27-2019 10:18
    Michelle,

    My quintuple bypass in January, 2010, followed by complications with my lungs causing lung surgery months later required the expected physical rehab: the mental/emotional aspects were a surprise.
    Such a learning experience that sharing it required an entire book that is described in my website http://www.OneHeartTwoLivescom.wordpress.com.
    An incredibly short glimpse is to think of our bodies as an electrical system that controls us physically and emotionally. Each morning I "primed" it by stretching and being grateful for another day. 
    We cannot change our genes but genes only provide a base line: from there it is up to us. 
    We are a living organism, and even organisms like animals and plants feel. However, only humans were blessed with the power to think and reason: with that power comes the obligation to do so. 

    Hope this incredibly brief philosophy works for you. It worked for me as last week I was hiking at 9,320 feet in Utah, and have bought my season ski pass for 2020.

    Brent Zepke 
       





  • 12.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-04-2019 09:15
    Hi Brent,
    Thank you for your reply. I received your book yesterday. I'm really enjoying it : )
    Congratulations, wow 9320 feet! I have the Sierra Nevada mountain range behind me and can't wait until the day I can go exploring and hiking again.Until then I have to remember it's going to take time and I will get there again one day.
    Thank you again for sharing your story : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 13.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 16 days ago
    Hi Brent. I got sick 5 months post OHS. Everything got better Aug 2019. How long did it take to get your energy back? I'm coming up on my 5th month post op from kidney stone surgery (×2). I'm still exhausted. I'm tired of hearing "it takes time" from my doctors. Did you go through this? Thanks for sharing.

    ------------------------------
    Carrie Kashani
    Parapro
    ISD
    White Bear Lake MN
    ------------------------------



  • 14.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 15 days ago
    Hi Carrie,
    I had an emergency double bypass May 15, 2019. It was quite a surprise being I thought I was relatively healthy. I felt the depression creeping up on me sometime in August. With the help from the wonderful members in this group and the amazing nurses and fellow rehabbers at my cardiac rehab, I've been able to work through it without any medications. One of my nurses had suggested I see a therapist who also specializes in CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). My therapist also has experience with heart patients so that is definitely a plus.  It has been helping me tremendously!  I also read Brent's book and really enjoyed it, One Heart Two Lives. We really do have a pre OHS and a post OHS life. At times I was struggling with the new diet changes and all the restrictions I had for the first six months. There were also times when I  wondered why I was saved (my widow maker was severely clogged) A friend of mine wasn't so fortunate the day after super bowl last year. Then there were many times when I wasn't sure why I felt the way I did but I just knew I wasn't the same. I'm back at work full time now and have also started getting back into my outdoor adventures, along with short hikes. I know one day these hikes will become longer but for now I just enjoy the beauty of the outdoors again.  I still have days when I have tenderness in my chest or feel a little more tired than usual after some activities but I try not to let it get me down. (Anyone else still feel tenderness in their chest 8 months out???)
    I know what you mean when people say it takes time, but I've learned from this group that it's okay if it takes you a little longer than others and to not get discouraged. I hope some of this will help you, just know you are not alone in how you are feeling. Best of luck to you as you continue to heal.
    Enjoy your week : )
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 15.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 4 days ago
    Michelle,

    I did a search about cardiac blues and found your post. How are you doing? My ascending aortic valve repair was in mid-September and my emotions have been nothing short of a roller coaster. However, it could be attributed to tRump fatigue! LOL

    I have found that walking a few miles with my dog daily helps and I am back to working out with weights and a home TRX system. I do have to consciously watch my wine consumption, after all alcohol is a depressant.

    Hang in there and thank you for continuing to share your story!

    ------------------------------
    Laurie Barrera
    Boise ID
    ------------------------------



  • 16.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 3 days ago
    Good Morning Laurie,
    I'm doing a lot better!!  Thank you so much for asking : )
    I think my emotional roller coaster ride started my 3rd month of recovery. All the restrictions, the lifestyle changes, along with the "blues"  that had kicked in, and not understanding why I was feeling the way I did was very hard for me. I feel very fortunate that I had a wonderful rehab team, a great therapist and all of you members in this group!! Yes, I've found that keeping up with my regular exercise routine helps a lot as well. I know what you mean by watching your wine consumption, I didn't want to add to my depressed feelings LOL! Being back at work full time and getting out on my weekend adventures has helped tremendously! Best of luck to you on your continued recovery and thank you so much for your kind words!
    Enjoy your weekend : )
    Michelle
    (I've attached a pic of two goofy fellas I came across on my adventure last weekend)


    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 17.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 2 days ago
      |   view attached
    Weekends are the best! Here is my reason to get outdoors!

    ------------------------------
    Laurie Barrera
    Boise ID
    ------------------------------



  • 18.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 2 days ago
    Awe, he's so cute! I'm sure he's been a very special part of your recovery as well : )
    I have a Beagle and chocolate lab, I sure enjoyed the extra time I was able to spend with them while off work.
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 19.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 15 days ago
    Hello all,
    I had my CABG X4 on March 24, 2015. I had a pacemaker installed on 15 August 2017. My chest scar became keloid and the itching and raw wound feeling made it almost unbearable. Had the scar revision surgery 21 November 2017. 90% success of keloid removal after surgery. A small amount of keloid returned mid sternum. Here it is January of 2020 and I still have some scar tenderness. My sternum still has a few spots that are sensitive to small amounts of pressure. I still get depressed at times. Carrie, Michelle, and all you other folks don't worry about the aches and pains that you are having.  Some folks completely heal without issues, while some of us will have major issues. 
    We are all different, I have arthritis as well, some folks have asthma or other issues. All these things also affect how your healing will progress. I have been treated for PTSD due to my military service many years before my heart issues, but I had to deal with my post-op depression separately. 
    As an accredited visitor I have met with folks that are dealing with issues far greater than mine and they were some of the happiest people I have ever met. Yet other folks with something a simple as a Stint are feeling like their world has come to an end. 
    The key is, how you deal with this new life is totally up to you. 
    My wife and I have sold our home and are now traveling full time in an RV all over the country. I see my doctor on the fly, schedule appointments around the trips and get my meds on the road. (Thanks Rite-aid & CVS) I have portable O2 for high altitudes and we just keep on seeing and meeting all over the country.
    I rest when I need to and have just decided to go explore. I am not able to do some things I like so I do other things instead. I want you all to know you can have pain and soreness and still have fun. You are limited in some directions, but not all. Ups and downs were in your life before your heart events, but we took them for granted and blew them off. but with being in bed longer and moving slower we have more time to dwell on them now. It does get better in you want it too. ����.  Wow, I did not mean to give a sermon. I just felt the need to say some things. This is also part of how I deal with my depression. I sometimes need to talk it out. Thank you for allowing me to vent, and Happy New Year to all.

    Richard Short 
    Chapter 395





  • 20.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 15 days ago
    I had a quad CABG on February 24, 2005 and a ICD in November 2007. Have a chest keloid that never went away, but it doesn't bother me.
    As far as depression is concerned, I don't get down any more than the average person, but find myself crying at many things, movies, TV shows, etc. But being Italian-American, I chalk it up to being an emotional person.
    When I joined a Grafted Heart group here in Cleveland, I met patients in better shape and worse shape than me. But never did my situation seem that hopeless that I was depressed. Yet I can sympathize with those who do experience those emotions.
    Being involved in a support group can be an uplifting experience. Having been a cancer survivor as well since 1999, I met with survivors there as well. Both groups helped me appreciate my life and to make the best of anything that comes along. I hope that all of you can get to that level.


    --
    Frank Caruso
    WWW.CARUSOIMAGES.COM
    440-829-1386





  • 21.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 7 days ago
    Thank you Richard. Your "sermon" reminds us all of our blessings 

    Marilyn B. Rosenhouse
    Mobile: (214)850-0655






  • 22.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 14 days ago

    Richard-

                  You make a valuable point about life bringing us ups-and-downs before our surgeries, which we tended to more easily get over as things that would pass; being brushed by mortality makes it more difficult though. I also couldn't agree more that we are all different and will have different experiences to similar traumas but I think you are being a bit harsh to say it is "totally up to" each of us how we respond. By the time some people get hit with heart surgery, the circumstances of their lives may have left them ill-equipped to get over the experience, and to suggest they have this capacity and not recognizing these difficulties may lead them to blame themselves and compound their problems.

    Bob Levin

    Berkeley, CA

     

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

     






  • 23.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 14 days ago
    Richard and Bob,

    I think Richard's "totally up to you" comment warrants some additional commentary.  I agree with Richard in the sense that, no matter how ingrained a viewpoint we may hold, it is not based on the circumstances of our lives,​ but rather our beliefs about how we "need" to or are "supposed" to react to those circumstances.  These beliefs are what we have accepted from childhood through the current da,y based on societal, familial, religious and other values and beliefs we have adopted, usually without consciously thinking about it.  While these beliefs may serve us well in adapting to society, they also may cause us to react in a manner that we are "supposed to," depressed, for example, when something traumatic occurs in our lives.  In fact, however, we are not required to feel any particular way based solely on the occurrence of an event.  If it were otherwise, then everybody would react in the identical way under identical circumstances, instead of the myriad ways that people actually react to the same or similar events.

    What really is happening is that we ignore the present moment in favor of projecting what we believe/fear will be our lives in a future that doesn't exist except in our imaginations.  Here's an example.  About nine years ago, I suffered a lower back injury lifting weights that left me with a severe case of sciatica for nearly a month.  The pain was so excruciating that I could barely get to the bathroom.  I also had no idea when or if the pain would subside.  If someone had told me the day before my injury, that I was going to be in excruciating pain for the next month, I probably would have been very upset and wondered how I would survive such hell.  As it turned out, though, that month was one of the happiest periods in my life, during which I was free from the concerns of work, watched great movies on TV (to was 30 days to Oscar on TCM) and read the recently published collected works of a psychotherapist teacher of mine with whom I trained while an undergraduate during the halcyon days of the early 70's.  My reality turned out nothing like what I likely would have imagined it.  This is because our fantasies of what the future will mean for us always lack the multidimensional elements that we can't imagine in the grip of our fears, and because we fail to recognize those fears for what they actually are; beliefs about an imagined reality that doesn't exist other than in our own minds.

    Ultimately, we all have the power to examine our underlying beliefs about why we think we need to feel a particular way about a particular event, whether or not we actually exercise that power.  In fact, once we recognize that we have the ability to examine and possibly discard such beliefs if they are not working for us, we also gain the awareness that "totally up to you" really means that we are free, and not condemned to suffer our "fate" in someway that we may believe is necessary but actually is conditioned upon our own beliefs.

    Sorry about the dissertation, folks, but thinking about this stuff is how I actually enjoy occuping my time.

    Ira


    ------------------------------
    Ira Reid
    Hoboken NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 24.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 3 days ago
    Good Morning Ira, I always enjoy reading your replies, no matter what thread they may be on. Have you every thought of writing a book? After my surgery when my Dr told me I was going to be off work for 6 months I too thought how am I going to survive?! I survived, and learned a lot during those months. With all my restrictions during that time I started reading, watching movies, but the best thing of all...I started playing my piano again.  I hadn't realized how much I had missed it. Sometimes we get so busy in life we forget to take the time to enjoy the small things that bring us so much joy.
    If you ever decide to write a book I know I would enjoy reading it!
    Enjoy your Saturday : )
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 25.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 3 days ago
    Hi Michelle,

    It's interesting that you raised the question about me writing a book.  I've been writing, mostly poetry, on and off since high school and, for the past few years, was planning to retire so that I could revise and publish my existing work, and write on a full time basis.  Since my heart attack and surgery, I've also had the desire to write about my heart experience and the lessons I've learned.

    I'm now planning to retire from the full time practice of law this year, and am looking forward to kickstarting my writing career.  I'm not sure, right now, whether I'll produce a prose book about my heart experience because I've got this thought that I may be able to do it poetically.  There is some precedent to this.  The great Israeli poet Abba Kovner wrote an excellent book of poetry about his throat cancer experience entitled "Sloan Kettering."  Earlier, William Ernest Henley, a Victorian poet and close friend of Robert Louis Stevenson, wrote  "Hospital Poems" about his struggles with tuberculosis.  They've inspired me to do the same if my much more limited gift will allow.

    Anyway, I'll keep you posted.

    Have a great day,

    Ira

    ------------------------------
    Ira Reid
    Hoboken NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 26.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 2 days ago
    Good Evening Ira,
    My mother wrote poetry for many years. She had some of her work published before her passing in 2017. I will definitely be looking forward to reading your book(s)!  In the meantime, I will enjoy reading all of your encouraging and kind replies right here in our group!
    Have a great week!
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 27.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 12 days ago
    Robert,
    Thank you for pointing that out, and I had no intention of minimizing the time it takes for some of us to recover our mental and physical health after being hit with several setbacks. 
    We have all seen where someone head a heart issue, and they may be lost a loved one or was hit with another medical condition. All that takes a toll and can slow us down or put us in a deep funk.
    That is where we as a group are helping each other by relating our stories. When I read a lady has had a valve replacement and was then hit with a possible cancer diagnosis and is awaiting test results while also dealing with being a caregiver herself, and she says everything will be OK because she is going to keep a positive attitude. Well, that removes my excuse for being depressed. She was showing all of us that we are not alone in facing our fears and concerns.
    Yes, it will be harder for some than others, but regardless only we as individuals can the choice of moving forward or not. 
    Again, thank you for challenging the way I put things. I am glad you and others are out there helping to show we all care about each other's recovery.

    Richard Short
    Chapter 395  





  • 28.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 12 days ago
    Richard that is it. I'M IN A FUNK!!! This group is great. Reading all the responses about "cardiac blues" has really explained everything about me. A little of this and a little of that from everyone's comments and I find myself. Maybe I do need to just do it because its OK for me to celebrate that "I survived"! I did go through a lot and it is hard to grasp all of what happened.Kidney stone surgery was so hard and painful. I had to have foot long stent in my ureter to the kidney for the stone to pass after it was broken up. My second night home I woke up very sick and ended up having to call and ambulance to take be back to the hospital. Ended up getting a terrible infection and still had stones too big in my kidney so I had to go through surgery again to get those out. Ten days I had to have that stent in and that was just as hard as hard as OHS. Everything happened so fast. Before heart surgery I was just Carrie. Now I am a different Carrie and I am excited to see who this Carrie is. Here's the kicker....Since I spent my 50th bday recovering from OHS my sister and I planned a vacation to Napa Valley, CA to bring in my big 5-0 is style. Well the kidney stone happened just before our trip. I had to get discharged from the hospital the day before our flight. I had to go to wine country with that nasty stent in. We had the vacation planned for so long that there was no way I was going to cancel so I just endured....and had a good time :) So thank you for helping me figure out my funk. Let's see where I go from here!

    ------------------------------
    Carrie Kashani
    Parapro
    ISD
    White Bear Lake MN
    ------------------------------



  • 29.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 12 days ago
    Hello Carrie,
    You are going to go to places and have more fun than ever before. My wife and I are traveling full time in our RV now. I just saw my cardiologist last week and he told me I am doing fine with my heart but I have now developed Emphysema. Oh, Joy! I am not troubled by that because it gave me answers as to why I cough so much. I am not a smoker but grew up in a family of smokers and secondhand smoke seems to have gotten me. But now I have an answer and I can address the issue. I now have O2 and inhalers to use. Just another tool to make life easier. 
    I am glad you went to wine country. Wine always makes me happy. ��
    Take care and looking forward to hearing good things from you in the future.

    Richard Short
    Chapter 395





  • 30.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 3 days ago
    Good Morning Richard, thank you for sharing your story. I enjoyed reading your reply. It's a nice reminder for me to know I'm not alone in some of the things I've been feeling and/or going through. With the help of this group, a wonderful rehab team, a great therapist and more normalcy in my life I'm happy to say I'm definitely doing much better. I still at times may have a  moment of anxiety (whenever I feel a pain or two) but that is something I'm still working thru. Which I feel I've come along way, so things are def. looking up! Safe travels and enjoy all your beautiful adventures!!

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 31.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 3 days ago
    Emotional issues are complicated. Years ago when I asked the mayor of Knoxville about standing alone on an issue, he said "I came into this world naked and alone. There are just somethings you must do alone." To that I would add being wheeled into surgery. Others like family, friends and medical professionals, may care: but you are physically alone on the gurney.  I say "physically" out of deference to religious beliefs. 

    Friends and professionals can offer one type of assistance on emotional issues, and Mended Hearts offers an opportunity for sharing of similar experiences. However, the ultimate resolution of our emotional issues can only be accomplished by each of us: alone.

    At first I found this thought process to be daunting, but ultimately liberating.   






  • 32.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 3 days ago
    Brent,

    I think you hit the nail on the head when you said about having to resolve emotional issues alone that "At first I found this thought process to be daunting, but ultimately liberating."

    I also find the aloneness liberating.  Perhaps the reason for this is that, when we recognize that the experience is ours alone, and our emotional response is ours alone, we also realize that there is nothing external to us that prevents or limits us from finding our own peace with what has happened to us.  We are free.

    Ira

     


    ------------------------------
    Ira Reid
    Hoboken NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 33.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 2 days ago
    Ira,
    Thank you. I agree with the other sentiments here that a book may be in your future! Your words so accurately express the emotional/mental conundrum that I feel and I believe others on this site feel. When I first found out about my heart condition, I wanted so badly to find someone going through the same thing. Even after finding someone with the same condition, I realize that everyone’s journey is truly their own. This forum however continually helps me, especially during the challenging times. Thanks everyone. 🙏🏼♥️




  • 34.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 2 days ago
    Thank you so much, Jill.  I more than anything want to share my thoughts, feelings and insights.  People like you, Michelle, Bob and others reinforce that feeling and I will do my best not to disappoint you.

    All the best,

    Ira

    ------------------------------
    Ira Reid
    Hoboken NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 35.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 15 days ago
    Carrie,

    I am not familiar with kidney surgery. The generally quoted return from heart surgery to relatively normal energy is six months, although it must vary greatly on the person.

    My rehab from my quintuple bypass was handicapped by the surgery rubbing the lubricant off the side of my lungs. With every breath my lungs were irritated by the friction with surrounding organs. To combat, my body was sending so much fluids into my chest that my body was unable to dispose of it. As it accumulated, every breath became more difficult. In my words "I smouthering myself much like a snake does to its prey." This sequence led to two procedures to remove two liters of fluid from my chest, followed by lung surgery almost four months later. I am not certain the value of my rehab during that time.

    After my lung surgery, I slowly increased my physical activities but remained pretty weak for months. In my fifth month, while walking on a track I spontaneously decided to jog again. Physically my efforts were a few shaky steps: but mentally it was "game changing." But from that moment forth my attitude shifted from being in rehab to being an out-of-shape athlete. On that track at Pepperdine University, I established a set on intermittent goals, every one of which I celebrated, culminating with jogging three miles on the anniversary of my second life: crossing that finish line was an incredible high.

    I relate this to illustrate that my experience is the mental aspect. I laughing borrow a Michal Jackson song to illustrate the important of my attitude altering who I see when "I look at the man in the mirror:" an out-of-shape athlete motivates my subconscious differently than a patient rehabbing.

    Hope this is helpful.





    ------------------------------
    Brent Zepke
    Santa Barbara CA
    (805) 698-4651
    ------------------------------



  • 36.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-04-2019 09:03
    Hi James,
    Thank you for your reply. I've started getting out more and have noticed that has helped quite a bit. I will be going back to work soon so I'm thinking that will help as well. I think I just have to accept the fact that the healing process is going to take more time. I think that's what gets me down at times. Some days I'm doing really well then the next day I have to take it easy. My Dr said due to my diabetes it may take me longer to heal. Joining this group has sure helped me with this recovery.
    Thank you again for sharing your story : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 37.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-26-2019 08:46

    Michelle,

    Depression – different levels for different folks – is common after open heart surgery. I believe I have heard the percentage as about 30% of folks have some depression.

    I think your idea of thinking positive thoughts and maybe calling friends for a chat more often are two of the more simple aides.

    You are not alone – keep after it and you should see improvement as time goes forward.

    CABG 2007

    Cryo Ablation for Atrial Fibrillations December 2017

    Volunteer for Mended Hearts and volunteer in the Cardiac OR area one day per week, visiting families in the waiting room to give them the status of the operation

    Joe J Ft Myers

     






  • 38.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-04-2019 09:38
    Hi Joe,
    Thank you for your reply. I started getting out more the past few days and have noticed that has helped. I'm not really comfortable talking about my sadness with family or friends, I don't want to feel like I'm complaining. This group and all of you with your kind words of encouragement is helping me get through this, along with my cardiac rehab. I think things are looking up for me : )
    Thank you again : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 39.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-26-2019 10:06

    Michelle-

                  As has been said here before, everyone's experience is different, but depression in one form or another is not uncommon. My cardiologist prescribed an anti-depressant for me, which I found helpful. (People's experiences with these differ too.) Others find the support of Mended Hearts meetings or other groups helpful. (You are not a pill person; I guess I am not a meeting person.) Look, it's life; no guarantees whichever way you turn; but you say you are staying positive and that's a good thing and good luck to you.

    Bob Levin

    Berkeley

     

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

     






  • 40.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-04-2019 10:47
    Hi Bob,
    Thank you for your reply. I'm so thankful for this group. I'm learning I'm not alone in my feelings, not only emotionally but physically as well. I'm definitely finding the support I need with this group : )

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 41.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 08-26-2019 10:42
    Michelle, Depresion is very common after heart surgery, about 80% of
    the people go through some form of depression, Talk to your doctor
    about this he can recommend a mild antidepressant to help you through
    this stage.

    --
    Fred G. Sparling
    President Mended Hearts of the San Gabriel Valley
    Covina, CA
    626-893-1014




  • 42.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-05-2019 13:08
    Good Morning Fred,
    Thank you for your reply : )
    I'm so thankful I joined this group, it helps me to know I'm not alone in how I'm feeling. I've started getting out more and have been discussing my feelings with my cardiac nurses. This recovery sure has it's ups and downs but I feel things are starting to look up for me : )
    Thank you : )
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 43.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-05-2019 13:23
    Hi Michelle,

    This group is lucky to have you as a new member.  I believe that you have personally thanked every person who responded to your original post.  I can't tell you how impressed I am with your graciousness.  If everyone was as thoughtful as you, this would be an immeasurably better world.

    Thank you giving us the gift of your company.

    Ira

    ------------------------------
    Ira Reid
    Hoboken NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 44.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-07-2019 10:12
    Awe Ira, thank you so much! What a beautiful way to start my day, smiling!!!!!
    A BIG thank you for being so kind! I think we are all very fortunate to have YOU as a member : )
    Have a wonderful weekend : )
    Michelle

    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 45.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-06-2019 09:05
    Hi Michelle and everyone!
    I had open heart surgery almost 7 months ago after finding out that I had a congenital heart condition at 49! I’m a very healthy person and it was a shock to learn I had a large hole in my heart (ASD Primum) since birth, so big that it doesn’t make a “swish” sound that a stethoscope could hear. So, it’s been a rough ride but I’m thankful. The cardiac blues are real but no different than the general blues, at least for me, because I’m familiar with them both. Staying focused on the positive, being thankful, getting my rest, eating and drinking right ALL HELP. I’m now taking even better care of myself. For this, I’m most grateful. It’s wonderful to “meet” you all and share stories. Today I graduate from Cardiac Rehab!!! I love everyone there. I will miss the nurses and other patients so I’m glad to find this forum. Love and light to you ALL ❣️❤️😊




  • 46.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"

    Posted 09-07-2019 10:51
    Good Morning Jill,
    Thank you for your reply. Wow, that would be quite a shock! Congratulations on your graduation and your recovery : )
    I still have 11 more sessions. I know what you mean when you say you will miss everyone. We create such an awesome bond with our fellow rehabbers along with the nurses. We had 2 people graduate yesterday and one of the nurses said it was bittersweet saying goodbye. Kind of like sending a kid off to college she said haha!
    I never realized this recovery would have so many ups and downs. I'm so thankful for this group and everyone on it. It has been a huge part of my recovery this past month. I'm learning from everyone on here that what I'm feeling is all normal and it will get easier in time.
    I've started getting out more so I think that has helped a lot. I still have some fears and anxieties but I've been working through those with the help of the wonderful nurses at rehab.
    I was informed about the "cardiac blues" when I was discharged but didn't really understand the feeling until it hit me. I've learned that they are real. It has given me a much better understanding for depression and even more compassion for people that live with this.
    I was taken off the arm machines this week, again, due to inflammation in my chest. I'm back on the Tylenol and ice pack.  Instead of getting frustrated or down this time around I'm remaining positive and thankful : )
    It's nice meeting you as well, best of luck to you on your continued recovery!
    Again, thank you for sharing your story and have a wonderful weekend : )
    Michelle


    ------------------------------
    michelle leverett
    Ridgecrest CA
    ------------------------------



  • 47.  RE: "CARDIAC BLUES"