Today marks ten years since I was diagnosed with heart failure. Although the anniversary (and this time of year in general) can be a bit tricky, it’s become more and more of a positive occasion for me over the years.
I had been looking forward to this date for many months. Dr Google*, back in 2011, told me I’d be dead within five years and instead I find myself 2×5 years on, being far from death and (until recently) the epitome of stability, managing my condition with medication and my CRT-D, feeling pretty relaxed and OK with it all.
Well, of course the rug has been pulled out from under me these last few weeks and I’m marking ten days on the heart transplant list as well as ten years with a heart failure diagnosis. Soon I’ll have all different medication and a different device, or maybe no device at all. Heck, I won’t even have the same heart.
What’s the moral of this story? I don’t think there is one really. I guess all chronic illnesses carry an element of the unknown, ups and downs – sometimes when you least expect them. I still feel like I’m in a really good place on this 10th heartiversary, still feel like I’m journeying positively through the challenges of living with a heart that is gubbed, still being taken good care of.
The average survival following heart transplant is 14 years and there’s every reason to think I’ll survive much longer than that. Ten years from now I’ll probably be crossing two sets of fingers, celebrating twenty (XX) years post heart failure diagnosis and maybe ten (X) years with my second heart.
Kind of feels appropriate to mark this decade with a new challenge. Nobody said it was going to be easy. That’s life! C’est la vie! D’accord. OK. Ten. 10. X.
*Dr Google is a QUACK and should NEVER be consulted (or believed) on matters of health.