Not just Heart attack!

by Bonnie
(Penna, USA)

Hi,

I'm A 54 yr. old female and find it hard to believe all I've endured.

In 2003 I had breast cancer and am now 6 yrs. cancer free! But had to have complete hysterectomy in Mar 2009 due to possibility of uterine/cervical cancer. Thank you, Lord - no cancer was found.

Went to post surgical check up for hysterectomy on Aug. 14, 2009 and received clean bill of health, although I thought I was having anxiety attacks from hysterectomy.

On Sun. Aug. 16th was watching a movie, got out of chair to make dinner and felt terrible burning, squeezing sensation across chest and between shoulder blades. First thought was anxiety attack, but then I told my husband I needed to go to ER - didn't feel like anxiety.

To make story short, had a mild to moderate heart attack, 100% block in right main artery, atrial fibrillation and now have pacemaker as heart was pausing when trying to concert to sinus rhythm and damaged from block.

Just wonder if I'm ever going to feel better, so tired all the time and weak. Trying to follow heart, diabetic diet. Have lost 50 lbs since had hysterectomy. I know I'm very lucky to be alive but very scared of another heart attack. I had a pretty active life - now wondering if I'm going to be able to return to work.

Are these feelings normal????

Bonnie

Comments for Not just Heart attack!

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If you can't work
by: Anonymous

If you feel you can't work apply for social security disability. You can receive benefits at any age.

Dear Bonnie
by: JoAnn

Bonnie,
I am 51 years old and in April of this year had a section of my colon removed due to severe diverticulitis and had an abscess the size of a grapefruit in there. A surgery that was supposed to last 2 hours took over 5 hours, but the amazing thing was that had I not had this surgery, I would be dead by now. During the pre-op it was discovered that I had suffered a massive heart attack. I know I had been tired for months and had suffered from chest pain but thought it was due to my Crohn's Disease I've had for 12 years now. So I blew it off as a stomach issue.
On June 10th I was re-admitted to have an simple angiagram. That turned into my nightmare. I now have 4 stints and a combo pacemaker/defibrillator implanted as the entire front of my heart muscle is now dead.
I can completely relate to the depression, confusion and feeling of being lost in life.
I am single, now broke and about to lose my home. I cannot yet go back to work and have no means to support myself at this time.
I do however have great faith, am blessed with wonderful family and friends and hang onto that each day, which I now have to take one at a time. If I try to think about the future and where I will end up it overwhelms me and the depression worsens.
All I can tell you is be happy you are still with us, keep the faith, and know that each day will get a little better.
My thoughts and prayers are with you!

There is Life After a Heart Attack
by: susan

Feelings of anxiety, helplessness and depression are to be expected after a heart attack. People heal differently and it depends a lot on their attitude towards the event.

I felt depressed for months and would have crying spells. This I would deny to my cardiologist and family doctor every time I was asked when I went for follow-ups. I had quadruple bypass after the birth of my 3rd child as a result of hormonal imbalance during postpartum. A heart disease that is not common. I almost died. This happened 5 years ago.

However, with lots of prayers and support from my family, especially my husband, I am back to work doing what I love the most. I have never been healthier, continuing to choose a healthy lifestyle, have participated in fundraisings and campaigning on the radio for the Heart and Stroke Foundation and have shared my story on TV and the paper. So, I can tell you that there is life after a heart attack. You are a survivor!

You are a trooper, Bonnie.
by: Sandra

Bonnie, you've had more than your fair share to endure. No wonder you are feeling overwhelmed.

Your feelings are very normal. I remember feeling betrayed by my body, terrified by every twinge or pain, overwhelmed at the prospect of going back to work, and nervous about what the future would bring. I'd say it took me a full year to get my energy back. And maybe even longer to get my confidence back.

I can tell you that I now lead a very active and full life. I think anyone who survives cancer or heart disease always has it at the back of their mind, but it doesn't have to prevent you from enjoying life.

Your body and your psyche both have to heal from this double whammy you've experienced and that's going to take time.

Congrats on the weight loss - that's fantastic. Now, it's one step at a time. Good luck and keep in touch. I'll look forward to hearing how you are doing and if I can help.

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