Tales of my Heart: Reboot

I've been having a bit of a cardiac adventure lately, and I thought I'd take a moment to share the story.

TLDR: I’m having heart surgery at the end of May. I'm ok, safe and don't need anything.

Why I’m writing this.

I wanted to take this opportunity to let everyone know that keeping up with updating everyone on this has been physically and emotionally exhausting.

It's common for people to find it exhausting to share their medical conditions with others because it can be emotionally taxing to receive unsolicited advice, opinions, or emotional reactions from others. Additionally, sharing personal medical information makes me feel vulnerable and exposed and very human(alas I’ve attempted to resist with chip implants and pointy ears). I hate being sick, it's so crippling to feel I can't do everyone by myself. “It's understandable to feel like you're managing other people's emotions and reactions rather than focusing on your own well-being.” - my therapist.

My question to my therapist was, "I love my friends, family, and internet friends AND I love that they care about my wellbeing, but it's draining to keep talking about it. How can let people know what is going on, and for them to listen when I say I don't need or want anything from them at this time? I dislike talking about health, emotions and feelings. I feel like this is the Kobayashi Maru with a no-win scenarios, emotional complexity, decision-making under pressure, learning from failure, and ethical dilemmas."

I didn't want to write this when I first discussed the idea with my therapist on how to handle sharing. I didn't have to share, but I think this will help me set boundaries and I can still receive emotional support without feeling overwhelmed by constantly retelling the story. I've been working on deepening my friendships with current friends and part of that is letting them in, telling about my personal life and sharing my location when I solo travel. :) Trust is a journey with me.

I am writing this for you and myself.  If I don’t reply back to someone for a few weeks, I don’t want them going through the mental journey thinking that maybe something is wrong with our friendship or whatever million thoughts go on in our heads when we don’t hear back from someone. I'm just taking time after my surgery to heal.

What happened?

In December 2021 at Emerald City Comic Con, I somehow contracted MRSA which turned into sepsis all through a tiny cut on my nose. I had a heart rate of over 220 while just sitting. I couldn’t stop throwing up, I had a high fever and all the fun things that comes with sepsis. Thank you to my friends that took care of me.

What is MRSA?

MRSA is a staph bacteria that is resistant to antibiotics, my doctor tells me MRSA is more common that people think. When MRSA gets into your bloodstream it turns into sepsis, it can cause infection and damage to organs like the heart. I had a small cut on the inside of my nose all the way to the tip of the outside of the nose eating away at the live healthy tissue. I will most likely have to have surgery in the future on the inside of my nose to repair the damage/structure. You can read more about sepsis here. I've been through a journey of doctors, dermatologist, ENT-Otolaryngology, and cardiologist.

My ENT doctor explaining the Inner nasal damage from the cut in my nose and MRSA eating the live tissue and cartilage

Inconvenience High Heart Recurrence

The high heart rate happened again in August 2022. And again on February 14, 2023 while at Disneyland. (The irony that my heart issue happened on valentines day does not go unnoticed haha). My friends are convinced it was the 56 year old Pirates of the Caribbean water ride that triggered it :)

The occurrence in February had my high heart rate of over 220 lasted for over 14 hours, so I got a nice little trip to the emergency room in California. Thankfully I wasn’t solo traveling this trip and my 2 caring and wonderful friends didn't freak out and took me to the Emergency Room.

The doctor immediately took me back to the ER room and I couldn’t get my heart rate to come back down "naturally", so they gave my heart a reboot.

The ER Doctor stopped my heart and restarted it.

This was done with a medicine called Adenosine through the IV, no electric shock needed. Who would have thought that the heart is like electronics?

The ER doctor described the heart stopping would feel like you’re at the point where you’re at the top of the roller coaster and they drop you. And that’s exactly what it felt like. I almost puked.
The ER doctor drew me a nice heart on my bed sheets at the hospital.

I felt fine after the reboot and returned home to Seattle the same day. I had a few follow ups with my cardiologist and got a second opinion from my cousin who is a doctor and another cardiologist in Spain, all which said the heart surgery is the cure. It’s possible that having sepsis caused an electrolyte imbalance that triggered the SVT. SVT(supraventricular tachycardia), which basically meant that my heart was having a party without me.

Drawing and risk of my heart issues from my very talented cardiologist

Echo Transthoracic heart imaging
What I do and don't need

I feel very fortunate to have a very diverse group of friends and family with different backgrounds and beliefs. While I respect your own decisions religious or not. I kindly ask that in regards to my surgery and recovery that you keep it to yourself.

I know by you asking if there is anything you can do is your way of showing support and letting me know that ya'll are there for me, even if I don't require immediate assistance. I don't need anything at the moment. I have the new Zelda to play, k-dramas to watch, LEGO sets to build in bed, and endless books.

My surgery info

Surgery is scheduled for Tuesday, May 23 here in Seattle. I have family to take care of me.

Signing off for now, sincerely,

I've-never-shared-so-much-in-my-life Amie


7/05/203: Surgery went well thanks to modern medicine. I'm back to almost my normally pre-heart surgery workout and routine, just with the addition of 4 new scars.