Just Keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming

This Mommy's Heart - My PPCM Story - Bow

Okay, so I never actually swam while I was in the hospital. Most of the time I was there I had the total artificial heart and you can’t even shower with those. Let me repeat that, you are not allowed to shower when you have a TAH. Whether you have it for one day or one hundred days, you are never supposed to clean yourself in the shower. C’mon Syncardia, I know you created a device that saved my life and all but get that shower situation figured out! (kidding…but seriously)

During my next several weeks at the hospital nothing super exciting happened although I was obviously still sick enough to have to stay in the hospital. After my tamponade there was still a lot of pain in my back which was caused by my chest tubes. I was on a ton of narcotics, baclofen plus used lidocaine patches and heat packs. Even if you are in pain, you still have to move so you don’t get pneumonia so on December 8th I walked for the first time in weeks. Using the cardiac walker, I walked all the way down the hall and back to my room. Woohoo…baby steps!

Hey Ho, You’re on ECMO

This Mommy's Heart - My PPCM Story - Ten days after delivery

I was admitted to UWMC on Thanksgiving Day. Since we didn’t really know what was going to happen, in addition to needing help with the kids, all of my siblings left their families to fly across the country (IND>SEA) to come see me and help out. I’ll never be able to thank them enough for their selflessness, love and caring that they gave to my children.

The fellow told my family there was a 33% chance my heart would get better, 33% chance it would stay the same and 33% chance it would get worse. Like I mentioned before, the theme of this story is if something rare and bad could happen, it did.

Healthy to Heart Failure

This Mommy's Heart - My PPCM Story - Time with Wes

That night my daughter slept like the perfect baby she is and only woke up a few times to breastfeed. The next morning, I remember thinking that I was feeling better but it was probably just wishful thinking.

The hospital is on post so my husband went to the gate to help my parents in with his military ID. The cardiologist and about 10 residents then proceeded to fill my room. At that point he asked if I wanted to wait for my husband to get back to review my results. I told him to go for it because I always have the mentality of ripping off the bandaid. This wasn’t the time for that way of thinking.