· No broken bones or death despite falling off a horse and getting amnesia, being hit by a car while on a bicycle, and several bad car accidents.
· A simple faith in God that prevented me from following through on suicide despite a serious undiagnosed, at the time, inherited mental illness.
· Survived many episodes of self medication with excessive drug and alcohol usage. Also, I avoided any accidents or consequences of my DUI. I only became addicted to food, not anything illegal or alcohol despite years of abuse.
· Receiving Jesus and accepting Him into my heart after fully understanding the salvation plan.
· Adopting two beautiful baby girls that share the same biological parents from the foster care system.
· Surviving 3 major surgeries despite severe allergic reactions to general anesthesia and pain medications.
· Living to the age of 33 despite a serious congenital heart defect, sinus venosus atrial septal defect (hole between upper chambers of the heart and a vein going in the wrong direction). The hole was > 2.7 cm, slightly larger than a quarter and my heart had enlarged 5 times the normal size of a heart to compensate.
· After 10 years of complaints to doctors, finally finding one who listened to my symptoms and didn’t explain them away as suffering from obesity or a properly medicated mental illness.
Now I come to the awesome miracle of my latest healing. Please indulge me while I give some history I don’t think I covered my previous blog post.
In 2008, six years after my corrective heart surgery, I had some fatigue. After a transesophageal echocardiogram (TEE), a cardiologist discovered that the hole in my heart had opened. The cells in our bodies have a memory. Mine clearly were duplicating what they had known for 33 years. However, the hole was < .5 cm, smaller than a pencil eraser. My pressure, saturation and oxygenation levels were well within normal. Many people can live to old age while having a tiny hole in their heart, no worries. In 2010, the hole got bigger. For the most up to date history about the hole in my heart you might want to read about My Almost a Clear Bill of Health for My Holy Heart.
I had a cardiac MRI done October 24, 2011 at UCLA. I have my official written out results, confirmation of my healing. THE HOLE IS GONE! My MRI shows there is no flow or evidence for right to left shunt. My pulmonary venous connections appear normal. Here is some great medical jargon. There are: No interatrial or interventricular septal discontinuity. No pericardial effusion. Both ventricles show normal contractility throughout with normal myocardial systolic thickening. No focal mural thinning or regional hypokinesia. No delayed myocardial enhancement to suggest myocardial scar or inflammation. The aortic valve is trileaflet with normal opening and coaption, no evidence for dephasing jet. After all that mumbo jumbo, trust me, the report says the hole is gone. Alleluia! It is confirmation of the Lords miracle. “O Lord my God, I cried out to You, and You have healed me.” Psalm 30:2
While the doctor went over the results I was thinking of the questions that I had for him. One of which was, “Can I do aerobic exercise now?” The interesting result from the MRI is that from a cardiac standpoint I am healthy and can resume aerobic exercise. However, to get a complete answer to that question, I have to follow up with my primary care physician. It seems that through incidental imaging of the upper abdomen, it demonstrate Cholelithiasis without evidence for biliary obstruction, but at least two gallbladder calculi, the larger measuring 2.0 cm diameter. There are also mild intervertebral disc bulges at T8-T9 and T9-T10 level, as well as, at T12 level, well defined 1 cm rounded cystic structure within the spinal cord. A well-defined high signal structure apparently invaginating the spinal cord at T12 level, with otherwise normal appearances of the cord - although SSFP sequences not optimal for evaluation -, and some lower thoracic disc bulging noted.
I find it amusing that I thought it maybe my heart that would prevent me from doing aerobic exercise, but instead is it my back. Although I don’t accept that it is an excuse. I know there are plenty of people with back problems that exercise successfully for weight loss. I just have to get my doctor to clear me despite what my back may indicate. Now my getting into the doctor before I move maybe the issue since he is so popular in the military community. Maybe there is another miracle waiting for me!