The GYM!!!

So, for those of you that don’t know me, getting (and using) a gym membership is a phenomenally HUGE DEAL for me. Growing up, I was never allowed to take P.E. or play in any competitive sports whatsoever. I was finally given consent from my doctors to join a bowling league back in 2005. 2 years later they told me I had to stop working and doing most of my regular activities that I had paced myself to enjoy. After my most recent surgery, I was cleared to work again and, to my surprise, even join a gym to fight the 55 pounds of fat that had attached itself to me (due to medications) in that first month and a half of no longer working. I will now put, in some detail, below the reasons of my sedentary life the past 30 years, followed by the most recent letter I received from my cardiologist.

Originally posted 4/09/2011:

I’m just going to keep this short, sweet, and to the point!

I’m getting a S-ICD (subcutaneous-implantable cardioverter defibrillator) implanted on Thursday, April 14th. I’m so excited! What they originally thought was A-fib is actually Ventricular Tachycardia. That means I’m at a very high risk for sudden cardiac arrest (heart attack).

I am a 27-year-old woman.

I have an enlarged heart (a little more than twice the normal heart size), CHD, and have had so far:

11 Open-heart surgeries
14 Electrocardioversions (defib shocks to get heart back into normal rhythm…was in the high 100’s to low-mid 200’s heart rate)
12 Cardiocatheter procedures
1 Failed Multiple Cardiac Ablation
Numerous other heart-related procedures
I’m still not “FIXED”, numerous future operations/procedures will be due as medical technologies allow…
AND I’M ONLY 27!!!

Averaged, that’s approximately 1.45 heart-related procedures EVERY YEAR THAT I’VE LIVED.


Despite all that I’ve been through, I’ve found others telling me that “You’re the most optimistic, positive person I know!”
I have never found myself wishing that I didn’t have to go through it all. It has been with me my entire life and will continue to be. If I didn’t have these issues, then I wouldn’t be the person I am today! I wouldn’t change ANYTHING that has happened. Keep your chin up, ladies and gentlemen! Hope, determination, and love for everyone & everything are the keys to living the life and finding the cure!

I’m still here!

This is what was implanted in me April 14th, 2011… And I’ve ‘activated’ (been shocked) only once so far, on November 16th, 2012…

S-ICD* I’ll be 30 on June 10th this year (2013) and am scheduled for yet another heart related procedure on August 1st… At least they’re doing what they can and I’m still here!

Originally posted 6/04/2013:
Another (minor-ish) Heart Surgery… WhooHoo!

So, for those that don’t know yet, I will be heading back into UWMC for another (minor-ish) heart related procedure on August 1st. They will be doing a Melody Valve Placement and I should only be there a night or two. When they performed my last open-heart surgery on July 28th, 2009, they had left my sternum open with about a 1″ gap when they stitched me up to allow more room for my conduit to fully open and work properly. Well, it’s still being squished in there despite that and, therefore, needing this to further (hopefully) assist it along!

Originally posted 8/06/2013:

New Pulmonary Valve!!!

Here’s an inside view of Before & After my new pulmonary valve surgery. Big difference! Just can’t wait to be fully healed up and out and about again!

Here’s some good news finally!!!
This is a letter I received from my cardiologists office regarding my recent stress test:

December 13th, 2013

Dear Mrs. Kilborn,
I’m writing to inform you that the results of the Cardiopulmonary Exercise testing you had performed recently have been reviewed by Dr. Stout. The results are normal for gender and age, and much better than the last time! All looks stable and we will continue to monitor you in the future as needed.

Amanda, RN
UWMC Regional Heart Center

Now ya’ll know why I’m so freakin’ excited!!!


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