Guess What I've been up to! ( the unusual story of my new heart )


Its been twelve and a half weeks since my transplant and how quickly the time has gone! My heart transplant was done a bit differently, so differently in fact I was interviewed by The Sydney Morning Herald and Chanel 10! I'll put the link to the Sydney Morning Herald article below!

Warning - There is a photo of my new heart sitting in a box (weird
right?)


http://www.smh.com.au/national/health/heartinabox-australian-woman-breagha-patterson-makes-medical-history-with-reanimated-heart-transplant-20160512-gotw3a.html 

Breagha Patterson with her grandmother Katie Graham and mother Maggie Patterson at St Vincent's Hospital.

Thnaks for reading! The Average Cyborg Girl is back! :)

I've Had My Heart Transplant!!


I can't believe it! I seems like yesterday that I was walking around with my ICD pacemaker and MVad heart pump device, now there's a strange flatness on the left side of my chest and a weightlessness at my right hip at the place where my driveline exited my stomach and the MVad used to hang.

All I have now is a beating heart ... I'm not a cyborg anymore.

Its so weird saying that

I'm going to be able to walk through airport security doors with no problem, fall asleep at night with my phone on my chest, shower without thinking about water proof bags and dressings, go jogging with my brother and play tennis like I did when I was younger.

This is turning out to sound pretty exciting!

My recovery has gone really well, so well in fact that a lot of Doctors told me its one of the fastest bounce backs from a heart transplant that they have seen in a long while.  What makes this even better is that I'm only nine days post surgery!

Heres a photo of me that was taken two days ago

 

Life is full of so many unexpected  changes, I imagined that I would be going to University this semester and have my MVad for a lot longer as well. My plans may have changed but that's alright, I can start Uni next semester and even though I have to build up my fitness again, things are going so much more quickly than I could ever have imagined. 

Yesterday one of our phones vibrated on the little table where I have my meals and look out through the window to Paddington and the sky and trees beyond. " You need to change your battery." My brother said to me as we looked around the little, white walled hospital room for the source of the noise. "Wait" he said. I could see the realization filling is face like a light. "You don't have battries anymore!" 

Its so funny not having to plug yourself into the power point in the wall at night or change your batteries every few hours. After doing it many times a day I almost began wondering how on earth the human body could function in any other way. I mean, how do normal people stay powered without electricity anyway right? 

Now I'm one of those "normal" people, now I'm powered like basically everyone else, with a real flesh and blood heart.  

- the-average-cyborg-girl 



I've been told they've found a heart!


I'm on my way up to the hospital for a heart transplant. I can't believe its really happening after all this time.

And I'm afraid...

But also I'm thankful

but mostly afraid.

I'm thankfulaid... or maybe afunkful

(Sorry, my sense of humor gets worse when I'm stressed)

2016 was meant to be a good year, I have been feeling so well and doing so many new things. I've begun University  (for two whole days) and I've felt so happy and healthy that for the past little while I've been thinking that maybe I don't want a heart trandplant, that maybe I could remain as I was for ever and not worry about ICU and hospital gowns for the rest of my days.

I couldn't have stayed on the MVad (my mechanical heart pump) for more than a few years however I felt about it. I new heart os what I need, nothing else can stand in itx place in the long run.

I wish I didn't have to have a heart transplant, I wish I was like my friends who didn't need to worry about things like this. I am very thankful that I can have this transplant even though at the moment I'd rathet almost do aything else. I hope my transplant goes smoothly and that my kidneys stay strong. I hope that before I know it I'll be out of hospital and breathing in the salt air by the sea.

- the-average-cyborg-girl

How You Can Make A Difference - Registering To Become An Organ Donor Is Now Online! (In Australia)



Registration to become an organ donor now has an online option in Australia!  

YAY! 



This means that it is now easier than ever to donate your organs, it is even expected that the number of organ donors in Australia will increase dramatically ( maybe up to threefold!)  

This is so great and I can't tell you how excited I am. 

If you live in Australia and want to donate your organs then click the link below! 

https://www2.medicareaustralia.gov.au/pext/registerAodr/Pages/DonorRegistration.jsp  

YAY! 

- The-average-cyborg-girl




Quote of The Week





I think if we applied this to our lives we would live very differently, I know I would.  

- the-average-cyborg-girl 

My Mvad Interview


I was just interviewed about my Mvad mechanical pump device by The Sydney Morning Herald! 




 If you would like to see, click the link below!

http://www.smh.com.au/national/smallest-heart-support-device-implanted-at-st-vincents-hospital-sydney-20160106-gm06ka 



- the-average-cyborg-girl

What To Do While Waiting For The Inevitable (And The Beginning Of Another New Year)


The phone rang and my pulse quickened, 'Could it really be?' I thought and slowly picked up the phone. "Hello." I said, my words sounded strained as if they came through gritted teeth or a throat that was being squeezed tighter and tighter with a spanner. "Hi" came a bright voice on the other end, "have you thought about your insurance lately?" my shoulder sagged in relief, it wasn't the hospital.

Like everyone else on the transplant list, at any time I could be told that a heart is available and whisked down through clean smelling corridors in a grey, drug induced lack of conscience to the place where people wear blue scrubs and carry long, shinny pieces of metal in the far off land of theatre.  For a few weeks it made me a bit jumpy, every time the phone rang I held my breath and imagined the possible series of events just like I was watching a brightly coloured, fast paced movie while clutching an overflowing popcorn box in the front row. Now that time has gone on I've become less afraid of phone calls, in fact I'm pretty relaxed about it, mostly.



It is an interesting experience waiting for something which you know you can't escape. Throughout the day you push it deep to the shadowy vault  hidden somewhere in the back of your mind and concentrate on what spread your having on your toast or what movie you're going to watch after dinner. Then with no warning it hits you and you remember the terrible thing that's coming and that however hard you try you know you can't escape. 

To be perfectly honest, I really do want a transplant and I am incredibly thankful that I can have one but... I don't really want one just yet. The thought of being cut up again and placed in ICU is one which I don't particularly relish.  

I can see a couple of options to choose from when you find yourself thrust into the terrifying middle of a situation where you can't escape. Option one (to become paralyzed with fear) is extremely attractive and for me involves barricading the door of my room and curling up with the internet or a good book and a family sized chocolate bar and hiding until the problem goes away. 

This option though seemingly laced with rational deliberation is actually intrinsically flawed.   

Option two is the hard one, the one which makes the left corner of my eye ball want to twitch. It is the option that calls for guts and boxing gloves and one that would never win a beauty pageant. 

Option two is to take a deep breath (maybe Google some inspirational quotes) and... get on with living 

I don't want to be defined by Cardiomyopathy or Doctor's check ups, I want to be defined by me. It is so easy to allow an illness to consume your very existence and its so easy to become 'the sick person' wherever you go. For next year I'm going to try and go to University, I'm going to try and get back into doing things I love, I'm not going to sit around and wait for the transplant to just happen. 

It doesn't matter what past we have or what chronic illness we suffer under, I believe even though it is desperately hard, we can move forward and fight for the act of living. Fighting for the act of living of course differs depending on circumstance, it might involve gathering the strength to smile through another round of chemotherapy or being able to find happiness while lying in a hospital bed in ICU. My younger sister is a good example of this. I remember when she was dying and the nurses were wheeling her down into theatre and she made them all laugh and smile at her jokes. She was almost always happy and cheerful even though life was so hard for her, she has taught me so much and she will always continue to be my biggest inspiration. 

2016 is now upon us and we have turned with fingers trembling to a new page to begin the next chapter in our lives. What this new chapter will bring is uncertain, the road might be straight with sunshine forming golden pools of light and adventure on the path and good times like shining pebbles littered along the way. But then  again, the road may be a hard one cast in deep shadow and pain and suffering will lead us and be our guide. Mostly years are a combination of the two but looking back there is always more good in life than bad. Whatever happens in the new year, be it light mixed with shadow, we can always fight for life, we can always find hope and something to fight for through our circumstances however black things may seem. 



- the-average-cyborg-girl