I found that the troubles I experienced during my eleven plus months in the hospital, and there were many, exhausted my ability to remain positive all of the time. I experienced life threatening events on what seemed like a daily basis. These events unfolded in and around me. I sat in my room for several months unable to even walk, due to compression fractures in my back and ribs and this resulted in almost total de-conditioning of my body.
But, even during all of this, I found that somewhere inside, I believed that I was going to survive and see my house and my dog Kenna again. I latched onto anything positive I saw or heard. I am a great watcher of trends and statistics, so I would track my blood work numbers daily and look at positive trends. I would ask about what percentage I had of survival and, if I heard it was an eighty percent mortality rate, I looked at it as a twenty percent survival. I would say to myself, OK, I am going to be one of the twenty percent.
My point here is “attitude”. Positive attitude and a firm belief that I was going to survive this and get home to my family and friends got me through. Of course the stupendous efforts of the doctors and nurses and staff were there, but still, without a positive attitude I am not sure you can survive an ordeal of CHF, LVAD and transplant and all it entails.
I was blessed with family being there almost daily,and friends came out of the woodwork to show their support via email, visits and texts. There were thousands of people praying for me all over the world. I focused on those prayers and actually felt them helping me along.
I want everyone to know who reads this to know that your attitude affects your ability to survive and in term it gives your healthcare provider a better chance of saving you. I actually saw several people lose their hope or belief or positive attitude and they did not make it. I know there are always technical reasons but I believe that their loss of positive attitude contributed to their passing in to the other side. Be positive, it may save your life.