Randy Travis’ LVAD device
Well, it has been a long four months, but I am finally home. As some of you know, I had to go up to Jacksonville to the Mayo Clinic to be evaluated for the heart transplant list. I have been initially denied because of the high presures in my lungs, caused by the overexurtion of my barely functioning heart. After some very serious consideration I decided to get an LVAD. Many of you may not know what that is. It is the Left Ventricular Assist Device (Randy Travis and Dick Cheney both received one.) You can see from the links that they were very different devices. Mine is the one that Dick Cheney got.
Dick Cheney LVAD device
At any rate, after I received the device on Dec. 17, 2013, I had to spend the next 3 1/2 months at the Gabriel House of Care. The people that I met during my stay have touched my life in ways I never could have imagined. I made friends, I mean real friends, who went out of their way to help me, both physically and emotionally. I did my best to return the kindness.
Spending so much time in a single place with the same peple for months, makes them like family. You get used to seeing them every day, talking to them, eating meals with them, and laughing and crying with them. On Thursday I came home–to my physical home. The house we bought in Orlando. I think it might be one of the most difficult things I have done. I had to leave people I came to care about and love to be where I live.
Gabriel House of Care, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL
It has been a very difficult journey, I have spent several days, and nights, in tears, I have also found myself getting reaccustomed to my home. Given my situation, it seems odd to say that home is where the heart is, but it is also very true. Sometimes it is excruciating to have my heart in so many different places.
There are so many people who I met at Gabriel House, but the ones who stand out did remarkable things for me. Thank you, Lavon, Cindy and Dearl, Sandie and John, Sharon and Tonyia, and Mike and Valerie. There are so many others, but I could write all day.
As time goes by I will be lettig you get to know some of the people I have met. You will love them.
And don’t forget, people need you! Become an organ donor. My heart depends on it.