Since then, as you've read, I have been on the road to recovery. Each day, week and month offering new abilities and opportunities, blessings and gifts. This past week, with school behind me and my lovely boyfriend in town, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to continue further up the trail, and take my first hike since my diagnosis and the surgery. For me, it marked an important occasion. I was finally going to try the thing which I had most obviously been unable to do before the surgery. It was one further test to prove my newly fixed heart was up to the life I wanted to live. Alert with the giddiness of adventure, my boyfriend Ryan and I set off to hike through Paris Mountain. We started on a simple, very flat, lake trail. By the end, both of us were yearning for more adventure and so we proceeded to the next trail, the Turtle trail. Then, realizing we were craving just a few more hills (probably more honestly, we yearned for more time to chat in such a beautiful setting) we continued onto the Sulphur Springs Loop. In all, we hiked approximately 4 miles. Here and there I would call for us to stop and take some breaks, but compared to my hike last summer,my energy levels and breathing were incredible. I never made it to a point where I felt I could not go on, quite the contrary! As we continued onto Sulphur Springs Loop an amazing amount of energy surged through my body, something I had not experienced before the surgery. Every step was energizing and I couldn't help but continue on my energy kick. The only thing that forced us to leave the trails (well... our feet were aching a bit) was our stomachs begging for food as it was nearing 2:00PM. By the end of our adventure, smiles were plastered on both of our faces. Between the hobbling from blistered feet, we celebrated the incredible day and I was overcome with joy that through the surgery this activity was now possible. My heart had passed the test. I could now do something not previously possible, as proven by the hike with my sorority sister last summer. To me, this adventure proved my heart, at least for now, is prepared to pump me through my goals and dreams ahead.
While this surgery is not a permanent fix, it has given me a new lease on this incredible life finally evidenced by my hike with Ryan. I am alive and filled with new-found energy that has allowed me to complete all these ventures over the past few months, including my most recent undertaking. I've been blessed with absolutely amazing friends who are willing to participate in my CHD recovery journey. To share on such an important venture with Ryan was an absolute gift. I was able to combine the new energy from my heart, and the developed friendships I've experienced through this surgery ordeal. Hiking up the hills in Paris Mountain I have reached a new height in my recovery. With only 11 days left until my sixth month's OHS anniversary, I am hiking to a new level of potential possibilities. I can now confidently attest that I am ready for the new and improved trail ahead!
|Ryan and I during our hike at Paris Mountain|