“I almost died” syndrome is real

*sigh* “Here goes nothing” I say to myself before I begin typing this unapologetic, unedited, maybe too honest post but please bare with me.. I needed to do this for myself foremost and 2nd for those suffering right along with me. Today, I’m going to speak about what is not on the paperwork the doctor hands you with a shiny black doctor pen before you possibly sign your life away for surgery or a procedure nonetheless. This isn’t about the risk you take when you go under but the trauma you will face afterwards.

January 19,2018 I had heart surgery as most of you know shortly after my right lung collapsed.. shortly after that I’d return to the hospital for lung surgery for the fluid that returned then followed by a blood clot and pericarditis.  Interesting enough that wasn’t the worst part because in every moment I mention all had  one thing in common .. I was fighting for my life. There was no time to question “ Why or How ? “ So I didn’t.. I fought and fought for my life everyday. 

But what happens to the young 22 year old woman when the pain subsides and all those negative thoughts you were forced to push in the back of your mind while you ran from the lion of death? What happens once you get in the house and lock the door? Once you’re safe & sound is everything better now? NO but I wish I could answer Yes. But what real good would that do ? If I wasn’t being honest with myself 

Almost 7 months post surgery while my heart rate is fixed yet I don’t feel better. Now that I’m no longer fighting for my life in that way, I have time to think more than I’d like too. I Question my purpose here on earth? Do I deserve to live? Why didn’t I die? How much longer do I have? Why am I not happy that I survived ? I ask myself those questions everyday. I lose sleep as I now battle with my mental health. Why don’t doctors talk to you about this part ? Because it’s real 

How do you ask for help when you aren’t addicted or abusing drugs? You aren’t cutting yourself? You aren’t trying to kill yourself but you’ve still questioned your life here on earth. How do you get help when you don’t fit into a box of what depression is ? Who do you go too who won’t judge you ? And think you’re just crazy. I’m left to pick up the pieces of my fragiled young mind by myself. 

This isn’t Heathly and it shouldn’t be the reality for those who go under the knife for our diseases/illnesses. Doctors have to step up and have those conversations before and after! No matter how hard it may be for them it’s even harder feeling like you have no where to turn just because you don’t fit the criteria for the mental institution. I myself can now write this very candid post because I’ve Identified what’s wrong and I’m working through my emotions day by day. But it’s not fair to begin with that I must go through this alone because no one talked to me about it prior to surgery. 

In conclusion to my road to recovery my first step is admitting I’m angry about what happen to me and looking in the mirror and facing my truth. Which is what happen to me was awful nonetheless but it doesn’t define me as a person. I may not be 100% health wise and that includes my mental health but I’m living in my truth. And I want the same for every single other person who has survived a surgery, heart surgery or not! This one is for you too 

 

Love, 

Emaje Harris