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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

It Gets Better

This is not really a poem or short story its just something I have had on my mind for a long time and just wrote it down so here goes. Im sure by now everybody already knows Im a big Jo Dee Messina fan and well listening to one of her songs made me start thinking. Its a song called "It Gets Better" below is the lyrics and a link to my youtube video I made for the song.

So here goes my views on this:

I have never been one to give up, I just somehow find the strentgh to keep fighting. I just get up up time after time again. However in all my years of all the hospital stays, sugeries, doctor vists, being teased and push down, I have often thought I'll get over it someday and be standing on my own two feet. I'll get better and stronger again.
But recently Ive thought does it really and truly get better, sure for a while it gets better but it always comes back. Take for example the heart has been great and going strong for years it did get better but 19 years later it comes back so therfore it does not get better forever just for a little while. My knee never got better yes it did get a little better but never fully got 100% better here i am waiting on surgery.
Dont get me wrong I love my life and everyone in it and I wouldnt change anything about who I am or my past, my past is what made me who I am today. All im saying is I have been re thinking things. This is an awesome song and I still listen to it all the time Im jsut saying that Im tired of always having to fight and Im tired of being the strong person.
Then I have been thinking outside the box and it truly will get better someday maybe not today or tomorrow but someday. Im talking about the day that I will be called home because that will be a day to where I will have no more surgeries, no more pain no nothing just happiness. Now Im not saying Im ready to go now but I have come to learn it does get better in the end and I can handle fighting and struggling with health promblems until that day cause in the end it will be well worth it.

Jo Dee Messina

This old world can be cruel sometimes
When you're looking for answers
You can't seem to find
No one understands what you're going through

Oh I know it can get lonely out there
When you feel like nobody cares
Well you look around thinking
If they only knew
Well I do

I've felt the chill of this world cut down to the bone
I've walked many a mile down this road on my own
I've been through hell on my knees
Come face to face with the devil
And I know that it's hard to believe
But it gets better

Time is a healer but we can't see how
When you're caught in the moment
And the hurting is now
We don't wanna see that maybe somethings
Weren't meant to figure out

I've felt the chill of this world cut down to the bone
I've walked many a mile down this road on my own
I've been through hell on my knees
Come face to face with the devil
And I know that it's hard to believe
But it gets better

This old world can be cruel sometimes
When you're looking for answers
Well just keep in mind
No you're not alone
We're all trying to find our way through this life

I've felt the chill of this world cut down to the bone
I've walked many a mile down this road on my own
I've been through hell on my knees
Come face to face with the devil
And I know that it's hard to believe
But it gets better

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Big Ugly Truth of My Life

So now that you guys know a little more about my surgery from my mom I thought I would share some other things about me that most probably never knew or even dreamed I have delt with in my life, this could get a little long.

I first want to say that I do not have much memory of my old hospital stays when I was a kid, I only know that I got to go everywhere with the nurses and doctors and yeah I was a little spoiled by my favorite nurse in PICU and my favorite dr. Oh I wanna add that I have been on the Peds floor recently at the hospital because my baby Logan from work had fell and was in there, but anyway I notice a game room, like the hot wheels cars and stuff like that. Im like dude where was all thsi fun stuff at when I was living up here they even had bikes its awesome that they put things like that for the kids but geez i feel old because they didnt have all that when I was there.
Anyways sorry bout that I remeber getting EKGs and be able to get a entire pad of those EKGs stickers and I would come home and play with my dolls and do open heart surgery on all my dolls and stick them with the EKG stickers. Those were the good ole days.
Since my mom made a big long post about my surgery not going to go into big details about that just that I didnt know what was going on but I got lots of goodies at the hospital and people came and seen me and my mom is the best mom ever she never left even to this day she always right there with me.
So After my surgery my heart was not normal but better I mean I had to always go to heart dr twice a year and still do just because of that one PDA that has never been closed. I always got sick I had gotten the flu every year it seems like and was put in hospitals if I got sick really badly. My entire life I missed more school days then what the school allowed but there nothing I could do because doctors didnt want me going to school and the school could hold me back casue I always had doctors excuses. However I was 2 years behind my normal age in school at times it felt strange at times I was made fun a lot for being slow. I was never in the speacial ed classes however when it came time for test taking I was in speacial classes and it really helped. Middle School years were the worse ever if it were up to me then I would have quit school but my mom never let me quite I thank her now for it. Im not sure why Middle school sucked so much I think alot of it had to was people seen me so different then most kids. I would cry myself to sleep every night for 3 years. I had to take P.E. classes and that was just pure hell people saw my scar and called me the freak girl I was know as the freak in middle school I did not have any friends in Middle School except one or two I was always the one picked last for everything. One time during P.E. class it was dodge ball and some chick I didnt like throw the ball at me very hard at my chest I have always been the quite type and one who doesnt break rules until you hit the right nerve then I end up showing my mean side, I grabed that ball went right up to her and said somethign along the lines hey do you think its cool or something to hit me the damn chest she and other girls were laughing I droped ball and pushed her straight up against the wall on the boys side of the gym and I said look dont mess with me and dont ever hit me again in my chest Ive had open heart surgery years ago and shoved her into the wall. I never told anyone that before I guess all this writing is just coming out. I made it out of Middle School the longest three years of my life.
Then I went to High School I thought it was gonna be the same as middle school. I was in band and my first year of Band Camp well I wanted to quite before I finish the 1st day and i probably would have if it wernt for a girl named Jessica  she was an upper classmen and lets just say she got on my nerves all the freakin time but it the end I learned it was just her trying to help me. What can I say Im stubborn and hardheaded I didnt wanna do anything anyone told me to do. But I started making good friends and i quickly learned it was going to be nothing like middle School. School work was a lot harder and I had to work 10x harder then anyone just to stay in the same grade leval and Mr. Williams Band Director made us keep a mininum grade point average and it took everything but I wanted to be in band, now Ill be honest I hated Concert band but I loved Marching band and in order to be in marching band had to be in Concert Band I was never the best player and I didnt try as hard as I could have but I had school work, band, Rotc, and still battling illnesses on my everything it seemed like. Not many people knew about my heart I was affarid to let people know thought they would make fun of me. Yes Im sure I could have done a lot harder in band but I was just so tired all the time and as long as I was able to get by and do what I thought at the time was all I did.
10th grade came and I started having bad back aches didnt know what from so went to doctor and said I had an inlarge spleen and was told the worse words ever "you can not march" I was mad but luckly I had a great Band director who let me just sit on sidelines and help pick up equimpment. I ment my best high school frined Toto, well thats just a nick name we gave her, my nick name was lil kevin (please dont ask). So I kept getting sick and missing school and sometimes I would miss school because of doctors and still show up for band practices. I finally found my best friend in high school and I told her everything I finally trusted her enough I showed her my scar one night and told her my story and she understood why I stayed so sick. However it did seem like the older I got the less I was getting sick I was like yes Im finally growing out of my sicknesses. (just wait it all comes back it always does).
Jr year comes and goes I was on uniform staff and still loved band I was 18 years old my JR year bout the same as the last two years.
Finally SR year arrives and SR game night came and went to fast I cried that night it was the last timne I would march on the Haughton High School field I gave it everything I had and pushed back the tears and went out there and performed. Then took the picture with my parents and band director. Now at this time my band director and I got into a big huge agrument a while back my JR year and we wernt on same good terms anymore. I quit after Marching Band there was no need to have to put up with concert band I was graduating in may so I didnt care anymore. Then I got my English 4 teacher he is what I call the teacher from hell I hated him with a huge passion, but most everyone liked him was a well known and well liked teacher with everyone but me. My promblem was that my older sister had him and she was perfect never ahd to study never had to do anything just look at a book and made good grade I had to work my ass off and it annoyed me. This one teacher always compared me to Nicki, saying crap like "well Nicki did this and Nicki did that" one day i got so fed up with that right in middle of class I sttod and said well I aint Nicki now am I Im April he made me go sit in the hall way for the rest of the class time. Then I found out that I was almost fixin to not graduated because of him and I asked was there anything I could do to get extra credit because I was working as hard as I could and still couldnt get a "C" he said I could interpt a song I was like yes any song of my choice he said yes in reson. I did Jo Dee Messina "It Gets Better" off the new album Delicious Surprise well at that time it was a new album. I had to turn in the CD case and CD cover I wasnt thinking its not a bad cover he had 2 promblems one he said he would over look it was a line in the song "Ive been hell on my knees come face to face with the devil" he said no one need to talk about the devil and then he almost took my Jo Dee CD case because of a certain picture and I said look she aint showing nothing she is clearly coverd by her arms and I said you can write me up expell me or whatever I dont care this was my excat words to him "mr hayden you have given me crap from day one and I take it day after day you talk about how perfect my sister was and how imperfect I am all Im trying to do is graduate High School I picked it gets better bvecause all the hell I have been through in my lifetime and it does get better but Ill be damn if you take my Jo Dee CD no one touches my Jo Dee CDs" he just gave me an odd look and passed me and as I walked out the door I was smiling and laughing and left. I can remeber that day very well it strange how we can remeber certain things and some we cant.
Anyway it was graduation day and I had to walk right pass mr williams to walk down the aisle and I almost starting crying but I didnt now after it was over I saw Mr Willams he gave me a hug and we made up and said I had a bright road ahead of me and he would never forget me it was an emotinal day.

And it starts again: about 2 weeks before I was suppose to start college I got a staff infection in my right hand and was put in the hospital for a little over a week. I almost lost my fingers Dr. B had passed away and I was sent to Dr J and even at 19 I seen a peds cardo dr he had to make sure my heart was well enough to cut on my hand and turns out there was a little red rash on my scar it was bothersome but my hand hurt more. So he sent me to Dr Manseny she one of the greats heart surgeons here in S'port. she said I had scar tissue but she wanted me to be discharged before she went in for surgery. A few weeks after my blood cells went down and I was sent home they did a minor heart surgery to remove scar tissue from under neath the scar.
A few years later did a heart cath to check on the PDA and it is still there at that time it was not leaking or anything it was fine. This is all taken place while Im in college. Come to think of it College was worse then High school I was out at least once a year for some kinda of surgery. I love my teachers and Deans they worked with me and know about my health. I meet my best friend Mary my first year of College we are still pretty close friends. She help me write my notes in English class because I couldnt use my hand. ANd as for as the work load it was freakin easy in college everyone always told me college was gonna be worse the high school but it was so much easier and I pass all my English Classes with an "A" and Coumputer, speech, Telcom classes with an "A" it wasnt hard for me I dont know why. I worked my way up in the Telcom department worked on student news and student films it was the best times and they understood about my illnesses. My last semester of college i injured my right knee at work lifting a slide and torn ligaments and did surgery and all kinds of stuff and still battling the knee injury I have a surgery coming up as soon as I get a phone call from dr and insurance approves it.

About 3mths ago my primary dr said he seen where theres a leak in my heart he seen that in the blood work. so I go next week to determine more about where and what is causing this leak.

So thats pretty much it told yall it was long its just my life nothing to important but I told yall i would write down and hope yall enjoy it and there will be post more about my health and heart  but just thought I would throw this out there for yall to read.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Where it all started

This writing is a writing from my mom's notebook back in 1985, I repeat this is not my writing it is told in my mom's opinion.

April Lynn Turner
Born: July 14, 1985
Where: LSUHSC Shreveport LA
Weigh: 5lbs 13oz (However within 3wks she droped down to 3lbs)

The first week of April's life was in NICU for Yellow Jondus, and also because she was a premature baby, my due date was Sept, 5 and April was born on July 14. After about a weeks time we were able to carry April home from the hospital, within 4-5 days April was rushed back up to the Hospital because she stoped breathing. When April was at the hospital we were told that she had 3 Congenital Heart Defects at that time we didnt know it was called CHD we were told she had 3 heart Murmurs. Aprils CHD's are ASD, VSD, and PDA. April was put into PICU and we played the back in forth game for a while; where April would be on the Peds floor for a while then back down to PICU it was a hard time for us. April took her first plane ride when she was 3 weeks old, she went to New Orleans in a private jet. April was so small that Cabbage patch clothes were to big for her to wear. We finally go to bring her bac home but we still played the home for awhile then back at the hospital for awhile, it got to be where April was a regulair patient and went everywhere with nurses and doctors, it truly was our home away from home.
April sat up at 6 1/2mths
April creeped around at 8mths
April Stood up alone at 13 1/2mths
Climbed at 16mths
Taken off bottle at 1 1/2 years old
Drink from cup at 7mths
Given juice at 4mths
Solid food at 6mths
potty trained at 1 1/2 years old

We were always told that April was going to die but I didnt wanna hear that I never gave up on April and therefore April kept fighting, she is truly my fighter even to this day. I didnt treat April any different then my oldest child Nicki we let April play in dirt and did whatever she wanted when she was at home. I never took pictures of April while she was on all those machines and tubes because at that time I didnt know if that would be the last time I seen her alive and I didnt want to remember my child that way.
So back to April's story at 2 years old April weighed 21 pounds, doctors started saying that the Murmurs were showing signs of closing on their own, however they also kept saying April would have to have heart surgery. The murmurs never closed on their own. April use to call her big sister Ick instead of Nicki because she had speech promblems, April went to speech twice a week, she was starting to talk a little more and went to church and learned the song Deep & Wide and drove everyone around her crazy with that song. At 4 years old April weighed 25 pounds she started school and loved. At 6 years old APril had her 4th Heart Cath the hospital called and told us that April would have surgery on Sept. 16 1991

Monday Sept 16, 1991: its 6:30am they took April to surgery I did not get to see April until 3:30pm it took them a little over 9 hours to repair her little heart, the doctor said they repaired the ASD, and the VSD, they told us that the heart had been out of April body for so long they could not repair the PDA if it caused promblems they would go back in there and repair it, April did very well during the surgery she got to come home that following Saturday she no longer had tyo take meds.

This is April only 6 months after her Open Heart Surgery:

There was no holding April down from the moment they took her off all the machines in the hospital she was ready to run and jump it was has if she never had surgery. She went home and wasn not able to go back to school for a long time she was home bound, we would have to tell April dont run, April dont jump, APril your not suppose to be doing that we tried our best to follow doctors orders but you couldnt tie April down she did whatever she wanted to do and there was no stoping her.

Years past and she went to high school and dances and graduated when everyone said she wouldnt she proved them wrong, She even graduated College I couldnt be more proud of her then what I am now. She has had many hard times in and out of hospitals her entire life she had many colds, flu, heart Failure, She has come back time after time again she is truly my mircle baby.

-April's Mom