Jill McCabe

First post: Nov 26, 2018 Latest post: Dec 20, 2018
Welcome to our CaringBridge website.  As we did during our last surgery, we are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place.  As new information becomes available during this journey, we will update the site as our best way of keeping everyone informed.

For those who are not aware, I have a congenital heart defect called sub-valvular aortic stenosis - which means there is  a membrane constricting blood flow inside my heart in the left ventricular outflow tract.  In addition, and of lesser importance, I have 2 additional valve issues (mitral and tricuspid).  It has been 10 years since my last heart surgery.  At that time, we were hopeful that it might be my last.  Unfortunately, over the past few years, it has become clear that this is not our path and we have been monitoring the status to wait as long as possible to "restart this clock."  With symptoms mounting, I pushed up my check-up with the cardiologist to early September and it confirmed that the time is now and we must move forward.

The following 2 months, Brian & I have been spent consulting with Duke, Mayo Clinic, and Cleveland Clinic.  All of whom confirmed surgery needs to occur sooner rather than later.  We have decided to go forward with surgery at Cleveland Clinic on November 27th with a world renowned surgeon name Gosta Pettersson, MD.  The extent and magnitude of what will be done will be based on educated decisions when he is in there.  While we started on this journey to lock down exactly what will be done, it has become clear that it is better to choose a surgeon that you trust with your life and then give him the latitude to do what is needed.  That is what we have found in Dr. Pettersson.  This being my third open heart surgery means that, ultimately, we need to solve for the best chance at no more surgery, as the risks get greater with each.  We have made the decisions necessary for each possibility and now we leave it in the hands of God & Dr. Pettersson, in that order.

This is certainly not an easy time on our family.  Not something a family wants to endure once...certainly not three times.  But in all of this rain and darkness, there is light & we are so very blessed.  We have the great fortune to have access the best medical care available, we live in a time where things can be done to help, and above all, for me personally, there is truly no better support system on the planet than mine, lead by the most amazing husband and parents a girl could ask for.  The gratitude and love I feel is the part of this that brings me to tears.  After my last surgery I said that I consider it a gift that the busy hustle and bustle of everyday life cleared away for a moment and I got the opportunity to have a perfect view of what really matters in my life.  That truth still remains.  It is the love and gratitude I hold in my heart for the people the make my life complete. Thank you for being a part of that.

Maya Angelou said "God puts rainbows in the clouds so that each of us - in the dreariest and most dreaded moments - can see a possibility of hope." I look forward to when the rain ends and we can sit back and take in the rainbows.  It will be magnificent! 

With Deepest Love & Gratitude,


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