Aortic dissection & aortic aneurysm information support group

Aortic dissection, aortic aneurysm - The aorta - Life after an aortic dissection

I have just returned from my first holiday since my AD last August.  It has been a long year recovering but most of all it's been great just being here.  My husband, sons, parents, brother and his family spent a week together at Centre Parcs.  I managed to swim and cycle which was a real treat as I wasn't sure whether I'd be able to do either of these things.  There certainly is life as AD and it's there for the taking, I can't do all the things that I could before my AD but I appreciate the things that I can do massively.


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Comment by Timo Söderlund on November 15, 2012 at 11:45

Again - thanks !!! Take care & all the best wishes to you and your family. / Timo

Comment by Nicola McMeekin on November 15, 2012 at 9:31

Hi Timo, 

That is a hard question, different things at different times were difficult.  To start off the pain from the operation was bad, it was several months before I was pain free and I found that very tiring.  I also found adjusting to my 'new normal' hard - for instance I can no longer do a weekly shop for my family because I can't lift heavy things - I now get food delivered each week which is great.  I found that I couldn't do everything I wanted to do for my family but they are happy to help out and I now gladly accept that help.

But I think the hardest thing was the fear of having another AD and dying before seeing my sons grow up.  I need my heart valve repaired/replaced and when I was told this 3 months after my operation it really scared me and that's when I became very scared of dying - every chest pain I had I worried was another AD.  I wanted to make it to Christmas and was frightened that I wouldn't - I wrapped all the Christmas presents early and sorted everything out in case I wasn't there! Sounds silly now but I think being told that I needed more surgery really threw my recovery when I felt I was doing well.

However, I am no longer scared of dying, I am grateful for each new day and being here to share it with family and friends - sounds corny but it's true. None of us knows what the future brings but we can enjoy the ride!  I had such a great time on my holiday and enjoyed shooting down the water rapids and going out cycling, of course there were activites that I couldn't take part in but I was official photo taker!  Now I go to the gym and circuit training each week and really enjoy that but it's taken a while to get to that point, I do a lot of walking. 

I am so amazed at how well you are doing, just finding this website is a huge step on the road to recovery.  I hope all is well in beautiful Sweden.

Take care,  hugs,


Comment by Timo Söderlund on November 15, 2012 at 4:34

Wonderful. I am now 45 days since my AD 1 oct this year. Every day is a blessing, and reading you blog post gives me hope. If you look back on your year of recovery - what do you think has been the most difficult part in this year ?  All the best & hugs from Sweden / Timo


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