It’s incredibly strange to start writing about yourself online and I don’t really know where to start. I thought it might be quite easy to begin this – as usually I can talk the back legs off a donkey – but I’ve tried for countless amounts of hours to think how to begin writing and it’s proving harder than it once seemed.
I guess it’s best to get the introductions out of the way first – hi my name is Mya, I’m 19 years old and I have heart disease!
No, I wouldn’t usually introduce myself in this way to people in my everyday life, but you’ve probably read the title of this blog and have a couple of questions, like “what is the point of this all?” or “why would I want to read this?” and to those questions – I have answers!
If you’re reading this, then there is a chance that you will know me – some of you may know me well and some less so, but I’d like to create a space where I can educate all types of people on the ups and downs of being a teenager with heart disease (or just a teenager in general, it’s tough!!) and share with you some of the things I’ve learnt over the past six months since my diagnosis.
After being in hospital for a week and sitting under piles of leaflets which I was given to try and better understand my condition, I found that they all spoke about things in a methodical and rigid way. By no means was I expecting the leaflet to jump out at me and start breaking into song and dance – but honestly, I just wanted to know if my life as a teenager would be the same after I had my operation. This is when I had the idea to create a blog for teenagers who were in a similar situation as me: living a normal ‘young-adult’ life one day, and being told you’re semi-dependant on a battery powered device, the next.
The main point of this all, for me, is to offer a real-life perspective of life post-diagnosis and post-ICD (if you have one, that is). There are ups and of course, a lot of downs when it comes to being a young person who has just been told they have one of the UK’s biggest killers. The amounts of times I re-read those booklets to try and see if I’d ever be able to do the same things that I loved doing before was ridiculous, so if I am able to help even just one person to feel like everything will be okay then I’ll be so happy.
As for the second question, “why would I want to read this?” well, I don’t actually know why – it could be a lot of things. Maybe you have heart disease yourself? Maybe you have recently got an ICD fitted? You might have a loved one who is going through something like this and want to understand? Or you might just be interested! Regardless, I want to welcome everyone to read this because there is currently no cure for heart disease – just ways to make things more manageable. This means the more people who speak about it and are aware that it doesn’t just effect a certain type of people – it effects everyone and anyone – then the more chance we have of finding a cure someday! (This makes me very excited!!)
I hope you will enjoy reading about my ICD & me!