Darrin Nelson of Rochester, NY, wrote this blog entry on Sept. 1, 2009, the day after he was released from Mayo Clinic – St. Marys Hospital following minimally invasive heart surgery to repair his mitral valve. This is the first post in a series of four.
As a very active 44 year old male, I am extremely surprised to be writing this for many reasons. I'm actually sitting across the street from the Courtyard Marriot in a little park in front of Saint Marys Hospital, which is affiliated with the Mayo Clinic, on Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009. You see, I was discharged from Saint Marys Hospital last night about 7 p.m., exactly 72.5 hours after having Dr. Rakesh Suri perform a successful minimally invasive, robotic mitral valve repair on me. It's partly sunny here and in the mid 70s, certainly not the nicest day I've experienced, but is definitely one of the most beautiful days I've been able to enjoy, with a mitral valve that doesn't leak anymore.
This is my story.
Happily married to a Sicilian for 19 years with almost 300 of her closest relatives living nearby, my friends and family are not surprised why I call Rochester, N.Y., my home. But when I broke the news to them that I was going to need heart surgery, they were all blown away. I have devoted much of my life to healthy living and nobody would have expected that I would have to endure this challenge, including me.