The Tricuspid Atresia Club!
This photo was taken May 3, 2008, at the Adult Congenital Heart Association‘s Bi-Annual Convention, held in Philadelphia. As you’ve probably guessed, all eight of us (I’m in the photo, too!) have heart defects. What is so unusual is that we all have the same heart defect. Eight adults, all living proof that Tricuspid Atresia (and heart defects in general) don’t have to hold you back.
Most of the enjoyment of the Convention was the opportunity to get together with people who understand. As I mentioned in an earlier post, almost everyone in attendance had “been there and done that”, and you didn’t have to explain things. For example, if you have a CHD, sometimes you just have a BAD DAY. Nothing is really wrong, you just feel as if your Get Up and Go actually got up and left. You can’t really describe it, other than to say you feel like a car with an almost empty gas tank. Your parents almost understand, since you’re their child and they can read you like a book; your Cardiologist probably understands, since he sees this sort of thing everyday. But to actually hang out with people who have been through the same thing… well, it’s a relief. They know exactly what you’re dealing with. Even though the convention lasted three days, friendships were made that will last a lifetime.
Have you figured out who I am yet? This photo leaves me scratching my head — all of us are survivors, obviously. And the Tricuspid Atresia Ladies are all beautiful. But the guy staning on the right got all the handsome DNA, all I got was a maroon jacket and a silly grin! 🙂