That's not good news...I hope for the best for him
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I, too have been in touch w JD for quite a few years, although never had the chance to meet, living 1/2 way across the country. Believe it or not, he is looking forward to getting a new heart and a better quality of life down the road. Me, I'd be scared witless ;~) There's also another thread about J.D. posted a few days ago here. Maybe our friendly moderator will merge them.
Thanks Greg, you know I love you. This is very kind of you to post.
I posted this response on the other thread too, but noticed this one now so I will post it here to.
These are strange, exciting and yet humbling times for me. When they placed my name on the transplant list six months ago, I had a very hard time with the concept that one phone call could be the start of a very new journey. Now my name is moving up on the list, and it should be within the next six months, and possibly today! Imagine getting a phone call, Yes sir, your heart is on its way as if it was an amp being delivered.
This past twelve years have been quite a long road, living with a chronic illness is not recommended. There have been three or four distinct times when my wife, Julie and I were sure I was on my last month of life. These often included hospital stays, and sometimes a procedure. These periods would be followed by endless months of recovery and learning to live with yet another setback.
Through this time, Audiogon has been a major factor in keeping me interested in life. I know it sounds lame, but it is true. When you are limited so severely, little things like music become major focuses. See I can do music and from this came a very special group of friends. Most of my active Audiogon days were in the late 90s and early 21st century, consequently many of my friends are less active than before. That does not mean Audiogon has not remained a huge part of my life. I still check in a couple times a day to see whats being talked about. I often follow threads as they progress, and at times have tried to offer a few thoughts.
When I started building cables for sale, I tried to stop the forums because I have not wanted to find myself in a situation where people would question my thoughts because I might have other motives. This has been painful, for I do enjoy the interaction, but I think it is most important to not confuse the topic. On occasion a thread that I might have thoughts on will come along, and it is safe to talk without risk of
Anyway, Audiogon has remained a big piece of my life since my heart attack twelve years ago. Sadly, this last year has not been so good. If you can imagine, listening to music has become too much work for me and my system has sat many nights silent. Just getting up and finding music, putting it into the cd player and going back to sit down can be too much. How silly is that! If I reach above my head (for a cd) or bend over (to find a cd) I can and do pass out. I once passed out and hit my head on the corner of my amp, knocking the amp off its isolation cones, and leaving me a bloody mess laying unconscious on the floor.
Cool huh! I have been quite light headed lately, and must be very careful to get down if Im going to pass out, thus I dont fall too far.
This does not mean I go without music completely. I started having a hard time sleeping as I lay thinking of what will happen if Finally I tried headphones in bed (like High School) which was good, so I got some better ones and a cheap (relative to our hobby) cd player with an internal headphone amp. I listen to one disk every night, and have found a different way to enjoy our great hobby. As I do with my system, I am able to escape my mind and benefit from the therapy of music. Funny thing about this bedroom system, I have a pair of $500 Dennon headphones, $500 Shanling Audio cd player with a $2000 power conditioner and two $1000 power cords. How stupid is that! But hey, it sounds very good, and I have discovered detail and room information lost in my big system.
So anyway, I continue to enjoy music, just differently for now. I look forward to a day when I can again have the energy to call John Fox and play with him at his house like we used to do. I miss that very much my friend. I look forward to a time when I am able to travel, perhaps meet some of my Audiogon friends at a show or in their homes.
My list of want to dos includes a family vacation rafting down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. I did this in High School and have always hoped to take my family, with our disabled son on the same trip. I have a plan to do this with a local friend and his family. Next on my list is a skiing vacation with my two oldest kida. We just started being able to ski the same extreme drops I loved when this all happened. Now I come to find my kids hardly remember me not restricted by my health. How sad to know my kids do not remember the active outdoors physically fit man I think of in my head. I hope to create some new memories for them soon. Third on my list is Julie and I going to New Zealand. I have a very dear local sailing friend who now lives in Auckland six months out of the year. His daughter has five kids and a husband from New Zealand, so he now splits his time between his daughters here and there. This of course gives me an excuse to meet one of my longest Audiogon friends, Redkiwi. He and I exchange ideas and family information periodically, and he is one man I deeply hope to meet in person.
These are my goals, as for professionally, I doubt I will go back to architecture, despite the fact that I was very successful and love to design. I think it has been too long, but I might be surprised by how I feel. One thing that suffers from low blood flow is my brain power. I simply could not formulate, retain and enact a design at this time. It would simply exhaust me, and most likely cause a physical reaction. I might try and make Jade Audio more than a hobby and sharing of my discovery with friends, but I would hate to make this a profit center at the lose of feeling I was sharing the hobby and playing audio.
I wrote a book (unpublished) a few years back, I loved the process, and might consider sharing my story in that way. I might simply volunteer at the High Schools architectural program. This is something I did for a few years before it too became too much. I miss that, I love working with kids, and helping them discover the creative side of themselves. I helped quite a few discover where they fit, and they have gone on to pursue careers in architecture.
Hell maybe Ill win the lotto, and simply ride off into the sunset. Problem is I hear you need to buy a ticket to win, and I quite doing that years ago.
OK, back to this thread, I hope we can share this process together, and perhaps I am able to share some of the life lessons I am learning in the same way I shared my audio findings over the years. Just know the people at Audiogon have been vital to my survival over the past years, and I thank you for your love and friendship.
I had a ham radio friend who had a transplant, lots of stories.
When they found a heart for him, they flew it in by copter (in a styrofoam beveridge cooler packed in ice, no less) and showed it to him before the operation. As he later said, "How many people can say they have seen their own heart?"
One of Joe's medications turned his skin quite dark and one day we were stopped by a police officer while driving. Aparently, the officer thought he was black and kept looking at Joe, then looking at the driver's license that pictured a obviously white Jewish gentleman, then looked back at Joe... Finally, Joe asked (in his Philly accent) if there was a problem. The officer handed him his license back, just said "No" in an exasperated voice and walked away!
The point is that Joe had some wonderful years after his transplant and had a ball. JD, I hope you have as great a journey as Joe did.
I love the story, thank you. The jock at our house is:
"The phone rings and I am told the heart is on the way. I wake up my daughter (she has been studying heart transplants over the Internet, and hopeful is up to speed). Next comes the knock on the door, the gentleman states he has my heart in the cooler, and wishes me good luck as he drives away. See the cost of the heart is one thing, the surgery is another."
Of course this is just something we kid about, trying to keep the journey a positive one. We are always trying to find things to laugh about, and I think we do well. The lead up to this transplant is hard as my health seems to fade weekley. I just got back from a couple days at the hospital. The preformed another anagram so they can look inside my arteries and bypasses. Turns out the second of my four bypasses has closed up and yet another is also closing. This explains the continued dizziness and hard breathing. It also helps explain the pain I feel more often than not.
The thing about this who process is you need to get sick enough to get help, yet being this sick makes muscle lose and fitness level continue to decline. I just hope I get to the day with some of my body function good. I do love the concept of feeling good again, and like your friend, making these coming years fun and worth living for.
Again thanks for the story,
This is just a quick update for those who wish to follow my progress as events unfold. A life long friend and I have been working on setting up a Caring Bridge website. This will become a clearing house for future updates (both medical and personal) on an as needed basis, and likely every couple weeks until the surgery, then most likely daily for some time.
I encourage you to log into my site http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jademacrae where we have already posted my story which provides some background on my family and me. I also have updates on my latest health and personal information. If you wish to sign my log book or offer your wishes, please feel free to do so.
Thanks for the support and love.
This news is a long time coming, but I just returned home from 12 days in the hospital where I received a heart transplant! I hurt and am tired, but so very excited for a better future after 17 years of being very sick.
To those of my Audiogon friends who have followed me, thank you for your prayers and support.