By the time EMS arrived and defibrillated me, I had been in a cardiac arrest (the absence of a life sustaining heart rhythm) for almost 10 minutes. I had experienced a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) something I had only ever heard of before.
The beginning of recovery held a lot of uncertainty. Would I work again? Would I ever get my memory and ability to reason come back? Would I ever be able to get back to my previous level of physical fitness?
We went through the steps and gradually things got better until we arrived at the best outcome anyone could have hoped for, but I was still angry and had now to focus that. I decided to set fitness goals I had never achieved before and, eventually, to use these to raise awareness and money to improve survival from cardiac arrest.
On April 22, 2018 I'll be fulfilling a longtime dream of running a marathon. Shortly after, on April 25, I'll be completing a 100 ton challenge in which I will lift 200,000 lbs in one day. Then, to round out the week, on April 29 I'll be doing 5050 push-ups! Look here for more of my thoughts on why I chose these challenges.
I am lucky. I get to post on a page with pictures of me leaving the hospital, climbing mount Vesuvius 5 months after my cardiac arrest, and hanging with my faithful training partners almost a year later. Unfortunately, most people do not enjoy all of this. Only 6% of people who experience a sudden cardiac arrest live to tell the tale. 80-90% of those survivors continue to have some level of disability, whether physical or emotional, after their event. I feel such gratitude to know that I am part of a small sample that gets to go on to do bigger, better things, than before. This gratitude, though, is accompanied by a responsibility to tell others about cardiac arrest and to raise awareness and funds to support those who are not as lucky as I am.
All of the funds given here (minus GoFundMe Fees) will go to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation to support their mission to raise awareness and improve survival. The only hope for survival is access to CPR and defibrillators which the SCA-F works to educate people on as well as help to provide at a low cost.
even if you can’t donate right now, please share this. Also please consider taking a CPR class. Some are available here The cost is small and will be well worth it if you are ever in a situation where action is required.
- Amelia Sear
- Family Sterling
- Patricia Shea
- Kathleen Engel
- Kenya Elliott
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