Let Freedom (of Arm Movement) Ring (Briefly)!

Why was it utterly urgent for Manny to get in one last frisbee throwing session today?! 

Or to enjoy one last summer jump in the lake with church friends, arms raised in joy?

Or to relish teaching his newest cousins how to do “The Karate Kid” with the proper position of the arms?

And why was it EXTRA special getting to see his many cousins and other relatives back in California recently, especially on the 4th of July, spiriting sparklers towards the sky?

How was it super refreshing to spend the day at a CA beach, exploring the shore with wild abandon, slinging a long string of kelp overhead at his battle-ready brother?!

And finally, why is Manny looking forward to avoiding any future lengthy, mandatory manual pat-downs by the TSA?

The answer to all these quirky questions is: in less than 24 hours from this post, Manny will undergo an ICD (Internal Cardiac Defibrillator) implantation surgery, in which a small, hockey puck-shaped life-saving device will be surgically installed either in a pocket cut into his muscle or on top of a muscle on Manny’s left side of his chest and then connected via electric leads stitched directly to his heart. Should Manny go into SCD (Sudden Cardiac Death), the ICD will internally shock his heart back alive, just as his current Life Vest would do for him externally!

During Manny’s recovery, his left arm will initially be in a sling in order to limit movement which could potentially dislodge the device which will be located near his shoulder. Manny will NOT be allowed to raise his left arm above his head or much at all during these next 6 to 8 weeks. THUS, he has relished the opportunity to STRETCH and FLING HIS ARMS freely with as much range of movement as possible until Thursday, JULY 27th when we will check in for his 10amET procedure with an overnight stay at Duke. 

If you’ve been following us on this blog for awhile, you may recall from a previous post that Manny’s cardiologist presented him with this ICD option over a year ago, but we did not feel it was the best option at that time. However, after much prayer and further consideration, we are hopeful that with this alternative cardiac implantation device, Lord willing, Manny may experience a bit more lifestyle freedom before he needs his heart transplant, whenever that may be. With the ICD, Manny’s heart will be protected 24/7 whereas he must remove his life vest every time before showering or swimming which then leaves him vulnerable. We also believe this device will make it easier for Manny to drive a car more safely, allow his skin to breathe better without the thick life vest layer during the hot and humid summers, improve his posture, and allow for less overall daily equipment maintenance. 

We covet your prayers for God to guide the surgeon team’s hands July 27th for a successful procedure with NO complications, an excellent recovery and as always, for our family to be a blessing to the stellar team at Duke.

THANK YOU for your heartfelt prayers and support! ??

Love in Christ always,

The Lees

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