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April 17th...and my theory for happiness

No, it is not my birthday, or a special anniversary, or really anything other than an ordinary day, until April 17, 2009.  Growing up I always had AV node re-entrant tachycardia, a kind of SVT, or basically, a cardiac arrhythmia.  Still with me?  Essentially, I would be sitting doing nothing and my heart would start beating really quickly and irregularly.  It was weird and scary, but my doctors figured until it got bad enough that I would pass out, or happened really frequently, that they would just watch it and see.

During my sophomore year of college it got more frequent and would start to wake me up at night.  I got a cardiologist in D.C., but still didn't think much of it.  Then the night of April 17, 2009 came about.  I had just broken up with my ex-boyfriend, and was returning to his place to get my stuff.  It escalated to a huge fight and by the time I got back to my house I was in full fledged SVT.  It lasted longer than normal, and I was upset, crying and now scared I couldn't catch my breath.  Then it all went black.  Thankfully, my roommate was an EMT!  She called 911 as I slipped in and out of consciousness.  After that night, my cardiologist decided it was time to do something, and I was scheduled for an ablation (a procedure where they burn the extra electrical pathway in your heart).  We joked he literally broke my heart (and thank goodness he did, I had bigger and better things waiting for me!) A month later I had the procedure and my heart was better!

By July, I had lots 12 pounds and was diagnosed with gluten intolerance.  They think the ablation was my trigger.
The day after Christmas, I got sick, and stayed sick until my appendectomy less than a week before going abroad.
But, I swear this is a happy story!
One of my closest friends in my abroad program had a theory.  She believed that everyone has one year of their lives where everything goes wrong, and then when that year is up, their luck changes.  April 17th was when my health took a turn for the worse, so April 17th was the day my luck would change!  Every time someone would mess up my order, or I'd lose something, on of my friends would yell "April 17th!" and we'd count the days.  On April 17, 2010 they threw me a big party and it was honestly one of the happiest days of my life!  
 Ah, tequila...I miss college ;)
Funny side note, that night was one of the first nights Dom came out with all of us because he thought it was my birthday! It's actually May 17th and 2 years later he still gets confused.

I still see April 17th as my "new year."  This past year has some health issues too, but I now see it mostly as a day for my luck to change, and to be happy that I'm starting fresh!  No matter what struggles you're facing, or what obstacles have gotten in the way of your happy life, try to pinpoint when it started, or more importantly when you want it to end.  It doesn't have to be a year away, it could be even a month or week! My luck did actually change starting that April 17th 2 years ago, but I think what changed more was my attitude.  No matter what happened, I looked at the bright side because I didn't have my "unlucky' year to blame.  So give your life a chance to get you down, but don't let it keep you that way!  Once your "unlucky" time is over you have the power to make your luck change.  So go do it.  Find your April 17 and be happy, even if life is unfair.
"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it"-Charles R. Swindoll

Happy April 17th everyone!


  1. I'm gluten intolerant too =)

    And I love that ending quote, so true!

  2. wow, that's an amazing story!

    i love your friend's theory - it definitely applies to my life too! for me, i think things got so horrible at one point that when good things started happening again, i appreciated them more.

    great post!

  3. Happy April 17th! I already had my bad year (and if that wasn't the bad one I'm giving up!) so January 10th can be my "New Year"!

  4. it's great that you had something to look forward to "april 17" I bet it made everything a little better looking at that as a bright side, plus it sounds like it kinda worked... way to go friend with her awesome theory!!!

  5. This is a fun concept & such an interesting story!

    Once again, we have too much in common. I also have a "heart" issue. It isn't as serious as yours sounds. Mine is Atrial Fibrillation. But it does the same things & I always monitor it.

    Crazy how blogging brings you to people with similar stories :)

  6. Awesome story!! Love it.

    Oh how I love tequilla.... :)

    Great blog love!! xo.

  7. Absolutely love this story!!! Happy April 17th :)

  8. So, just read your post, and I have to say I simply adore your positive outlook, and additionally, your post really got me thinking. I too have a day like your April 17 day. Mine is November 21, 2006, but my turn around did not happen until two years later on November 21, 2008. I always felt there was a connection, but until you articulated it, I did not really see it. So thank you! And happy April 17th!

  9. Hey there! I just came across your blog today and saw this post and just had to read it! April 17th is my birthday and I was born on Good Friday! Isn't it crazy how some dates are your life saving dates? I almost died in May 2011 when I had 80% of my stomach removed and then a second surgery days later due to being septic. I spent a month in the hospital and had a feeding tube for 42 days. I didn't think I would make it-- and I did.
    I've been through so much in my life, after losing my son at birth, etc-- it makes you think you have a bigger purpose, doesn't it?

    Love the blog-- Jamie (from FL)


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