Episode 8

Published on:

7th Mar 2023

Overcome Open-Heart Surgery Challenges: Tools and Techniques for a Successful Recovery

#8 Boots Knighton has a candid conversation with Kari Potter on how Reiki, sound healing, and acupressure helped Boots remain calm in preparation for open-heart surgery as well as how it helped her process her grief when she learned she had been born with several congenital defects. Kari uses Suzanne, Boots's first name, to refer to Boots throughout the episode.

Website: The Heart Chamber (theheartchamberpodcast.com)

Transcript: Joyful Beat | The Heart Chamber (theheartchamberpodcast.com)

The Heart Chamber (@theheartchamberpodcast)

Thanks to Michael Moeri for being my right hand man. Michael Moeri - Audio Editor, Podcast Producer and Marketing Director

Thanks to Denise Hardy for your support and believing in me. linkedin.com/in/denise-hardy-30a51086

Music by AudioCoffee

Show notes

1:20 How Boots came to know Kari.

2:30 Boots’s “why” for today’s episode with Kari.

3:00 Kari shares the birth of Greenhouse Yoga and the benefits of what she and her husband bring to their practice each day.

5:30 Boots’s experience during a Sound Bath at Greenhouse Yoga.

6:20 Kari explains what Sound Baths do to the body and why it is so beneficial.

7:00 The parasympathetic nervous system and how Kari supported Boots in preparation for her open-heart surgery.

9:00 What is Reiki and how Boots was buoyed by it.

12:00 Boots was not feeling safe in her body waiting for heart surgery but Kari was able to help her calm her nervous system.

13:30 Distance energy work - what is it and how Kari used it to support Boots post open-heart surgery.

14:30 If listeners struggle with the word “intention,” substitute in the word “prayer.”

15:30 Since heart surgery, Boots feels as if she is a barometer now.

16:50 Kari offers the idea that we all have superpowers to heal ourselves and shares several ways to help yourself.

17:30 How to calm the nervous system through several simple exercises (acupressure points) you can do anywhere (while driving, in the hospital, waiting in a doctor’s office, at work). These exercises can help you get to sleep or calm you when you find yourself stressed from a conversation or while sitting in traffic.

21:40 Boots shares that the most difficult part of her heart journey were the medical bills and dealing with health insurance and how these exercises calmed her down.

22:30 The meridians in the body and our ability to work with them to support the body.

23:30 Working with the heart meridian.

27:40 Boots stresses the importance of visualization in preparation for heart surgery.

29:20 Kari talks about strengthening the spirit and what that means.

32:20 Everytime we go through a tough experience, layers of ourselves that aren’t true are stripped away.

33:00 Boots had to grieve that her body was broken and how she came to the other side of surgery and is able to reflect on one of the “best weeks of her life.”

36:00 Surgery does not have to be awful.

37:00 Kari met Boots wherever she was in her emotions pre-surgery.

38:00 Where emotions are stored in the body and how emotions affect the heart.

39:00 How grief protects us and our hearts.

40:30 Boots laments the toxic positivity culture and how it harms us and uses skiing as an analogy.

41:30 Kari shares two more acupressure points to clear grief for the heart.

42:30 Boots lacked the courage to feel grief.

44:20 Kari gently leads Boots into supporting herself to feel grief. This was profoundly powerful for Boots.

47:40 Boots has made peace with her heart journey with support from these practices.

49:20 How we can use our own sound to move energy and emotion.

52:40 Boots dares you to make your heart journey joy-filled.

53:30 Boots stresses that she needed a large and diverse team to help her heal. You can’t just do a little cardiac rehab and think all will be well. Be an extraordinary heart patient.


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Carrie and I have. Incredible conversation about alternative healing when it comes to the heart. She was instrumental in helping me prepare for open heart surgery,

if you would leave a review.[:

Your donation makes a huge difference in helping me keep the podcast going. I'm so excited for you to listen to Carrie and I's conversation, so let's get to it.

suzanne_boots_backup: welcome to the show today, Carrie. Thank you so much for being with me.

kari_potter-backup: Oh my gosh. Thank you for having me. I'm so excited to be here with you.

suzanne_boots_backup: So Carrie Potter and I have been, dear friends, I actually don't know how long it's been this, this amazing flow that we've been in. Several years now. and I first came to know Carrie through yoga in Teton Valley, and then I have also benefited from her husband's Qigong. but then Carrie and I's Friendship continued to blossom beyond that.

d she was a part of my heart [:

And still you can find hope and healing in this podcast. And so I invited Carrie on today to share some of her, her healing with us. And so just thinking back to those months prior to my open heart surgery, when I would come to your beautiful healing space in the middle of Teton Valley, Carrie, let's, let's just dive into that.

kari_potter-backup: yeah, the

suzanne_boots_backup: she laughs

potter-backup: It's pretty [:

He's an artist, professionally as well. And so, and it was kind of like a storage area. And when, um, COVID happened and the yoga studio we met at, we all met at, closed. He was like, he had the vision like, well we could have, you know, small classes and privates and do zoom out here. And I was oh my gosh, it is just transformative. It's really beautiful space. So he is got a lot of his artwork in it and there's growing, you know, plants and flowers and we like to say that we're growing yogis now . Yeah,[00:04:00]

suzanne_boots_backup: But you still have beautiful flowers in there,

kari_potter-backup: We, we do, there, there's a lot of, we do a lot of plants sitting for our students and clients , so they winter their plants in there, which make it more beautiful. but it is really just been an organically grown space. the, our offerings, it's all just kind of, it's kind of been blooming really just this last year I feel like.

suzanne_boots_backup: Mm-hmm.

kari_potter-backup: Yeah. So people can come, you know, for, we have yoga classes every week and, Chi Gong and, you know, our focus is not only on the physical realm, but, you know, yoga's a holistic practice, so it's gonna touch mental, emotional, spiritual, And we really highlight kind of the blend of the physical body with our subtle energy body.

like that, is a priority of [:

so yeah. And then we have these sound baths that we've been doing, that I've been leading in, bringing in sound healing as well. So really it's about moving energy and um, so that's what the sound does and reiki and the.

suzanne_boots_backup: Yeah. Amazing. And I've just recently, more acquainted with the, the Sound bath. And at first I was like, that sounds a little hokey. I mean, I'm not gonna lie,

kari_potter-backup: Yeah.

suzanne_boots_backup: and I, it's the real deal. And with every different instrument you play, my body has a different experience

kari_potter-backup: Mm-hmm.

suzanne_boots_backup: physically, like Yeah.

And when I leave, I can't do anything the rest of the evening. I just kind of have to sit there and chill and then I sleep so Amazing.

kari_potter-backup: Awesome. Yeah. And so, you know

backup: it is really has [:

kari_potter-backup: huh? Yeah. Well I am so grateful to be stepping more into that and sharing that because the, you know, the science of sound is that we're activating the alpha and the sayta brainwaves, which are our access to relaxation and meditation and creativity and our higher self. And so the sounds are doing that in our brain, which is turning on the, you know, parasympathetic nervous system.

And we know, as you know, Americans Western, we all need to chill out and we need to activate our parasympathetic nervous system and actually feel relaxation and especially here in Teton Valley, cuz we all are very active people. We need that balance. so I feel like the sound is really supporting that.

king of the parasympathetic, [:

kari_potter-backup: Working with your nervous system. Absolutely. Oh, oh yeah. Yes. Yeah. Reiki, is

a tool

suzanne_boots_backup: mm-hmm. , so, I'm just thinking back to this, I, I came several times before I left for California and for, you know, Stanford where I had all that testing done and obviously the pandemic ended up shutting down my heart, open heart surgery, and I had to wait a few more weeks. But

those sessions that I received from you, I can recall one in particular, well, all of them were really powerful, but there was one in particular where you played or where you used the singing bowl, the crystal singing bowl

kari_potter-backup: Yeah,

e heart frequency, and I had [:

Can we talk about that?

kari_potter-backup: yeah. What do you want me to say about it?

suzanne_boots_backup: All. Everything.


I guess you know, what I'm getting at Carrie is, you know, I want people to understand that like, reiki was such a crucial part of my preparation for surgery, like, and afterwards, but, you know, I've been thinking a lot lately about how did I have such a successful open heart surgery.

pen up their minds to what I [:

It's really not. Um, and yeah, and it really should be a part of preparing for and then healing from open heart surgery.

kari_potter-backup: yeah, so Reiki, for those of you, you don't know what it is. you know, it's reiki, it's, it's a life force and key chi energy, so it's about accessing life force energy, which energy is all around us. Everything gives off energy. and that that can be shown and proven and all that. so when you're, when you're working with Reiki, a practitioner like myself, like I'm using my hands, which all of our hands are electromagnetic, biomechanical, or biomagnetic, and give off, uh, frequency.

ention is to support healing.[:

Really the nervous system wants to feel safety. and when we've had traumatic experiences, it can get, you know, off balance cuz it's not feeling safe anymore. We have to bring in these practices to help, Reiki helps that, that's why Reiki helps with trauma. so you're essentially, it's just, I'm guiding energy flow into the body and it really focuses on, you know, the seven chakras, your energy field, the meridians of the body, through Chinese medicine and so that experience that you had, you know, it was like I was just directing energy flow into your heart.[00:11:00]

Now the bowl brings another type of frequency that's moving energy, through the sound, but also the vibration of the Crystal Bowl is literally moving through your body, your tissues. It works with the water and the body were made up of mostly water and fluids. So that came in and that brought some release for you, which maybe you wanna share more about, but that's kind of a general idea of what Reikis going to do.

And so I do wanna also add, like it's going to bring up any unprocessed emotions that need to come into your awareness to be moved. Energy again, needs to move. Emotions are messengers. They're here to inform you of something and if we judge them, shut them down, stuff them, we're actually creating more of an imbalance within our body.

s going to help that process [:

suzanne_boots_backup: Beautiful tha thank you for that explanation and something you said that really just resonated feeling safe in the body, and that was something I was not experiencing at the time.

kari_potter-backup: Before your


suzanne_boots_backup: yeah. Um, I felt like my heart was ready to murder me, you know, and, and I mean, it really did not want to murder me, but I just felt so unsafe and I felt like I was a walking heart attack, you know, ready to happen.

And I, from other heart warriors I've spoken with, they experience and report the same. And so I can only imagine had, you know, I not been, you know, the receiver of your love and care and reiki, I wonder how I would've gone into that surgery. because I can't imagine that's, that's helpful to go into a surgery with a jacked nervous system.

potter-backup: yeah. No, [:

suzanne_boots_backup: Yeah,

kari_potter-backup: I was,

suzanne_boots_backup: it did.

kari_potter-backup: I also, I remember we also did, like, I did a couple distance reiki for you when you were in the hospital too. And so I just wanna, you know, kind of just share about that because it's hard to wrap our minds around like distance energy work. Like, your hands aren't on my body, or I'm not with you, and how does that work?

of, we are all connected of [:

And, you know, I can set the intention, I can go through your body, I can offer that. , that intention, that healing energy. And it sounds like you had an experience where you're ex, where that process went better than you would've thought. And so it's like, okay, cool. , you know, and other people who are, you know, a lot of times I'm on the phone usually with people.

We weren't. We just edit it, you know, distantly you were doing your own thing. But, it works. All I'm saying is until you have the experience, you don't know until you try it.

suzanne_boots_backup: Right. And, you know, I think some, some listeners might struggle with the word intention, so maybe, um, substitute in the word prayer.

desire. What is your heart's [:

suzanne_boots_backup: Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm.

kari_potter-backup: There's my

suzanne_boots_backup: Well, and you know, and I think I've said this to you over one of our many t dates, but since my heart surgery, I've been turned into even more of a barometer than I already was. And I just can sense anything and everything and yeah, I'm learning to work with that better now and to have, you know, more energetic boundaries.

but for like the first year of going into a room, I could pick up on everybody's energy after heart surgery. It was, it was really uncomfortable.

kari_potter-backup: I bet. Mm-hmm. Yeah. 30 feet out, we can, um, feel into a room with our heart. So good. I'm glad you've been learning some boundaries,

backup: Yeah. [:

kari_potter-backup: Yeah,

suzanne_boots_backup: don't know if I said that right, Carrie?

Um, correct my words. .I'm still learning how to talk about all of this , so

kari_potter-backup: That was right on. It's perfect.

How do we

suzanne_boots_backup: superpowers and go from there.

kari_potter-backup: I want you all to know that you have superpowers too. And so what you're just saying is we all have the power to work with our own energy.

And so I'm

just gonna offer, it's what

I mean. Talk about empowerment.

suzanne_boots_backup: Mm-hmm.

my biggest lesson on my own [:

okay. So the first kind of trick I wanted to share, is called, I don't even wanna tell you what it's called. I just want us to do it first. But what I wanna tell you about is that it's going to calm your nervous system, and it's simply going to be placing one or two fingers. Right at the notch of your throat, under your Adam's apple, right under the, I think it's called, like the sternal notch.

And you're just gonna hold here and you can have your eyes open with a soft gaze or you can close your eyes and you're just going to begin to breathe

suzanne_boots_backup: if our listeners are driving?

kari_potter-backup: So if I actually do this when I'm driving, so don't close your eyes.

suzanne_boots_backup: Oh,

e, you know, and if you feel [:

Very powerful visualization. Very powerful. Okay, so just take some slow, deep breaths now in through the nose as you breathe into your belly. And now exhale out the mouth.

And continue to follow the pace of your breath, breathing into your belly, up into your lungs. Exhale slowly out the mouth.

So just continuing to breathe

am safe. I'm okay. Whatever [:

and you decide when you're like, okay, good. So, this is where you wanna hold when you're feeling, overwhelmed. emotionally, maybe you're in a rabbit hole. Maybe you're just feeling really scattered or anxious. I would say if you are preparing for an open heart surgery or you've just had it and you're recovering, you're going to wanna do this every day and maybe several times a day.

ve to do that over and over. [:

So this is ju you just go here, like, I do this. If I'm talking to someone and I'm feeling triggered, you know, it's like a lot of times we wear necklaces. I do. And so it's like, it looks like I'm playing with my necklace or I'm scratching my neck, but I'm just kind of holding here. So it's kind of a good trick to just be like, everything's okay.

Even if this, what this person is telling me is triggering me, I can calm my nervous system. Ah, and now I can have a new response to what this person is sharing with me. I use this when I can't get to sleep. so if you know you're laying on your side, you could just hold your fingers, you know, here.

atever resonates with you, . [:

suzanne_boots_backup: That's beautiful. I felt an immediate shift. And you know, Carrie, I'm wondering for listeners who maybe don't have as much experience working with their nervous system I'm wondering if it will take them a few tries to. To like

get in touch and feel their body. And so I, I, I just wanna encourage you like, it really does work.

Give your body time to respond and it's, this is free. You can do this when you're sitting in front of your doctor as they deliver you tough news. You can do this as you're opening medical bills. Like I found, of all the things that happened over my heart journey, the most difficult part of it were the medical bills and the insurance.

getting cut open. And so I, [:

kari_potter-backup: Yeah. Beautifully said.

suzanne_boots_backup: Yeah, I feel totally different. That's so great.

kari_potter-backup: so cool. should I show you some more?

suzanne_boots_backup: Oh, please.

kari_potter-backup: So I think it's important, um, that we know where our heart, meridian.

suzanne_boots_backup: And what's a meridian?

kari_potter-backup: so Meridian. Great question. So me, Meridian is a channel, it's a pathway where energy moves. And in Chinese medicine we have, 14 meridians, main meridians. And they're going to run to our organs and they're going to help, you know, make sure that our organs are healthy as well as they're going to help move emotion.

but their channels, I think [:

suzanne_boots_backup: Great.

kari_potter-backup: Does that make sense?

Okay. Um, how we connect to Meridians, this is we connect, can connect to them through acupressure points, so points on the body where we can access the river channels. So we're gonna access our heart meridian, and I just wanna show like where the river runs and then we're gonna hold a point to move the water.

So, just look at your left hand, at your pinky finger and your heart meridian starts on the tip of the, ring little is what I'm trying to say. Pinky is what I really wanted to say. Pinky finger.

suzanne_boots_backup: Pinky

goes inside of the wrist and [:

And then it goes up your bicep and it lands at the chest. So that's just the channel starts from the pinky finger inside the arm to the chest on both, both hands, both arms. Same thing on the right. So, we are now going to hold a point along this heart meridian, and so again, you'll find your left pinky finger and you'll run your fingers down the hand to the inside of your wrist.

And you can put one or two fingers there and you, this arm can be relaxed. You're holding it on your lap, but I'm just showing you're just gonna hold right inside the wrist, bone in line with the pinky finger. And this is heart seven. And as you're holding your fingers here, again, if you can close your eye, we can all be breathing whether your eyes are open or closed.

gonna hold here and breathe. [:

So it's gonna relieve insomnia, it's gonna reduce heart palpitations,

unctions, it's gonna balance [:

So with these accu pressure points, we're gonna just hold here and breathe. Light pressure. You're not pressing in, you know, real firmly. It's just light pressure, a connection. So you wanna hold these, you know, in real time, two to three minutes until you feel complete, and then you do wanna go over and do the other. Okay, so you'll go inside the inside of the, the right wrist bone in line with the pinky finger and you'd hold and breathe here.

oints. So that's heart seven [:

suzanne_boots_backup: That was great. It was so great. My cat wanted to, to join.

kari_potter-backup: So she wanted to join.

suzanne_boots_backup: yeah, she's sitting on my lap now.

kari_potter-backup: if you, you know, breathing and intention to move energy, it's powerful. Like we talked about, the prayer visualization's another powerful tool. You can imagine light flowing into this point. Or water, like warm water, you know, just, just a way to like connect into your heart healing.

y own visualizing the entire [:

and I really found that that was also instrumental. and I, visualized my surgeon having a good day. I visualized all the other like assistants in, in the, OR being in a great mood. And then I visualized angels being in the room as well as like my guides and. You know, I, I know that it worked because there was a, another procedure I had before that, which was the heart catheterization, and I had no idea what to expect, and I did no visualization, and I ended up being traumatized for over a year from the heart cath.

which was obviously way more [:

kari_potter-backup: Yeah.

suzanne_boots_backup: And then the, the other thing I wanted to speak to is strengthening spirit. Now part of me is like, oh, come on. Really, I can like, touch a little part of my wrist and, you know, I'm gonna become like this spiritual warrior, you know, , like, let's talk about that a little bit more.

What do you mean about that?

kari_potter-backup: Hmm.

suzanne_boots_backup: I can tell you that like heart patience, spirits get a little hurt, in the process. And so anything that can buoy our, our spirit and both emotion and mental, is, is so important.

acupuncture, and what I can [:

so I feel like it's a reminder that we are also spiritual beings having this human experience in this human body, which to me, at least in just my own, my own health journey, which has not included a heart surgery, but other things, I think remembering that our souls have these experiences for, many reasons.

you've watched me in my own [:

Every time we go through these really intense experiences and we don't know why they're happening to us, remembering that, there's a, you know, there's a greater reason and purpose and sometimes in the moment that doesn't feel very cozy and comforting and we're just like, well, I just think it's important to remember that we are these multifaceted beans. This isn't just your heart in just its physical form. giving out their, that's one piece, or I don't wanna say giving out, but it's like, it's here to show you something.

There is a less, there are lessons, there are, lessons for you to take away from the experience in the moment. That's hard to always know, but eventually you're gonna see, because you're already walking this Suzanne, that what you went through is now, inspiring you to help others who are going through the same thing.

And so that's a part of the [:

We thought we were this person, or this was two of us. And it's like, no, actually let's take that layer off what's really true inside. And I feel like that's where illness and injury lead us to.

suzanne_boots_backup: Ooh,

an with that for months, and [:

I just know that there's a higher power and that I know I'm well cared for. And, you know, I kind of call it the universe. you know, and I want people of all faiths and spirituality to feel comfortable listening to this podcast. And so I honor you, listener, and wherever you're at in your journey. But for me, like I just believed I was just this, like, reject body and blamed my mom who had already passed.

ive, which was my heart, was [:

And so I had to work with my spirit. And I remember the times that you did Reiki on me. I left, I, I, the only way I can describe it is when I would leave your house, I would feel like I was vibrating at a much higher level and. If, you know, there was ever an example of our thoughts create our reality.

It was me walking around saying, I'm defective, I'm defective, I'm defective. And then my vibration would get lower and lower and lower. And it's no different than you walk into a room and someone's grumpy. You can feel that and that their grumpiness affects a room versus you walk into a room with like a comedian and the room is just like so happy and it's like buzzing with good energy, right?

ey're able to meet you where [:

And I was thinking to myself, wow, that was one of the greatest weeks of my life. And here I was having my chest cut open. I threw up 25 times post sternotomy. And then I had too much of a laxative, which CRO caused another problem, , like it was this epic, you know, five days in the hospital. And I now say it was the greatest week of my life.

. It literally lifted outta [:


kari_potter-backup: yeah,

suzanne_boots_backup: and it, thankfully, I've been able to keep mostly in alignment since, cuz I, I'm not afraid to go back to that week and look at the pictures that my husband

kari_potter-backup: yeah.

suzanne_boots_backup: It's not that I'm like wanting re to relive it and ringing my wrists. It's, I wanna relive it because it was that amazing of an experience and I just don't think, you know, you hear of open heart surgery as being this horrific thing, but I don't think it has to be, it does not have to be, we do not have to bill surgery as like this ending of your life or like, it, it does not have to be as hard as society makes, it

kari_potter-backup: Mm-hmm.

suzanne_boots_backup: means us. What I think.

got cleansed out And so what [:

I feel like being angry. And I'm like, good. Okay. Be angry then be in your anger. Because what I don't want you to think is that like you need to judge your anger is bad or wrong and you know, stuff it away. But you, you're able to be authentic and just like, this is how I'm feeling. And I think that's why you are where you're at right now.

Because we've talked about, and I know you've brought this up in your blog about like toxic positivity and how like when we're so focused on thinking, well, we just need to feel joy and gratitude all the time, and if we're not, we just need to try harder. You know, whatever the messages out there that you're just like, okay.

y heart isn't perfect in the [:

Like we think we just have to, we just go to the joy, but it's like, oh, but they're the same coin but just different sides. so I wanna talk about that just in terms of like, energetically our heart and our lungs are. In the heart chakra. So chakra is just this, it's like a circling vortex of energy.

f and energy is moved there, [:

When we have lungs that are not honoring grief, not feeling it, we're more vulnerable in our heart. That make sense?

suzanne_boots_backup: Wow.

kari_potter-backup: I guess I did want to just

suzanne_boots_backup: Wow. So you're saying that feeling, sorry to interrupt, but you're saying that feeling sad, like allowing, feeling our sadness get protects us.

kari_potter-backup: Yeah, because it's like you're feeling this energy of grief, which in energy medicine is in our lungs. Our grief is held in our lungs, and our heart, when our heart is like healthy vibe and free flowing energy. We feel joy when our joy isn't there. I just, I have had this in my own experience and I, and I also can see how it works with Chinese medicine, energy medicine.

They're one and the same, is [:

suzanne_boots_backup: Wow.

kari_potter-backup: and, so it's a

suzanne_boots_backup: heard it put that way before. incredible. You know, I think of that, that I see a bumper sticker a lot, you know, in like the ski world, and it's like no bad days. And another hashtag, you'll see hashtag no bad days, or there's a bumper sticker. And then, um, another one is another best day. And I, I get like, you know, especially in skiing, people wanna talk about the stoke and get people excited.

And, but I think it, it, it also only continues to perpetuate that, that talk positive, toxic positivity culture that I, you know, write about. that we need to be given the permission to like, you know, have, you know, a boiler plate groomer day and be okay with it.

otter-backup: Yeah. Yes. And [:

So that's why we go back to like, The nervous system in balance, I feel like is the key to even being able to enter in a little bit more into those emotions. If your nervous system isn't feeling safe, it's not gonna feel safe to feel old grief.

I was just gonna share, we have time, just a couple other accu pressure points in terms of helping moving grief. we've talked about grief, you and I. Because I have, I've had greater access to that emotion in my life based on my soul is here to help clear grief from my own family, ancestral lineage, maybe past lives.

I'm just here to [:

suzanne_boots_backup: Right. I tend to be more of a flame thrower than a crier.

kari_potter-backup: yeah. So, anyways, we've joked before, like I'm here to cry for you and for all the people who don't cry as easily, I'm just, I'm helping to move the energy. were you gonna say something before I show these points?

suzanne_boots_backup: Yeah. Well, I think this is a good segue because, you know, sometimes I, I feel like I lack the courage to really grieve because I want to always have a good day because I want to have fun because I want to experience joy. And if I take a few minutes to cry or even just feel sad, then I feel like I've squandered a day.

kari_potter-backup: Uhhuh.

lf years and, you know, so I [:

And so, you know, my numbing now is to be busy. and I find that, you know, I'm a pretty courageous being except when it comes time to really feel deep grief and then all courage drains for me. So Do you have like a

kari_potter-backup: Mm-hmm.

suzanne_boots_backup: and I have a feeling I'm not alone in this. I think in fact, I, I'm a little worried that I'm really not alone in this

gh us? Or are these next two [:

kari_potter-backup: Yeah. Well, there's a lot to say about, you know, when our hands touch our bodies. So like, if you put your left hand over your chest or over your heart and your right hand on your belly, just this hands on, gentle, loving touch. there's something that almost immediately can happen whether you are aware of it the first time you do this or, two months from now.

ow, just take a few breaths. [:

and then. Crossing your hands at the upper chest here, right into like the corners of the chest. If you just like slide your hands down like a couple inches and your hands are just here, you're just gonna breathe again and you're, you're actually gonna make a connection with your lung points. Now, lung one, to be specific, we're just gonna hold here.

you can press in, you can massage if that feels good, or just hold and breathe.

s the sound of s like you're.[:

So it's not like we have to cry to release our grief and sadness.

suzanne_boots_backup: Wow. You know, just of those two words, acceptance and peace. peace was more resonant. I think I've fully accepted my journey.

kari_potter-backup: Yeah.

suzanne_boots_backup: I still have a little more peace to make with it all.

kari_potter-backup: Yeah.

bout things with your heart, [:

It doesn't mean that's the end, you know, like they're still monitoring and future, follow up visits with your cardiologist and then, you know, you never get to not think about your heart again. You know, I, I often explain that, you know, I don't walk around thinking about my spleen, or my kidneys, but I definitely think about my heart every day and it's,

kari_potter-backup: Mm-hmm.

suzanne_boots_backup: it takes up a lot of emotional and mental real estate, and so like, learning and it needs to, you know, like I still need to be careful.

And so it's, it's like how do you find the right amount, and all the, all the practices you've shared today. Like, help me to still consider my heart every day,

kari_potter-backup: Thank

lly, I really like this lung.[:

The lung points

kari_potter-backup: Mm-hmm. .Mm-hmm.

suzanne_boots_backup: Yeah, just wanted to explain how I would use that in my personal practice.

kari_potter-backup: Absolutely.

suzanne_boots_backup: Oh, this has been beautiful. Anything else you wanna share with us today?

kari_potter-backup: well, I just thought we would close by, using our own sound. we talked about sound healing and we've talked about, you know, those of you who have never done a sound bath, there's different instruments. Uh, I play singing bowls, drum, there's chimes gong, and then I use my voice and, so that's all great to receive.

alance, to release emotions. [:

Um, and you could, again, you could choose to put your hands over your heart. Maybe you're feeling tender, you've just had surgery, and that doesn't feel accessible than just put your hands wherever they feel good on your body or by your sides. And the sound that we're going to make on our exhale is the sound of a h.

So we'll inhale into the belly and we'll exhale. Ah,


t's using that vibration. Ah,[:

suzanne_boots_backup: wow, I feel that right in my heart center.

kari_potter-backup: yeah. And so I just pause and feel and notice. I often feel like it lights up my smi, my face with a smile. Like, I just kind of feel like a lift of endorphins, of energy. Um,

so yeah, just using the sound.

suzanne_boots_backup: and you know, for listeners who might be like, what the heck are they doing now? Like, you know, it's no different than screaming. I screamed the other day by myself and my car

over health insurance and I felt so much better. . So this is just a, a, you know, different type of screaming

's like, sounds weird, like, [:

If you wanna know like why or what, why would I do this? But it's like, it's just another way to support that system as well as your.

suzanne_boots_backup: And I can promise you listeners, that you will not hear any of this in a standard Western Medical Hospital. and you'll get the, you know, the standard, you know, American diet in the hospital. be given the medications, which some, which they are important. I'm on a medication for my heart. but you know, this, this only adds to your healing and I can promise it will make your journey just so much easier.

ous enough to work with your [:

I have found that I have needed an a, a very large team of people and every single person has been instrumental in my healing, and that includes my incredible surgeon and the different cardiologists and the nurses, but it also includes my acupuncturist and Carrie and, my massage. Like you. This is such a monumental event for the body that you just can't assume. You know, you go to the hospital, get your open heart surgery, do [00:54:00] some cardiac rehab, and then down the road you go skipping, you know, merrily and happily ever after. It's, it's more than that. If, if, and, and the more you put into it and the more you're aware of your recovery, it, it's amazing what your life has in store for you.

If you're willing to let it. Don't just be just the standard American, or if you're listening overseas, you know, I don't just be the standard heart patient. Be the extraordinary heart patient.

kari_potter-backup: Amen.

suzanne_boots_backup: Well, I think, I think we've said that all it needs to be said,

every listener should be levitating by.

kari_potter-backup: I think we're all levitating.

suzanne_boots_backup: Yeah. Oh, thank you Carrie Potter

for joining me today on the heart chamber.

kari_potter-backup: Thank you, Suzanne, for having me. let's do this again sometime.

ending part of your day with [:

I want to hear from you. Lastly, don't forget to leave a review and make sure you subscribe so you never miss another Tuesday edition of the heart Chamber. Thanks again. Have a great week, and I'll be back next week with more stories of open heart surgery and recovery.


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About the Podcast

Open Heart Surgery with Boots
A podcast for heart patients by a heart patient
Formerly called The Heart Chamber Podcast, Open Heart Surgery with Boots airs every Tuesday for conversations on open-heart surgery from the patient perspective. Boots Knighton explores the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual experiences of surgery with fellow heart patients and health care providers. This podcast aims to help patients feel less overwhelmed so you can get on with living your best life after surgery. You not only deserve to survive open-heart surgery, you deserve to THRIVE!
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