Thank you guys so much for the fav's and the watches!
I wasn't expecting Rainboom to gain as much attention as it did, but it kinda blew up in attention quickly so when I saw my inbox getting flooded I was in silent awe of what was going on. I don't usually reply to every comment but trust me, I've read every one of them.
Everything's settled down now, so I feel like this would be the best time to actually make a journal post about it and some other stuff too.
Oh, and this is my first journal post, so uh, yay! I think.
About Rainboom--if you guys read the description, I did mention that it started out as vent art. Well, I feel that right now it's the best time to explain the backstory behind that. If you wanna read on, cool! If you don't, eh, that's fine too.
So let's rewind to 4 months ago in November 2016--when probably one of the most significant (and traumatic, maybe) events happened to me.
It was around 3:00PM. I was in college, sleeping in my car, parked in one of the parking lots. I was waiting for my sister to finish her classes so we can both drive home together. Eventually she arrived and she got in the car, and I started driving home, asking her how her classes were and all that, normal stuff. Then all of a sudden, I started feeling an sharp, intense stabbing pain in the left side of my chest. I tried to ignore it as I continued driving, but then the pain got so bad that I had to ask my sister to drive the rest of the way home, in hopes that the pain would pass.
So, we switched seats. She drove, I sat in the passenger seat. Pain wasn't going away. And it just got worse from there. Just moments later I suddenly started feeling pins-and-needles in my fingertips and my toes, and the sensation was growing. When I felt the same sensation across my face, I knew something was wrong. Shortly afterwards, I felt my breathing quickly fall shallow, causing me to panic and hyperventilate, which caused the muscles in my fingertips to lock up due to the excessive buildup of carbon dioxide. My sister saw me breathing for my life, asking me if I should call an ambulance. I told her to call 911. We veered off the main road and into one of the side streets of a neighborhood, where we immediately pulled over. As I heard my sister talking to the 911 operator through the phone while gasping for breath, I was questioning if this was the actual moment that I was going to die. I was focusing purely all of my concentration on one thing: staying alive as long as possible until help arrives.
Thankfully, help did arrive, after around 5 minutes or so. A firetruck came first, where paramedics came to the car and asking me questions about my condition. Even though I was extremely short of breath, I was still stable enough to give a simple yes/no answer, or a simple nod or shake of the head. The ambulance arrived around maybe 5-10 minutes later, where they later transported me to the hospital. In no time, I was quickly escorted to the Emergency Department, where they took an x-ray of my chest. After the x-ray, they put me in one of the treatment rooms of Emergency.
Around maybe 20 minutes later, one of the nurses came in and told me that I was diagnosed with a condition called a pneumothorax
, or in normal terms, my left lung had collapsed. Air somehow leaked from an opening in my left lung and started collecting in the space around it, restricting my lung from expanding. It was a major pneumothorax that needed immediate intervention, because my left lung had collapsed by 75%, so at that point I was only operating on one lung. If left untreated, it would be life-threatening due to the pressure built up from my left lung pushing against my heart, potentially cutting off blood flow from arteries and thus putting me at risk for death.
Later on, I was escorted to an operating room, where the surgeons made a small incision on the left side of my body and inserted something called a chest tube through the incision and into the thoracic cavity, the space surrounding my left lung. There, the tube started suctioning out the air gathered in the cavity, finally allowing my left lung to expand. Just moments later, I felt my head clear up, my concentration restore, and my breathing normalize and start taking in precious oxygen again; I felt as if I just rose from the grave.
Of course, I had to stay in the hospital doing nothing but laying on a hospital bed for about a week with the chest tube still inside while they periodically checked how my left lung was doing. During that time in the hospital though, they asked me more questions about the incident, about what I was doing, etc. The doctors later told me that the specific pneumothorax I had was spontaneous
. The real kicker about a spontaneous pneumothorax is that there is no clear reason on why it happens
; it simply does. It can't exactly be predicted, and although it's a very rare condition
, it can also happen to a young healthy person too
In the end though, I was able to fully recover and have the chest tube literally
pulled out of me. I had hoped that what I experienced over the week wouldn't happen again and that I could return to my normal life.
Well... unfortunately I was wrong.
Last month in January, I had just finished breakfast and was going to get ready for class, but suddenly I felt extremely short of breath when I tried to walk. I didn't even strain myself; just simply walking caused me to start hacking up dry coughs and make me winded, which greatly concerned me. I called my medical advisor, telling her my symptoms, and she said that I should be checked at Emergency to see what's going on. I didn't think this time was a reoccurrence of what I experienced because it didn't feel nearly as painful or severe as before, but I still felt uncomfortable.
I was later admitted into one of the treatment rooms in Emergency again, and after taking an x-ray, they told me I had another pneumothorax--again, on the left side. My left lung had collapsed by 40% this time, and even though it's not as severe as last time, a reoccuring pneumothorax meant that I had to have surgery directly done on my left lung to treat it.
After the doctors reinflated my left lung using a special pneumothorax kit, I was transported to another hospital where I would have the surgery done. The surgery was successful as they told me they removed a cluster of "cyst" structures (whatever that means) that they found on top of the upper lobe of my lung, and in addition they intentionally scraped the wall of the cavity to induce inflammation, so that my left lung can stick to the wall to drastically reduce the chance of reoccurance.
Four days later after the surgery I was discharged from the hospital, from there I would have to stay home for a week to recover and help my lung expand and strengthen itself. It was painful to take deep breaths in the first few days, but as the days go on it gets a little more easier. Even now I'm still recovering, which at the time of this writing is about two weeks after surgery.
About three days ago, worries about my condition started to haunt me. What if the surgery didn't do anything to help? What if I get it on my left side again? What if it happens again, and there's no one there to help me? The worries got so bad they started to affect the way I thought and talked a little bit; usually I would be on edge or very watchful on the pain I was feeling in my body. I was getting absolutely paranoid about it. And I was starting to think that this might be something I have to live with for the rest of my life.
Well, until I realized that being paranoid about my condition for all of my life would mean I would be living in fear all of the time. Even though those worries were constantly present in the back of my mind, at the same time I knew I couldn't live in a shell forever cutting myself off from everyone and everything. I had to at least live my life, too.
And... well, commence Rainboom. A picture where Rainbow Dash does the impossible, and proved that what was once thought impossible, is actually possible.
So... you can imagine the shock and joy I felt when I saw the picture getting the reception it has. Never has one of my pictures gotten this much reception--not even my picture of Moonlight Tide where I had submitted that for EQD's Drawfriend. I only submitted Rainboom for Rainbow Dash day--I was never expecting it to appear in the Drawfriend as well.
So... thank you guys. A lot. It really does mean a lot to me that you enjoyed the art and felt some sort of powerful emotion from it (hopefully), or it just looking cool and badass, which is fine too. I'm glad that the aspirations I had for myself translated well into a piece of art that you guys can find joy in, too.