A routine checkup saved Amy Grant’s life.
On Thursday, the singer appeared on “Good Morning America” to talk about undergoing open-heart surgery in June.
“I had an irregular heartbeat for the last 10 years, and it exhibited every day,” Grant revealed. “It bothered me a little bit and then I’ve had a harder time singing in the last five years… everything kind of tightening up as I was trying to sing. I remember a couple times telling [husband] Vince [Gill], ‘I feel like I’m suffocating.’ It’s the weirdest thing, I’m breathing as deep as I can, but in my mind none of that had to do with my heart.”
In 2019, her doctor encouraged the 59-year-old to undergo tests, which showed she had a birth defect called partial anomalous pulmonary venous return.
The doctor informed her that she would need to go through surgery before she turned 60 to prevent her condition from potentially worsening very suddenly.
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Hi everybody…. I know there is so much going on in the world right now. This is a crazy, broken, yet beautiful time. And in the midst of all of that – in the midst of all of our awareness and becoming and learning to love and see each other – I’ve had this really unique experience of having an unanticipated open heart surgery. The only way I can explain my experience would be to ask you to imagine a non-runner who was signed up for a marathon. I didn’t want it, but I had to have it anyway and it was a week ago Wednesday. And as people heard about the surgery I started getting messages: “I’m praying for you” …“I’m praying for you”. People I worked with decades ago, people who have come to my concerts or listen to my music, my work family, people on social media, and my own friends and family all offered their prayers. And now, ten days later, I just want to say, from the moment I went to the hospital, if it really were a marathon race, I felt like I got into that runners block and as soon as it was time for the race to start there was this massive West Texas wind at my back.. just pushing me through. Even stuff I was really scared about felt like nothing more than just a deep breath and something supernatural pushed me through it. My recovery has honestly felt miraculous. And so I want to say thank you to each person who said a prayer for me. Prayer changes everything. Let’s keep those prayers going for our country and lets turn all the brokenness into love and seeing each other. I love you. Amy
“They were doing an ultrasound of my heart and the doctor came in. He said, ‘Vince, this is the kind of situation where Amy would be fine, fine, fine, and then one day it would be catastrophic,'” Grant recalled. “And we don’t know when that would be, but it would have been sooner rather than later.”
Saying that she is “so grateful” her condition was caught in time, Grant encouraged others to get regular checkups.
“If I have got something wrong, anybody could have something wrong,” she said. “My message would be, take a minute and take care of yourself. You don’t know that something is wrong unless you make sure it’s right.”