Right now, getting surgery seems riskier than ever. But certain procedures can’t be halted. And that includes an open-heart surgery that singer Amy Grant recently received.
Amy Grant has been in the music industry for quite some time. Her first album, self-titled, was released in 1977. From there, she earned her title as the “Queen of Christian Pop.” Currently, she’s 59 years old — and opening up about her heart defect.
The singer was born with a condition that she said is asymptomatic. She learned about it for the first time after undergoing multiple tests. But it was eventually figured out based on genetics. Her doctor, John Bright Cage, suggested she get the tests done due to her father’s heart issues.
And that’s when they found the problem. She was diagnosed with PAPVR, short for partial anomalous pulmonary venous return.
“It’s fixable, so instead of concerts and camping trips this summer, I am going to take care of my heart,” she said on Twitter back in February. “Are you taking care of yours?! Please do.” Humorously, at the time, Amy didn’t realize that everyone’s summer would be lacking concerts this year.
The surgery happened this week. And according to Amy and her team, everything went well.
Aside from her music, Amy is also known for her unique love story with Vince Gill, whom she wed in 2000. When the two first met, there were definitely sparks. However, both of them were involved with other people, so they never acted on anything.
The two first met through work back in 1993. “We were both married, and though we were crazy about each other, we thought, ‘Well, that’s not our life,'” Vince told AARP. “The hard truth was that we never thought for a minute that we would wind up together.” The important part is that they did stay faithful to their marriages and didn’t act on impulse.
It’s hard to rebuild a new life after leaving the one you had prior, but both Amy and Vince eventually knew that it was what they had to do. “I knew from the tips of my toes that he was unlike anybody I had ever met,” Amy added. “I related to him on such a cellular level. I was just so overwhelmed by him as a person that I finally came up behind him and wrapped my arms around him and said, ‘I’ve needed to do this all night.'”
The two eventually divorced their spouses and had to deal with the media backlash once they announced they were together. Plus, they had kids from their prior relationships who were also affected by the split. “It was hard,” said Vince. “The kids, the popularity of our lives, a lot of tongues waggin’.”
But Amy helped to make it work. As Vince said, she was the glue that helped hold the new family together. Eventually, the two had a child together. But Amy realized that at her age it had taken more of a toll on her body than she thought. Vince told her that every day she aged, she became even more beautiful.
Comments like that are why fans are so in love with the couple. “What’s funny is I see old photographs of Amy in her 20s, and she’s much prettier these days,” Vince admitted. “She still does it for me.” So you can bet that he was incredibly supportive of Amy during her surgery.
According to Amy’s rep, who talked with Today, everything went perfectly during her big surgery. “She had open heart surgery to correct a condition from birth the doctors discovered during a heart check-up called PAPVR,” the rep said. “Thankfully the doctor said it could not have gone better. We’re praying for a full and easy recovery over the next few days, weeks, and months to come.”
Her team also chose to make her surgery public information, posting directly on her official Facebook page. “From Team Amy – with all that is going on in our world that needs our collective prayer, please also join us in praying for Amy this week as she has heart surgery to correct her PAPVR condition,” the post said.
Hours afterward, her team came back with a positive update: “Thank you for so many prayers today. Amy is out of surgery and the doctor said it could not have gone better. We would ask for continued prayers over the days, weeks and months to come as she makes a full recovery… xo.”
Amy’s journey brings up a few excellent points. For one, many diseases and conditions don’t include any symptoms. Sometimes, we can be suffering without even knowing it. During the times we’re in now, it’s a healthy reminder as to why we’re still trying our best to stay indoors. We may be carrying something deadly and have no clue.
Secondly, it’s a reminder to keep up with your doctor appointments. As you get older, you may want more extensive tests done. We can’t predict the future, but we can be proactive and try our hardest to stay as healthy as possible. Without her doctor’s intuition, who knows what might have happened?
Thirdly, genetics are important. If you know that certain ailments run in your family, it’s good to keep on top of things. If you know you have a history of breast cancer in your family, getting checked by a professional early on is a smart way to make sure you prioritize your health.
Not all of us love to go to the doctor, especially if we have no current symptoms. But Amy’s doctor could have saved her life by giving her a ton of heart tests as a preventative measure. There would have been no other way she could have figured it out otherwise. Now she’s taking the steps to prolong her life.
Hopefully, Amy has plenty of time to relax and feel better. Her family needs her to stay strong. And as she’s still actively making music, just like her husband, the music world needs her to crank out even more wonderful albums in the future.